MadCap Brew Co. is ready to put on its big boy brewing pants.
The nanobrewery, which opened in 2013 in Stow, is undergoing a big expansion and relocation.
MadCap is transitioning to a 10-barrel brew-house — it’s using a three-barrel system now — and moving to Kent.
The brewery, best known for Bullet IPA and Bad LeRoy Brown, also is opening a tasting room for the first time.
MadCap co-founder Ryan Holmes said he’s excited about the growth, which will allow the brewery to have more interaction with its fans at the taproom, produce more styles and distribute more in the Akron-Cleveland-Canton area.
He’s also happy to be in Kent.
“The water is phenomenal for brewing in Kent,” he said last week during a tour of the new building.
The brewery will occupy the former Consolidated Mold & Manufacturing Inc. building at 1422 Mogadore Road. Bent Tree Coffee Roasters also is opening a shop inside the 17,000-square-foot structure.
MadCap will continue to focus on draft beer, with perhaps some small-scale bottling. The ultimate goal is to can, Holmes said. He hopes to be open in a few months.
Holmes hasn’t finalized the specific hours or days when the tasting room will be open, but he’s thinking five or six days a week. He also is interested in becoming part of the community, including Kent State University.
This is the second expansion for MadCap, which started out on a tiny system in a tiny garage in Stow. It then graduated to its current three-barrel system.
The brewery has flown under the beer radar in the Akron area. It appears sometimes at local festivals but its system is so small that it has had limited distribution.
If you’re looking for a taste, Ray’s Place in Kent and Fairlawn always have MadCap on tap.
It’s last call Saturday for Trailhead Brewery.
Owner and brewer Eli Smart said his wife got a big promotion and his family is relocating to California. The nanobrewery’s last day is Saturday.
Trailhead, located at 1674 Merriman Road in Akron’s Merriman Valley and a few feet away from the new R. Shea Brewing Co., opened in 2013.
“I’ve had a lot of fun down there,” Smart said. “The valley has been great. I’ve enjoyed being a part of Akron’s beer scene.”
There’s nothing special planned to mark the occasion. “Just the usual: Selling beer and hanging out,” Smart said.
Trailhead sits at the edge of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, thus its name. The small production brewery and tasting room features draft beer, a small custom-made cedar bar and wooden picnic tables for seating.
If you want a final taste, the brewery will be open from 5 to 10 p.m. Wednesday; 5 to 10 p.m. Friday; and 2 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Smart said there’s a chance he might open early on Friday.
With the explosion in the craft beer industry nowadays, it’s rare to see a brewery close. But it does happen. Indigo Imp Brewery in Cleveland also closed this year.
Hoppin’ Frog dinner
Hoppin’ Frog Brewery, 1680 E. Waterloo Road, Akron, will host a five-course, six-beer pairing dinner at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 14.
The dinner will feature King Gose Home paired with French ratatouille, Hopped-Up Goose Juice with mahi mahi crepe, D.O.R.I.S. the Destroyer with braised short rib ragu meat sauce over pasta, Barrel-Aged Frosted Frog Christmas Ale with roasted pork medallions, and Infusion A Peanut Butter and Chocolate Coffee Porter with doughnuts.
The cost is $55, plus tax and tip. Reservations can be made by emailing TheTastingRoom@?HoppinFrog.com.
Platform Beer Co. brewer Reed Jaskula always counted Count Chocula among his favorite cereals while growing up.
So it made sense when he was looking to do an experiment with a cereal-infused beer that he would choose the chocolate bomb. Well, it was either that or Golden Grahams.
Platform mixed 48 boxes of Count Chocula into a breakfast stout to create its newest brew: Cerealism.
“You get a real chocolatey cereal taste,” Jaskula said when asked to describe the flavor. “I thought it’d be fermented out.”
The brewery, 4125 Lorain Ave., Cleveland, will debut the beer at 10 a.m. Saturday during its Cerealism Brunch. The event will feature $8 stuffed French toast and an endless buffet of Count Chocula, Froot Loops, Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Raisin Bran for $5.
Cerealism, which is 8.5 percent alcohol by volume, will be available on draft after the brunch as well. The brewery made 15 barrels so it should be around for a little while.
Jaskula admitted that Cerealism was an experiment. But it turned out well enough that he joked about creating a cereal series.
Think about it. There’s always Franken Berry, Boo Berry, Cinnamon Toast Crunch and the aforementioned Golden Grahams, among others.
Platform isn’t the first brewery to use Count Chocula in a beer. Last year, Black Bottle Brewery in Fort Collins, Colo., caused a stink when it bought up all the Count Chocula in the community for its brew. It also produces a cereal series.
Scenic Brewing Co., 7253 Whipple Ave. NW, Jackson Township, is getting ready to release its first bottled beer.
Gambit’s Peak Blonde Ale will hit bars and restaurants in the Canton area in five or six weeks, owner and brewer Dan Mueller said.
“We’ve had a lot of customers who like it and they really wanted to have it at certain venues,” he said.
The beer, which is 5 percent alcohol by volume, won’t be sold in bottles at the brewery or in six-packs, he added. (It is available at the brewery on draft.)
He also expects Unchartered IPA will be released in a bottle around late January.
Crave, 57 E. Market St., Akron, will host a five-course beer pairing dinner with Ommegang Brewery at 6 p.m. Monday.
It will feature Hennepin paired with hot soup dumplings, Rosetta Sour with foie gras bread pudding, Gnomegang with brown butter pizza, Adoration Ale with turducken, and Three Philosophers with cherry creamsicle cannoli.
The cost is $60. For reservations, call 330-253-1234.
Royal Docks series
Royal Docks Brewing Co., 7162 Fulton Drive NW, Jackson Township, has launched a 10-beer, yearlong series called B-Side Medley — an effort inspired by the Beatles’ Abbey Road album.
The first beer, Because Belgian Golden Ale, is available now on draft at the brewpub. The beer is 5.1 percent alcohol by volume.
“It’s a real smooth, easy-drinking Belgian ale,” brewmaster Dave Sutula said. “It’s one of the beers I’m most proud of in my entire career. I was shooting for something Duvel-like.”
All the beers in the series, except for the first and last one, will be released in 750-milliliter bottles with corks and cages, the brewery said.
Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Read his beer blog at www.ohio.com/beer. Follow him on Twitter at @armonrick.