There’s a lot of great craft beer and spirits in town and we are slowly working our way through them all. Today we venture to Wolf’s Ridge Brewing!
Upon arriving for a tour, our tour guide Eric immediately presented us with a baby-sized beer of Wolf’s Ridge drift wood session IPA. Now that’s what I call service! Once everyone had arrived, Eric took us down the ramp seen in their taproom to the modest brewery below, to hear about the Wolf’s Ridge story with beer in hand.
As usual for many current businesses around Columbus, their location used to be an array of different things. First it was used by a commerce truck company. Then it was occupied by a company that made t-shirts and trophies. Afterwards it was vacant for a long time before the father-son team started Wolf’s Ridge in September 2013. Their goal was not to be a brew pub, but instead wanted to elevate the food with the beer.
Beer consists of four ingredients: malted barley, wheat, hops, and yeast. And here’s some fun trivia knowledge for you about hops: in addition to it’s bitter flavor it also happens to have antibacterial properties. It is for this reason that hops was used for brewing beer as it allowed it to last longer. This was particularly useful because you didn’t use to be able to brew in the summer. Therefore you would add more hops to the beer brewed in April to last until the temperatures declined in October – hence Oktoberfest!
But there’s more that goes into beer making that just those four ingredients. For example, they change the chemistry of the water to brew the type of beer they want. If they want a beautifully hoppy pale lager they will use soft water. Meanwhile pale ales prefer harder water. Also where the fermentation occurs impacts the flavor as well. Since the yeast works faster when warmer, ales are top fermenting. Meanwhile, lagers are bottom fermenting where it’s colder.
If you are familiar with Wolf’s Ridge you know that they love playing with new flavors. Right now they are working on barrel aged beer, pumpkin, dire wolf, and a Belgian triple. Since bourbon barrels only get used one, they can get them from Middle West the day they are emptied and put beer in them the very same day to start aging, such as their bourbon barrel dire wolf. Some of their other creations have been sitting, patiently waiting, for a couple of years already! They also have a sherry cask with sour red in it.
At the finale of our tour we were lead back to the taproom. This space used to only be a garage but has since been revitalized and has original, restored windows. Also, the tables at which you sit are made from wind-fallen trees that the owner, Allen, himself built. Upon relaying this information on us, Eric said that Allen is handiest person he has ever met and went on to list a number of creative ideas Allen has had.
With our tour completed we finally got to dive in and order some flights of beer (which come in 3 or 5) and lots of food to share! In true blogger form, we each ordered something different to make sure we got to sample it all.! And of course to take all the pictures. Pictures or it didn’t happen, right?
Their goal to elevate their food with the beer clearly has been met and possibly even surpassed. We couldn’t stop oohing and ahhing as beautiful plates of food were being presented in front of us. Even the honey comb on the cheese board was alluring. Clearly, this is not your every day bar food.
Everything was delicious from start to finish. Speaking of the start, we’ve heard that their brunch menu in the front room is not to be missed either! We’ll be back for more that’s for sure.
Pictured from left to right: Rachel and Vicki (2 Hangry Chicks), Megan (Food For Foster), Jordan (Midwest Foodfest), Karaline (Simply Columbus), Erin (The Spiffy Cookie), Kara (Byte Sized Nutrition), and Stacy (Eat Pretty 614).
Interested in collaborating on a meetup or becoming a member of the Columbus Food Bloggers group? Please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blog Post & Photos by:
Erin, The Spiffy Cookie