Experience what Ohio's Lake Erie Shores & Islands has 'On Tap' this season!

September 09, 2015

New Brews

Catawba Island Brewing Company is a small production brewery near the shores of Lake Erie. The local brewer recently released Lake Erie Love Light, in partnership with Lake Erie Shores & Islands and with a portion of the profits donated to the Lake Erie Improvement Association. To describe its taste, Catawba Island Brewing Co. says it contains bready, citrusy flavors and a subtle hop presence for the trained pallet. It is on-tap now at the brewery tasting room and is being made available to many other local establishments.

Cedar Point Amusement Park this season partnered with Strongsville-based The Brew Kettle to offer a signature beer to park guests. RougaBREW, named for the park's famed coaster Rougarou, is a light lager (5% ABV) available at several park locations including Last Chance Saloon, Red Garter, and Hotel Breakers' new Surf Lounge. Cedar Point is the only place to taste this limited-edition beer.

Ferndock Brewing Company is a Sandusky brewery-in-the-making, coming to downtown in 2017. Currently participating in Cleveland's Platform Beer Co.'s brewery incubator program in Cleveland, Ohio, Ferndock is already making a splash with their first offering, the Sandusky Pale Ale. This beer named for the city that created it can be tasted locally at Volstead Bar, Crush Winebar, Zinc Brasserie, Small City Taphouse, and Cameo Pizza.

Crazy for Craft Beer

Small City Taphouse in downtown Sandusky was recently awarded “Best Craft Beer Bar in Ohio” by Cool Material, a popular men's lifestyle blog. Featuring 40+ beers on tap and over 300 bottled beers, Small City also boasts small plates available to compliment each brew and the area’s tastiest sushi.

Mekong Restaurant, a local favorite, also combines Asian-inspired cuisine with an out-of-this-world selection of craft beers. Mekong mantra is “Mekong is for Beer Lovers.” Just ask any of the patrons who visit.

Get your craft beer straight from the source when you visit the Kelleys Island Brewery and the Put-in-Bay Brewing Company. Local crafters experiment with a variety of flavors and mixtures of traditional ingredients like hops and barley.

Speaking of Getting Crafty…

Relax and explore your creative side while enjoying a drink or two. The Corks & Creations program is held the first Thursday of the month at the Sandusky State Theatre. Participants are given a 9″ x 12” panel to paint with all supplies provided and a cash bar available. Background music is provided to help inspire your painting. Audra’s Floral in Oak Harbor hosts a Wine & Designs class every other Wednesday. Each class features a different theme and includes all supplies, two glasses of wine, and a light snack.

Put a Cork in it

Wine lovers rejoice! Lake Erie Shores & Islands is an ideal location to taste the grape as well. With the fantastic Lake Erie Shores & Islands Wine Trail consisting of a dozen or so wineries, there are many vineyards to enjoy and local vintages to taste. Some wineries offer tours, while others offer cozy tasting rooms.

If you prefer to expand your horizons and taste wines from around-the-world there are number of wine bars that can fill your glass – Milan Wine Post, Canoe Club Wine Bar, Crush Winebar, Vine & Olive, and The Wine Vault, just to name a few. Another way to sample more than 400 foreign and domestic wines in one stop is at the Island Wine Festival at Put-in-Bay on October 3.

Flavors of Fall

When one thinks of fall flavors, you can't help but think of fresh-from-the-orchard apples and apple cider. Unwind with an abundance of farm markets and pick-your-own orchards, such as Burnham Orchards in Berlin Heights or Bergman Orchards in Port Clinton. Or pick up apples and other fresh produce at a weekend farmer’s market. The lakefront town of Oak Harbor celebrates everything apple at the annual Apple Festival on October 10-11.


Three back-to-back weekends in Ohio's Lake Erie Shores & Islands celebrate Oktoberfest: Downtown Sandusky September 25 & 26, Kelleys Island October 3 & 4, and Put-in-Bay October 10 & 11. Sandusky's Northcoast Oktoberfest features a lighted boat parade. Get to any or all of the events to enjoy traditional German food, entertainment, and, of course, bier!

Getaways are Easy with Packaged Deals

Lake Erie Winery Tour Package – Sawmill Creek Resort (Huron) - This package includes an overnight stay in a deluxe guest room and hot breakfast for two, a wine flight sampler and appetizer/cheese plate at several local wineries as well as transportation to and from each winery. The tour is only available on Saturday (1-4 pm).

Island Lodging, History & Wine Miller Ferry Package – English Pines B&B (Put-in-Bay) - This package includes overnight weekday lodging at historic English Pines B&B with continental breakfast, tour of Heineman's Winery & Crystal Cave, tour of Put-in-Bay Winery at the Doller Estate & Mansion, and two round-trip, adult passenger tickets aboard the Miller Ferry to Put-in-Bay.

Tagged: oktoberfest, ohio, shores and islands, events, wine, lake erie shores and islands, lake erie, fall, craft beer, lake erie love, brewery