Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. is jumping back into the brewpub game.

The Akron production brewery is opening a brewpub in the Flats East Bank development in downtown Cleveland.

“We’re excited to be joining the Cleveland beer scene,” Thirsty Dog co-owner John Najeway said. “It’s always been on the forefront of Ohio craft beer.”

The brewery is coming full circle with the opening. Thirsty Dog started out in 1997 as a brewpub (a restaurant and brewery) in the Canton area and then added brewpubs in suburban Dayton and Akron. But those operations all closed by 2005.

The brand survived through contract brewing before opening a production brewery in 2007 in the former Burkhardt Brewing Co. building in Akron.

The new Cleveland brewpub will feature a 10-barrel system.

“We’ll make the same beers here but we’ll have a whole bunch of new beers that we make there,” Najeway said.

He said he’s happy to be joining a neighborhood that already features the Collision Bend and Portside breweries — not to mention being around the corner from Great Lakes, Market Garden and others.

“We’re going to be part of a cool brewing district,” he said.

The goal is to open in August.

New beers

Speaking of Thirsty Dog, the brewery has two new beers.

OH IPA, a dry-hopped American IPA, is now available on tap and in six-packs. The beer will be available into September. Six-packs will retail for $9.99.

Meanwhile, barrel-aged Bernese Barleywine Ale will be released on draft and in 750-milliliter bottles starting at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

The bottles will sell for $20.

New stout

Speaking of new beers, Hoppin’ Frog Brewery, 1680 E. Waterloo Road, Akron, is releasing Bourbon Barrel Aged T.O.R.I.S. in bottles and on draft at 11 a.m. Saturday.

The beer is 13.8 percent alcohol by volume.

Game of Thrones beer

The Winking Lizard Tavern, 14018 Detroit Ave., Lakewood, will host a launch party from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday for the release of Brewery Ommegang’s latest Game of Thrones-inspired beer.

Bend the Knee, a strong golden ale made with honey, is the seventh beer in the collaboration series. It is 8.5 percent alcohol by volume.

Winking Lizard is hosting a “Feast of Bend the Knee Ale” event, with a menu that includes turkey, seafood, pork steak, beef rib and half chicken platters. There also will be live music, a best-dressed contest and Game of Thrones trivia.

Brew and BBQ

Cedar Point’s annual Brew and BBQ has returned to the Sandusky amusement park.

The event, which takes place each weekend through June 11, showcases barbecue and more than 40 breweries.

The beers include exclusive brews made by The Brew Kettle for the amusement park. One of those is new this year: Shandy Shores, a new blood orange-mango beer that celebrates the Cedar Point Shores Waterpark.

For full details, go to:

Hello, Almanac

San Francisco-based Almanac Beer Co. is moving into Ohio.

Sixth City Distribution has inked a deal to distribute Almanac in Northeast Ohio in both bottles and on draft beginning Monday.

“Almanac has been widely recognized as one of the best producers of wild and barrel aged beer and we’re excited to be bringing them to Ohio,” Sixth City founder Ryan Reed said in a prepared statement.

Sixth City will start off distributing the following Almanac beers: Sunshine & Opportunity, Farmer’s Reserve Pluot, Farmer’s Reserve Blackberry, Passion Project, Peach de Brettaville, Farmer’s Reserve Citrus and Farmer’s Reserve Blueberry. Others will follow.

Beer story sampler

•?Noble Beast Brewing Co., 1470 Lakeside Ave. E., Cleveland, has opened.

•?Platform Beer Co. in Cleveland recently won a gold medal for Speed Merchant and a silver for Luchador Lager at the Commonwealth Cup competition at the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fest in Lexington, Ky.

•?Cincinnati State Technical and Community College has launched a two-year associate degree in brewing. It’s the first brewing science degree program in Ohio.

Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or Read his beer blog at Follow him on Twitter at @armonrickABJ .