Exploration Brewery: March First

March First Brewing


I recently visited March First Brewing for the first time and the experience did not disapoint. Since I had not been to the taproom yet but was cheering them on in the Fifty West Punch Out this year, something you can read more on here, I thought I better stop by before the event. Their address is 7885 E Kemper Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45249 – look for the red “M” flags out front.

The Place

To start off March First has plenty of parking. I went on a Saturday afternoon on a beautiful day and I didn’t have any trouble finding a spot. I know that’s important to some of you. The building is a little hard to spot but they have several promotional vehichles parked out front to go along the line of little red flags waiving you to the parking lot. The building kind of looks like an old set of offices. The parking lot is off to the side of the building and once you get out the taproom is around the back of the building. They have arrows and signs pointing you in the right direction. There are two huge roll up garage doors that let you know you’re in the right place. Outside they have tables and a patio area set up. Inside the bar is right there when you walk in. They have tv’s to behind the bar. When I was there the World Cup and the Reds were on.

March First is no one trick pony. They have a kitchen with a variety of pizzas and other food options. They also have more than beer. They also do ciders and spirits. I’m talking spirits they distill themselves! Basically, they have something for everyone.

The Beer

March First has a lot going on in terms of what’s avabliable to drink in their taproom. Like I said earlier, they’re a triple threat with the beer, cider, and spirits. While I was there I had a flight plus a pint so I tried five beers in all. This was my first stop of the day so I stuck to the lighter side of things so I could keep going. I had the session IPA, Ohio pilsner, Denali IPA, the Irish Red, and their newly released Tropical Blonde.

They have plenty of swag avaliable, growlers, and bottles to go too.

It was the Tropical Blonde that I really enjoyed. At 5% ABV and 15 IBUs this one is a drinker. I picked up a lot of mango at first taste and pineapples notes on the backend.  It’s light, refreshing, and delicious.

Overall

March First is about to embark on an agressive expansion soon so you’ll probably see more of them around town. Until then, go check them out in Blue Ash. They have a cool taproom with plenty of options for you no matter what kind of drinker you are. I’ll be back to try the darker/heavier side of their beers soon and some ciders soon.

They are open daily, check out their website for the hours. They also have a large event space to rent out.

marchfirstbrewing.comTwitter: @Marchfirstbrew

Exploration Brewery: Narrow Path

Narrow Path Brewing Co


I recently visited Narrow Path Brewing in Loveland for the first time this past week. The are located at 106 Karl Brown Way, Loveland, OH 45140. If you’ve been to Cappy’s or know where it is then you’ve seen this place and never noticed. It’s almost directly across the street. 

The Place

Narrow Path features a 5 bbl brewhouse, a cozy taproom, and a large outdoor patio backing up right beside the bike trail that goes through downtown Loveland. There is on and off street parking available. They do not have a kitchen at this time but there’s plenty of food options just around the corner. The taproom seemed to be family friendly with board games stacked along the wall and the patio dog friendly with water bowls put out for your pooch.  Downtown Loveland has been a pretty cool for sometime now. The addition of this brewery just solidifies Loveland as a great hangout spot. The brewhouse is right in the middle of the taproom so you know exactly what’s happening with the beer. When I was there they had all 12 taps going plus a couple of set up outside on the patio. The staff was personable and more than willing to tell you about the beers on tap and their role within the brewery. Overall, it was an A+ atmosphere.

The Beer

When I was there they had all 12 taps filled and ready to go. The styles ranged from cream ale to a coconut porter. I tried 9 different beers on my visit, 2 flights plus 1, all of which exceed my expectations completely. They only had their beer on tap, no guest taps. I’m not sure if that is the norm or not but I liked it. It’s always a good sign when the brewery has the taps filled with their own beer. I would normally pick one beer to highlight here and tell you about it but there were several that I couldn’t decide on so I’ll tell you about each of them.

First, the Coconut Porter, ABV 6.2%, the beertender said this is the beer they are known for and I can see why. It hits you with chocolate, coconut, and a smooth milky finish. People would compare it to an Almonds bar, but its better.

Second, the Tire Patch IPA, ABV 6.5%, now I’m a big IPA guy, hop head to the fullest and I really liked this one. It’s not a trendy NEIPA. A style I’m not too fond of, which could be a blog post itself. It’s a tropical, hoppy, crushable IPA. It was like 100 degrees the day I was there so the heat made it that much better. It features mosaic and simcoe hops and I highly recommend it.

Finally, the Blackberry Bourbon Brown, ABV 6.25%. It’s lighter than you would expect but I don’t think it was aged in a bourbon barrel. I picked up some hints of vanilla but nothing from the barrel if it was aged in one. The blackberry really comes through on this one and its on the sweeter side.

Narrow Path has something for anyone, light pale ales to dark stouts and everything in between. Most of the beers have a low to mid ABV percentage so the alcohol content of any one beer won’t knock your socks off. They go for bigger flavor as opposed to higher ABV.

Overall

The atmosphere, amazing staff, and list of impressive beers will have me coming back again soon. I’m in Loveland a lot and with the discovery of this brewery plus Cappy’s across the street I’ll be there more now. That also gives you 2 awesome reasons to venture out there this weekend! You’ll be glad you did.

They are opened daily (except Monday) and you can find out more about Narrow Path Brewing Company on their website and their social media accounts.

www.narrowpathbrewing.com 

Twitter: @narrowpathbeer

FB: Narrow Path Brewing

Beers Across America pt 2

Beers Across America pt 2


Here is the next installment of the 10 beers that made it onto my US beer cap map! I have to say there was some extra special beers in this edition.

Beer 11 of 177.

New Holland Brewery did an excellent job making the cherry flavor stand out from the Dragon’s Mild Reserve. Bourbon barrel beers are my favorite and I give it 4.75 out of 5. Purchased at Jungle Jim’s in East Gate. Thanks to my brother for asking for it from the back.

 

Beer 12 of 177.

Purchased at Old Canal Smoke House.   After a long day of work stopped by for something to take home this was a nice end to my day and the heat from the pepper made it even better. Ryan comes through with another good beer.

Beer 13 of 177.

Shared and enjoyed with Erick a good friend from work. This beer came all the way from a Wisconsin brewery called New Glarus Brewing Company. Spotted Cow saison/farm house ale was light and fruity that got me geared up for vacation. Thanks Erik and thank you to New Glarus.

Beer 14 of 177.

Brought to you all the way from Tampa Florida’s own Copper Tail Brewery. This was a great porter that brought back the memory of actually being at the brewery in March and look forward to going back again someday. The other remarkable thing is the art work the brewery does on their labels and their brewery.

Beer 15 of 177.

Sierra Nevada’s 2018 Edition of Hoptimum triple IPA and boy is it hoppy. I enjoyed this one on my back deck after long day at work, mowing the yard, and 6 mile bike ride. Well deserved after today if I do say so myself. Brandon thanks again for beer. Cheers!

Beer 16 of 177.

From all the way Nantucket, MA from the wife’s trip to Salem, MA. Grey lady was a nice fruity, hoppy beer. 3.75 out of 5. Enjoyable and worthy of the beer cap map.

Beer 17 of 177.

Another beer wife purchased on a tour of Salem, Ma. Monks’ Reserve Ale is a 10.2% abv that comes Spencer’s Brewery the Belgian Quad packs a punch and is fitting for the last beer of the evening.

Beer 18 of 177.

Enjoyed on front porch of buddy’s house after work. 2XLP from Warpedwing brewery in Dayton, Ohio was a double IPA that hit the spot but the companionship of couple friends was even better than the 10.5 abv. Cheers Brandon and Erik.

Beer 19 of 177

Vanilla Oak Aged Yeti from Great Divide Brewing Company. This imperial stout was packed full of coffee and full of good 9.5% abv.  Was enjoyed with few buddies Nate and Hanas while playing pool on a Friday evening.

Beer 20 of 177

Jackieo’s Bourbon Barrel Oil of Aphrodite a stout that packed a 12.1% abv was the final beer that I enjoyed from Ryan at Old Canal.  He had made the place a home away from home.  Cheers to Jackieo’s and cheers to Ryan.

The Punch Out with March First

The Punch Out: Round 3


Coming up this Saturday is the Fifty West Brewing’s Punch Out: Round 3. The event starts at 4pm and as of the Thursday evening there are tickets still available HERE. Now if you’re not aware of what the Punch Out is then let me try to explain. In what I’ll venture to say is the most unique beer event in the country the creative people at Fifty West went out to other breweries around Cincinnati and found people to represent their respective brewery in a boxing match. They paired them up and on Saturday we see 18 match ups between 9 different breweries. If you need a visual let me show you their hype video from last year’s Punch Out.

It looks like the coolest thing ever! Or as the kids say, it’s lit! Craft beer and amateur boxing? Sign me up.

Needless to say I’m pumped for Saturday.

I had one problem though. I’m a fan of all the breweries participating in the event so who am I going to cheer for? I’m a person that draws lines in the sand when it comes to sports and competition and becuase of that I needed to take sides. I turned to Twitter to help me decide which brewery to cheer on.

Several liked and responded but only one brewery retweeted…

March First Brewing

March First is sending out Bryan Fischer to take on Corey Minton of Rhinegeist.

I thought it would be cool to hear from the boxer representing the brewery in the ring so I sat down with Bryan (sort of) to ask him a couple of questions about his fight and about March First. Enjoy.

Q. What is your roll / job title at March First ?

A. Assistant Brewer and Director of Throwing Hands

Q.  If you could pick one person to compare your boxing style to who would it be? (Real or fictional)

A. Batman!

Q. Did you volunteer as tribute or were you picked to participate in the Punch Out ? Why?

A.  I volunteered because it has always been an interesting event that I have wanted to be a part of.

Q.  Is this your first time boxing in the Punch Out ? How did you do previously? Will you be trying any signature moves/combos?

A.  Yes it is my first time! My signature moves are … secrets 

Q. What’s one thing the good people of Cincinnati have to know about March First?

A. We are in the process of an extensive expansion. It will include a bigger, new taproom and patio, more parking, and more production space.

Q. What does the brewery have coming up that you’re most excited about?

A. Same Answer as above

Q.  I heard boxers are supposed to trade beers at the end of their matches, which beer will you give to Corey from Rhinegeist?

A. We just released a Tropical Blonde that will be at the event. It will be the perfect, refreshing after fight drink.

To sum this up Bryan is a Batman-like fighter with secret moves and an expanding brewery supporting him so good luck Corey, you’ll need it.

In full disclosure I have not visited the taproom at March First so Saturday before the festivities begin at Fifty West you can catch me there. Feel free to join me! The taproom can be found at  7885 E Kemper Rd, Cincinnati, OH 45249 – look for the red “M” flags out front.

You can find them online at www.marchfirstbrewing.com. 

If you’d like to hear a more in depth conversation with the guys at March First and what they have coming up in the near future they recently sat down with the Gnarly Gnome on Cincy Brewcast, listen HERE.

 

 

Photo credits from the Instagram pages of Fifty West Brewing and March First Brewing, respectively.