After announcing plans for a brewery addition back in June of last year, the circle is once again restored at Blue Ash’s Firehouse Grill… their new brewery is scheduled to open with a weekend of festivities February 20-23 2020. Before we dive into things… we have to roll through a quick history lesson.
Watson Brothers To Firehouse: A Lesson
There was a small boom of brewery openings in Cincinnati back in the 90s. You might not realize that, and to call it a boom compared to today’s standards is a tough comparison… but at the time, things were exciting. From this boom came a group that called itself the Queen City Brewing Company. They opened several brewpubs around town, and had big plans to open many more until things “fell apart”.
The second of their operations was opened in Blue Ash in 1996 and operated (albeit with a slight name change eventually) until it closed its doors in 2005. This brewery was Watson Brothers… I have really fond memories of this place – it was my first local brewery.
Firehouse Grill took over the space and opened its doors in March of 2011… and upon the ashes of Watson Brothers, they built an absolute shrine to local beer. Firehouse Grill pioneered what it meant to support local beer with its massive selection of fantastic craft beers… but they didn’t rest there. The announcement came in the summer of 2019 that the restaurant would be adding a brewery on site.
About Firehouse Grill & Brewery
The four-barrel brewery isn’t designed to change the world of brewing in Cincinnati – it’s designed to be a brewpub first and foremost. They’re making a big point out of keeping the heart of Blue Ash front and center with all they are doing, much like Firehouse Grill has focused on since they opened their doors.
The brewery has tapped Justin Chaney as their head brewer to create half a dozen beers as they open their doors to call upon the history of Blue Ash. On grand opening weekend you’ll find some goodies such as:
- Sycamore Blonde
- Blue Ash Brown
- Summit Saison
- Aviator Amber
- Flightpath IPA
They’ll be celebrating the grand opening with flights and pints of the new beer selection with an $8 keep-the-glass special running all weekend long (or at least as long as supplies last). Swag giveaways, meet-the-brewer opportuniteis and brewery tours are also scheduled. You’ll find plenty of food specials to reflect the gastropub theme and infusing the new brews to elevate their comfort food flare to new levels.
These guys are going to hit the ground running, determined to show craft beer fans just what this thing is all about. They’ve got a Belgian Wit and a Stout in the works and have some collaborations with other local breweries in the works already.
Like I mentioned… this place is looking inward an around them in Blue Ash for inspiration – and thusly don’t have any big aspirations to distribute their beer out into the world. In addition, the brewpub will continue to offer 40 taps from other national and local breweries in addition to the beer that they brew on site.