I have a general rule when I travel somewhere new: find a brewery and find a coffee shop. They’re the best way to get to know a place, from every big city to even the smallest town. Find out how people like their coffee – pour overs, cappuccinos, espresso – and how they like their beer – big stouts, tart farmhouse ales, hopped up IPAs – and you can read the local vibes.
This means it’s easy to get to know Ohio these days; it’s really a great time to be a fan of craft beer. Every city large and small is opening small breweries and taprooms, or canning and bottling beers to share. I find people gathering around their new local watering hole to share a beer, enjoy local food trucks, listen to live music, and more. Here are five new spots – open 6 months of less – we’ve found around the state.
Maple Lawn Brewery
110 Mulberry Avenue, Pomeroy
“Brewed with pure Appalachian spring water,” it says above the bar at Maple Lawn. Their sizeable taproom still feels very cozy, and their beers are all designed for easy sipping, from the fruity Pomeroy Pale Ale to the clean and clear Chief Cornstalk Colsch. I also love how their beers are like a mini tour of the region; they incorporate local produce like strawberries from Meigs County or pawpaws in the cream ale arriving in the fall.
Kindred Artisan Ales
505 Morrison Road, Gahanna
I’m not as much of a fan of wild and sour beers, but Kindred might convert me. The Gahanna brewery focuses mainly on sours and farmhouse ales. Their tasting room is brand new, but it still has that comfortable, cozy-up-to-the-bar feeling. If you’re still unsure about sour beers, just think of them as tart. Sour has such a bad connotation, but “tart” makes me think of candy. Try their Farmhouse Pale Ale and Berliner Weisse for starters. I also love getting to see their barrel-aging room; it’s loaded end to end with barrels for aging and blending their sour beers.
Euclid Brewing Company
21950 Lake Shore Boulevard, Euclid
Euclid finally has its own brewery and taproom! Their little storefront is a great spot to try flights of beers, sip on pints, or fill a growler to go. The taproom is currently only open Thursday through Saturday evenings, but so far they’ve been winning fans with easy-to-love beers like their Sims Beach Blonde, Session Saison, Isosceles IPA, and Moss Point Pale Ale. They’ve also started featuring some collaboration brews, like the hoppy wheat they made with Cleveland Brewery.
Two Monks Brewing Company
352 Massillon Road, Akron
Two Monks hasn’t even celebrated an official grand opening yet, but they’re already serving pints and filling growlers at their taproom. They’ve said that their goal is to preserve and perfect classic styles, although I’ve seen them flex their creative muscles a bit, too. So far they’ve debuted beers like a pale ale, a Czech pilsner, and a schwarzbeer, but they’ve tinkered with fruit beers and a hefeweizen as well.
2800 Woodburn Avenue, Cincinnati
Woodburn uses a stylized phoenix as their logo, to symbolize the rebirth of brewing in Cincinnati (a city with some serious brewing heritage). Their taproom and brewery in Walnut Hills combines modern design elements with historic touches. Their beers range from simple like the pale ale or Belgian wit to fun and complex, like the Cedar IPA, pineapple saison, and chocolate cherry stout. And they’re starting to serve small plates from Mazunte Taqueria in the taproom!