Let’s give three cheers to Ohio lawmakers. Thanks to their dealings, local breweries can now offer tastings on site, readying taps and tours for anyone interested in a behind-the-bottle look at their crafts. We checked out three, and each are worth a day trip of libations.
Mount Carmel Brewing Company
- Where: 4362 Mount Carmel-Tobasco Road, Union Township
- Phone: 513-240-2739
- Web: www.mtcarmelbrewingcompany.com
- Owners: Mike and Kathleen Dewey
The vibe: “Come porch-sit with us.” It’s a fitting catch phrase for Mount Carmel Brewing Company, settled along a quiet, township road just a few miles outside the commercial sprawl of Beechmont Avenue. The tasting room has four taps, and brews by the pint, bottle, snifter or growler. You can grab a seat inside, or, of course, on the porch. Better yet, you can sit on the back porch, next to a small pond and about two acres worth of green space.
What’s on tap: Recent offerings include the “year-round” Blonde Ale and India Pale Ale, the Summer Ale, and the Third-Shift Imperial Coffee Stout, one of the brewery’s “snapshot series” drinks. High in alcohol volume and boasting hints of espresso and chocolate, the latter is poured in a five-ounce snifter.
Price: Tastings are free; grab a pint or a growler for an even better experience.
Tap times: noon-4 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Due to popularity, the times might change. “It’s kind of a loose policy,” brewer Virgil Roesel says of the closing time. “We’ve extended hours a few times.”
Where else to get it: Jungle Jim’s, Latitudes Cafe and Dilly Cafe.
Rivertown Brewing Company
- Where: 607 Shepherd Drive, Unit 6, Lockland
- Phone: 513-827-9280
- Web: www.rivertownbrewery.com
- Owners: Randy Schiltz and Jason Roeper
The vibe: Brewing in the heart of Lockland and unassuming in the thick of an industrial park, Rivertown now has a tasting room adjacent to its machinery and ingredients. When you go to taste, chances are a brewer or two will be pouring drinks as well as mashing and fermenting ingredients or doing something else that makes beer great. The tasting room has a bar, music streaming from the boombox and lots of brews on tap. You can leave with six packs, growlers and kegs.
What’s on tap: Rivertown has more than 10 brews ready for tasting, including the Helles Lager, Oatmeal Stout and Wit Bier, a citrus-infused brew that tastes like summer. Deliciously potent beers like the Hop Baron Double Down IPA and the Roebling Porter are recommended for those who like beer with a little more strength.
Price: $4 for four 3-oz pours; $5 for Hop Baron, Roebling and one other pour.
Tap times: 5-10 p.m. Friday, noon-10 p.m. Saturday, and noon-6 p.m. Sunday.
Where else to get it: The Senate, Arnold’s and The Rookwood.
Listermann Brewery Supply
- Where: 1621 Dana Ave., Evanston
- Phone: 513-731-1130
- Web: www.listermann.com
- Owner: Dan Listermann
The vibe: Make no mistake – Listermann is largely a supply store for retailers and homebrewers. Before the new law passed, you could pick up growlers, but now you can also sample the company’s brews, and those of its new subsidiary, Triple Digit Brewing.
Taste times: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday.
What’s on tap: Recent offers included Triple Digit’s “Aftermath,” a Scottish-style ale that could unleash your inner wrath if you’re not careful; and Listermann’s Enter the Beagle IPA, Losantiville Pre-Prohibition Lager and the “Experimental Batch Series” Double Black IPA.
Price: $1 a taste, or $3.75 for four
Where else to get it: The Lackman, Dutch’s and Gordo’s.