Ohio Brewery News



Cheers to eight years of beers from Staas Brewing Company! Liz and Donald Staas opened their cozy neighborhood brewery on July 25, 2013, becoming one of just a few dozen craft breweries in the state at the time. The creation of a small brewery permit that year removed some significant barriers to market for those looking to get into the brewing business, as evidenced by the more than 300 breweries that have opened in Ohio since then. Staas continues to chug along, knocking out small batches of flavorful ales from their basement nanobrewery. Belgian styles – including a spectacular, Trappist-influenced quadruple ale – have been a focus since the beginning, alongside many other quirky, classic beer styles and hoppy brews for the popular palate. The brewery will celebrate at their brewery taproom in Delaware on Sunday, August 8 with special selections from their cellar and some new brews as well. Follow Staas on Facebook for updates in the week leading up to the festivities: facebook.com/staasbrewing


Respected Ohio beer writer Rick Armon used to call me around this time every year to ask if the Ohio Craft Brewers Association could say how many breweries sent beer to the Great American Beer Festival competition. Out of humility, caution or superstition, brewers generally kept mum about what, if any, beers they were submitting for GABF judges’ consideration. A few have dared to break that silence this year, including Shaun Yasaki of Noble Beast Brewing. He announced last week that he’s sending two-time medalist Murder Ballads Baltic porter back into the ring, along with five other beers. In a show of faith toward crowdsourcing, Yasaki is also sending both collaboration beers made with the Cleveland Craft Beer Community Facebook group: The Baker’s Russian imperial stout and Prognosticator doppelbock. To answer Rick’s perennial question, OCBA facilitated the shipping of competition beer for more than 80 Ohio breweries this year, with another few dozen expected to have sent entries independently. Hopefully this results in a whole bunch of Ohio brewers taking the stage at the awards ceremony in Denver this September. See Noble Beast’s GABF submissions at instagram.com/noble_beast_brewing


Food and beverage is a notoriously difficult industry in which to differentiate yourself from the competition. Occasionally a good marketing idea is initially written off as niche or novelty, but is eventually proven to be brilliant. Take Biker Brewhouse in Youngstown, for example. When they opened their doors in 2017, they proclaimed themselves as the first and only brewery located within a Harley-Davidson motorcycle dealership. While it may have seemed like a gimmick, brewer Larry Wilson kept cranking the throttle on his brews, oftentimes barely able to keep up with customer demand. The brewery and the dealership were a symbiotic fit, and Biker Brewhouse outgrew its small corner of the building. This month, the brewery opened their new, expanded digs at the dealership with a larger taproom, more brewing capacity and an expansive outdoor area to host loyal customers. Saddle up and head out to Youngstown to check out what’s new. Photos from the grand re-opening party are posted at facebook.com/bikerbrewhouse


While it has only been around since 2018, the Northwest Ohio Brew-B-Que hosted by 4KD Crick Brewery has become one of the state’s most enjoyable beer festivals. On Saturday, August 7, two dozen northwest Ohio breweries will gather in Defiance to sling beers alongside a barbecue feast prepared by Sweetwater Chophouse. The full list of participating breweries has yet to be released, but expect many of the region’s traditional favorites to be supplemented by some of the area’s newer brewers, combining to offer a wide variety of craft beer styles. Admission includes drink tickets for 12 four-ounce sample pours, with options to add the barbecue buffet or a VIP experience that comes with reserved seating and a complimentary pretzel necklace. Follow 4KD Crick on Facebook throughout the week for more announcements, or secure your tickets now on eventbrite.com


If you’re the kind of person who likes hunting down as many recognized beer styles as you can, you may want to make your way out to Wooly Pig Farm Brewery this weekend. They recently tapped a Bernsteinfarbenes weizen, a particular South German beer style that literally translates as “amber-colored wheat.” If you thought the name was a mouthful, wait until you taste the beer itself. Bernsteinfarbenes weizens couple yeast-derived flavors and aromas of clove, vanilla and banana with caramel and bread notes coming from the use of amber and red malts. This style is sweeter than a Bavarian hefeweizen, but not as dark and roasty as a dunkel weizen or as rich and heavy as a weizenbock. This relatively rare style is available on draft now at Wooly Pig’s brewery taproom in Fresno. Don’t worry if you can’t pronounce it when you order… “BSF” will do just fine. Read more at facebook.com/woolypigbrewery


Cheers to six years of beers from Fibonacci Brewing! Another of Ohio’s longer-tenured nanobreweries, owners Betty and Bob Bollas have been serving small batch brews from their converted flower shop taproom in Mt. Healthy since 2015. Two years ago, they opened Fib Farm, their on-site urban farm complete with a second taproom space, beer garden, AirBnB accommodations and the brewery’s famous goats, Honey and Fiddlehead. This Saturday, July 31, both taprooms will be open for Fibonacci’s anniversary festivities, highlighted by five special beer releases. Sour fans will enjoy Rubus Trillium, a wine-barrel aged sour ale with blackberries, while dark beer aficionados will appreciate Maillard Maple Cinnamon pastry stout, aged in New Riff bourbon barrels. See the full tap list at facebook.com/fibonaccibrewing


It’s been a long time coming, but we’re finally ready to bring back Ohio Craft Brewers Association Signature Events after the pandemic layoff. Ale-O-Ween, our Halloween-themed beer festival, returns to Dayton on Saturday, October 23. We’ve moved this event to Eichelberger Pavilion, the stunning new ballroom located at Carillon Historical Park. More than 40 Ohio breweries will be on hand serving up seasonal specialties, barrel-aged cellar selections and popular favorites. As in prior years, Ale-O-Ween doubles as a huge costume party, so come dressed to impress for a chance to win prizes in our costume contest. Ale-O-Ween tickets go on sale this Sunday, August 1: we’re running an early bird discount through August 30, so order in the next month to save 20% on early admission and general admission tickets. We’ll start announcing the participating breweries in mid-August as well; expect some heavy hitters as we encourage our member breweries to show off their best beers at our Signature Events! Get all the details at ohiocraftbeer.org/ale-o-ween

Categories: Brewery News