Ohio Craft Brewers Association

Winter Warmer Fest tickets on sale now (buy them here►)

On Saturday, March 7th from 2-6 p.m. this much-anticipated Ohio craft beer showcase and fundraiser for the Ohio Craft Brewers Association will return to Windows on the River. More than forty Ohio breweries will be sampling their winter, limited edition and other popular beers. The event features live entertainment by blues artist Austin Walkin' Cane and food trucks including Fired Up Taco Truck, Scott's Fire and IceSweet! Mobile Cupcakery and Zydeco Bistro.

General admission tickets are $45 and include a souvenir glass and 20 tasting tickets for 4 oz. samples. VIP tickets are $75 and include early admission at 1:00PM and Enthusiast Membership to the Ohio Craft Brewers Association (complete with a Drink Beer Made Here t-shirt). Designated Driver tickets are available for $12 each and include a non-alcoholic beverage. You must be 21 years of age to attend WINTER WARMER FEST.

Tickets are available online in advance here► or by calling 1-888-941-0229.

Stay tuned here for a list of participating Ohio Craft breweries and their offerings!

Ohio Craft Brewers Conference: February 5 - 6, 2015 (register here ►)

As the state brewers guild whose mission is to promote and preserve Ohio’s unified craft brewing industry, one of the Ohio Craft Brewers Association’s primary organizational values is Empowerment: we give independent breweries the training and tools to improve and sustain their craft. As such we are excited to present the inaugural Ohio Craft Brewers Conference and Trade Show.  This two-day conference sponsored by the OCBA and OSU will be held in partnership with the Ohio Hop Conference on February 5 and 6, 2015 at the Ohio State University/OARDC Shisler Conference Center and Fisher Auditorium, 1680 Madison Avenue, Wooster, Ohio.

Attendance will be of interest to operating breweries and breweries in planning with topics ranging from Ohio licensing and regulatory compliance to effective interaction with the media. There will be eight primary presentations with regional and national speakers and five smaller breakout-sessions with the opportunity to learn from expert OCBA members and allies. Registration includes breakfast and lunch both days, a trade show that showcases the latest in hops production and craft brewing technologies and a social banquet that will take place on Thursday evening. Registration is $150 for OCBA members* (*discount valid for breweries and allied members) and $200 for non-members. There is a $25 per person discount for any brewery/organization registering more than 3 people for the conference (group discount applies for both members and non-members).  The full schedule can be found below

REGISTRATION DEADLINE is January 25, 2015.  To register online for the conference please click HERE

Ohio Craft Brewers Conference Schedule

Thursday, February 5, 2015

8:00 –9 a.m. Breakfast and registration

9– 9:45 a.m. Welcome address in the Fisher Auditorium: State of Ohio Craft Beer and Hops Industries

10 a.m. – 11 a.m. February Membership meeting

11 a.m. –12 p.m. Generating Additional Business from the Ohio Traveler: Tips for Working with Ohio’s Tourism Industry with Melinda Huntley, Executive Director, Ohio Travel Association

Break out session: Triumphs and Setbacks:  Our Bumpy Ride to Opening a Brewery, with Adam Benner, owner of Land-Grant Brewing Company, and Joe Infante, Attorney, Miller Canfield

12 - 1 p.m. Supply Chain Issues. Panel Discussion moderated by Eric Bean, Columbus Brewing Company with Matt Letki, National Sales Manager with Canada Malting Co. Ltd., Peter Velez, Eastern Regional Manager at Hop Union and Grant McDonough, Northeast Region Sales Manager with BSG Craft Brewing

Break out session: Pour Yourself Better Profits - Pairing Craft Beer and IT with Lynda Nance, Scott Hunt and Allen Serio of Brewers Professional Alliance

1 – 2 p.m. Lunch provided

2 – 3 p.m. Post-production Quality in Craft Beer: Understanding the Problems & Managing the Solutions with Rob Gerrity of Sierra Nevada

Break out session: Smart Solutions for Small Businesses - Protecting Your Investment and Retaining Key Employees with John Fonner of New York Life

3 – 4 p.m. Effective Media Interaction. Panel discussion moderated by Jim Ellison of Columbus Brew Adventures with Rick Armon of Akron Beacon Journal, Marc Bona of Northeast Ohio Media Group, Dan Eaton of Columbus Business First and Cheryl Harrison of Drink Up Columbus

Break out session: Dotting I’s and Crossing T’s – Proven Techniques for Financing Your Brewery with Dan Slate and Jeff Jacobson of Brewers Professional Alliance

4 – 5: 30 p.m. Brewery Licensing and Regulatory Compliance.  Gary Jones, Chief of Investigations and Compliance and Elaine Moore, Assistant Chief of Beer and Wine, Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of Liquor Control.

7:30 – 10 p.m. Banquet in Shisler Auditorium. Transportation available to and from conference hotels via Wooster Transit.

Friday, February 6, 2015

8 – 10 a.m. Breakfast

10 a.m. – 11 p.m. Packaging options: Bottling? Canning? Both? Neither? With Dean Hornsby, VP Sales & Marketing at Meheen and Dan Blatt and BJ Solomon, co-owners of Buckeye Mobile Canning

Break out session: Navigating Distribution Issues for Craft Brewers -- Wholesale Distribution v. Self Distribution, Distributor Contracts, and the Ohio Alcoholic Beverages Franchise Act with Jim Niehaus of Frantz Ward and Curt McCamon, Chief Operating Officer of Superior Beverage Group

11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Yeast and Beer Flavor with Neva Parker, Head of Laboratory Operations, White Labs

12 – 1 p.m. Brewery Safety with John Blystone of Great Lakes Brewing Company

1 – 2 p.m. – Lunch (available for dine in or carryout)

Ohio on Tap magazine

The Ohio Craft Brewers Association created Ohio on Tap magazine in conjunction with Great Lakes Publishing (publishers of Ohio Magazine) to serve as an informational guide to the craft breweries of Ohio. The first edition of the annual publication includes a history of Ohio’s brewing industry, description of beer styles, regional beer trails, food pairings and other interesting craft beer stories and news. The magazine is being distributed by tourism information centers, craft beer retailers, craft breweries, craft beer events and other sites around the state. 

Pick up a copy at your favorite Ohio craft brewery or read it online here 

Ohio Craft Brewers are an award-winning bunch!

Going into the fourth quarter of 2014 and Ohio's craft brewers are STILL racking up awards!

Great Showing for Ohio at the Great American Beer Festival where Columbus Brewing Company earned a gold medal for Creeper and a bronze for Bodhi; Fat Head's Brewery won a gold medal for Alpen Glow, JAFB Wooster won a silver for Wooster New Stout and Listermann/Triple Digit Brewing won a bronze for Nut Case Peanut Butter Porter.  

World Beer Cup, 2014 for example where Ohio craft breweries came home from Denver with five medals. Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. won a bronze for bourbon barrel-aged Siberian Night. Willoughby Brewing Company scored a gold for Peanut Butter Cup Coffee Porter. Fat Head's Brewery dominated the hoppy beer category and walked away with two silvers for Bonehead Red and Head Hunter IPA. Columbus Brewing Company earned a gold for Uncle Rusty. We'll be back for more next year. 

The Brew Kettle's El Lupulo Libre won The Brewing News National IPA Challenge 

Dayton Beer Co. won a gold medal for Mad River Milk Stout at the Best of Craft Beer Awards

Great Lakes Brewing Company won three medals at the Dublin Craft Beer CupBurning River Pale Ale received a silver, while Eliot Ness Amber Lager and Edmund Fitzgerald won bronze medals. They were also rated among the top 100 brewers in the world by RateBeer.com

Hoppin' Frog Brewery was rated the best brewery and DORIS the Destroyer the best beer in Ohio as well as one of the top 100 breweries in the world by RateBeer.com

Nano Brew Cleveland was among America's top 100 beer bars as rated by Draft Magazine

Rhinegeist was named best new brewery by RateBeer.com

Thirsty Dog Brewing Company won "Brewery of the Year" and a "Double Gold" for Bernese Barley Wine Ale at the third annual New York International Beer Competition 

Elevator Brewing Company, Great Lakes Brewing Company and Thirsty Dog Brewing Company's beers were rated among the top in the world in 2013 based on ratings by the Beverage Tasting Institute. The Ohio Beer Blog gives a nice recap here 

Moving on to the second quarter...

At the Alltech Commonwealth Cup in Lexington, Kentucky on Saturday, May 17 a handful of Ohio breweries took home some hardware. The Dayton Beer Company (2 bronze, 6 silver), Eudora Brewing Company (1 bronze, 1 silver), Fifty West Brewing Company (1 silver) and Sam Adams (15 bronze, 11 silver, 2 gold) all brought home some new hardware for different beers. For a complete list of winning beers click here