Award-winning brewer Kevin Moreland, who energized the Listermann and Triple Digit brands and co-founded Taft's Ale House in Cincinnati, spent the last year working as a consultant, traveling around the country and even outside the United States helping breweries open and fine tune their beers.

But now, he's hanging up his consultant hat and joining the new music-themed Fretboard Brewing Co. in Blue Ash as a managing partner. He will serve as production manager.

"My goal is to drive this business into the future," Moreland said Thursday. (Jan. 11) "I can use my strengths to help Fretboard grow and get people in the door and help [head brewer Bradley Plank] come up with unique products, too. It's exciting to me."

His goal also is to bring more attention to Ohio and the Cincinnati craft beer scene.

Moreland, who developed the award-winning Chickow! and Nutcase Peanut Butter Porter while at Listermann, enjoyed his time consulting with his business KDM Brewing Solutions, saying he learned a lot about quality control labs and the technical side of the business.

"It really upped my game," he said.

Despite his love of consulting, Moreland found himself often drawn back to Fretboard. He had helped the brewery launch in November as a consultant.

"I really meshed with the guys," he said.

He also sees a similarity between Fretboard and the former Barrel House Brewing, where he used to hang out in his younger days, because of the new brewery's emphasis on live music.

"It's that love of music and craft beer," he said.

Fretboard was founded by Plank, Vice President of Operations Jim Klosterman and CEO Joe Sierra.

In honor of Moreland joining the team, Fretboard will release an imperial stout infused with smoked coconut aged on cacao nibs produced by Maverick Chocolate Co. It's called Nati' Dread. A dollar from every pint of Nati' Dread sold on Jan. 18 will benefit the ArtsWave foundation.