Fresh, clean, renovated and now the sports bar offering in the Brew-Stirs family.
The Brew-Stirs network of bars expanded in 2020 with the purchase of what used to be Zuey’s Roundback Bar in the Clintonville / Beechwold neighborhood of Columbus. Nearby Brew-Stirs Clintonville Tavern is joined by a related offering in Columbus suburb Westerville, creating an association between three very different places. Zuey’s Roundback was a proper Columbus dive bar to be sure and Brew-Stirs Beechwold has used that foundation not to create another dive bar, but to build a new sports bar-oriented space that sheds some of the diveyness of the previous tenant.
All of that is to say that classifying Brew-Stirs Beechwold as a dive bar would be unfair, even though the location itself is a bit of a hot spot for classic Columbus dive bars, including Eldorado Food & Spirits, which shares the same block of land, and Bob’s Bar (cultural hub of the Midwest) just across bustling High Street from Eldorado. What Brew-Stirs has built at this location can better be classified as a clean, renovated sports bar that looks a far cry from Zuey’s rougher edges.
The building itself can be a little hard to find on a first visit, not just sitting behind a strip mall parking lot, but almost obscured entirely from view by the strip mall’s buildings closer to busy High Street. Instead, Brew-Stirs Beechwold runs along a support road in between the strip mall, housed in a building that looks a little bit more like a long, low apartment building than a sports bar at first glance.
Inside, renovations are easy to spot, from the new flooring to fresh paint throughout. A small lobby area with bathrooms in front quickly gives way to Brew-Stirs Beechwold’s open central space, a layout that makes the bar feel much bigger than its exterior would suggest. A ringed bar sits in the middle of this room, corrugated metal under wood providing an anchor point to activity.
The back wall is lined with dart boards, a welcome sight, with a small VIP, roped-off area to one side. A pair of pool tables flank the longer side of the bar, tall tables along the other side. The draft beer selection extends beyond the classic domestic dive bar set into local craft beers prominently displayed on a chalkboard-style menu along one of the bar’s short interior walls. Hot Dog Wally’s occupies the small kitchen attached to this main space, offering, you guessed it, hot dogs as well as wings, fries and the like.
Of the Brew-Stirs network, Clintonville provides the most dive-like atmosphere just a few blocks south of this Beechwold location, offering a counterpoint to the renovated, sports bar feel the Beechwold layout creates. And given the density of great Columbus dive bar options in the area, Brew-Stirs Beechwold’s decision to target a slightly different crowd makes sense. Fresh paint, deep beer selection, renovated layout and the bones of a classic sports bar experience exist here tucked behind a Columbus strip mall.