Here’s what’s on tap for the season at Blue Heron Brewery

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The fall comfort food menu at Blue Heron has been rolled out along with a slew of barrel aged brews. (Photography: Felicia Vargo)

By Ken McEntee

The most pleasant autumn view of colorful Austin Badger Park may be from within the shelter of the cozy heated outdoor igloos on the patio at Blue Heron Brewery, opines Ben Erjavec, chef and co-owner.

“By popular demand we now have 10 igloos, which seat up to 8 people on comfortable lounge furniture and offer full bar and dining service,” Ben says.

That means you and a group of close friends can enjoy Ben’s special touch on satisfying fall comfort food and a hearty beer brewed right on-site while enjoying one of the most picturesque landscapes in Medina.

“Our fall menu features a lot of squashes and seasonal spices,” Ben reveals. “In the crisper weather, people like to enjoy something that will fill them up and keep them warm.”

Like soup, for example.

“Our fresh, homemade soups include everything from chili to cold-water lobster bisque,” Ben says.

A hot bowl of soup may pair well with a braised short rib sandwich with Asian barbecue sauce, topped with fresh vegetable slaw—or a pulled pork sandwich with macaroni and cheese, smoked Gouda and crispy fried onions.

Blue Heron’s braised short rib sandwich with Asian barbecue sauce pairs wonderfully with brew master Mike Piazza’s Oktoberfest lager.

To capture the full experience, you’ll probably want to wash to wash it all down with a robust fall draft made on-site by brew master Mike Piazza.

“Mike has been brewing like crazy,” Ben reports. “He has a lot of new styles going for fall and winter, like a harvest ale that he brews with roasted carrots and butternut squash, and his popular Oktoberfest lager. His barrel aged beers have really taken off with our patrons as well.”

Among the barrel aged brews Mike introduced for this fall season are bourbon barrel aged Harvest Ale, bourbon barrel aged Coconut Porter and tequila barrel aged Belgian Saison amber ale. The barrel aged Harvest Ale, Mike says, is a twist on a popular selection from last fall.

“If you liked our Harvest Ale last year, I think you’re really going to enjoy this year’s variation,” Mike says. “We put 90 gallons of it into Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels for aging. Barrel aging adds more depth of flavor to beer.”

Don’t be surprised if you catch a hint of rich, fermented flavor in some of Blue Heron’s menu selections.

“We’re trying to incorporate more of Mike’s beers into our food—like the short ribs, which are braised in stout,” Ben says.

Dine in one of the most picturesque landscapes in Medina. On chilly evenings, you can enjoy igloo seating, perfect for a small group of friends or family.

Fall also marks the return of the mother of all Bloody Marys—Blue Heron’s Hail Mary Bloody Mary, that packs in the punch with a skewered filet mignon medallion slider. Topped with a portobello mushroom and supported by a breakfast sausage, the slider is surrounded by Cajun bacon, a sausage stuffed mushroom, assorted meats and cheeses, peppers, olives, pickles and a boneless chicken wing, flanked by shrimp.

For Thanksgiving and Christmas, Blue Heron again will offer its convenient and delicious holiday take and bake meals, featuring entrees like filet mignon, oven-baked chicken Florentine and seafood pasta with shrimp.

Blue Heron Brewery, adjacent to the elegant Blue Heron Event Center, which hosts personal affairs and business gatherings for up to 350 guests, is located at 3227 Blue Heron Trace, in Medina. You can make reservations and learn more about the brew pub and event center by visiting or calling 330-870-BLUE (2583). You can get the latest updates on parties and entertainment at Facebook: @BlueHeronMedina.