Now the ’burbs can get in on the duckpin bowling action without venturing to bustling Over-the-Rhine. And they’re doing just that: Only three weeks out from its grand opening, Hoppin’ Vines is reportedly already attracting upward of 1,200 guests on the weekends—all by word of word-of-mouth, says manager and co-owner Brian O’Connell.
The new spot serves pizza, beer, and wine, but the big draw is the duckpin bowling lanes. “You can be 5 or 85 and still enjoy the game,” O’Connell says. It’s a scaled-down version of the classic, with squatter pins, shorter lanes, three rolls per frame (instead of two), and smaller, lighter balls, making it ultra-family friendly. Bonus: No need to swap your shoes for a rental pair. O’Connell says they’re looking to set up leagues in the future.
Beyond the bowling, it’s a bar at its core, with 40 draft beer taps, a 1,000-bottle wine cellar, 41 bourbons and counting, and a full bar to please the cocktail sippers. If you need to refuel for another round of bowling, Delicio Coal Fired Pizza is at your service: It’s a Cincinnati-based pizza company that uses anthracite, a smokeless coal, to bake its pizzas. Request your pie dairy-free or gluten-free for two bucks more.
Brian and his brother-in-law Steve Schoembs—former owner of 16 Lots brewery in Mason—initially envisioned Hoppin’ Vines to be a brewery, but Ohio regulations require breweries to serve 90 percent their own product, which left their menu lacking in diversity for non-beer-drinkers. Schoembs and O’Connell modeled their business with plans to expand from the very beginning, so they hope one day soon there will be more Hoppin’ Vines popping up.
Hoppin’ Vines, 8150 Montgomery Rd., Madeira, (513) 791-8463, hoppinvines.com.
Open 3 p.m.–12 a.m. Tues–Thurs; 11 a.m.–1 a.m. Fri & Sat; 12 p.m.–10 p.m. Sun.