It’s 3:30 p.m. on a Thursday and there are more than a dozen people sitting in the tasting room at Yellow Springs Brewery. Some are at the L-shaped bar, while others are sitting at wooden tables scattered throughout.
And that’s not even counting the steady stream of folks stopping in for growler fills and then leaving.
The doors just opened at 3 p.m.
Why aren’t these people at work?
“I know. I know,” owner and brewer Nate Cornett said with a laugh over a beer last week. “I think that all the time, man. I think that all the time. ... It’s been relentless. It’s been great. We’re brewing as much as we can as fast as we can.”
Cornett and his wife Lisa Wolters opened the production brewery and tasting room earlier this year in a former seed storage building just outside downtown Yellow Springs, a small artsy community located about a half-hour east of Dayton.
“For me, this place was perfect for it,” Cornett said about Yellow Springs. “It’s already a tourist destination.”
The white-washed, concrete block building sits at the end of a long and wide gravel driveway that serves as the entrance for a few businesses. The brewery also backs up to the Little Miami Scenic Trail, a popular hike and bike path. A wooden deck is being constructed onto the back of the brewery to capture that hike and bike crowd.
As for the interior, the attractive tasting room has a definite industrial feel. The floor is concrete, while some of the walls are natural, gray concrete block and others are drywall painted in dark yellow, burnt orange and gray colors. Artwork hangs on the walls, and there’s pottery on display, as well.
The ceiling features exposed duct work.
As with many tasting rooms at production breweries, there’s no television, forcing people to ... gasp! ... be social and talk with each other.
The back of the bar is fabricated metal and features the Yellow Springs logo in metal: Two giant stars and a soaring eagle between them. Built into the bar back and afixed at the top is the Yellow Springs Brewery motto: “Crafting Truth to Power.” It’s a play on the old Quaker saying “Speak Truth to Power.”
The brewery doesn’t offer food, but will have food trucks around and allows people to bring in their own food from local restaurants.
The brewhouse, a seven-barrel brewing system that includes re-purposed dairy equipment, is in another section of the building. Visitors can get a glimpse when they exit the tasting room to head to the restroom.
Last week, the brewery had seven beers on draft: Kerfuffle English Mild, Captain Stardust Saison, Wilfred American Amber Ale, Handsome American Brown Ale, Wyatt’s Eviction English Pale Ale, Breaking Edge IPA and Wobbly Wheel IPA. The lineup does change.
“Kerfuffle is probably my go-to right now because at 3 percent [alcohol by volume] you can belt down a couple of pints of that and you’re still OK,” said Cornett, a former homebrewer and IT worker at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton. “It just tastes good and it’s low alcohol.”
Yellow Springs will start offering 22-ounce bottles in the upcoming months. Cornett expects business to slow a bit during the winter and that’s when he’ll start focusing on that aspect of the business.
He also plans to join the growing craft trend of putting Yellow Springs in a can.
The bottles and cans will be available at the brewery and also at select places in Yellow Springs and Dayton.