July 2018 Notes about Toledo Area Breweries
Since February 2018, I have rarely posted at my message board toledotalk.com. But when this July 2018 TT thread swerved into a discussion about local craft breweries, I posted the info below.
My TT comment
"And even happier not another micro-brewery. More than enough of those already around. ... such a nuisance with so many around."
Compared to Grand Rapids, Michigan and Traverse City, relative to the population sizes, the Toledo area should be able to support many more craft breweries than what currently exists around here.
Some taprooms are very small with limited hours. I don't see how they could be considered a nuisance. We already have bars and restaurants in the area that open and close and hold longer hours.
The Inside the Five Brewing Company replaced a former restaurant in Sylvania. Upside Brewing operates inside J&G's Pizza. Two restaurants that sell beer. That's what existed before those locations started making their own beer.
And even though those two "breweries" exist near each other in downtown Sylvania, they are not similar. The former Treo restaurant was not the same as J&G's Pizza. I think that Upside continues to operate as a nano brewery while Inside the Five started big, thanks to a lot of initial funding. Inside the Five is a brewpub with good beer and good food, and it's big and loud inside.
My favorite "bar" to visit around here is Black Frog Brewery. Obviously, Ernest Brew Works produces excellent products too. Both are taprooms. The breweries all have their own styles and preferences, and I favor the beer styles that Chris produces at Black Frog.
I like the taproom concept. The taprooms seems to have more of a neighborhood pub feel. The Bowling Green Beer Works taproom is worth the drive. The customer area inside the BG Beer Works is smaller than what exists at Black Frog.
And as a reminder, taprooms are prohibited from operating a kitchen and selling food. At times, some taprooms partner with food trucks or other eateries. And you can bring your own food to eat in the taproom. The only alcohol that taprooms can sell is the beer that they brew on site, unless the taproom license has changed.
And while the soon-to-open Patron Saints Brewery taproom is considered to have a West Toledo location, it doesn't feel like "our" West Toledo in the DeVeaux Village area. I have been unable to convince a brewing friend to view properties for a potential taproom, east of Douglas Rd.
We've been looking forward to Patron Saints opening, but it would be nice to have one or two taprooms, located in our area of town. But that's why we brew our own beer too. I drank more of our delicious Saison last night.
Patron Saints is starting as a nano brewery. I think that Black Frog started as a nano brewery too.
Pavlov's Brewing Company is also expected to open soon. It's located near Lewis and Sterns in Temperance. It seems appropriate to open a brewery in a place called "Temperance."
"Black Frog is open and doing great! Chris is retiring from his ‘real job’ and I’m hoping to see them expand their hours."
Soon, Black Frog will be open four days a week. I spoke with Chris last month. He mentioned his forthcoming retirement from his full-time job. He does plan to expand hours by being open one additional day. He said that Black Frog might be open on Sundays in the fall for football. Then after football season, he would close on Sundays and open on Wednesdays.
The Black Frog taproom opened in the fall of 2016. And since Chris kept his other job, the taproom initially was open only on Friday evenings and Saturdays. This past winter, Black Frog began opening on Thursday evenings too.
In about two years, Chris will have expanded his hours of operation for the public from two days per week to four. That's hardly a nuisance. And most of the time, Chris is working behind the bar too. It's a small operation.
Prior to Chris opening his taproom, he bottled his beer and sold it at area stores. We bought Black Frog beer at The Andersons. But once the taproom opened, he stopped bottling. He didn't have the time. He brewed on Sundays and Wednesday evenings. Since he'll quit his other job to focus more on brewing, I think that Chris plans to bottle his beer again.
According to the Patron Saints website, when it opens, it will only be open on Fridays and Saturdays. I'm assuming that the two owners may be maintaining full-time jobs elsewhere too.
As to brewpubs, we still enjoy dining at Mutz, especially in the courtyard, and drinking Maumee Bay Brewing Company beer. We took my wife's parents to Mutz last Friday evening, and they enjoyed the food, the beer, and the small, unique, courtyard setting.
We have not yet visited Wild Side Brewing Company, located in Grand Rapids, Ohio, but it sounds fascinating, according to their website.
I think that the Great Black Swamp Brewing Company still maintains their bar in Perrysburg.
End my TT comment
It's not an accident that I failed to mention the black cloister brewing company.
created Jul 13, 2018