Boris Music stayed put when hipster places such as TownHall and Market Garden Brewery opened their doors in Ohio City. The longtime owner of Hansa Import Haus on Lorain Avenue wasn’t intimidated by the trendy hot spots. Instead he got to work on refocusing his German market into Hansa Brewery. After three years of renovations and expansions, the 8,000-square-foot Chalet-style building now boasts a 15-barrel brewery, restaurant and retail shop. Here’s why we love this Old World gem.
The Beer With a rotating lineup of eight in-house beers on tap, the $5 flight is an easy way to test-drive varieties such as the Black Flag Schwarzbier, a dark graham cracker-flavored beer that drank lighter than it looked. Beer aficionados will want to try the Winzig Haus Bier, a Lichtenhainer-style beer — similar to a gose — that’s kettle-soured for tartness. Smoked malt and wheat give it a bold smoky finish.
The Food Of course you’ll find German staples such as potato pancakes, knodel — German dumplings — and schnitzel on the menu. Make sure you leave room for dessert. There’s always house-made apple and cherry strudel. Music brings in pastries such as the light-as-air napoleons from neighboring Farkas Pastry Shoppe.
The Atmosphere It always feels like Oktoberfest here — especially when you join in on a shot ski — with festive European flags dotting the walls and a long alphorn perched above intricate wood-painted beer signs lined up behind the bar. A larger-than-life mural of two well-endowed ladies dressed in dirndls watches over the lively crowd.
More info: hansabrewery.com