People to Watch: Colin Vent and Collin Castore

From the 08/03/2011 edition

Collin Castore and Colin Vent are the kind of affable, enthusiastic guys you'd love to have a beer with. And pretty soon, you can have one of theirs.

It was beer that first brought them together. Castore and his business partners had been harboring plans to start a brewery. Vent was a longtime home brewer. Then, the pair met at an event at Elevator Brewery.

"I more lucked out into meeting them," said Vent, who is currently executive sous chef at DeepWood. Soon Columbus will be sipping the results of their fortunate meeting.

Along with partners Travis Spencer and Jen Burton, they'll be launching Born Brewing Co. - the name a nod to a historic Columbus brewery from the late 1800s.

"We have a similar outlook, similar love of beer, similar view of the industry," said Castore, who is already a co-owner of two havens for local beer lovers, Short North bar Bodega and The Barrel & Bottle in the North Market.

The brewery itself - a 5,500-square-foot space located at the corner of North Fourth Street and Fourth Avenue - will also serve as event space and will have a community garden. It's a key addition to the Short North-adjacent Weinland Park neighborhood, a target of revitalization in the city.

Born will first be available on draft in "Dine Originals-type restaurants," Castore said. They have verbal agreements with several - including Liz Lessner's Betty's Family of Restaurants - to serve when the first brews are ready, likely this winter or next spring.

Born will launch with two signature beers - one lighter, one darker - as well as a rotation of "experimental" brews. "I intend on bringing my culinary sensibilities to the beer," Vent said.

Having a chef-turned-brewer makes sense to Castore. "Brewing is cooking," he said. "It's just cooking with malts and hops."