You’d Be Crazy to Drive Past This Place

But I did end up driving past it even though I was trying to find it! I don’t want you to make the same mistake.  What place am I talking about?  I promise I’ll tell you, but humor me! My wife thought what happened was funny.  Maybe she was laughing at me, but that’s ok, too!

What place am I talking about?  I promise I’ll tell you, but humor me!

I lived in Chicago for three years, and around every corner I had the option of choosing a local brewery, Chinese cuisine, sushi bars, and 24 hour diners as well. Coming back to my home town has been enjoyable for me for many different reasons, but one of the things that I’ve had to do is rediscover the local dining options around me, since I can’t look out my front window and scope out what is right across the street like I could before.

Over the past couple of months (this was back in early 2012), I’ve heard about a place in Chardon that I wanted to check out next time I was there. My wife and I were heading out to dinner with no particular destination, and as we pulled into Chardon I said, “Let’s try this new place I’ve been hearing about, if I can find it. I think it’s right here in Chardon”. She looked up the address on her phone and I proceeded to try and locate it. I’ve been in Chardon thousands of times, but honestly never bothered to realize that Main Street is the street that goes around the circle on the opposite side of from library. For some reason, I thought the location we were looking for was down in the Plaza across from the post office. I was driving by there slowly but didn’t see it at first. As I was about to continue down Center Street, I saw a neon light and thought it must be the restaurant, so I stopped short and turned into the lot.

Good evening sir, can I have your license and registration?

After driving through the lot and realizing that I was wrong about the location, I turned left, heading north, thinking that it may be farther down. 10 seconds after I was back on the road, I saw flashing lights in my rear view mirror and proceeded to pull over. What had I done? This is not the first time I had been pulled over (I know, how surprising), but I have actually slowed down in the past few years, and I finally get less speeding tickets.

“Good evening sir, can I have your license and registration?” You know the drill. This time I was actually curious as to why I had been pulled over so the “Do you know why I am pulling you over” question was interesting to me.

Turns out that I had stopped quickly with only one tail light, and the car behind me was this officer. I thanked him for stopping me, because I could have been driving for awhile without realizing this. When he asked if I had been drinking, I jokingly said no, but that I was trying to find Chardon Brew Works.  With a grin on his face, he asked if I was from around here, and I said that I was, but apparently couldn’t use a GPS.  He kindly explained to me that it was up on Chardon Square opposite the library. He sent me on my way with a warning to get my tail lights fixed. We were finally headed in the right direction now, and I had once again provided my wife with some evening entertainment. That’s my feature act – dinner and a show.  Sometimes I just reverse the order.

Welcome to Chardon Brew Works

Chardon Brew Works and Eatery

Tuesday – Thursday ~ 4 pm – 9 pm

Friday ~ 4 pm – 10pm

Saturday ~ Noon – 10pm

Sunday ~ 4 pm – 8 pm

When we walked into Brew Works, it was very familiar. I was fairly certain that I had been there before. But I came to find later from Jefferey Campbell (one of our writers), that I was probably remembering the similar interior of Beans Coffee Shop which is a few doors South of Brew Works.

We found a table midway back in the dining room and began to watch the band set up near the front window. Our server, Robin, greeted us and explained, after I asked where the actual brewery was, that it was located right next door. She said that if I wanted to tour it, I could stop by around 3:00 pm most afternoons and one of the owners could show me around.

On the wall on the chalkboard were spelled out the current beer specials, as you can see:

Beer specials menu
The beer specials menu is written every day on the chalkboard on the wall

I ordered the POG Maple Porter, and began to enjoy a dark and rich, but not bitter-tasting beer. I’ve only had one other dark beer like this that was so full of flavor, but not sour.

Robin also told me about their burger special which was called Fire and Ice. I’m always up for new and exciting food, so I decided to order that.

Our food came out quickly, and my burger was perfect. It had bacon, coleslaw with apples and dried cranberries, jalapenos, and pepper jack cheese on one burger. That might sound like an odd combination, but it was delicious. The cook had combined these different ingredients into a burger masterpiece.

When we finished eating, my wife was checking her Facebook page and was surprised to see one of her childhood friends, who she hadn’t seen in years, had also checked in on Facebook.  She just happened to be at Chardon Brew Works also, on the upper level! So we met them upstairs, and enjoyed a drink together at the cozy bar with the sounds of the band playing in the background.

My whole experience at Brew Works was excellent. The beer, dinner, and dessert were all wonderful. The restrooms also were clean and orderly, which is always a nice perk. It makes me feel like an owner really cares about their place when they pay attention to all the details.

I walked out feeling very satisfied. I have no idea who owns the place, and they didn’t pay me to write this review, I promise. I am impressed by excellence, and this was such a wonderful experience filled with good food, music, and drinks, that I wanted all of you to know about another fantastic business in our county to enjoy. Go check it out, and tell them that Gabe at Geauga News sent you. I hope your experience will be just as gratifying as mine was.

Geauga News
Author: Geauga News