Former West End Tavern To Be Reopened As West End Cider House

By
Arian Smedley - Athens Messenger staff reporter

Dateline
Updated Thu, May 29, 2014 2:09 pm
Photo Credit: 
WOUB Staff Photographer

The long-vacant former home of the West End Tavern is currently being renovated to house a new establishment called the West End Cider House.

Pending the approval of both federal and state liquor permits, the cider house will feature house-made ciders made from regional fruits, according to owner and manager Deanna Schwartz. The tentative opening date is set for April 1.

The federal permit has already been requested, and Schwartz expects its approval in early January. Once that is complete, she will begin the state-level application process, although, both permits can be pursued simultaneously, explained Matt Mullins, a spokesman for the state's Division of Liquor Control.

The space, located on the corner of West Washington and Shafer Streets, is currently undergoing renovations in preparation for it to be operated as a winery. The permit applied for would allow the new business owners to both manufacture and sell on premise, explained Kelly Sauber, who will serve as the operation’s head zymurgist (or expert brewer). Sauber is also the owner of the Meigs County-based Dancing Tree Distillery (soon to be re-named Fifth Element Spirits).

“I’ve been brewing professionally for while, and I always thought about brewing more hard ciders and meads,” said Sauber. “This gives us our niche in town.”

In addition to fermented products created onsite, the cider house will also have regionally made spirits, beers, and wines, and a few Irish and Scottish whiskeys and bourbons. There will also be a short food menu.

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