Starting Friday, craft beer aficionados will have a new spot in Over-the-Rhine to call home.
HalfCut Beer Café opens its doors at 1126 Walnut St. at 3 p.m.
The growler stop and bottle shop will offer a wide range of craft beers for the discerning beer fan and newbie alike.
HalfCut is the creation of Jack Heekin and Tom O'Brian. The pair previously launched the pedal wagon that can be seen making stops all over Over-the-Rhine and downtown Cincinnati.
Heekin said the pair got into beer as homebrewers and toyed with the idea of opening a brewery before deciding on a bottle shop. He said they thought they could better serve the industry by opening HalfCut after going on a cross-country fact finding trip to breweries across the nation.
O'Brian and Heekin both live in OTR and said they wanted to open the shop there because they felt residents needed more craft beer options and they wanted to remain part of the community.
HalfCut’s owners seem set on not just satisfying local taste buds, but also becoming an integral part in the local business community of Over-the-Rhine.
“I think with going on our road trip to a bunch of breweries, and talking with the breweries and distributors; they saw the utility of people walking up and sampling beer; and the breweries enjoyed that and I think they want their product in here,” Heekin said.
Inside, patrons will find a massive mural courtesy of Neltner Small Batch , and furnishings from another local store, the Frameshop.
In addition to stopping by for a quick pint, a long talk with a barista or to peruse the bottle shop, there is also a to-go only window adjacent to 12th Street.
While HalfCut has the space to have 32 beers on tap at a time, they plan on starting with 16 and going from there.
The beers available at launch on draft will be:
- 50 West Brewing – Speedbump
- Rhinegeist – Sabertooth Tiger
- Bells – Overon
- Founder’s - Porter
- Lagunitas – Hairy Eye Ball
- Blank Slate – Long Way Home
- West 6th - Amber ale
- Oscar Blues – Momma’s Lil Pils
- MadTree - PsycHOPathy
- Fat Head – Trail Head
- Great Lakes – Rally Drum Red
- Hopping Frog – Boris the Crusher
- Rivertown – Roebling Porter
- Ithaca Brewing – Flower Power
- Jackie O’s - Chomolungma
- Southern Tier – Hop Sun
Heekin said demand will dictate how fast they grow and how fast they rotate out the beers.
That said, they will have certain brands on tap at all times. Among those possibilities will be local brewers Blank Slate, 50 West, MadTree and Rhinegeist.
Heekin said HalfCut plans to have a mix of local, regional and national brewers. While the co-owners want to well-represent local, they also want to expose the Tri-State to a wealth of breweries from across the nation.
HalfCut’s creators said they have looked at using a counter-flow growler system similar to what The Party Source uses but opted not to buy that specific brand. Heekin said that with limited space, they are trying to create their own version that is in the “prototype” stage of development.
Aside from beer, chips, salsa and bar snacks will be on hand to help people cleanse their palate. Gomez Salsa will be opening right next door to HalfCut so people can get their Tex-Mex fix at the walkup window. Heekin said patrons are also welcome to bring in food to the beer café.
HalfCut will be open Monday-Thursday from 3 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Friday from 3 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., Saturday from noon to 12:30 a.m., and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.
You can follow HalfCut online at: