MONTVILLE TWP. — After 14 months of construction, Blue Heron Brewery is set to open its doors and fire up its taps with a soft opening this weekend.
Owner and brewer Mike Piazza said Thursday that the brewpub will be open to residents of the Blue Heron subdivision as well as local first responders today and Saturday from 3-9 p.m. Reservations are required for the opening, with party size limited to six guests.
“It is going to be pub style, a little bit on the upscale side,” Piazza said of the former Blue Heron Golf Course property.
Piazza described an atmosphere of Ohio handmade oak tables, polished cement floors and an exposed corrugated steel ceiling.
A complementary sampling of pub fare including select appetizers, flatbread pizzas, hand-blended burgers and desserts will be available during the weekend. The brewpub will close Sunday and Monday following this weekend’s soft opening, and will open for regular business Tuesday, when Piazza said the entire menu will be available.
While the brewery has yet to receive its license from the state to brew on site, a partnership with Akronym Brewing of downtown Akron means guests will be able to enjoy a cream ale beer on one of its 16 taps.
“That is currently on tap, so that is going to be the feature beer to give people a way to wet their whistle with one of our beers,” Piazza said.
Piazza described the cream ale as an approachable beer with a smooth forward malt flavor and a little bit of noble hops character at the very end.
“It is more of a gateway beer for noncraft beer drinkers that are looking for something to get into craft beer,” he said.
Montville Township Trustee Sally Albrecht said Thursday that she is looking forward to the Blue Heron’s opening as both a township trustee and neighborhood resident.
“As a trustee, we are elated that we have found such a positive use for the building and that the Blue Heron brewpub has invested so much money in improvements in that building,” Albrecht said.
“What they have done to it is absolutely amazing and it looks wonderful,” she said.
Albrecht said the facility will be a nice addition to the nearby Austin Badger Park, created from land purchased by the township that was once the Blue Heron Golf Course.
In addition to park visitors stopping in for a meal or a pint, Albrecht said neighborhood residents are looking forward to having a restaurant nearby again.
“I believe it is going to be a win-win for the community,” she said.
Piazza said that because the Blue Heron Banquet Center and Brewery, 3227 Blue Heron Trace, is located within a development, residents have been following the construction phase of the project and stopped in to say hello.
“The thing I am excited about is finally getting to meet those people when they sit down and seeing what they think about the product,” he said. “We have shaken hands with these people, but they haven’t tasted our food, they haven’t tasted our beer, so I am excited to live up to the hype that we have built for them.”
Piazza said the onsite banquet center has been open for about three months, and has already proved to be a popular event center.
“We are booking heavy, we almost have every Saturday booked in 2020,” he said.
Hours will 3-11 p.m. Tuesdays to Thursdays, 3 p.m. to midnight Fridays to Saturdays and noon to 10 p.m. Sundays.