USA, OH: Codex Brewing already open in North Canton
After working for several Northeast Ohio breweries, Jason Gasper-Hulvat has decided it's time he operated his own place, the Canton Repository reported on November 24.
So in the midst of a pandemic, he has opened Codex Brewing at 6305 Whipple Ave. NW. He described the experience as wild, crazy, challenging and frustrating.
And because of Ohio's recent spike on COVID 19 cases, Gasper-Hulvat isn't certain as to how long he'll be open before the pandemic and state officials say it's time for a temporary closing. He hopes that doesn't happen.
Codex will focus on beer. Gasper-Hulvat has a five-barrel Portland Kettle Works system, which realizes is small but, he said, is not the smallest being used in the area. That means beer is being brewed in smaller batches. But Gasper-Hulvat expects to be crafting a variety of beer and styles.
The current beer menu includes a couple of saisons, a New England India Pale Ale, a festbier, and several styles of ale. On the way are a Northeast Ohio-style Christmas ale and North Canton Hard Seltzer.
Codex has been open from 4 to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Last week Gasper-Hulvat moved closing time up an hour after the state imposed a 10 p.m. curfew for three weeks.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Gasper-Hulvat said he has been working around potential shutdown scenarios. He has a small canning operation and plans to offer 4-packs of some beers. His building, which used to be Four Kids Coffee, has a drive-up window where he can sell beer.
But don't bring your own glass growler. State officials haven't banned growlers, but they are suggesting that brewers not fill growlers and Gasper-Hulvat is following the suggestion right now.
The brewpub can accommodate 123 people, but because of the pandemic, the number has been cut to 50 to meet social distancing requirements. Most tables are set up for two customers. Gasper-Hulvat asked that parties larger than four people call ahead to make certain space is available.
Gasper-Hulvat has been a brewer for six years. He completed his apprenticeship with Market Garden Brewery in Cleveland. He has brewed for Thirsty Dog in Akron, and in Stark County for Canton Brewing and Shale Brewing. After helping others as they opened brewpubs, he decided the next project would involve opening his own operation.
The name Codex stems from his interest in books, with a codex being the earliest version of a manuscript or book. He wanted the brewpub to be more like a bookstore or coffee shop, and that worked out when the Four Kids Coffee location became available.
"It was already set up to fit the concept we liked," Gasper-Hulvat said.
While the number of local craft breweries keeps growing Stark County is now home to 10 different brands Codex offers something different for craft beer lovers, Gasper Hulvat said. He expects craft brewing will continue to expand.
"It's part of the growing recognition of the difference you get when trying a fresh, local product," he said.
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