Both new to the scene, Pretentious Barrel House and Random Precision Brewing Co. are the city's first two breweries completely dedicated to sour beers.
While Pretentious sits off the beaten path in the shadow of John Glenn International Airport and Random Precision lies in the heart of Linworth, each one features a small taproom where guests can sample sours. Here's how they compare.
Pretentious Barrel House
Pretentious is anything but snobby. Owner-brewer Joshua Martinez's approachable brewery and taproom is tucked down a side street on the East Side, just north of I-670. Small chandeliers hanging from the ceiling light the narrow taproom with Edison bulbs. A collection of tables surround the bar, while a stack of barrels stands in one corner. On nicer evenings, the staff rolls the garage door up, allowing patrons to enjoy fresh air and easy access to the food trucks that park out front. A colorful, psychedelic mural decorates the back wall, where a small collection of video games sits. On Thursday evenings, Pretentious offers brewery tours for $10 that include a walk through the facility, tastings straight from the barrels and a flight of four beers at the end. At any given time, you'll find a dozen sours on tap—with highfalutin names like Derisive and Erudite—featuring infusions like ginger, raspberries, coffee and even peppercorns.
What to order: If you're new to sours, order Truculent, spiked with ginger and lime zest (5.1 percent ABV) for a tart and refreshing brew. For a bigger punch of those puckery flavors, sip the Sybarite (5.9 percent ABV), which the menu accurately calls the “equivalent of cramming fresh raspberries into your mouth.”
Random Precision Brewing Co.
Random Precision's name nods to the game brewers play when fermenting beers with wild yeast. Its Linworth taproom is simple and clean, sitting in plain sight on Dublin-Granville Road. The bar is lined with white subway tile, a row of taps jutting out of the center. A collection of four-top tables with bright orange chairs sits close to the bar, while sturdy wooden tables line the other section. Stacks of barrels sit in the back, labeled with the names of participants in their Sours & Staves Club, which allows guests to “adopt” a barrel and follow the beer's trajectory from aging to blending to tasting. Visitors can order pizza from JT's Pizza & Pub across the street.
What to order: Random Precision is slowly rolling out its sours, but has made a good start with Misconstrued Sarcasm (7.2 percent ABV), an IPA fermented with Brettanomyces, a strain of yeast used frequently in sour production that results in funky and tart flavors. Owner-brewer Jason Grable uses a specific strain of “Brett,” as it's called, that produces tropical fruit flavors to balance a light punch of hops.