Eudora Brewing Company | Photo by Grace Ramsdell | The Wright State Guardian
Eudora Brewing Company in Kettering, OH offers its customers a warm atmosphere to eat a hearty meal, grab a drink, brew their own beer and pick-up Thanksgiving side dishes.
Starting the brewery
Located at 3022 Wilmington Pike in Kettering, the brewery was started by Daytonian Neil Chabut. He became interested in craft brewing while attending the University of Dayton.
“I started homebrewing when I was in college, and fell in love with the creative aspect of brewing, along with the scientific aspects,” said Chabut. “I worked at a homebrew shop and met a lot of cool people, learned a lot of stuff in a very short amount of time.
Chabut was inspired to start the business because, at the time of its conception, there were no craft breweries in the Dayton area.
“Over the next year or two, I put together a business plan, visited as many breweries as possible, learned as much as I could about brewing on a professional level and running a business, and learned from people in the industry,” said Chabut.
Eudora Brewing Company opened on Wilmington Pike in 2013. The business soon outgrew its original location and relocated to a 20,000 square foot space down the street in Jan. 2019. This move was needed to accommodate for more brewing equipment and seating, and to put in a full-service kitchen.
Brewing beer from scratch
Customers have the opportunity to brew their own beer at Eudora Brewing Company. After scheduling an appointment, they can choose from several beer recipes on Eudora’s website and bring that recipe to life in Eudora’s brewing facility. The brewing process takes about two and a half hours.
After it is brewed, the batch must ferment for three to five weeks before the customer can package the beer for consumption. A single five-gallon batch can fill 40 twelve-ounce bottles.
In addition to that alcohol, Eudora serves 18 of its beers on tap and a variety of dishes from its kitchen. A portion of each sale is donated to charity: water, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit that delivers clean water to those in need, especially in developing countries. Customers are also invited to throw spare change into one of three jerrycans mounted on the wall as part of the “Chuck the Buck” fundraising game.
Chabut chose the name “Eudora” for the business because of his mission to give back to the less fortunate. The phrase “Eudora” translates to “a gift” in Greek.
The coronavirus pandemic has caused sales to be unpredictable at Eudora Brewing Company, which has led Chabut to make a few changes behind the scenes.
“We’ve made some changes as far as layout goes, and we’ve added a hostess for seating during busy hours,” said Chabut. “We’ve also made lots of adjustments in the kitchen and behind the bar. It has been a pain, and it doesn’t even seem like our efforts have helped, because of the huge spike in cases right now. It’s frustrating.”
All private events at Eudora, including those in the Thunderball Room, have been suspended due to the pandemic. An additional precaution taken by the business is that all customers must wear a face covering when they are not sitting down.
Everything but the Thanksgiving turkey
To boost sales during the pandemic and chilly fall season, Eudora is selling pre-made Thanksgiving side dishes for customers to take home.
“It’s also meant to help people who won’t get to visit their families or friends this year, and won’t be able to cook everything on their own,” said Chabut.
These sides include mashed potatoes with Thunderball Oatmeal Stout gravy; sweet potato casserole with ricotta cheese, toasted pecans, whiskey-soaked craisins and a drizzle of honey; green bean casserole in a creamy bechamel sauce with caramelized onions topped with parmesan gruyere and panko bread crumbs; and stuffing made with Big Sky Bread Co. English muffin bread.
The business has also partnered with Ghostlight Coffee Shop in Dayton to offer pumpkin and pecan pies, allowing customers to purchase everything they need for Thanksgiving dinner, except for the turkey, in one place.
These dishes will be available for pre-order until 9 p.m. on Nov. 20 and can be picked up between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Nov. 24 and Nov. 25.
Planning for the future of Eudora has been difficult due to the pandemic. Chabut hopes to expand the business to distribute kegs and eventually can their brewed beer to sell it for outside consumption.
Student opinions on Eudora
Media studies majors Tyler Frierson and Tia Clyburn had never heard of Eudora Brewing Company, though all are interested in visiting the business and purchasing side dishes for Thanksgiving.
“From looking at the menu, I’d probably be most interested in the Kentucky Pecan Bourbon pie or the green bean casserole, as they both resemble dishes I would usually have at my family’s dinners,” said Clyburn.
Meanwhile, Frierson is intrigued by the sweet potato casserole.
“I think it’s for a good cause, and I’ll be here, so I’ve got to get Thanksgiving dinner some way,” said Frierson.