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People Behind the Pint: Walt Keys

He’s the man responsible for the nice image on your can, the poster on your wall, and the t-shirt on your back. He’s also the guy who will be at the taproom at 6am setting up for an event, and the same guy that will be there until 1am tearing it down. He’s Walt Keys, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Land-Grant Brewing Company… and he’s this month’s Person Behind the Pint!

Name: Walt Keys
Position: Co-Founder / Creative Director

You’re one of the Co-Founders of Land-Grant… how long has LG been a part of your life?:
Land-Grant really started for me in 2010. My college roommate and Best Man at my wedding, Adam Benner, started home-brewing in the basement of his apartment in Chicago and looped me in to design labels for his new brews. I was working at a design agency in Cincinnati at the time, and so his hobby of brewing beer on the weekends became my hobby of designing brands and labels after work. In 2012, we decided to really make a run at opening a commercial brewery, and launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to get the idea off the runway.

What is it you do here day-to-day?
I’m the Creative Director here at Land-Grant, which essentially means I’m in charge of creating and executing everything visual that we need to move beer. Here’s an incomplete list of the things I design from week to week: beer labels, trading cards, posters, event brands, ads, social graphics, photography, video, website updates, menus, taproom materials, tap handles, and sales materials. We did 35 different beers in package last year, and we’re already at 32 this year, so I stay pretty busy.

On September 29, you’re celebrating Four Years of Beers. Congrats! As LG graduates from a small, young business to a more mature operation with over 40 employees, what advice would you give to other creatives and/or entrepreneurs that may need a push?
Just keep at it, and don’t be stubborn. That’s not to say you shouldn’t have a strong plan and a fully formed idea, but you should definitely remain flexible and open-minded. That–and, be prepared to put in A LOT of hours.

You’ve been working towards your vision of LG for over 8 years. That must come with some high highs and low lows. Looking back, what were some of those defining moments?
I’ll start with the low-point, which was when we lost our original Grandview building in October 2013. We’d been working so hard on this concept… we’d quit our jobs, relocated and it was starting to finally come together, when suddenly the rug was pulled out from under us. We had to essentially start back at zero. But to the team’s credit, we stuck together, held steady, and were able to land on our feet in Franklinton (albeit a full year later than we expected).

Highlights are a lot more fun to look back on, and there have been a lot! Every time we throw a big event like the Anniversary Parties, Backyard Barbecue, or Strawberry Jam, I’m still overwhelmed when people show up to this thing we made. We’ve been fortunate enough to celebrate a lot of cool milestones: Opening Day, canning beer for the first time (what a mess that was), and being able to enjoy a Land-Grant beer at Ohio Stadium. But, I think the most amazing thing about Land-Grant is the incredible family of people we’ve been able to assemble. It’s obviously apparent in happy times like when one of our people welcomes a new baby or ties the knot, but it was especially humbling to see the team rally around one another when tragedy struck and we lost one of our friends and brothers. It’s something I think about every day.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Friday. There’s a palpable buzz in the building; the doors open earlier for Ray Ray’s and the room starts to fill up around noon. If it’s a Friday before a big event, everyone will be running around working on this or that–there’s a lot of excitement, and generally folks from the neighborhood, old friends, and family start to drop in around happy hour, making it tempting to pop out an hour early to have a beer in the Beer Garden.

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Jacob Walker

You can thank this LG OG for that can in your hand. When Jacob isn’t busy overseeing the canning line, he is designing and customizing all of our tap handles… or, mastering (and sharing his love of) the sport of disc golf! Our annual winner of Employee With The Shortest Commute, Jacob can be found in his front yard (AKA, the LG patio) most Mondays with taco in hand. Cheers!

Name: Jacob Walker
Position: Canmaster General

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
Since November 1, 2014. Almost an OG.

What is it you do here?
I’m the lead operator on the canning line and I also produce all tap handles for accounts and taproom.

You’ve spearheaded LG’s passion for disc golf–how long have you been playing? And is it true we may be restocking our custom discs?
I started throwing discs when I was 16 (now 34), but had some right shoulder injuries here and there. I started playing competitively in early 2017 with the intention of going PRO. Yes, it is true that Land-Grant will be restocking our custom stamped discs…. this time it’s CLASSIC SOFT JUDGES!!!!! More to come in the future regarding different molds and such.

You’ve been a Franklintonian for years now–since before Land-Grant opened–what first drew you to the neighborhood and what do you think of its recent evolution?
Well, initially we moved to Franklinton for affordability–not really knowing the neighborhood–and, we fell in love immediately! The people are awesome and it’s decently close to all the cool spots in Columbus. In the future I see big things for Franklinton. With two huge living complexes about to open to the public, Franklinton has every reason to be a hotspot for fun… and super good LG beer!

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
My favorite day of the week at LG is easily Monday! Colin and Amber usually tend the bar with Sunnyside Tacos outside cooking up tasty tacos. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the other trucks and Ray Ray’s, but there is a special place in my heart for TACOS!!!!!

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Brittany Fisher

Just call her “Spotted Genet” because she is one cool cat with a dynamite personality. Not only is Brittany a brilliant bartender, but she is also our in-house animal expert. Fresh off an Exotic Animal Behavior and Welfare study abroad program in South Africa, Brittany fills us in on her travels and identifies the hidden beasts of Land-Grant. Rarrr!

Name: Brittany Fisher
Position: Bartender

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
A little over a year.

What is it you do here?
I am one of the lucky bartenders in the taproom who gets to sling drinks with my best friends. At times I also double as an animal-question-answering extraordinaire.

You just got back from spending some time in South Africa-what were you doing there?
I just finished my undergraduate degree in Animal Sciences at The Ohio State University. In the fall I will begin a Master’s of Science degree as a graduate research student at OSU. I traveled with eight other girls for three weeks as part of an Exotic Animal Behavior and Welfare study abroad program in South Africa. It was amazing! We spent 8 days off the grid in Kruger National Park and the remainder of the time visiting sanctuaries and rehabilitation centers. Most of our time was spent observing wild animals but we did have the opportunity to interact with some ambassador animals as well.

You’re the animal expert, so if you had to pick spirit animals for you and your bartending colleagues, what would you choose?
Oh man, ok here we go: While in South Africa I was told that my spirit animal would be a spotted genet and yes I had to look it up, too. It’s a small African cat with a dynamite personality which is very fitting. For Becca, our matriarch, I’m going to choose an elephant for her strength, compassion, and leadership. Nik, who is one of our fearless leaders, gets a brown bear for his confidence, leadership, and strength. Colin, our other head bartender, is a tiger for his power, intelligence, and leadership. Justin is definitely a lion, have you seen that beard? Lions represent courage, compassion, and strength. Jenna, our theater queen, is a zebra for her individuality, sociability, and leadership. Emma Swysgood, check out her band Mungbean, seems like a giraffe for her wisdom, creativity, and grace. Amber is absolutely a monkey, if you haven’t been to her comedy shows you are missing out. Monkeys are known for their humor, resourcefulness, and smarts. Jordan, our dog dad, is a wolf for his knowledge, leadership, and courage. Kayla is a peacock for her effortless beauty, nobility, and wisdom. Mike seems like an eagle for his loyalty, creativity, and integrity. For our newest addition, Jake, we’ll give him the leopard. They are known for their strength, courage, and independence. If anyone else would like to know their spirit animal, I take appointments on Fridays and Saturdays for a small fee.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Working weekends at Land-Grant is my absolute favorite! I love it when the brewery is full of excitement. We have so many great regulars and new customers alike; I love getting to see everyone and catching up on how their week went. On the weekends most of the bartenders are scheduled and I never feel like I am actually at work. Our staff is full of great personalities and positive attitudes (see above), so you know we are going to have fun. We also have Ray Ray’s outside serving the best BBQ in town as well! Not only is their food great but the staff is wonderful. When we first me all the guys, we knew immediately that it was a great decision and now we are all very close.

Events at Land-Grant are especially fun. It is so rewarding to be able to partner with local companies and organizations, like Jeni’s and 97.1. This weekend, after we walk the Pride Parade on Saturday, I won’t but bartending, but I will be celebrating in the beer garden… so come say hello!

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Hajier Karimi

If you’ve ever enjoyed a cool and crispy Land-Grant beer outside of our walls, chances are it was dropped off by Hajier Karimi, the longtime Land-Grant distribution All-Star with a heart of gold. When not picking daisies, Haj gets that beer where it’s going… right on time, all while dishing out crunchy bass licks.

Name: Hajier Karimi
Position: Distribution Team Lead

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
I started here in September of 2015.

What is it you do here?
I do a few different things here at Land-Grant. First and foremost, I manage our Distribution Team and make sure that our beer gets to where it needs to go in a timely manner. I also manage our packaged inventory to ensure that we have enough product to fill orders and that our beer is at optimal freshness once it leaves our facility. I sit on the Safety Committee as well, and I train new employees on how to operate some of the heavy machinery that we use in the brewery. From time to time, you might also see me out and about, working events or tastings. Aside from that, I’ve done everything from installing drywall to building a walk-in cooler, and anything else in between.

What’s your favorite L-G beer?
Wow I’ve been staring at this question for a really long time because, truth be told, it’s impossible for me to pick just one Land-Grant beer that I love the most. There are so many delicious beers that we release here on a weekly basis and I love them all. However, for the sake of this question, when push comes to shove, I’ve got to go with an old favorite: our Greenskeeper Session IPA. This little workhorse of a beer is perfect for just about any occasion and it won’t quit on you–even when you’re a few (or more than a few) pints deep. Perfectly sessionable, and with the addition of Citra hops for an added kick of citrusy goodness, this beer is solid AF.

Best Land-Grant Memory?
All of ‘em. For real, it’s hard to keep track of all the great times I’ve had here. It’s easy to make memories when you’re having fun working with your friends!

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Each day usually brings along something new and exciting. Whether it’s a new beer release or an event in the taproom, there’s always something cool going down at 424 W. Town.

I will say though, my favorite days are the ones where the brewery is running on all cylinders, which is just about every day at this point. There is definitely a nice rhythm that we get into throughout the day, which I love. There are a lot of people and simultaneous moving parts involved in running this operation, and when everything is flowing smoothly and we are all “in the pocket,” so to speak, you can really feel it… and it feels good! I think this is reflected in the product we are putting out as well; by that I mean that our beer is greater than the sum of our individual parts. I think that really shows since we are able to consistently produce a high-quality product day in and day out. We formin’ like voltron out here, all day baby!

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Kayla Chandler

If you’ve ever visited our taproom, you’ve surely met Kayla, Land-Grant’s bartender, customer experience extraordinaire, and human flow chart. When she’s not striving to make your taproom experience exceptional, she’s keeping quite busy adventuring with The Campfire Experience and her two little kiddos! Whew!”

Name: Kayla Chandler
Position: Bartender & Customer Experience Lead

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
I have worked at Land-Grant since March 2016.

What is it you do here?
I’m a bartender! For those of you who may not understand what that means, at Land-Grant, as bartenders, we are somewhat of a human flow chart to help you decide which kind of beer you should drink. That’s right–I know you better than you know you. My favorite customers are those who tell me they don’t like beer. This becomes a personal challenge for me to find the right fit.

In addition to bartending, I recently started as a Customer Experience Lead. Not many days go by when Land-Grant isn’t hosting a fundraiser, 30th birthday celebration, or party of some sort. I ensure that these events run smoothly and help to create finishing touches of hospitality.

The Land-Grant bar staff is essentially family–what are the pros and cons of working with your closest friends?
The bar staff spends a lot of time together, whether we like it or not. Truth is, the staff is a huge part of why I enjoy coming to work. Each person on our staff is creative and ambitious in their own way, and with all of our traits combined, we make an exceptional team… if I do say so myself!

Con–sometimes it is difficult for everyone to find time to hang out outside of work!

Outside of Land-Grant, you are involved with The Campfire Experience, plus you’re a mother! How many hours do you have in your day?
Enough to balance everything! Outside of Land-Grant I work for a company called The Campfire Experience, a luxury adventuring brand, as a manager of custom events. We specialize in creating upscale outdoorsy events for brands, festivals and weddings. I oversee one of our signature events called Campfire Sessions–intimate music performances in unique spaces, recorded live. The process of scouting locations and bands is what I find most enjoyable.

I am also a mother of a 2 year-old and a 3 year-old! Watching my children develop and grow has been the most rewarding and fascinating experience of my life. It’s important for me to balance a busy work schedule and spend the most quality time with them.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
I recently worked my first Hickory + Oak Supper Club at the brewery. It was cool to see the taproom transform into somewhat of a “speak-easy” where guests are seated at communal tables with candlelight, sharing special plates that are selectively paired with unusual beers. Can Ray Ray’s please tell me how they made a simple carrot taste so good?

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.
Want to work with the Customer Experience Leads to plan your event at LG? Drop a line right here.

People Behind The Pint: Dan Shaffer

With some excellent and varied beers dropping in the coming weeks (Batch 300, Spring Quarter, Space-Grant) we figured it was high-time to check in with our Lead Brewer, Dan Shaffer. Dan speaks softly but with a sharp wit and earned wisdom, making him right at home in the brewery, and on our new weekly podcast “Beers With the Brewers.”

Name: Dan Shaffer
Position: Lead Brewer

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
I started in the fall of 2016.

What is it you do here?
In general, I make beer. Specifically, I’m involved in all the steps leading up to providing our packaging team with brite beer to put into cans and kegs. The rest of my time goes towards educating our staff about beer, refining processes in the brewery, and developing new recipes.

What is your favorite beer to brew?
There's a real excitement to brewing a new recipe or trying a new technique, but I take a lot of pleasure in dialing in a staple like Stiff-Arm, our IPA. There's great satisfaction in knowing how a brew is progressing just by touch and feel (and of course smell).

We're going to be hearing a lot more from you on the Beers With The Brewers Podcast–tell us more about that!
When I first started home brewing, I wanted to feed my head with as much information as possible. Great podcasts like "Basic Brewing Radio" and "Brewing with Style" were as important to my beer education as my brewing degree. I'm hoping that with "Beers With The Brewers" we can not only inform people about our beers, but also relay some of the information I've accrued over the years about beer styles and brewing history. Hopefully it will inspire someone to try a beer that is outside their comfort zone, or maybe revisit an old classic.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
A brewer's schedule is so varied that it's hard to pick a particular day, but I love getting in before everyone on the early brew. It's quiet and the smell of the grain in the mash tun (and Ray Ray's meat in the smoker) wakes up your senses. The sun peaks up over the brewery windows, people stumble in one or two at a time and the place starts to buzz; delivery drivers load their trucks, can hands build boxes and load cans, the cellarman fires up the centrifuge and the bar staff take down stools and polish the bar top for the lunch crowd. A brewery is a living, breathing thing, and not just in the sense that we rely on living organisms to ferment our beer. Not to get too sappy, but without the people it's just a bunch of stainless steel.

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Jackie Kemble

Jackie Kemble is the gift that keeps on giving! In her role as Land-Grant’s Community Partnership Manager, Jackie spends a lot of time listening to the needs of our neighbors and the community at large, and makes sure to give back to the best of Land-Grant’s ability. Jackie is as smart as she is generous–so, pop into the brewery on any given Sunday and pick her brain on every topic from philanthropy to Cicerone Certification. Cheers to Jackie!

Name: Jackie Kemble
Position: Community Partnership Manager

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
I’ve been here for a little over 2 years!

What is it you do here?
Here at Land-Grant, I steward our philanthropic giving and community engagement. I’m lucky to be able to work with a lot of amazing organizations. I listen to people in our neighborhood and community about the different issues that affect them, and work with individuals and organizations to see how we can assist them. I also coordinate our Community Happy Hours, which are days that we open the taproom (Mondays through Wednesdays) to nonprofit initiatives under the tiers of Education, Community Building and Sustainability. We give groups dedicated, cost-free space to educate people about their initiatives, and then donate up to 20% of the proceeds from the evening to their cause. I have the best job here (I think so, anyways).

What is your favorite aspect of your job?
My favorite aspect of my job is meeting so many people who do amazing things in my hometown. I love Columbus – I grew up here, went to OSU and have worked here ever since. It’s an amazing city, and that’s because of all of the amazing people that work and live here. From the community initiatives to the Columbus Crew (#SaveTheCrew!), there are always people willing to listen, work hard and lend their collaborative spirit to get things done. Also, beer. I’m Cicerone Beer Server Certified and this place is a like playground for beer nerds and domestic lovers alike.

You have had the privilege of working with a lot of amazing non-profits/community groups, what have been some of your most rewarding community collaborations?
I would have to say that the work we do with Pelotonia is extremely rewarding. We’ve donated over $20,000 in our three short years to an issue that seemingly affects everyone – whether it’s you or someone you love. If I had to pick one thing though, it would be working in Franklinton. All of the passionate people that make this neighborhood great by waking up every day and serving the community – they’re the best. We’ve donated the outside sales from our Anniversary Party to Franklinton Gardens (now Franklinton Farms) for the last 2 years, and the direct community impact that they provide is almost immeasurable. In fact, Franklinton Farms is one of the sole providers of fresh produce to low-income communities like Franklinton. We are so proud to work with them.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
That’s a toss-up between Friday and Sunday. Friday because everyone is so happy to be here – they’re not at work, they get to eat Ray Ray’s Barbecue, we almost always have something new on tap, and our bartenders are hands-down the nicest, most knowledgable bar staff in Columbus. It’s the best place to start your weekend!

Personally though, I love Sunday. This is a perfect spot to have a lazy Sunday afternoon beer with (more!) Ray Ray’s. We see people in here playing cards or board games, catching up with friends or watching football. The vibe is so relaxed, but still fun. It’s really nice to want to hang out where you work – you’ll see a lot of us in here even though we don’t have to be.

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Mark Richards

Meet Mark, a (self-proclaimed) big-time extrovert, Judas Priest superfan, and bearded hero. If you’ve stopped in Land-Grant before, you have probably crossed paths with Mark, shared an “Oh sure” and a pint, and become life-long friends. And, you can thank Mark, our Director of Operations, for keeping the beer in your glass, on the shelf, and in your fridge! That’s a truuuuuuuue story!

Name: Mark Richards
Position: Director of Operations

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
3 years in January! I started just after Land-Grant opened when outside sales were enough to need someone driving keg distribution and helping out in the brewery. As we have grown as a company, I have had the opportunity to wear many hats – some of which I still have on! It has been very exciting being a part of our rapid growth in the past 3 years. I consider everyone I have the pleasure of working with a friend. Being a part of the local brewing community I love has been a dream come true.

What is it you do here?
I get to do a little bit of everything from managing day to day operations in the brewery and distribution logistics to taking care of our customers and stadium accounts. There is never enough time in the day to accomplish everything I want but I like to stay busy and make any contribution needed for our business. I enjoy working with others and get a lot of satisfaction out of seeing others within our company succeed.

We are headed into the holiday season, which means holiday beers! What brew do you look forward to this time of year?
I think it’s awesome that our “holiday seasonal” is an oatmeal stout with raisins. Beard Crumbs Oatmeal Raisin Stout is a fantastic beer and has gathered quite a following. Christmas beers jam packed with mulling spices, ginger, cinnamon and the like have become a turnoff to me (and a lot of craft beer consumers), so Beard Crumbs is a perfect choice. It’s an all-around great oatmeal stout with a touch of sweetness from the raisins.
My taste interests are predominantly driven by the time of year. As winter solstice approaches, shorter and darker days call for darker beers and styles like doppelbocks, porters and stouts. One of my favorites I look forward to is our Deep Search Baltic Porter. Baltic Porters were always a favorite of mine to brew during my homebrewing days. One version I brewed with my homebrewing friends, A.J. Zanyk and Hans Gorsuch, was a split 15-gallon batch fermented by different yeasts–it was awarded Best In Show at the Ohio State Fair in 2001!

Here at LG, we clearly take our beards very seriously. What qualities do you look for in a beard?
Aside from the benefit that it sure beats shaving, a full beard is my choice.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Beer release days bring out a lot of taproom regulars and friends of both myself and the brewery. It is a lot of fun seeing people come out and enjoy the products we work so hard to produce. There’s nothing better than visiting with others over a pint and discussing what you find interesting about what you are tasting.

As far as day of the week goes, I really enjoy Monday night in our taproom during our 10-week Land-Grant Euchre League. Euchre will be coming up in January, which will be here before we know it!

I’m a people person–big time–and most recently our Third Anniversary Party was an absolute blast. It was great to see all the hard work, planning, and organizing pay off, and to enjoy the party with our staff, customers and friends. It’s been an extrovert’s delight each year and I love seeing everyone having such a good time. It is hard with such a large turnout to spend enough quality time with everyone, but I sure try.

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Quintin Jessee

As we pull up to the three-year mark, we are reflecting back on the very beginning. So, this month, we caught up with Quintin “Q” Jessee, one of our fearless founders. Q takes us way back to 1999 when he first fostered a love of craft beer, reminds us of a time when Land-Grant was Oval, and reflects on his happiest time at LG. Ahhh, memories!

Name: Quintin “Q” Jessee
Position: Co-Founder / Director

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
I met (Co-Founders) Walt Keys and Adam Benner during the Oval Brewing Kickstarter in 2012 when their college roommate introduced us. I was in the process of starting a brewery too. After meeting Walt and Adam, we decided to join forces and build a brewery together. I am very blessed to have met Walt and Adam and be part of the Land-Grant family! 

What is it you do here?
I am fortunate to get to do a lot of different things at Land-Grant. I am a board member at Land-Grant, and I also serve on the Quality and Safety committees. That means I work on special projects, help our President, Adam, with business strategy, foster investor relations, visit accounts with the sales team, help brew beer every once in a while, develop policy and execute HR functions–I even deliver beer occasionally! A little bit of everything!

Your background is in pharmaceuticals, so what about the craft beer industry peaked your interest?
My chemistry background in pharmaceuticals is what got me interested in brewing. I like the science that is involved. My wife and I made beer for our wedding back in 1999, and had a lot of fun creating something for our friends and family. In the mid-90’s, we not only fell in love with each other, but with brewing too. (Awwwwww!)

As we approach the third anniversary, looking back, what is your best memory at LG?
I can truly say that I have so many great memories at Land-Grant that it is hard to pick just one. But if I have to choose, it would be cutting the ribbon on Opening Day, October 18, 2014, with Walt and Adam. All the dreams and hard work by our team, family and friends came to life that day.

Q raises a toast before the first tapping of Land-Grant beer.

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Every day of the week is my favorite day! Our food truck line up is one of the best in Columbus, so I get to try different food every time I’m at the brewery. It is especially fun experimenting with food and beer pairings. I also love a good beer and Jeni’s Ice Cream pairing. I highly recommend our 1862 Kölsch with Jeni’s Wildberry Lavender Ice Cream.

I can also honestly say that we have amazing bartenders every day of the week at Land-Grant. I’ve been at national conventions wearing some of Walt’s amazing design work, and people chase me down to tell me that our bartenders are the best they have ever met.

Every day of the week, you can also encounter some form of community empowerment at the brewery. Adam had a vision to give back and support our local community from the outset. In fact, it is incorporated into our mission statement! Many of our events are actually specific to helping improve the community–from Community Happy Hours to special fundraising events. My favorite is the efforts to help with Pelotonia fundraising. Being a pharmacist and being able to help support cancer research at Land-Grant is truly amazing.

Want to catch up on our previous ‘People behind the Pint’ entries? You can do just that right here.

People Behind the Pint: Amber Falter

This month, we chatted with Amber Falter, our beloved bartender and comedic genius. No topic was left untouched; we tackled elephant pregnancies, acquiring ownership of the moon, her duties inside and outside of the bar, and her deep affinity for community (and stickers!).

Name: Amber Falter
Position: Bartender

How long have you been at Land-Grant?
1.3 lovely elephant pregnancies!

What is it you do here?
Most of what I do is sing Michael McDonald’s “I Keep Forgettin'” to boost morale behind the bar. 

My second most important job is to show people pictures of my dogs. Constantly. 

Some days (and most terrifyingly) I am asked to change the TV channel. This requires most of my energy and I usually end up bloodied from battle. As much as I hate it, I am grateful for this technological challenge–it humbles me.

Oh, and I pour beer for my friends.

Why do you pay me again?

What are the best aspects of your job? And what are the most challenging?
Best aspects are the people. Hands down and on both sides of the bar. You’re never in bad company at Land-Grant. 

The most challenging…? Hmm. Personally I think it’s not giving every single guest a sticker. I love stickers. THE WORLD NEEDS STICKERSSSSS!!! (Also, because of me I think we are out of stickers).

You have a super successful comedy career outside of Land-Grant, tell us about that!
Tell you about my successful comedy career?! Hold on, allow me to park my Ferrari first. I don’t get perfect reception in my beautiful mountainside getaway home–just kidding, of course I do! I’m a billionaire! I own the moon!

First of all, since starting at Land-Grant I was finally in a position where I was able to work and explore my life long passion of comedy. So hats off to you, fam. You the real MVP.

Secondly, comedy is so fun! I meet people that make sure I’m constantly laughing and I couldn’t love writing more. What a silly life I am chasing. Not sure what will come of it, nor do I have any idea what I am doing. I just want to impress myself as a writer and challenge myself as a performer. The art of Comedy is so fascinating and thrilling to me. Also, the scene in Columbus is active, supportive and growing. If I have any real goal with comedy, it’s to help the scene attract more performers to the stage. Whether it be inviting touring headliners or encouraging newer or younger comics to our showcases, I just want people to want to perform in Columbus! Luckily for me, Land-Grant has introduced me to so many great people and they’ve come to explore our magical world of local comedy. It’s really satisfying to me to see someone’s first local comedy experience as an audience member. I. Just. Love. It! 

What is your favorite day of the week at the brewery?
Oh my goodness–how do I pick?! 

Beer releases are super exciting. You can always count on the few regulars to be the first ones in. You know, the ones that aren’t afraid to remind you multiples times to give them their Collector’s Club cards. I always try to have my first sip of the beer with the first person I get to pour it for! (If we aren’t slammed of course!) I like to talk to our super fans because they are so willing to shell out their honest opinions with us. I learn so much from those conversations! I love it!

Also, our Second Anniversary Party (Third Anniversary coming up, Save the Date!) was just incredible. What a beautiful day. That was the busiest day I’ve worked in my life, but at the same time, THE most fun! The bar was packed. Just a sea of people sardined together… willing to rub bodies with strangers for 40 minutes all to grab an 1862 Kölsch and celebrate with us at Land-Grant. So, so cool. 

At first it was scary. I like to make sure everyone has a great experience while they are at Land-Grant and we were so slammed that I initially felt like an inadequate bartender. Then I looked around and noticed the team I was working alongside and it changed my attitude completely. Becca just blowing my mind with fast she works. Watched Colin hand six canned Stiff-Arms to people four deep like it was nothing. Jenna laughing and screaming “Yaass Queens!”. Everyone was crushing it. Bar staff and all. And the reason that bar was so packed was because it was filled with friends, family and neighbors that were just thrilled to be there with us. It made me so happy to see everyone at Land-Grant that worked so hard all week to have a Greenskeeper with their friends and family and realize what a cool community they’ve built. 

LOCAL DELIVERY ONLY AVAILABLE FOR ORDERS OVER $40 (1 case). Please allow 20-30 minutes for us to pull pick-up orders. Pick-up is from Noon-7p Thursday-Saturday and Noon-4p Sunday Dismiss