Urban Artifact Revives a Northside Church Space

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Cincinnati has a thing for turning old churches into other stuff. There’s The Monastery, Ric Hordinski’s record studio and event space housed in a disused Episcopal Church in Walnut Hills. There’s the Clifton Urban Outfitters, formerly the Third Protestant Memorial Church. And there’s Taft Ale House, a huge OTR church converted into an echoing beer hall. Then, as if even more people were just anxiously awaiting another reason to hang out in a church, along came Urban Artifact.

The tap room
The tap room

Photographs courtesy Scott Hand, Urban Artifact

Northside’s newest brewery has been making a name in the local beer game since its opening in late April. Part of Artifact’s edge is their unique brewing approach that taps an unfilled niche in the market. Following what they like to call “wild culture,” they specialize in sour beers with a tart and funky taste. Their current line includes Maize, a Kentucky Common Ale; Harrow, a Gose Ale; and Finn, a Berliner Pale Ale.

Another leg up for Artifact is that it’s actually much more than a brewery. The three buildings that make up the premises include a gymnasium, which houses the brewery itself; the old St. Pius X church, in which beer worshippers will find a taproom equipped with a live performance venue; and the currently unused rectory.

With plans in place for a restaurant in the rectory, as well as another dedicated music lounge in the church nave and a beer garden (plus, of course, more beer), this is definitely a spot to keep an eye on.

1662 Blue Rock St., Northside, (513) 620-4729, artifactbeer.com

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