Cleveland’s newest brewery is just days from opening. Goldhorn Brewery
(1361 E. 55th St.), which sits immediately adjacent to Sterle’s Country House
, is phase two of developer Rick Semersky’s ambitious Hub 55 project. The brewery and taproom joins Café 55 inside a sprawling 30,000-square-foot complex.
In preparation for the big day, brewer Joel Warger, who previously brewed at Great Lakes Brewing Co., has been working nonstop for weeks. The shiny eight-barrel copper brewhouse is highly visible behind a wall of glass, as is the tank farm in an adjacent room.
“We’ll start with classic European and American craft styles, with a rotation of six to eight beers until I can get a feel for what people are liking, what they’re looking for from us,” Warger says from his elevated perch.
On tap for opening day will be a pilsner, stout, Scottish ale, hefeweizen, India pale ale and a smoked pale ale. The strongest beer is the IPA, which clocks in at seven percent. For the time being, those beers will only be served at Goldhorn and Sterle’s, but they might soon begin appearing at a few select neighborhood spots.
“Obviously we’ll send it to Sterle’s immediately, and another half dozen to a dozen bars and restaurants who are interested,” Semersky explains. “But right now we’re focused on making good beer and making sure that Goldhorn and the Hub stay popular.”
If the demand does find them, Goldhorn has plenty of room to grow and expand within its four walls.
“We can actually double our fermentation tank space,” he adds.
Goldhorn’s spacious taproom can accommodate around 125 guests at the dimpled copper topped bar, at tables, and out in the beer garden. When hunger strikes, customers will have a nice selection of hearty, casual and beer-friendly fare from which to choose. The setup will be self-serve, with guests ordering and paying at the kitchen pass and picking it up when their buzzer buzzes. The taproom shares the kitchen from Café 55.
“We didn’t want to be another restaurant; we want to be a brewery that serves good food,” Semersky says. “My only rule was that it couldn’t require silverware.”
Look for a nice sampling of sharable appetizers and sandwiches, priced between $10 and $15. The only deep-fried items are the housemade potato chips, which come topped with beer cheese and sausage. There’s a nice sausage board with various types of sliced sausages, pickles, mustard and bagel chips. Also in the appetizer section are pierogis with crème fraiche, and a salad.
A roster of great sandwiches include an Italian beef sandwich with peppers, onions and spicy giardiniera, a pressed Cubano with pork, ham, Swiss and pickles, and a burger. Also on the menu are pulled chicken tacos, tofu sliders, and a BLT on sourdough.
When it opens mid- to late-July, Goldhorn will be open Tuesday through Thursday 3-9 p.m., Friday 3-10 p.m., Saturday noon – 10 p.m., and Sunday noon to 6 p.m.
“This is not a late-night place,” Semersky says. “This will be the place you come after work or on weekends to have a couple drinks and maybe a sandwich.”
Semersky is banking on the Hub’s proximity to downtown, University Circle and the Shoreway to continue attracting clientele to the neighborhood, much like his fresh Café 55 has been doing.
Goldhorn is named after the fabled golden-horned white chamois buck, which was featured prominently in Slovenian fairy tales and culture.