Carillon Brewery

 Carillon Brewery

Carillon Brewery will allow visitors to watch (and taste) an important part of Dayton’s history.

Nearly 160 years ago, the allure of jobs began drawing central Europeans and their favorite drink to Southwest Ohio.

The fresh-off-the-boat Germans started mingling with the English and Irish population, producing an unheralded thirst for beer.

“Beer, which was primarily a homebrew, finally turned into a mass-produced item at this time,” says Tanya Brock, Carillon Brewery brewmaster. “Dayton was on the rise at this point.”

On Aug. 22, the Carillon Historical Park will give visitors an unfiltered look at the 19th century when they open their doors to the new Carillon Brewery. The two-story, 10,000-square-foot brick-clad brewery and restaurant (fashioned after similar breweries that once populated the Miami Valley) meshes history and beer, while replicating the prevalent atmosphere of 19th century Dayton.

“No one else in the United States is doing a fully-licensed production brewery in a historic museum,” says Brock.

Through “interpretive history,” visitors can observe from behind the bar as workers dressed in 19th century garb tend to boiling pots of water around brick fireplaces, and pour hops into large copper kettles.

To ensure every aspect of the brewing process is historically accurate, Brock’s research has taken her through newspaper archives and old homemakers’ recipe books.

As innovate craft beers, infused with a variety of flavors, fill local beer glasses, Brock has found that some of the new beers aren’t as new as we might think. During her research, she found recipes for beers made with all sorts of ingredients, including hot spices and peppers.

“Beer is one of the oldest drinks in the world, so it is constantly evolving,” says Brock. “I’m sure [19th century Daytonians] thought it was cool and innovative, too.”

Carillon Brewery will also cater to wine drinkers with a host of 19th century wines, as well as a menu filled with English and Irish pub fare.

Although they haven’t released their list of available brews, Brock says Carillon will feature porters, ciders and ales. The naturally carbonated beers will be served alongside contemporary brews, so drinkers can compare and contrast tastes from yesteryear. If patrons enjoy the old-style beer enough, they can buy a growler of the brew and take it home.

Situated on the park’s 65-acre campus, the brewery is among a crowd of attractions that engages visitors in Dayton’s rich history. From the original 1905 Wright Flyer to the first automobile self-starter, the park documents Dayton’s impact on the American landscape.

“Our goal is to bring people back in time while creating a memorable experience,” says Brady Kress, CEO and president at Dayton History. “Dayton has a lot of amazing history and Daytonians are proud of it.”

Carillon Brewery Hours: Mon-Sat: 9:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Sun: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. For more information on the Carillon History Park and the new Carillon Brewery, visit