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Dojo Gelato opening stand-alone shop in Northside

Dojo Gelato, a Findlay Market staple for six years, plans to open a stand-alone location in the old J.F. Dairy Corner building at 1735 Blue Rock St. in Northside. Owner Michael Christner says he hopes to open by early spring next year and be the first place in the neighborhood to serve ice cream.  
“I’m really excited about the new location,” Christner says. “I like to say that I bought myself a job when I started Dojo six years ago. So far I’ve far succeeded the goals I set out to accomplish with my business and can’t wait to see what’s next.”
When Christner and his wife moved to Cincinnati about seven years ago, they settled in Northside. He looked for locations in the neighborhood for Dojo then but didn’t find the perfect spot. Now that he and his family have moved elsewhere, he’s bringing the business to where it all began.
“It’s very serendipitous,” he says. “Plus, the building was an old soft-serve stand.”
Not only will the new Dojo location serve gelato, but Christner plans to put his own spin on traditional ice cream treats such as sundaes and soft-serve. He also wants to expand the menu he offers at Findlay Market, which he can’t do right now because of space constraints there.
The Findlay Market location is only 210 square feet, and much of that is used for production, which is done on a rolling cart. With a larger space, Christner will be able to develop new treats and flavors.
Even though Dojo won’t open in Northside until 2016, Christner plans to move all of his production work to the new location as soon as possible.

CincyLocals travel advice app launches for All Star Game test run

Jordan Axani posted a note on Reddit six months ago, looking for someone who had the same name as his ex-girlfriend to take her ticket and go on a trip with him. The story went viral, and the experiences of the trip helped him come up with the idea for Triplust, a mobile platform that asks locals for travel insight.
“Whenever Elizabeth and I checked our phones, we had hundreds of messages from locals who were giving us travel tips and ideas and inviting us out to dinner,” he says. “It was very cool to have this experience of seeing and doing things that not a lot of people get the chance to.”  
Unique, off-the-beaten-path places aren’t usually on Yelp and Trip Advisor. Those are the things the locals know about and want to help others find.
Axani and his business partners, Sebastien Filion and Andrew Vine, started their business mentoring class at The Brandery on June 16. Axani says they applied to a number of business accelerators but The Brandery really understood the opportunity of a product like Triplust.
“We’ve all been very fortunate to live all over the world, but we’re having an incredible time here,” Axani says. “There’s this amazing sense of hometown pride here, and we’ve been discovering so many things because we’re hanging with locals every day.”
Triplust launched last week as CincyLocals, a simplified version of the app designed specifically for the All Star Game.
“There’s so much more going on this week outside of the All Star events downtown,” Axani says. “The city wants to throw an amazing experience, and we want people to have that experience.”
Twenty locals are volunteering their time to give visitors free travel information. The volunteers specialize in food and beverage as well as baseball trivia and history.
“We hope that CincyLocals is as much a local thing as it is for visitors,” Axani says. “We want people to feel like they have a trusted friend with them everywhere they go.”
It’s a free app, but people are generous and willing to pay for insider travel information. For that, there’s a tipping functionality built in and users are given $10 of free tip money.
The app will be live through Wednesday, July 15, and then will be taken down to assess its success. It will be relaunched as Triplust in August, when it will go live in a number of domestic and international cities. At relaunch, the app will be available in the iTunes store and on the web, and it will have a personality matching algorithm that pairs users with a local with the same interests.

Local vintage outfits host popup shop at Brick OTR during All Star Game week

Two local vintage stores, Flying V Vintage and Mike’s Vintage Toys and Collectibles, will host a popup shop at Brick OTR during All Star Game week. The shop will be open 11 a.m.-7 p.m. July 13-14 to sell items from the ’80s and ’90s.
Up to this point, both operations have sold exclusively online and through direct sales models. Jason Helferich, owner of Flying V Vintage, says the popup shop is an experiment in the feasibility of having a permanent brick-and-mortar store in the future.
“Both myself and Mike Patterson (owner of Mike’s Vintage Toys and Collectibles) were looking for a way to engage customers in an offline setting and generate awareness of our businesses and the type of products we sell,” Helferich says.
The popup will feature vintage sports apparel such as T-shirts, jackets, jerseys and snapback hats, with an emphasis on baseball apparel since it’s All Star weekend.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Real Ghostbusters, GI Joe, WWF and WCW action figures and toy playsets will also be available for sale. Helferich says that the most desirable items might be be a Chalk Line Chris Sabo Fanimation jacket and the original prototype toys from the ’90s Jim Carrey The Mask animated series toy line. Items will range from $10 to $150.
“We hope to bring something unique and different to the weekend,” Helferich says. “We know that many are fond of the ’80s and ’90s, and I’m sure they will find something they remember or had as a kid. From the unique merchandise to the limited engagement, this isn’t something you see every day.”

Gilpin's opens third sandwich location, providing late-night dining option in Mt. Adams

Frequent visitors to Clifton Heights and downtown are sure to have visited Gilpin’s Steamed Grub for late-night food runs, but owner Brad Gilpin isn’t stopping at just two locations. He’s partnered with Quincy’s Bar and Lounge in Mt. Adams to open a third Gilpin’s.
“I’ve always wanted to be in Mt. Adams, and the timing is now right,” Gilpin says.

He says Gilpin's will offer something that he feels is missing in Mt. Adams, a late-night food option. A majority of the neighborhood’s restaurants stop serving food at about 11 p.m., and Gilpin's will cater to those who have the munchies beyond that.

Gilpin's partnership with Quincy's also allows customers to grab a bite to eat along with a beer.
The Mt. Adams location will serve Gilpin’s new late-night menu, which features sandwiches that can’t be found anywhere else, out of the window behind Quincy’s, 1101 St. Gregory St.
The menu includes favorites like the Doritos, which is turkey, steam melted cheddar and lettuce topped with crushed nacho cheese Doritos and a parmesan peppercorn ranch honey mustard, all on a pretzel bun; and the Pride of Porkopolis, smoked pulled pork, bacon, BBQ sriracha mayo and lettuce topped with crushed BBQ chips.
A new sandwich on the menu is the Nutella Fluffernutter, Gilpin’s first venture into a sweet sandwich. Nutella, peanut butter and marshmallow fluff are all steamed together to create a melty, delicious mess.
Gilpin’s in Mt. Adams opened July 3 and serves 10 p.m.-3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. Depending on its popularity, hours could expand in the near future.

Kenwood-based bakery to open location in OTR

Lisa Ebbert comes from a long line of bakers, and the success of her homemade cupcakes led her to open 3 Sweet Girls Cakery in Kenwood in 2012. In mid-July she and her two daughters, Kristen and Lauren, will open their second location at 29 E. 12th St. in Over-the-Rhine.
Over the past few years, the bakery has had customers come out to the Kenwood location from downtown to pick up sweets for parties and meetings. It seemed like a logical next step to take the bakery closer to those customers.
“We’re very excited to see the growth downtown and want to be part of it,” Ebbert says. “We love Over-the-Rhine, the people and the energy and diversity of the neighborhood.”
Ebbert and her daughters are currently renovating the 500-square-foot space to be a mini version of their Kenwood location, with turquoise and pink walls and a whimsical mural. The OTR location is considerably smaller than the original and doesn’t have a kitchen, so they will be bringing everything to OTR from the main bakery.
3 Sweet Girls will offer a daily selection of eight cupcake flavors and about 15 flavors of cake pops, including their specialty Flying Pig Cake Pops. The bakery will also have custom decorated cookies, chocolate pretzels and Oreos, cake push-ups and cupcakes in a jar as well as homemade dog treats and pup cakes.
“We hope to bring a fun, creative energy to Over-the-Rhine and hope to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth and bring a little joy to people’s days,” Ebbert says.
The Ebberts are currently hoping to be open before the July 14 All Star Game and plan to have a variety of baseball-themed treats.

Bouquet Restaurant owners opening second fresh & healthy spot in MainStrasse

Stephen Williams, chef and owner of Bouquet Restaurant & Wine Bar, and his wife Jessica are planning to open another restaurant in Covington. Son & Soil will occupy in the former Cake Rack Bakery space at 627 Main St. in mid-August.
As a busy entrepreneur and father, Williams is always looking for something quick and simple but still fresh and healthy. He saw a need for healthy, fast option in MainStrasse and went with it.
“We’re going in a healthy direction, and sun and soil are two of the main components for growth and nourishment,” Williams says.
Like Bouquet, Son & Soil will feature local, fresh ingredients sourced from local farms and farm market partners.
The menu will include freshly-pressed juices, smoothies and organic wraps and sandwiches. Specific menu items are still in the works, but Williams plans to build his sandwiches on Sixteen Bricks bread and to serve coffee from Lookout Joe from Mt. Lookout.
“We love being part of the MainStrasse community,” Williams says. “We live here, and we’re raising our family here. With Bouquet right down the street, it just makes sense for us. Almost eight years ago, the community welcomed Bouquet with open arms, and we really didn’t consider opening our second venture anywhere else.”  
Son & Soil hours will be limited at first: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Saturday.

Local musicians opening Northside Sound Factory this weekend

The papered-up windows of 4172 Hamilton Ave. don’t look like much now, but on June 13 Northside Sound Factory will open its doors at the storefront. Local musicians Clinton Vearil and Josh Pilot, formerly of The KillTones, wanted to bring affordable instruments and accessories and vintage pieces to the neighborhood.
“The area is growing rapidly, and we felt it’s something the town could really use,” Pilot says. “There are lots of musicians in Northside, so we knew it was something the community could use and appreciate.”
The space used to be a restaurant but has been remodeled to fit a musician’s every need. One of the two restrooms was soundproofed and will be a testing station for instruments, where customers can set up an amp or drum set to try it out.
Vearil and Pilot will sell new and used musical instruments and accessories as well as unique and interesting pieces the two have been collecting. In the next few weeks, Northside Sound Factory will also begin offering a consignment service for instruments. Besides instruments, the shop will also offer an instrument repair service and lessons.
Shortly after opening, the shop will offer a delivery service for bands and musicians who are ready to start their set and either forgot something or are in need of a replacement string, pick or strap.
“With Northside Tavern right across the street, a bartender will be able to call our delivery number and we’ll bring over whatever the bands need,” Pilot says. “It won’t be a huge thing for the shop, but we really want to help musicians as well as help the surrounding music scene.”  
Pilot says they also plan to donate instruments to a number of schools and other organizations that help kids get into music. The guys already have a number of guitars to donate and are looking for other instruments as well.
“Music has been such a great thing in our lives, and we want any kid who wants to learn to have that ability,” he says.
Northside Sound Factory will be open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, but the shop will open at noon on June 13. The grand opening event will include music from The Good Morning Heartaches, Betsy Ross and The All Seeing Eyes featuring Johnny Walker. The bands will play in the alley next to the shop, and Lyric food truck will be set up on Hamilton Avenue. 

Retail collective coming to Main Street June 14

A new retail collective will open at 1300 Main St. in Over-the-Rhine on June 14, which is also this summer’s first Second Sunday on Main. Goods on Main will feature merchandise from national brands as well as locally made products.
Originally, Frameshop owners Jake Baker and Jake Gerth planned to open Workshop at the location. A larger space opened up in Walnut Hills, but they had already rented the space in OTR. The business partners decided that something else needed to go there.
“We’re hoping to bring more of a critical mass of retail to Main Street,” says Pat Feghali, local attorney and co-owner of Goods. "Right now lots of people go to Vine street to shop, but by opening Goods we’re hoping to make Main Street a stronger retail destination.”
The 1,500-square-foot, first-floor retail space will be split in two, with the front half devoted to Goods. The rest of the space will be used for more of a gathering area for special events like Final Friday and Second Sunday on Main. Feghali says they plan to devote the entire space to Goods in the future.
The merchandise available at Goods will center around a theme and change several times throughout the year.
When it opens, the theme will be "adventure.” Feghali says this could mean a camping adventure or something more outside of the box like a culinary adventure. Items available will range from bicycles and mopeds to camping gear and hot sauce.
Along with Feghali, Goods is owned and operated by OTR entrepreneurs Duru Armagon, owner of Sloane Boutique; Adam Atallah; Carl Hunt; and Micah Paladino, CEO of PB&J.
Goods’ hours aren’t set in stone yet, but the storefront will be open Thursday through Sunday.

Local and organic burger/milkshake bar coming to Northside

Tickle Pickle burgers-and-milkshake café and catering company will open in Northside later this summer. Owner Sarah Cole originally thought about moving her other catering company, Sarelli’s Catering, from Newport to Northside, but when she purchased the building at 4176 Hamilton Ave. she decided to start a new business instead.
“I grew up in Clifton but moved to Northern Kentucky when my kids started school,” Cole says. “As soon as I saw a chance to buy something in Northside and be in Cincinnati again, I jumped at the chance. We come to Clifton all the time and want my kids to know the beautiful diversity (in the city of Cincinnati) that Northern Kentucky doesn’t always have.”
Tickle Pickle will be a fast-casual restaurant offering organic milkshakes that cater to dietary restrictions, including gluten-free and vegan. And Cole is trying to keep her food as local as possible.
“At Sarelli’s we’re really into organic, non-GMO foods and being conscious about what we put into our bodies,” she says. “We try to buy local, but a lot of the time companies can’t provide enough to support Sarelli’s. But Tickle Pickle will have a smaller menu, and it will be much easier to do that here.”
Organic milk will come from Snowville Creamery, chicken from Gerber Honest Hatchery Chicken Farms, no-preservative pretzel buns from Hot Pretzel in Northern Kentucky and vegan and whole-wheat buns from Sixteen Bricks Bread. Cole is working with Tiny Footprint Distribution, which is Green BEAN Delivery’s wholesale side, and Findlay Market as well as Northside Meat.
“I want to give Northside and the surrounding neighborhoods my money, keeping the food as local as possible and as organic as possible,” she says.
The 2,000-square-foot space was already outfitted with a kitchen, but Cole is renovating the building’s dining area and storefront. She’s working with the American Sign Museum to create an awesome Tickle Pickle sign and plans to use reclaimed wood and recyclable items when remodeling.
The catering side of Tickle Pickle will open June 8. The restaurant is able to cater business lunches and meetings for groups of 15 or more.
Tickle Pickle is also hiring, so if you’re interested send your resume to sarah@ticklepicklenorthside.com.

Homebrewer expands palette to kombucha brewing, to move in with Urban Artifact

Algis Aukstuolis began experimenting with fermentation about 10 years ago when he first started homebrewing. A few years ago, his wife purchased a bottle of kombucha at Whole Foods, and Aukstuolis decided he could find a way to make the probiotic-heavy fermented tea less tart and sell it as Skinny Piggy Kombucha.
“Kombucha fermentation is very similar to beer,” he says. “With beer you need to extract the sugar from grain, but kombucha is more like making sweet tea and focusing on steeping it correctly.”
Skinny Piggy currently operates out of the Northern Kentucky Incubator Kitchen in Covington, and Aukstuolis brews about once per month but bottles more frequently. He has plans to expand the business and move into the same building as Urban Artifact in Northside.
“I met with a number of breweries, but Urban Artifact seemed like a good fit because they specialize in wild yeast and tart beers,” Aukstuolis says.
Skinny Piggy's Kickstarter campaign ends on Monday, June 1, and Aukstuolis has already reached his $10,000 goal. Funds from the Kickstarter will go toward a larger brewing system and bottling equipment.
Skinny Piggy is an original tea blend that makes the drink less tart. In a few weeks, Aukstuolis will have his first flavored kombucha: lavender. Once he’s expanded production, he plans to add more flavors.
“I think Cincinnati deserves its own kombucha,” Aukstuolis says. “There are a number of styles coming from California, but Cincinnati has its own specific taste. I want to cater to that taste as well as help encourage healthy drinking lifestyles.”
Bottles of Skinny Piggy are currently available at The Gruff in Covington, Happy Belly on Vine and the Hyde Park Remke. It’s also available on draft at Urban Artifact. Once the Kickstarter campaign ends, he and a distributor will begin working to get the drink in Whole Foods stores.

OTR continues to introduce new retail and food/drink options

The Over-the-Rhine economy continues to boom, with new street-level businesses opening every week. Entities like 3CDC, The Model Group, Urban Sites and Over-the-Rhine Community Housing have helped spur much of the residential development in the neighborhood, and the influx of residents has led to a demand for more retail and eateries.
A number of new storefronts have opened recently, with several restaurants coming on-line soon to add to the area’s eclectic and diverse options. Here's a quick roundup:
Continuum, 1407 Vine St.
DAAP grad Erica Leighton-Spradlin opened Continuum on May 8. She curates home décor, gifts and women’s clothing items that are designed by local artists.
Elm & Iron, 1326 Vine St.
Columbus-based Elm & Iron opened its first Cincinnati location on May 13. The store sells a mix of new and vintage industrial home décor pieces and accessories.
Idlewild Woman, 1232 Vine St.
Article's sister store Idlewild Woman opened on May 16. The shop features clothing and one-of-a-kind home accessories exclusively for women.
Kit and Ace, 1405 Vine St.
Created by the family of Lululemon Athletica’s founder, Kit and Ace focuses on luxury clothing. The OTR store will be the company’s third U.S. location, with the others in NYC and San Francisco. It's expected to open June 5.

Low Spark, 15 W. 14th St.
The overall concept and opening date are still under wraps for this tiny bar from the 4EG folks, but keep a tab on its Facebook page for updates.
16-Bit Bar+Arcade, 1331 Walnut St.
Stepping into 16-Bit Bar+Arcade promises to be like a blast from the past, with arcade games, music and drinks straight out of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Work at the site is ongoing, and owner Troy Allen is shooting for an early summer opening.
TBA, 1429 Walnut St.
An as-yet-to-be-announced restaurant concept from the owners of Cheapside Café and The Rookwood.

Bad Tom Brewery undergoing changes, keeping beer recipes

Bad Tom Smith Brewing will be undergoing changes in the coming months to enhance its customers’ experience. The beer will remain the same, but the look and feel of the brewery itself will undergo a facelift.
Bad Tom opened as Double Barrel Brewery in 2013 under the direction of Sean Smith and Charles Boucher, who left the business at the beginning of this year. Smith then brought on two friends, John Vojtush and Sheryl Gittins, who are now majority owners, with 70 percent ownership; Smith, his mother and two others retain the other 30 percent.
Jeff Graff, owner of Paradise Brewing Supplies, was recently brought on as Bad Tom’s head brewer and is also an equity partner in the business. A full-time assistant brewer, Eric Napier, was also hired.
Bad Tom Smith beer recipes will remain the same, but Graff and Napier plan to better the products’ overall quality. Changes will also be made to improve the taproom experience and make it more inviting for customers. Bad Tom is working with a new marketing partner as well, and the overall brewery and taproom will soon have more of a Western saloon feel.
Plans are also being circulated for a new brewery location, which could happen as early as the first quarter of 2016.
Bad Tom is open from 5-10 p.m. Wednesdays, 5-11 p.m. Thursdays, 4-11 p.m. Fridays and 1-11 p.m. Saturdays. The brewery is located at 4720 Eastern Ave., East End.

Cincinnati State adds craft beer classes to help grow local job market

Starting this fall, Cincinnati State will offer two classes that are designed to complement the city’s growing craft beer industry. Both classes will be three credit hours and available only to students taking other Cincinnati State classes.
Carla Gesell-Streeter, chair of the Communication and Theater Department at Cincinnati State and co-owner of the Hoperatives blog, designed the classes. She’s been writing about Cincinnati’s beer culture for about six years and has seen the number of active breweries and brewpubs here grow from five in 2009 to about 30 by the end of this year.
“These classes will help bring exposure to what the professional world of brewing is,” she says. “Right now, if a brewery wants to hire a brewer with experience, they have to hire away from another brewery. The same is true for sales representatives at different brewing distributors. As a community college, we look at the workforce and identify the need. We’re looking to help build up the field and the knowledge basis.”
Gesell-Streeter submitted a proposal to the school four years ago for the new classes and recently took a sabbatical to research different programs.
BREW 100: Introduction to Craft Beer will be offered for the first time in the fall. The class will cover the history of beer and brewing as well as the different styles of beer. The class will also partner with Rhinegeist to design a beer, which will be brewed and tapped at the brewery. A sales and marketing rep will then talk to the class about possible next steps to roll out the new beer. If another section is added in the fall due to demand and when the class is offered again in the spring, a different local brewery will be invited to work with the class.
BREW 160: Sensory Evaluation will focus on cicerone, which is the craft beer equivalent of wine sommelier. There are three different levels of cicerone, with BREW 100 getting people ready for the first level, certified beer server. BREW 160 will focus more on the second and third levels, which deal with how a beer tastes and when a beer doesn’t taste right. At this point, BREW 160 doesn’t have a true pre-requisite, but it will require instructor approval.
“These classes aren’t about homebrewing, but more for people who are trying to get into the business of craft beer,” Gesell-Streeter says.
If you’re a Cincinnati State student who is interested in either beer class, email Gesell-Streeter at carla.gesell-streeter@cincinnatistate.edu for more information.

With building purchased, what's next for Clifton Market?

The Clifton Market co-op recently purchased the old IGA building at 319 Ludlow Ave. in Clifton, completing one phase of a long process to bring a grocery store back to the business district.

The market currently has more than 1,000 members and is aiming for 1,500 by the summer and 2,000 by the time the new market opens near the end of 2015. The co-op has raised about $1.3 million so far, with plans to continue fundraising in the coming months.
“This store isn’t just for Clifton, it’s for the whole Cincinnati area,” says Adam Hyland, president of the Clifton Market board. “We want it to be uniquely Cincinnati as well as a celebration of what a grocery can be.”
The old co-op model, in which shareowners work in the store, isn’t as popular any more. Clifton Market’s model is a democratic form of ownership, which means that no matter how many shares you own no one can buy out majority ownership and each shareowner gets one vote to elect the board.
“When we first approached the community about a grocery store, they wanted a sustainable, long-term system, and that’s exactly what this model is,” Hyland says.
Shareowners vote for board members, and a general manager will then report to the board on how the day-to-day business is going. One of the things that will set the market apart from other grocery stores will be its staff, which Hyland says will be chosen carefully in order to help provide the ultimate grocery store experience for customers.
The 23,000-square-foot space will be a full-service grocery, with everything from natural, healthy options to Pampers and dog food. The market will have what the community needs and will also boast the community’s culture, Hyland says.
Highlights will include special attractions, signature products and featured products, all with a housemade objective. Keith Wicks, a grocery market analyst who has been helping develop Clifton Market, says that the market will partner with a few specialty retail partners — specifically bakery partners — to bring back the old stone-ground, German master pastry ways.
“There are lots of really interesting foodie-related things happening in the business district in general, and we hope that the market helps make it a foodie’s destination, both locally and nationally,” Wicks says.
Since Clifton’s IGA closed, the Ludlow Avenue business district has lost about 40 percent of its business, Wicks says. He hopes that Clifton Market will bring back that traffic and help promote the street’s other retailers and services.
“We’re all in this together,” Wicks says. “As the anchor goes, so goes the district.”
The market’s business model projects that it will see about 10,000 transactions per week, with about 15,000 people coming through the door. That kind of foot traffic will benefit not only Clifton Market but the surrounding businesses as well.

Apart from turning a profit, Clifton Market has another objective: to work cooperatively with the Ludlow Business District. Even though retailers like Ludlow Wines will offer some of the same items as Clifton Market, it won't be a competition for customers. Ludlow Wines will have something that Clifton Market doesn't, and vice versa. Plus, if you need to pick up a bottle of wine for dinner, you'll also be able to pick up the things you need to make dinner from the market.

“Part of the idea of the co-op business model is that you’re community-minded,” Hyland says. “Most businesses are about how much profit can you get out of one location, but we’re focusing on how much profit can we help bring to the business district. As a business ecosystem, we all rely on each other.”
The goal is to have the market open in about six months, but that timeline could change depending on how quickly additional fundraising money comes in. Once the funds are raised, interior and exterior remodeling will happen quickly.
If you’re interested in being a shareowner in the Clifton Market, you can purchase shares online for $200. There is also an option to make an owner loan to the market, which will be paid back 100 percent in full.
Clifton Market is hosting a foodie event on June 14, when the market’s wholesaler, produce supplier and Boar’s Head will be providing tastes of a wide range of products. They’re still looking for vendors to participate; those interested can contact Charles Marxen, field developer, at 614-432-6663.

Brewery culture continues to grow, this time in Walnut Hills

Chris Mitchell, formerly of Listermann Brewing, has been homebrewing for about 15 years. After talking with a number of partners, he decided to pursue opening The Woodburn Brewery, which will debut later this summer at 2800 Woodburn Ave. in Walnut Hills.
“The neighborhood is up-and-coming and looks like it will be a nice entertainment district here pretty soon,” Mitchell says.
The building, which was built in the early 1900s, is just over 4,000 square feet and is being designed as taproom/brewery with capacity for about 120. Mitchell says they’re going to cater to the taproom experience and customers won’t feel like they’re in a brewery, even though they’ll be able to see the tanks through a giant glass wall.
“Lots of breweries feel like you’re sitting in a brew house, but we’re going for a different experience,” he says. “This will be somewhere everyone wants to go.”
The Woodburn Brewery will open with 4-6 flagship beers, including a pineapple saison, a cedar IPA and a German pilsner. The recipe and name of the German pilsner, which will be released at opening, comes from Espelkamper Brau in Germany — the owner of that brewery won four gold medals for the pilsner and has signed over the rights and name to The Woodburn Brewery.
Mitchell also plans to release seasonal beers and sours as well as bourbon barrel releases, experimental batches and limited-edition bottle releases. The Woodburn Brewery will also be serving from Brite tanks, which means that the beer is carbonated and served from the same tank.
There are plans to distribute to bars, restaurants and retail stores, but Mitchell says they’ll start small with a few select spots. When the brewery opens, there won’t be a food menu, but there a light appetizer menu is in the works.
The Woodburn Brewery will partner with Firehouse Pizza and local food trucks to feed their customers in the first few months, Mitchell says, and there are talks of a cidery/restaurant in the future.
“We’re excited to see the explosion of breweries happening in Cincinnati,” Mitchell says. “We’re also excited to see Cincinnati restored to its original brewery status. In its heyday, there were a ton of breweries here and Cincinnati was known for its beer. We’re excited to be part of it and to see lots of new faces pop up.”
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