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26 April, 2021

Brewing news USA, TX: Ovinnik Brewing working towards late summer opening in Houston

Houston's newest entrant on the craft beer scene, Ovinnik Brewing, is working toward an opening by late summer in the Timbergrove area, the Community Impact Newspaper reported on April 23.

Formed by Janine Weber and partners Chris and Jen Mathis, the brewery will put a big focus on supporting the do-it-yourself, homebrewing crowd.

"I’ve been a homebrewer for 15 years. Jen’s a major brewer," Weber said. "We plan to be big supporters of that—brew-ins, yeast shares. We want that DIY theme to be our focus."

Weber said she decided to chase her dream of opening a brewery after her 35-year geology career was cut short with a layoff over a year and a half ago.

"As a geologist you have to know everything about everything. I’ve found it to be really helpful when I’m in the production of beer," she said.

The crew will likely offer Belgian-style beers, including tripels, witbiers and sours, but the lineup will be driven by what people want, Weber said.

The brewery's space at 7201 Wynnpark Drive, Houston, a former paint warehouse, will have a 3.5-barrel brewing system. A taproom will come eventually, but at the initial opening, it may be bare bones.

"We're bootstrapping it. We'll put out tables and folding chairs and serve it right there," she said. "It will be fun. People will be able to watch how it develops step by step."

The name of the brewery sprung after their first idea, Fascination Brewing, ran afoul of trademark advice. However, they wanted to keep their logo, a three-eyed cat.

Jen Mathis went searching for mythical cats, Weber said, and discovered Ovinnik, a Slavic creature known for protecting barns when they were appeased—and burning them down when they were not.

"It's a good-cat, bad-cat kind of thing," Weber said.


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