What I consider a real tragedy for Cincinnati’s craft beer scene, when Ken Lewis (Then owner of the Party Source) opened Brew works at the Party Source opened this brewery he had a grand scheme for saving one of Covington’s historic buildings, the Bavarian Brewery.  Admittedly when he bought the old brewery building, his intention was to demolish it, but after seeing some of the details in the building itself, he thought better of the idea and decided to renovate instead.  With renovations totaling $11million dollars, the building became something that hadn’t been seen before (or since for that matter).  The complex sprawled over 4 floors with dance floors, a gift shop, a party source store, a private party room, a cigar lounge, a main dining room, a coffee house, a Brew on Premise facility and the microbrewery itself. The brewery used a 15bbl Century brewhouse along with a 1/2bbl brew on-premise system.  This along with an on-site restaurant set the operation up to be something unique for the area. Unfortunately, the operation didn’t do as well as planned, and after a few months, the brewery and restaurant portions were leased out to Wynkoop Brewing in Denver before the entire operation was shuttered in 1998.

This is an idea that Morphed into what we currently see at the Party Source in Bellevue… but it’s still a fraction of what the vision entailed.  Craft beer fans could wander the aisles of the party source and have a bartender ‘call down’ and send up a rare beer that they found.  This was if the “beer geek bar” with it’s 40ish taps wasn’t enough to satisfy palates.  With somewhere around 1500 different brands of beer on-site… this was a beer mecca in a time where there weren’t nearly as many places as we’ve become familiar with today.


  • Opened in November 1996
  • 1997 – In July, the brewing operation was leased out to Wynkoop Brewing.
  • Closed in 1998