Longtime friends Dave Bertolotti, Dan Kephart, Keith McFarlane and Danny Yagersz joked years ago that they would open a brewery in 2025.

They are beating their estimate with plenty of time to spare.

The homebrewers are on the verge of launching Missing Mountain Brewing Co., a 10-barrel production brewery, tasting room and eatery at 2811 Front St. in Cuyahoga Falls on the border of Silver Lake.

The two-story brewery and taproom — made up of two separate buildings — is expected to open in April.

Missing Mountain sits along the Cuyahoga River and features large outdoor patios overlooking the waterway. It’s a fitting, scenic setting for a group of guys who once dreamed of moving to Colorado so they could go snowboarding more often.

The Missing Mountain name is an homage to their love of mountains.

“We really love this property,” McFarlane said. “It’s just a beautiful setup here.”
Missing Mountain hopes to open the tasting room in April and plans to distribute its draft-only beer to bars and restaurants.

The smallish tasting room — there’s a balcony level, too — will feature salads and sandwiches, along with beer, wine and liquor.

There will be some communal seating, along with individual tables, and windows on the second floor offer a view of the river. The brewery also will be family friendly.

“We aren’t going to be your typical brewery,” Kephart said. “Our space is very quaint and very comfortable. It’s almost like you’re going to your home.”

Missing Mountain will be the third brewery to call Cuyahoga Falls home — and the latest in a wave of new breweries opening in the Akron area. McArthur’s Brew House is within walking distance, while HiHO Brewing is less than two miles away. Ohio Brewing Co. also has announced plans to open on Front Street.

Even though it will offer food, Missing Mountain doesn’t want to be known as a brewpub.

“We’re going to be a brewery with food,” McFarlane said.

Missing Mountain expects to offer 20 taps, with about a dozen house beers when it’s fully up and running. Styles will range from a kolsch to IPAs to a stout to Belgian-style ales.

“We do like our hoppy beers and that will definitely be a staple on our menus,” McFarlane said. “But we also love the Belgian styles. We love the American styles we can play around with. … We don’t want to be handcuffed to any certain style or be connected to being just a style-specific brewery.”

Missing Mountain also would like to launch sour and barrel-aging programs down the road.

The friends have been homebrewing together for years and came up with the Missing Mountain name well before deciding to take their hobby to the professional level. They even produced Missing Mountain merchandise for parties with friends and family.

McFarlane, 38, of Munroe Falls and Bertolotti, 43, of Tallmadge, who are both physical therapy assistants by trade, will primarily handle the brewing duties. Kephart, 33, of Cuyahoga Falls, a software engineer, and Yagersz, 42, an operations manager, will oversee the bookkeeping and tasting room.

They are looking forward to opening and getting back to the business of brewing — as opposed to construction.

“That’s truly our passion,” McFarlane said.

The hours aren’t set yet, but Missing Mountain plans to be open seven days a week.