Q&A: Rolling Mill Brewing Company owners continue plans for 2021 in Middletown

Founded by Josh and Megan Laubach and established in the heart of historic downtown Middletown, Rolling Mill Brewing Company in Middletown is Ohio’s only dedicated gluten-free brewery.

“The last we checked there were 16 other dedicated gluten-free breweries in the United States. (There are) not many, considering one in 100 people need gluten free,” said Co-founder Megan Laubach, who launched the brewery in 2016 with her husband, Josh.

After a year of renovations, the brewery opened in December 2017. Located at 916 1st Ave. in a 5,648-square-foot commercial warehouse, Rolling Mill Brewing Company is a family-owned brewery.

In 2012, The Laubachs wanted to brew beer that happened to be gluten-free due to Josh being diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2011. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that is triggered by the consumption of gluten. Later, Megan was diagnosed with major food allergies with wheat being one of them.

Rolling Mill Brewing Company’s top three beers are also available in cans, including Two Goldens/American Lager, 10-09/German Pilsner, and Anti-Federalist/American Pale Ale.

“Canning our beer has been super exciting for us, especially when we can enjoy it in public locations. It really makes us feel like we are doing something,” said Megan Laubach.

With the New Year ahead, we caught up with the co-founders to discuss what’s in store for 2021 and the importance of supporting local businesses.

Q: Why did you want the business to be located in Middletown?

A: We always say why not? We believe there is a longing for the comfort and return of Middletown roots. Stability, knowing your neighbor, living alongside the owners of businesses, all coming together for that small town, big heart feel.

Q: What are you most proud of as far as being able to own and operate the business?

A: That we have done so without ever changing our core values as people and business owners. Our main goal is to really pour into our employees, customers, and the city.

Q: What do each of you enjoy the most about being able to do this?

Megan: For all the other gluten-free people, seeing someone be able to drink beer for the first time in years is amazing. It truly brings tears to their eyes and the appreciation they have is so rewarding. It’s what keeps us going.

Josh: Having the opportunity to learn how to operate a business focused on relationships, while also having the chance to build and grow a brewing operation that offers world-class beer.

Q: For those in the community who haven’t stopped in or tried Rolling Mill Brewing Company, why would you encourage them to stop in?

A: If they like beer, we have something for them. We always encourage non-gluten free people to not let that scare them away.

Q: What are some of your goals for 2021 and beyond?

A: To can more varieties of beer and draw more business into the taproom with events/food.

Q: What do you consider as some of your greatest successes and accomplishments?

A: That we have never sold out or given up.

Q: How have family and close friends supported you in your endeavors? How have other local businesses been supportive?

A: We could not do it without close friends and family. So many of them are willing to help with little to no notice. They have helped work the taproom, clean, make repairs and watch our kids. The Swire Inn, The Sorg, Bourbon’s Craft Kitchen and Bar, Forest Hills Country Club, Eastern Lanes, to name a few, have carried our beer. We have used Triple Moon Coffee in our beer. Central Pastry Shop is amazing at mentioning us on their social media.

Q: How have you seen the business grow or evolve since you started?

A: Yes, it sure has. We started canning and self-distributing our beer. We also offer online ordering/shipping anywhere in the state of Ohio. The demand for gluten-free seems to be growing as well.

Q: Have you made any major changes recently or have any new offerings you want to promote?

A: We are looking to ramp up distribution in 2021, and also bring in food to a small degree. We are currently developing beers that will serve the low carb, low calorie, traditional beer customer.

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