Thirsty Dog Brewing Co. hopes beer drinkers are in a sour mood.

The Akron brewery is opening the Sour Haus, a sour-focused tasting room next to its production brewery to serve as an outlet to share its sour beers. It opens March 23.

Thirsty Dog co-owner John Najeway said he believes Northeast Ohio is ready to embrace the style. Sours aren't everyone's cup of tea. He admitted that it took a little while for him to warm up to them.

It happened about 10 years ago when he took a trip to Belgium and stopped by hallowed breweries such as Cantillon and Lindemans.

"As I always tell everyone, you have to drink 100 to find a style within the style that you like," Najeway said. "I found some I really liked."

Upon returning to Thirsty Dog, he launched a sour barrel-aging program. The brewery now is aging beer in about 120 barrels that once held everything from red and white wine to sherry.

Sour brewer Joe Lero blends batches that have been aging anywhere from six months to six years to get the perfect end product.

The Sour Haus will offer five Thirsty Dog sours on draft all the time, including Cerasus Dog, a Flanders red aged in cherries, and Rubus Dog, a Flanders red aged in raspberries. Black Currant Berlinerweisse will be available on opening day. There also will be a few bottled non-sour Thirsty Dog beers available, along with a house-made root beer.

The family-friendly tasting room is located in the same 1,200-square-foot space that held Aqueduct Brewing at 529 Grant St. Thirsty Dog will employ Aqueduct's former two-barrel system to pump out more small-batch sours.

"The goal is to switch from these super acidic bombs to making more balanced and approachable [sours] — having different levels," Lero said. "You can still get that crazy acid hit and then you also can go to that other extreme where it's just a little bit funky and nothing else, or even dry-hopped sours."

He said his personal favorite now is Thirsty Dog's Saison D Chardonnay, a farmhouse ale aged for 18 months in chardonnay barrels.

In addition to offering the sours on draft, the brewery plans to hold a special 500-milliliter bottle release each month for a new sour. People will be able to order growlers and howlers to go.

Thirsty Dog isn't the only Ohio brewery that offers sours. Urban Artifact in Cincinnati produces only sours. Jackie O's and Little Fish, both located in Athens, also are well-known for sour beers. Rivertown in Monroe and BottleHouse, which has locations in Cleveland Heights, Lakewood and Shaker Heights, also have been making sours for years. Meanwhile, Platform is opening a sour-only facility in Cleveland known as Phunkenship.

The Sour Haus will be open limited hours: 4 to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. On March 23, it will be open noon to 8 p.m. The tasting room will be a separate, dedicated spot on the 2019 Summit Brew Path, which kicks off March 23.