The Story of Ignite
Like most great beer stories, this one begins in friendship. We are three couples with growing families who enjoy spending time together talking about the little things — the jobs, the kids — and the big things, too, like participating in a strong community and making world-class beer.
All missions begin with curiosity and ours does, too.
Ignite was inspired by curiosity. We started off as friends who have shared values rooted in the importance of a strong community. We also share a curiosity for innovative, great tasting craft beers, which led the team to discover the very best beers from Ohio, from breweries throughout the United States and around the world.
We believe in giving back to the community (just read our mission). One community is the city of Barberton where our families live and where our taproom is part of the growing downtown. We are always looking for ways to help each and every community where our beer is served. We strive to make life a better place for residents and visitors through our partnership with local businesses and regional causes.
Ignite serves as the catalyst for craft beer lovers to rally together and drive positive change in their community – whether it’s a charity run in the morning, service day around town, or tackling that big project to make meaningful change. Consider Ignite your home base for charting your course to do good and celebrating your accomplishments.
We put our values and curiosities together to create a business with a unique approach: Making Beer Make a Difference™. Learn more about Ignite’s mission.
Ignite Brewing Company honors their hometown’s rich history as the “Magic City” from the early days when O.C. Barber founded the Diamond Match Company in 1880 and ignited the growth of Barberton. Today, Ignite contributes another spark to the resurgence of downtown Barberton as well as the Northeast Ohio’s booming craft beer industry.
The Ignite Taproom is located at 600 W. Tuscarawas Ave. in a spacious industrial modern building just footsteps away from restaurants, theaters and other downtown businesses. Ignite provides menus from favorite local restaurants to complement your craft beer tasting — or you can bring your own food. Choose a high table for two or three, a group table, or enjoy the large outdoor patio. Our taproom is your home-away-from-home place to hang out with your friends and whole family!
Meet the People Who Make the Beer that Makes a Difference
Fun Fact: I home-brewed 400+ batches before helping to start Ignite.
More about Adam
While visiting the many breweries in Portland, Oregon, we loved being able to sit outside in the sun and enjoy a great beer and conversation. That’s why the patio at Ignite was a must-have! Anywhere I go, I love to see the brewhouse and fermentation tanks visible from the taproom. At Ignite, we put a great beer in your hands, but we also create an inviting, open space where people really want to gather to enjoy each other’s friendship, too.
How did your honeymoon lead to the creation of a popular Ignite beer?
We honeymooned in England and Ireland, thoroughly enjoying the English ESBs (Extra Special Bitters) They were light in abv (alcohol by volume), making it easier to sample one at every pub along the way. But still full of flavor! It was a style I immediately brewed upon coming back home and is now one of our Ignite beers – The Dean.
What unique ingredients have you brewed with?
I have used dry tart cherries, cocoa nibs, coconut, peaches and, of course, pumpkin.
Recommendation: Enjoy the Ignite taproom atmosphere inside and on the patio. It’s friendly and laid-back.
More about Megan
What Megan looks for when visiting breweries.
I enjoy visiting breweries that feel like they are still breweries. I gravitate towards a space that has the feel that it is thoughtful and put together, without trying too hard.
Cool discovery on her beer journey
The one beer that comes to mind is a jalapeno stout in Cincinnati. I would love to create a pepper beer that has a clean pepper flavor with a little heat at the end and isn’t heavy and sweet.
Fun fact about one Ignite beer
I think the use of whole coffee beans in the Coffee Blonde is unique. The taste that comes from the beans is identifiably different than most coffee beers.
What if a customer doesn’t know much about craft beer and wants to explore Ignite beers. What do you recommend?
I’d ask them what other beers they have tried before and why they liked or didn’t like. Knowing if they like the sweetness or dislike the bitterness of hops can help direct what Ignite beers to try. I often suggest our Matchstick Blonde or Ignite Courage, depending on what’s available.
Passionate About: I love the outdoors, climbing mountains, learning, and whisk(e)y. And of course beer.
More about Michael
What other businesses did the partners even remotely consider?
We consistently wrestled with answering the question of how can we make the biggest difference in Downtown Barberton with a new business venture, and create a community gathering place. Our journey led us to the idea of starting a brewery with great beer and great community impact.
How has your business travels or observations of other brew pubs influenced the products you create or the design/atmosphere of Ignite?
For me, a lot of the influence is from the Colorado taproom experiences of the late 1990’s and early 2000’s as I was climbing mountains. Since then, I’ve been fortunate to visit at least a hundred more around the country. These visits definitely influenced our taproom design – the ones I enjoyed the most were consistently the ones that are family and community friendly, are welcoming and comfortable, and create that “second home” feel.
Excluding the beer, what do you hope is Ignite’s appeal to the customer?
We want to create a tribe, a place where everyone feels welcome. A place where people can learn more about beer, the process, and the Ignite community. We want to make a meaningful impact with our tribe.
What goes into naming the beers?
If you’re going to get great results – you’re going to use Excel! Great conversations – throwing out ridiculous ideas and, of course voting! With a beer in hand. Naming beers is serious business around here! We are constantly thinking about beer names. Ones that tie back to the “Ignite” idea. Ones that help you experience the beer better. For example, our kolsch is one of our “gateway” beers for folks that are not as familiar with craft beer. It’s named “Ignite Courage” to encourage our guests to branch out and try something new. And sometimes you read a book and come across a phrase like “Flighty Temptress” and high five over it and that becomes a name, too!
Fun Fact: Named our dog “Porter” after the beer we brewed the next day.
More about Marie
Tell us something fun about one Ignite Beer
Our Belgian Tripel is named for one of my favorite passages in the novel Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince: “Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress adventure.”
An Ignite customer enters after a lifetime of drinking Bud Light and wants to become a “crafter.” What do you recommend?
Depending on what we have on draft at the moment, I will give them a little taste of our Matchstick Blonde Ale, Ignite Courage Kolsch, Flighty Temptress Belgian Tripel, Prost! Hefeweizen and our The Dean ESB. These are all great introductory beers with slightly different levels of complexity to pull a new crafter in. If a new crafter is a coffee lover, I’ll have them try our Ignite Your Day coffee stout or Blonde Barista – our Matchstick Blonde with Coffee – and they’ll love it!
Describe the Ignite “experience”
Ignite is family friendly. We offer an open, comfortable and inviting spot for our guests to make Ignite their “second space”.
What other brew pubs would you recommend to Ignite customers?
Check out the tasty sours at the Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales in Dexter, Michigan. If you’re in Portland, the Cascade Brewing Barrel House – again, for the sours. Closer to home? You’ll find a super awesome building, great owners and delicious beers at the Phoenix Brewing Company in Mansfield. If your beer path takes you there, tell me what you think when you get back!
Fun Fact: I’m also active with my dad in a custom woodworking business.
More about Jason
For me, it’s all about family, kids and community. I love playing golf and running, too.
What’s your passion, beerwise?
I appreciate the classic, clean tasting beer. IPAs are good, but tend to be overdone in many cases to my taste. I love variety. The single biggest venture into a beer for me from something else I tasted was a Wee Heavy that my dad that I fell in love with.
Sometimes, Ignite beers will include a unique ingredient. Got any favorites?
I love the Michigan tart cherries we’ve used in our Matchstick Blonde Ale.
Ignite provides a welcoming, relaxed, family-friendly environment for your guests to enjoy. Where else have you experienced this in your “beer travels”?
Wadsworth Brewing Company provides a community focused experience and a comfortable and welcoming environment. Fulton Brewing as they made me feel welcome the moment I walk through the door. It had the type of vibe that would bring me back again and again. In Seattle, Fremont Brewing has a great outdoor vibe. Very cool to see kids and dogs all hanging out together.
How would you describe the Ignite taproom as a gathering place?
It’s a place for people to feel comfortable bringing their friends and families…where strangers become acquaintances and acquaintances become friends. Because we offer our space as a hub for community involvement, we think of Ignite as the meeting place for community improvement – through good acts and deeds or simply through knowing your neighbors better.
Passionate About: Family, nature, good food and great beer!
More about Stacy
There’s something to like about most of them – but mostly I love the Colorado vibe. (If you’re ever in Boulder, check out Avery Brewing.) Ignite provides that atmosphere where friends and family can chill…where everyone feels welcome to sit and relax with a good beverage.
Okay, what beers do you like while exploring the breweries of the world?
I love stouts. Beers that have surprised me lately are IPAs and Saisons. I’m always looking for the next beer adventure!
Tell us about one of your Ignite favorites.
They are all awesome, of course. I really like Adam’s coconut stout.
What makes Ignite different?
Like many breweries, we are passionate about creating great original beers. But we also want to make an impact where we live and everywhere Ignite beers are sold by giving back to all these communities.