Rivertown Brewing opens new Monroe taproom, restaurant

Rivertown Brewing Company unveils its new $6 million Monroe facility Friday, Jan. 20, the next step in a rapidly expanding growth plan expected to continue well beyond 2017.

Opening day for Rivertown Brewery & Barrel House at 6550 Hamilton-Lebanon Road comes a little more than seven years after founder Jason Roeper opened Rivertown Brewing’s brewery in Lockland.

That facility expanded over the years, but it’s nowhere near the size and scope of the new 26,000-square-foot Monroe facility, a massive new structure that sprawls across eight acres on the corner of Salzman Road and Ohio 63. That prime location puts it just three-and-a-half miles west of the Interstate 75 interchange, an area that sees thousands of motorists exit daily to visit Cincinnati Premium Outlets and Miami Valley Gaming and on weekends for Traders World.

Roeper announced plans to bring the brewery to that prime location in November 2015 and the facility broke ground last June.

The new 4,000-square-foot taproom and restaurant space is twice the size of Rivertown’s Lockland counterpart.

The taproom boasts a 30-tap line-up including 20 Rivertown beers and 10 offerings from other area breweries. It also serves other local libations, including wine from Valley Vineyards in Morrow and liquor from StillWrights Distillery in Fairborn and Watershed Distillery in Columbus.

Lindsay Roeper, Jason’s wife and the brewery’s “dream facilitator,” said new equipment at the Monroe brewery, including eight new 100-barrel fermenters and two new 200-barrel fermenters, means Rivertown can brew boost production from 15,000 barrels in 2016 to between 30,000 and 40,000 barrels in 2017.

Production should be up and running in Monroe by late February or early March, she said.

The brewery is expected to increase production to as much as 150,000 barrels a year, allowing it to expand its distribution footprint of seven states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“Our plan is always to continue to grow,” she said. “In 2017, we do have the plans to enter some additional states, as well, and just continue to grow our business, in general.”

The company plans to keep the Lockland location as a taproom and restaurant, although operations there will shift to creating small test batches of experimental brews instead of Rivertown’s main products.

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