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First Look: Gemüt Biergarten

Susan Post Susan Post First Look: Gemüt BiergartenPhoto by Susan Post
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The transformation is complete of a former firehouse in Olde Towne East. Gemüt Biergarten opens its doors tomorrow, Friday, August 23 at 734 Oak St.

Patrons can expect a menu of traditional, German-style beers accompanied by German and European eats with a fusion of founder-family recipes.

Gemüt will pour two of their own brews at opening – the Alfheim Hefeweizen and Woden’s Hunt Dunkel. Guest taps of imported German beer similar in style to their future brews will round things out until Gemüt’s kolsch, helles, marzen and Czech pilsner are ready for consumption.

Owners Chelsea Rennie, Kyle Hofmeister, Rob Camstra and Nick Guyton did a little nerding out in naming their beers. Each of the flagship brews pulls its name from Germanic Mythology. Alfheim, for example, is the home of the light elves, corresponding to the golden color of a hefeweizen.

Imbibers can brush up on the mythology behind their beer in two ways while at Gemüt. Camstra, Hofmeister and Rennie put their poetic writing skills to the test with a booklet that shares the stories behind each. For the visual learners, each beer also has its own stained glass window in the beer hall.

Rennie says they knew they wanted to do stained glass, and took a shot in the dark reaching out to a London-based artist they found on Pinterest. The team sent Kate Baylay the story and symbolism they had landed on for each beer and let her get creative. Artwork in hand, Gemüt turned to Franklin Art Glass Studio in German Village to bring the creations to life.

The hand-made windows sit behind the bar in the indoor beer hall, featuring open, communal seating with tables crafted by Rennie’s father, Michael Rennie of Nature of Wood Designs.

A walk through the brewery lands patrons outside in the biergarten. Staying true to the brewery’s theme, the tables are imported from Germany. The large patio also features an outdoor bar and a kids’ area.

As for the eats, there’s a heavy focus on German-style food courtesy of Chef Adam Yoho. There will be a limited menu to start, featuring snacks, shared plates, wurst and schnitzel. Gemüt diners will find dishes like Flammkuchen, an Alsatian flatbread with creme fraiche, caramelized onion, arugula, cambozola and gruyere, and, putting a twist on a classic, Duck Schnitzel with duck skin cracklins and brandied cherries (an early favorite among the staff). Rennie looked to a family-favorite recipe for the Kebapi, a Macedonian hand-rolled sausage with paprika cabbage salat.

When the full menu rolls out, it will feature more wursts and schnitzels, and a few large plate options like a double-boned pork chop.

Gemüt Biergarten will be open Tuesday – Sunday, 11 a.m. – midnight.

For more information, visit gemutbiergarten.com.

All photos by Susan Post

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