“The Kids” (Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Black Butte Porter) were ready to venture to new lands in the mid-west and decided to plant some roots in Ohio. They heard that Ohio was very knowledgeable when it came to craft beer and with all of the pre-prohibition brewing history in places like Over-the-Rhine, we wanted to learn more so…we boarded a plane and flew into the Dayton, OH airport.
Dayton was hit hard by the recession and by the closing of automobile industries which employed many of the residents of the city. In the past decade, the city has come together and businesses are thriving including restaurants, shops and new breweries opening each month! The craft beer industry is flourishing in Dayton with about 5 new breweries in the works and lots of beer fans in the mix. We had a great time meeting new people, hearing their stories, and touring the town. We decided that fate had brought us to Dayton first since they even have their own historical area called the “Oregon District!” After working for a few days, we decided to play and since Black Butte Porter is a fan of planes and flight, we hit up the National Museum of the United States Air Force.
We found out that the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, OH is the world’s largest and oldest military aviation museum which opened in 1923 and has more than 360 aircraft and missiles on display. We were excited to be one of the 1.3 million visitors that the museum hosts each year and we were even more pleased to find out that this experience was absolutely FREE! Since we didn’t have a lot of time, we had to fly through the exhibits (hehe, get it…fly and it’s the museum of flight) but we really enjoyed the Presidential Aircrafts and the displays with old uniforms worn by the pilots. Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Black Butte Porter even got to climb up onto some of the planes. If you are ever near Dayton, this is a must see museum!
Next we wanted to learn more about the brewing history of Ohio so we traveled to Cincinnati (also known to the locals as Cincy). We learned that Cincinnati is the 25th largest city in the United States and some of the earliest settlers in 1788 were Germans who came over and settled in a neighborhood called Over-the-Rhine. In addition to being at the forefront of innovation with river transportation across the Ohio River, then railroads, streetcars and more, this was a HUGE beer town back in the day boasting one of the biggest brewing centers in the country. 30,000-40,000 people in Over-the-Rhine were employed by breweries or by brewing related companies. When prohibition hit in 1920, it struck the city hard, leaving lots of residents out of work and it also left large, empty, brick buildings with massive lagering cellars completely bare. Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Black Butte Porter were totally intrigued by all of this, so we had to take a trip deep down into those old, underground ,creepy beer tunnels. You could truly imagine all of the old beer barrels down there stored in the cold and the workers moving them around with barely any light to see. AMAZING! Now, there are new breweries popping up all over the area revitalizing these beautiful buildings. If you are in town, be sure to check out Rhinegeist Brewery and Christian Moerlein Brewing Company. The beer is wonderful and the building’s interior of both breweries are a sight.
Last but not least, we traveled to Columbus…the capitol and the largest city in Ohio. Named after Christopher Columbus, the city was founded in 1812 and became the capitol in 1816. Although Columbus is known for many things, “The Kids” wanted to check out Ohio State University as it has the same initials as our local Oregon State University. Ohio State was founded in 1870 and was originally known as an Agriculture and Mechanical Collage. It has since grown to the 3rd largest University Campus in the United States and is home to the Buckeyes (which is a North American tree or shrub)! Its medical college is quite impressive as well as the beautiful Orton Hall building (School of Earth Sciences). We chatted with a few students who were studying business and asked them where to go for a tasty craft beer…they were not yet of drinking age so we wandered the college town enjoying all there was to see.
Our time in Ohio was well spent but there is a lot more to see. Mirror Pond Pale Ale and Black Butte Porter are gonna stick around to take it all in and you can find them at your favorite watering holes, craft beer shops and more. To locate these beers and other Deschutes brews near you, be sure to consult our beer finder tool at www.deschutesbrewery.com/find and if you don’t see them, be sure to ask the manager, beer buyers and bartenders for… “The Kids!”