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In 2013, midway between Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio, Kevin Mooney, Sr. pursued his dream to have a treetop brew tasting room built on his family’s 75-acre property, an addition to his unique Mohican Cabins complex. He envisioned a grown-up’s version of a tree house, nestled in Mother Nature’s arms among the leaves, complete with a swinging bridge, a deck, and so much more. His plan was to use the woodsy retreat as a public tasting room, and quiet refuge for developing craft beer recipes.

Once the public at large became aware of the novel cabin, however, he was inundated by requests to rent it out as a private overnight get-away. Bending to popular demand, the brewing aspect has been moved to another location, though at rare times when it isn’t housing guests, it provides the perfect atmosphere for dreaming of all things beer.

Built by a renowned tree house builder, the bone-structure was completed in just two weeks, secured 22 feet up in the forest canopy near Mohican State Park. Anchored to a flexible platform, it is mostly supported by a single tree, moving a bit with the wind. Finishing details include a Gothic arch stained glass window, chainsaw carvings, and a hand-carved miniature tree house beer tap handle.

Your favorite Beer of the Month Club salutes Kevin’s son Colin, who proudly put his college degree in Sustainability to good use, incorporating an array of ideas to protect the environment. Reclaimed wood was used for siding, steps, cabinets, shelves, bar stools and a table. The polished bar top is a pine slab cut from the property. Vines removed from surrounding trees are used as deck railings.

The cabin was built so in winter it is warmed by carefully placed windows, while deep roof overhangs provide cool summer shade. A composting toilet is attached outside the tree house. With a metal roof and unique wall coverings of burlap and rope, this rustic Tree Top Taj Mahal provides a natural respite for reconnecting with our inner child.

ASK MR. BEERHEAD: LEONARD COLSON OF GENOA JUNCTION, ID ASKS: “MY WIFE AND I WANT TO TAKE A ‘BEER TOUR’ VIA CAR. WHERE WOULD YOU SUGGEST?”

Wow! There are so many areas rich in both beer history and pubs from which to choose, but I personally have never been disappointed when I’ve visited Columbus, Ohio. There are more than 20 stops along the Columbus Ale Trail featuring great brewpubs and monster beer menus. Best of all, there are lists of local craft brews available at all Central Ohio breweries to help you plan your route. Happy travels!

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Tracie Burket
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