Bowling Green Beer Works: NW Ohio’s Best Kept Secret



In a small town, down a hidden alleyway, and tucked into a signless double-door garage-like building is Northwest Ohio’s best kept craft beer secret; Bowling Green Beer Works.

Located at 322 N Grove St, Bowling Green, OH, Bowling Green Beer Works is Bowling Green Ohio’s first nano brewery. Small batch, hand-crafted beer, cider, mead and soda made right on site.

We urge you to keep reading our Bowling Green Beer Works spotlight, but also invite you to listen to our half hour conversation with Justin Marx; Brewmaster and Founder of Bowling Green Beer Works below.


One of the newest nano breweries in the Northwest Ohio Toledo region, and one of just two craft breweries in Bowling Green, Ohio, Bowling Green Beer Works has an almost prohibition era speakeasy feel to it.

We first heard about BGBW from a former teacher colleague who excitedly told us about “this guy who brews beer out of his garage…but the beer is stupid good”. Bowling Green Beer Works has an almost mythical buzz surrounding it. With all of the hush-hush rave reviews we were hearing, and an insatiable appetite for uncovering the unknown, we reached out to Justin Marx, Brewmaster and Founder of BG Beer Works to plan a visit to check it out.

Once we arrived (after accidentally driving past the hidden brewery twice), we were met by Justin, a few of his devoted helpers, and one loyal patron to sit down and chat about Bowling Green Beer Works. We were treated to a half hour conversation with Justin and his loyal patron, Mike (which you listen to above, OR, subscribe to our On Tap podcast and listen to his interview on our latest episode!) and talked about the momentous achievement of opening a nano brewery and the following of Bowling Green locals who have so lovingly embraced Bowling Green Beer Works.

“If you don’t know where it’s at; you don’t know where it’s at!” – Justin Marx on the speakeasy vibe of Bowling Green Beer Works

One of the appealing and charming aspects of Bowling Green Beer Works is that speakeasy effect that we described earlier. There is absolutely no signage or evidence of a brewery. Much like the secret speakeasies in the prohibition era; hidden away sanctuaries for thirsty patrons, Bowling Green Beer Works is Bowling Green’s own little secret. Justin described a nighttime scene of passerby’s looking in at laughing silhouettes through frosted windows and wondering just what was going on inside that signless, nameless building. After our interview, Justin joked that a good slogan on a t-shirt would be “If you don’t know where it’s at, you don’t know where it’s at!”

That hasn’t stopped the Bowling Green locals from stopping out in hordes. Retired Bowling Green State University Professor, craft beer enthusiast and loyal BGBW patron Mike Coomes explained that the nano brewery gets so packed that “You can’t swing a cat in here”. We think that speaks volumes about the beers Justin and his crew are brewing up. The snug, neighborhood vibe of Bowling Green Beer Works won us over right away. You get the sense that it can become that “Cheers-like” brewery; a place where everybody knows your name.

Brewmaster & Owner Justin Marx sharing a glass with a patron. Photo c/o Toledo Blade

Photo c/o Toledo Blade

We had a taste of a number of the selections available at Bowling Green Beer Works, and if those samples are any indication of what Justin and the crew are capable of, they are going to blow your mind with beers that are both true to style, carefully and lovingly crafted, but also experimental and interesting.

The Selections of Beers on Tap at Bowling Green Beer Works on the Day of our Visit.

The Selections of Beers on Tap at Bowling Green Beer Works on the Day of our Visit.

Currently, Bowling Green Beer Works is running a KickStarter campaign (which we featured on Episode 24 of On Tap) to help with the associated costs of expansion and success. They are dangerously close to meeting their goal, and we are hopeful that you can find it within your means to support Bowling Green Beer Works and local craft beer.

We want to thank Justin and his extremely warm and welcoming crew for giving us the time on one of their working days. We know that we will be spending many of our summer weekend evenings on their beautiful patio area; enjoying the quiet streets of Bowling Green, and sipping on some fine craft beer courtesy of Bowling Green Beer Works.


Bowling Green Beer Works is open on the following days and times:

5:00 pm – 10:00 pm
4:30 pm – 10:00 pm
1:00 pm – 10:00 pm

You can find more information on Bowling Green Beer Works at the following locations:



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Brew Review Crew

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