Ahhhh… the Queen City Brewery of Cincinnati – In Blue Ash.
Are you getting fired up yet?
I think that’s the fun of it all, it seems that everyone gets fired up when you mention their name. Some people get really angry… they bring up a Kickstarter that even if I wanted to defend it, I’d have a hard time to do so. There are people who think that seeing pictures of people who want to open up a brewery brewing a batch of beer with extract means that the brewery will be terrible, that there is no way those same people could up out a batch of beer on a system as big as 3bbls and have it be halfway decent. Then, there are people who get so incredibly angry that their name has the word Cincinnati in it, I mean… how dare a brewery in Blue Ash think they are part of Cincinnati?
Yes, it’s got a lot of you fired up, for sure.
Then there’s those of us, like me, who are fired up in a very different way. I love breweries. I love beer, and I love seeing new places open up. I especially love the promotional brewery merchandise that comes with a new brewery opening. I can’t say that every single place is my “favorite” – but I can honestly say that I love something about each and ever brewery that is making beer in this city right now (and yes, my definition of this city reaches far beyond what Cincinnati proper does). The Queen City Brewery of Cincinnati gets me more excited about a brewery opening than I have been for a while. I can’t wait to see how the people of this city react to what they are doing.
I have been there, I have seen what they are doing… and I like it.
About The Queen City Brewery of Cincinnati
Like I mentioned before, the brewery is working with a 3bbl system, which puts them in the nano category with Fibonacci, Dogberry (for now), Darkness Brewing, Bardwell, Paradise, Mash Cult, and Quarter Barrel. Nano Breweries are nothing new to our community. They are built to serve their individual neighborhoods, and Blue Ash is a part of town that is eager for something local… something that isn’t a chain restaurant to open.
From the ground up, the guys behind QCBC have created a space that is designed to cater to those fans. It’s not a flashy taproom… you’ll find lots of pallet wood, repurposed things. A big, comfortable bar flanks their cold storage with 6 taps built into the side of the cooler. It’s a place you can stop on the way home from work and have a pint or two, fill your growler and head home. It’s the sort of place that this city needs more of.
it’s a neighborhood brewery, making solid beer for people who want a place to go and hang out and have a few. If you’re looking for the next Rhinegeist, or the next MadTree, this is not that place. I’m not going to say that they’ll never get bigger, or move to a bigger, more flashy location – but much like DogBerry, this is a way to open up a brewery and bring their beer to us. It’s not extract brewing either, which I guess brings us to the beer.
They have been making beer as fast as they can. Working tirelessly since they got their license last month, the brewery will have a couple different styles available for people to try when they open their doors (Yes… open their doors… it’s coming, more on that in a minute). I had the chance to sit down with them last week, and try a couple of their beers. I think that the brewery will make a few of you happy with what they are doing (yes… even some of their naysayers). Their head brewer knows what he is doing and has learned a thing or two in the 8ish years that he has been brewing.
The standout for me of the two beers I had was their Black IPA. It was smooth, creamy and roasty with a really nice hoppy bite. It was good, no, it was really good.
Their direct fire 3bbl brewhouse feeds into 4 3bbl stainless steel fermenters, and they let slip that there are plans for 4 more 3bbl fermenters coming in the early spring. The new fermenters will have glycol jacketing, which will only increase their ability to create a solid, consistent product.
The Grand Opening, and Why You Should Go
I’m not going to pretend that the Queen City Brewery of Cincinnati is going to change the face of beer in this city. The bigger thing that I think you should take away from all of this is the journey, and the story. This is a group of four guys who had an idea, and let us come in to the process from the beginning. I can’t make the decision of whether or not that was the smart way to do it, and I don’ think that matters. They seem to me like a great group of people who are doing the right things, for the right reasons, and that’s something that I will support every chance that I can.
The Queen City Brewery of Cincinnati will open their doors to the public on December 30th, 2016. They’re going to be busy, and they’re going to be hard pressed to keep up with the demand for their beer. It’s a good thing. It’s all a good thing. Make sure that you’re following them on all their social media, as the announcement should be coming out today. Let them know you have faith, and that you support craft beer in Cincinnati, In Blue Ash, and in your own neighborhood.
Why are you so angry about it all? I salute places like this, doing what they love, and I can only beg of you to give them a fair shake! Go. Try the beer.