At the corner of Hudson Street and Indianola Avenue is a little venue that prides itself on being the local pub where people can gather.
After opening last year, Rambling House Soda provides the campus community with locally brewed soda, beer and live music five days each week.
It primarily focuses on selling its homemade soda, which is brewed in a factory less than a mile away from the pub.
Owner John Lynch used to brew beer and said it taught him vital skills for brewing soda.
“I worked for a brewery in town for five years and saw the huge explosion in craft beer,” Lynch said. “And I wanted to do something similar … I thought there was an opportunity to create a little niche for the bar venue and create an option for people that do want to come out and have a good time, but not necessarily drink alcohol.”
And as he and his wife, Jennifer, wanted, they created a place where the community could enjoy the experience of a “rambling house.”
“It’s an old Irish term,” Lynch said. “In Ireland, a rambling house is in a community that didn’t have a pub, so someone’s home would be the rambling house. It would change from month to month, but that’s where people would go to tell stories, play music, eat, drink and just have fun.”
In addition to wanting Rambling House to be a place where the campus community could have a good time, the Lynchs wanted to work with the community to better their establishment.
Brent Skatzes, who works at Rambling House Soda, said more than 80 percent of the musical talent booked comes from somewhere in Ohio, mostly from Columbus.
“We try to focus on Americana bluegrass style,” Skatzes said. “(As well as) old-time Appalachian string-based.”
The products used in the various sodas are locally brewed as well. Locals throughout the campus and Columbus community can expect drinks such as flavored colas, ginger beer, sarsaparilla and a weekly special, such as cream soda. In addition to its soda, Rambling House sells beer brewed in Ohio.
The company has also begun the process of branching out into serving food as well, teaming up with Paddy Wagon Food Company, a mobile restaurant company.
“We’ll have a full kitchen menu,” Lynch said. “It’ll be a three-page menu, featuring a lot of good pub food.”
Zachary James, founder and operator of Paddy Wagon, currently provides food for both Little Rock Bar and Scarlet and Grey Cafe, in addition to his food truck.
Along with the upcoming addition of food, Rambling House has recently started being open on Wednesdays as well as Thursday through Sunday.
Additionally, it will open at 5 p.m., an hour earlier than before.
With the hopes of bringing in more customers, the $5 cover fee, which goes toward the live performers, will be dropped between the hours of 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. There is currently no cover on Wednesday and Sunday nights.
Currently the soda is sold in places such as Growl! and The Torpedo Room inside Gateway Film Center.
Lynch said 32-ounce bottles will be sold in stores throughout the campus area, as well as in Clintonville, starting in May.
Draft soda will also be available in select Whole Foods Markets throughout Columbus at a later time.
Rambling House Soda is located at 310 E. Hudson St., with parking available along the street, as well as in the Helping Hands Center parking lot.