Our city’s temperatures are falling and residents are flocking indoors to prepare for wintertime hibernation, Cleveland style. What better place to get cozy than a local brewery, and a new one at that? Luckily, a handful of entrepreneurs have opened their brewery doors in the past several months, leaving us with plenty of suitable places to drink in the comfort of controlled climates. Here are six of the best new breweries in Cleveland, sure to leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy.
Between Velvet Tango Room cocktail bar, Duck-Rabbit coffee roastery, the soon-to-be opened Western Reserve Meadery, and this year's Forest City, Duck Island is quickly becoming the place in town for thirst quenching. Forest City serves a rotating list of brews, including tripels, IPAs, porters, and stouts, among others. Get there quick to enjoy a seasonal pumpkin ale, subtle enough to taste like fall in a glass, with absolutely none of that dreaded PSL aftertaste. Blech.
Westside-dwelling devotees of the original BottleHouse in Cleveland Heights no longer have to trek to the east side to get their fix. Earlier this year, the team opened a Lakewood location in the former home of Sullivan's Irish Pub. This spot is much larger than the original BottleHouse, leaving plenty of space for the production and aging of beers served at both locations. It offers an extensive, rotating list of craft beers as well as a selection of meads, a favorite among regulars since its introduction in Cleveland Heights several years ago.
Is there anywhere more fun than a German beer garden? Of course not; so beeline to the newly opened Hansa Brewery in Ohio City. European-style beers and hearty food favorites, including schnitzel and a sausage platter, make Hansa a perfect destination for those who are feeling less concerned with their summertime bikini bod and more interested in cold weather indulgences. Dig in.
Specializing in what's referred to as “neighborhood beer,” Goldhorn seeks to take patrons back in time by serving up delicious brewskis that are crafted right in Cleveland’s own backyard. This family-friendly brewery serves food and drink with an Eastern European flair, including sausages and pierogies, as well as pilsners and stouts. Better yet, Goldhorn is part of the Superior-St. Clair revitalization project, which seeks to breathe new life into a somewhat forgotten part of town. We’ll toast to that.
Since its opening in 2011, Market Garden has been a favorite amongst Ohio City’s beer connoisseurs for its jovial atmosphere, quality bar food, and of course, outstanding brews. In 2016, Market Garden opened the doors to its brand new production brewery, a large-scale facility located behind the restaurant. Here, visitors can enjoy tours, tastings, and beer to-go. We’ll take a growler of that excellent Prosperity Bavarian Hefeweizen, please.
We weren’t kidding when we said “new,” as evidenced by the inclusion of Masthead, which opens this fall in the historical Bryant Building across from Reserve Square. In addition to a solid array of American and Belgian-style beers, this ultra-fresh spot also plans to serve wine, coffee, cider, mead, cocktails, and Neapolitan-style pizza as the opening weeks roll on. Basically, it'll be everything you could possibly need, in one expansive Downtown spot.
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Housed in an early 20th-century tap house alongside a dance studio, a coffee company, a meadery, and a cycle-touring business, this brewery’s antique store kitsch feels perfectly at home. You’ll find vintage brewery paraphernalia, antique furniture, exposed weathered brick, and exposed wood, but most importantly you’ll find brews that are anything but the beers of yore. Watch the Browns and Indians on the big screen and sip on beers like the Belgian-inspired Tomahawk Tripel (mildly hoppy bitterness with citrus notes and a peppery bite) and tart German-style Redline Greenway Berliner Weiss (cloudy in appearance and wheaty and slightly bitter in taste). Their tap list is always changing with the season, some even the month, so keep an eye on their website.
BottleHouse is not just a craft brewery and tap room, they are a mead hall with all the charm of an Irish pub and 8 beers and 6 locally-sourced meads on tap. They aspire to be more than just a tasting room with their rustic back patio and event space; they have board games and they host bingo, trivia, and live music. Bring your own snacks or pair one of their rotating beers with their rotational chefs and food trucks. Our favorites are the Hadrian’s Wall rye whiskey barrel-aged ale that has toffee notes with a smokey malt flavor and the City Mead made with local honey, apple cider, blueberries, and black currants and has a clove-spice after taste.
Hansa looks exactly like a traditional European beer hall from ts timber-framed edifice to the high ceilings and pine accents inside. Their style perfectly matches their beers (or should we say biers) and food menu, because they too emulate european styles from Kölsch-styles to Weissbiers. Their food menu features Charcuterie, German pretzels, schnitzel, and a special Cevapici Burger (european sausage patty popular in the Balkans). Pair their hearty menu with lightweight, tart Winzig Haus Bier derived from the historic brew from Lichtenhainer, or go full weight with the malty Hansanator Doppelbock with notes of sweet caramel and a high ABV.
Occupying a stylish, industrial space alongside Café 55 and the historic Sterle’s Country House, Goldhorn Brewery is part of the Hub 55 co-op and the larger plan to revitalize the old, somewhat forgotten St. Clair-Superior neighborhood. Head Brewer Joe Warger knows better than to reinvent the craft beer wheel, instead he focuses on making “Neighborhood Beers” that remind drinkers of what Cleveland is about. Along with their Eastern European food options like pickled veggies and sausage, Goldhorn pays homage to the large Polish community with the styles and names of their beers. Try Numbered Street Wheat, a sweet, German-style wheat beer with notes of banana and cloves, or Polka City Pilsner, a light,refreshing classic pilsner made with hops grown in Slovenia.