Ah yes, it’s a sound and a taste with which we’re all so familiar.
The pop of the cap, the escape of the air and the refreshing, smooth taste of a Natural Light. Wait, some people don’t like tasting slightly hoppy water? That’s weird.
Or maybe not. While some enjoy beers for tailgating and partying, others enjoy sitting down and enjoying a citrusy IPA, a heavy stout or perhaps even channeling their inner medieval selves by having a nice mead.
Fortunately for those on the prowl for that ambrosial amber ale or that piquant pilsner, Columbus has quite the variety of local breweries for those lovers of lager. The Short North is chock full of craft breweries well within reach for students, while others such as Lineage Brewing might be worth the Uber up the road.
So put that Natty back in the fridge, order that Lyft and stop reading this if you’re a freshman (unless you’re just doing some studying for the future). It’s time to head out to some breweries.
Lineage Brewing — 2971 N. High St.
The farthest brewery from campus, Lineage offers guests an ever-changing array of beers with a solid mix of food. With a variety of IPAs, stouts, pale ales and several European-style drinks always on tap, Lineage meets the needs of any beer-lover who walks in the door. I personally was a fan of the Billingsworth, an English golden ale with an even more British name, that wasn’t too strong and had a subtle citrusy taste to it. Spaceman #6 is an IPA that you can’t go wrong with either.
The atmosphere is laid-back, with no televisions, a relatively small indoor space and a smaller patio outside. All of the drinks are brewed just behind the bar in view of all the patrons. It’s a little bit out of the way for Ohio State students, but it’s worth the trek up north.
Seventh Son Brewing Co. — 1101 N. 4th St.
There might not be a better place to hang out during the summer than Seventh Son Brewing Co. With plenty of outdoor seating in the form of picnic tables, a food truck just outside and a wide range of ales, stouts and other assorted beverages, Seventh Son is a perfect brewery just to relax with some friends at the end of the week.
Most of the options to drink here are a bit on the stronger side, but are reasonably priced. If you’re looking for a reliable flagship beer, you can’t go wrong with the Seventh Son, an American Strong ale. Before October ends, be sure to try Brother Jon, a Belgian blond ale with a nice blend of fruit and bread flavors.
BrewDog Short North — 1175 N. High St.
You thought this list was limited to American breweries? Not quite. BrewDog has its roots in Scotland where it was founded in 2007, and the location has since opened up four locations in Columbus — including a hotel called the Doghouse.
As a Scottish company now located in central Ohio, BrewDog offers a pleasant mix of beers with a more American flavor than those that originate in the United Kingdom. Punk IPA and Elvis Juice (another IPA) are my two favorites, but Clown King is a solid barleywine with a nice caramel flavor to it.
Guests can choose to sit either at various tables and barstools across the bar or heading out back into the beer garden.
North High Brewing — 1288 N. High St.
Just a block south of a Kroger Ohio State students know and love, North High Brewing offers patrons a different sort of atmosphere than some of the aforementioned breweries. This has more of a sports-bar feel with the quality ales of a brewing company and televisions playing the biggest games of the day.
The brewery offers a couple of year-round beers such as an IPA or a hefeweizen, but also mixes it up with a wide variety of newly prepared drinks. If you’re heading in soon, I recommend trying the Mr. Fahrenheit, a New England IPA, before it runs out.
Brothers Drake Meadery — 26 E. 5th Ave.
Feel like ordering a nice, autumnal mead without being put in a stockade by a blue-suited, Bud Light knight? Head right around the corner of North High over to Brothers Drake for a flavorful glass of the honey-based brews. Brothers Drake offers home-brewed meads with just about any flavor, ranging from apple pie to ginger verve to PB&J. The personal favorite of this reporter is the Cyser, which has a nice green apple taste to it.
Though the space is a bit limited in terms of seating, guests often get to enjoy a local band or event coming on the stage just off to the side of the bar, making for a unique drinking experience.
Never had a mead? Be sure to schedule a tasting tour and sample some of the brewery’s offerings.