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Posted September 9, 2013 by keif in Brew Tour

#CbusBrewTour v0.2

We kicked off the second Semi-Bi-Monthly-Weekly-Annual Columbus Brew Tour (aka #CbusBrewTour) this past Saturday, August 31. It was a rather long weekend, so forgive us for the late write-up (this is what happens when I go out with friends the night before to catch Downtrodn at Hal n’ Al’s, followed by a Cleveland trip).

Did you not learn your lesson the first time?

Sure enough, I had another Colorado trip – for Red Rocks, Queens of the Stone Age and Gogol Bordello, and Mono Verde. And more craft beer. #CbusBrewTour had to follow, of course. Actually, that might be the kick-off for every #CbusBrewTour. I’m fine with that. I’m also going to keep this brief to allow us to go more in depth (and hey, revisit, if need be!) the individual breweries.

Learning from last time.

We took a no-holds barred approach this time–we had our map, posted our times, and waited for no-person. We again had a plan–start at 11am at Columbus Brewing Company for their brunch, ending eventually at Barley’s. Four String Brewing is still without a tasting room, and luckily Actual Brewing company had a featured tap at CBC.

The original map. For those of you following me on twitter or playing along at home, on Untappd or Instagram.

The Pros: This was OSU kick-off. Now, you know, being a Buckeye fan is somewhat of a requirement in Columbus, so I’ll skip the stories/explanations, but my hope was that the first game would cut back on the crowds–not that it was crowded last time, mind you. Weather was possible storms, which I hoped for. It ended up being not crowded (actually, Seventh Son was *less* crowded than it was last time, but I believe we were also a couple hours earlier).

Ry- Pros: OSU game was on at most bars so I didn’t miss it!

The Cons: The heat. The lack of sleep. I was dragging from ill-timed festivities the night before.

Stop #1: Columbus Brewing Company

We were not let down by starting off our second tour here. Granted – no cyclists. Alas – the big let down was they were out of two of their beers, but they did have Actual Brewing’s Lemongrass on tap! A brewery that isn’t on the tour (yet) due to the lack of response from them to my pestering.

Ry- Still impressed by their brunch.. so good. Sad that a few beers had just run out but that is to be expected. Actual’s Lemongrass was a nice surprise since I tend to enjoy beers that use it. Random none beer related thought….lotion and hairspray in the bathroom, this lead to a very interesting conversation.

Stop #2: Seventh Son Brewing Co.

For some reason, I don’t remember this much beer last time.

Their stouts still stood out to me–so tasty. At this time, the heat was beating down, but we still caught some plays of Ohio State, and stepped out to their back patio (yes, they have a *back* patio, and a *front* patio, and tons of seating inside). Unfortunately, the heat was taking its toll, and even with copious amount of water, I was wiped the fuck out.

Ry- The back patio was rather nice and would have been more appealing if the heat wasn’t so taxing.  Roughly the same beers as last time but again all very solid. I noticed a few people in the brew room working away and wondered if they let you take a small tour. I think we may have to inquire about this for the next #CbusBrewTour.

Stop #3: North High Brewing (formerly BRU)

This bar is friendly as always–somehow I ran in to a few friends I haven’t seen in a while here.

I wish this was closer to my house, because the vibe–from the bartenders to its clientele–is so damn friendly. This time, Ryan and I were prepared with battery back-ups, and a few of their beers were freshly tapped (grand total of ten–they did have a coconut firkin, as well!)

Ry- As Keith said we were prepared so our phones were not dead at this point, surprisingly, since the data network was lagging because of the OSU game. North High Brewing has become my favorite new brewery this year. They always have a large selection of their beers and the staff friendly and helpful.

Stop #4: Brothers Drake Meadery & Bar

Thank Jebas for mead.

We landed an ideal parking spot across the street, and evidently entered during a showing of the Lima Company Memorial. Tasty as always, but we really didn’t dwell too long here.

Ry- There was a new peach mead on hand that I had not had prior called Peach Rush. I found itto be very appealing to my taste buds and could have several more.

Stop #6: Zauber Brewing Co.

They were closed. Well, shit.

We have no love lost for Zauber, however, and we will always include them on our crawls and will be returning in the future! I have a growler to fill, after all… :)

Thankfully, we were in Grandview and not too far from…

Stop #6.1: Starbucks

…and got some coffee during the storm. Seriously, I needed that. Despite all the water we drank, I was wiped out. And I’m pretty sure it’s a law there has to be a Starbucks every few miles. They’re freaking everywhere.

Ry- I believe the law is something like “can be no fewer than 1 in a 5 mile radius” but I am not complaining because it was much needed.

Stop #7: Barley’s Brew House

Our last stop this time around. Ran in to our friend, and we proceeded to order a ton of beer, and a ton of food.

Wings, scotch eggs, beer. Again, with the huge flights! This leads me to think we may do smaller beer tours in the future since our local craft breweries are doing less small batches and having an increase in their quantity. As long as their quality doesn’t suffer, I’m fine with this.

Ry- Don’t forget pulled pork nachos aka a highlight of my food gorging there. Normally I would have thought this was far too much food for three people, but after all those beers it was just the right amount. Thinking back on this I wish I had it all in front of me now because I am starving!

Stop #7.1: 16-bit Arcade

Ryan already had a better write-up from his earlier venture. We popped in so I could get a quick peek, but as I was wiped out (and we had decided we wanted to catch World’s End by night’s end) we didn’t stay long.

Ry- We should have know this was going to be a shit-show of people being the first weekend open. To put it bluntly, we would have been full on sober by the time we were able to play one game. Sigh… I really wanted to play some TMNT damnit!

Stop #7.2: Studio 35

It’s been some time since I’ve been here–I believe the last time was a good friend’s birthday–and this is the kind of place that you can do that. Come, have food, drink, order food, catch a movie. The movie, World’s End, was a perfect choice to end the night with. Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, in a movie about an epic pub crawl? How could we not!

Ry- I agree with Keith, Perfect end to a Beer-tastic day. I must say that Studio 35 does have a pretty damn good peer selection on top of good taste in movies.

The Completion of a Journey.

Overall, it was *still* a success. The increase in samples (and the breweries planning on opening up soon, and the existing ones adding tap rooms) means the “all day” tour may be side-lined in favor of smaller tours in the future. We still cut Gordon Biersch and Elevator out this time, and I’m still glad we did. By night’s end, it was a fun journey!

Better than the last Tour in a lot of ways, maybe next time some of you will join us! I almost think the coffee stop will be a much needed addition to future trips as well. So here is to another successful Cbus Brew Tour (raising my glass if you had not guess that already) Cheers!  -Ry




Keif is a ecommerce web consultant and fan of beer, wine, fine spirits, the art of the home brew, and fine smokes. Favorite Beer: tends to fall around stouts and I/PAs Favorite Wine: Port Favorite Microbrew: The city of Columbus, Ohio. All of it.