ALL THE WAY FROM SCOTLAND, comes the infamous BrewDog Brewery to the small city of Canal Winchester, Ohio, which sits just outside of Columbus. And guess who lives close by? Yes you guessed it, ME! So one sunny day in April, my husband and I ventured up the highway for drinks, food and fun.
BrewDog sits off a high traffic, noisy road, but you’d never know it’s within the city limits as you drive back the lane. Your eyes immediately notice the massive building sitting on 42 acres, which is around 100,000 square foot and houses 100 barrels of brew. Sprawling across the front of the building are the words BrewDog Taproom & Brewery, while the side of the building displays a humongous shark mural. On the same side as the mural is a patio with seating for humans as well as four pawed friends. Yes that’s right, dogs are welcome – we saw a few running around outside that day! There’s a pond by the patio as well as a bike path. Garage style doors open up off the patio, leading into the bar and restaurant area.
If you choose to enter through the front door, you enter into a rather large sized room filled with shirts, growlers etc. for your purchasing pleasure, followed by the waiting area. In the waiting area there’s another mural of Earth, pinpointing all the BrewDog locations. Thankfully we didn’t have to spend much time in the waiting area as I purposely waited to visit until the crowd died down a bit from the initial opening when the wait time was over an hour, for weeks, or so I heard
The restaurant and bar area is spacious and open, quite industrial looking. We sat in a booth by the bar and had a nice view of the outdoors. We ordered a flight and several small plates, and while we waited I explored the venue. Towards the back are arcade games, pinball machines (a Metallica Pinball machine, might I add) plus table shuffleboard. The games are backed up against a giant glass wall, looking into the brewery. I headed back to my table to find my flight and appetizers had arrived.
On draft were six BrewDog beers and several guest taps of local choices. My flight consisted of the famous Punk IPA, Dead Pony Club session pale ale, Elvis Juice (another delicious, very citrusy IPA), and my favorite of the night: 5AM Saint. Described as the Holy Grail of red ales, it’s brewed with red berries, cinder toffee, pine & orange.
The menu offers appetizers, cheese plates, burgers, pizzas and dinner entrees. We ordered four of the small plates to split.
Scotch Egg – soft egg, pork sausage, cider cured bacon, bread crumbs, fire charred chilies, capers, mustard…….We loved it so much we ordered seconds.
Kingpin Carnitas Tacos – pork shoulder, onion, cilantro, lime and avocado cream.
Hop Fries – Fries with toasted hops, chipotle sauce topping with habanero dip. I didn’t really notice the toasted hops, but the combination of the two sauces made the fries a hit.
Haggis Spring Rolls – A Scottish favorite with an Asian twist, served with apricot chutney. If you don’t know what Haggis is, let me inform you: it’s a savory pudding containing sheep’s pluck. Sheep’s pluck is the heart, liver and lungs, minced with onion, oatmeal and spices. The Haggis is then stuffed in a spring roll. I ate one spring roll but could not handle the other. No fault of the chefs, I just wasn’t sure I would like Haggis, but was willing to give it a try. When in Rome? Or in this case Central Ohio.
Bottom line, next time you’re in Central Ohio, take time out to visit BrewDog. It’s well worth the trip.
COMING SOON – The DogHouse.
A craft beer hotel and sour beer facility being built right next door! Highlights include: Punk IPA on tap in the hotel room, beer spa treatments, and craft beer themed menus.
“ The people of Ohio have absolutely bowled us over with their enthusiasm, passion for beer and warm welcome! Their reaction has been incredible, it’s awesome to know we’ve made the right choice with where to lay the foundations for our American home, and we’ll be throwing one helluva party to thank the locals for their support!” – James Watt – BrewDog Captain