SIDNEY — The bar at 111 S. Ohio Ave., which for several years was known as the “bar with no name” and more recently has been called Missing Keys, now has a new name and owner.
Jason Levering, of Sidney, purchased the lease for the tavern in December. He has upgraded the interior with fresh paint, raised a platform for a piano, added a juke box, changed lighting and installed a massive tap system for craft brews. And just this week, he hung out his shingle, as it were.
A sign announcing the place as Lev’s Brew House went up over the door Thursday, Feb. 4.
Levering has been the owner of JR Levering Construction for a number of years. This is his first venture into tavernkeeping.
“I’m a people person,” he said in explaining why he took up the challenge of a new business. “When I get done working, I go have a couple drinks, so I would go in there. It’s not a wild, crazy place. More of a middle-age crowd. (The previous owner) was going to close in July.” Levering was convinced to give its management a try.
The bar is open Monday through Thursday from 6 p.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.
“We offer Ohio craft beers,” as well as craft brews from elsewhere, Levering said. “There are more craft beers on tap than anywhere else in Sidney.” There are 14 craft beers on tap, but he rotates the offerings.
“I want something different. I don’t want the same thing all the time,” he said. Domestic beers and some other craft beers are available in bottles. Lev’s Brew House is a fully stocked bar, so he also sells hard drinks.
“There are lots of specials,” he said. Happy hour runs from 6 to 7 p.m. daily. Whiskey Wednesdays are from 8 to 10 p.m. midweek.
He presents live music on Saturday nights and hosts disc jockeys on Fridays. The last Friday of every month features comedy. The entertainment runs from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. He selects local bands to perform and works with agents in Nashville and on the comedy circuit for nonlocal acts. Patrons can dance to music from the 1970s and 1980s as well as classic rock and country. Recent Sidney performers have been the Vice Presidents and Funk in the Trunk.
“I think we’re the only place in Sidney where people can dance,” Levering said.
There is a $5 cover charge on Saturdays.
Levering has hired two barmaids to serve customers in the 98-seat venue. He doesn’t offer food — yet.
“I don’t have room for a kitchen right now, but I may be open on Sundays in the summer and bring my grill down and cook outside,” he said. He hopes to rent the banquet room at the back of the facility for private parties.
“We had two Republican debate watch parties there and it was packed,” Levering said.
The Fairlawn High School graduate plans to celebrate a grand opening in the spring, when the weather is more stable. By five years from now, he’d like to own the building.
“My hope is to give people a good place to go. I want it to be the first place people think of when they want entertainment. I want to make the downtown better,” Levering said.
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