Why they're interesting: In 2014, the duo launched Platform Beer Co. in Ohio City with a revolving menu of innovative craft brews and an incubator program for wannabe brewers. They've since expanded into the former Leisy Brewery bottling plant under the Gypsy Brewery name as a place to experiment and offer a home to other brewers. Entrepreneurial spirits: At 17, Carson was working at Dick's Last Resort in the Flats and living on his own. He started JC BeerTech, a cleaning service for draft beer and soda lines, out of necessity. "When you're put in that situation at a young age, it's based on your electricity or your gas being cut off," he says. crafting passion: Benner, who played wide receiver at Baldwin Wallace University, earned his real estate license as a junior in college, flipped houses for a few years and then worked in for-profit education. But he didn't find his passion until taking a brewing class in Akron. "I immediately became obsessed," he says. Bright ideas: Inspired by its homebrewer roots, Platform frequently hires hobbyists as staff and runs an incubator program for budding craft brewers. Even its lightbulb logo pays tribute to experimentation, creativity — and the power of happy accidents: While debating the logo during construction, a single bulb was plugged into an outlet. "It fell out of the ceiling and smashed on the ground," Carson says. "That ended that conversation." Monster mash: Brewer Reed Jaskula dreamed up Cerealism, a breakfast stout made with 48 boxes of Count Chocula used in the mash. "Making a stout is fine," says Benner. "But why not try something stupid?" Big plans: Housed in the former 120,000-square-foot Leisy Brewery bottling plant, Gypsy Brewery is expected to more than double Platform's capacity. More than that, Carson enjoys breathing new life into a piece of the city's history. "You know that it had a soul previously."