Because of YOU - The Old Mine doors are OPEN!
We’ll spare you the popular flavor of “new normal” cliche, and cut to the chase of what’s been going on at The Old Mine.
This past year has been… awful for humans. Lots of change, and lots of loss (and we aren’t just talking about the fact that our BBQ has to take a hiatus from the menu for a bit. And yes, we’re sad about that too).
Your life has been crazy enough that you probably didn’t notice that we had to skip our 6th-year anniversary celebration. Or that we almost had to close down for good (and an anniversary party seemed about as appropriate as the “Who Cares About COVID-19 Bro!” keggers that popped up in Florida frats this time last year.)
… But we didn’t close, and it looks like we’ll get to celebrate our 7th year anniversary soon because the hero of the story came in: YOU.
Instead of eating a third Cup-O-Ramen for second lunch, you picked up an Old Mine Artisan Pizza.
Instead of opting for a supermarket brand of Cider, you supported a small business.
You tried new flavors of our one-of-a-kind Hard Cider, along with our ranked #1 in the country Vanilla Bourbon (PRO TIP: it’s on tap at The Old Mine right now!).
And because of you, we get to keep our doors open.
Because of you, we get to keep making crisp Hard Cider and tasty Artisan Pizzas.
Because of you, we get to keep our #7 in the world ranking on Untappd (and yes, we have our sights set on beating out the Russian Cideries that are currently ahead of us, ideally in 1980’s Olympics DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES!? style with Kurt Russell reminding us ferociously that “great moments are born from great opportunity…”
Thank you, fellow Old Miners, for your continued grace, love, and support.
We are so excited to see your smiling eyes walk in to hang out and dine, or grab some goodness to-go.
Thank you for sticking with us.
Love, peace, and cheers!
- The Old Mine Crew
AUGUST 2013 ...
SEPT - NOV 2013 ...
In 2010 I hated beer. Couldn’t stand it. Thought it tasted like liquid bread soaked in mop water. And, honestly, the beers I’d tried tasted about like that.
Then my buddy Matt made me try a Belgian ale. Whoa. This beer tasted like heaven.
For my birthday the next year, my incredible wife Shannon bought me a homebrew set. I rubbed my hands together and got after it thinking, “I can make beer as good as that Belgian ale! It can’t be that hard….”
Almost a year, 18 batches, and expecting our first child Brooklyn later, I quit the homebrew thing. My friends were complimentary of the beers I’d made, but I think it was just because they were free. Compared to other beers mine was marginal at best. So, I made a decision to stop making mediocre beer. Instead, I’d go out and track down the best beers I could get my hands on (“treasure hunting,” I call it). But I wasn’t done creating. I decided to try my hand at cider.
My cider was (forgive the immodesty) a hit. People who came to my house pushed past me to dive for my kegerator and a pull of what I called “Handlebar Hard Cider.” Pretty cool.
Then, in 2013, I met fellow Erie resident (and now great friend) John Jacquat at a planning meeting for the first annual Erie Brewfest. During the meeting, John heard me talk about my ideas for the Brewfest. He also heard the passion I had for great beer and wonderful cider. After the meeting, John approached me.
“Mike, I want to open a brewery with someone and I think you’re that guy."
“John, you don’t even know me,” I replied. “For all you know, I could be a nutball. Besides, I’m just a creative dreamer and graphic designer and I don’t make beer anymore. I make hard cider at home, but I’m no businessman.”
John pushed through, though. Over the next few weeks we talked and talked and dreamed and dreamed. I got to know John and what an amazing man he is. A stellar father of three, with a wonderful wife and a thriving insurance business he’d started himself (Pure Risk Advisors in Erie). At the same time, John got to know the beer world more and more, falling in love with the process and the product.
I shared with John my dream of opening The Old Mine — a place for people to gather in Old Town Erie and enjoy wonderful beverages and delicious food. I worked up a logo and ideas for the physical space and experience that folks could feel as well as key menu items like our signature Handlebar Hard Cider. I then tried John’s artisan pizza. And we drank cider. And soon, we were in.
In 2013 we gutted and scraped the plaster off the walls of the 1889-built brick building at 500 Briggs Street in historic downtown. We called on friends and family to come in and help us turn what was left into the vision John and I had come up with. We put in a beetle kill wood bar. And hung 99 of my treasured bottles of beer on the wall.
It’s crazy… the Old Mine is open. Handlebar Hard Cider is flowing. Fifteen taps of craft beer are foaming over goblet glasses. Over 500 rare beers are cellaring. Fresh artisan pizza is wafting it's delicious smell through the streets of downtown. Pappy Van Winkle is lurking in a bottle somewhere ... Our dream has come true.
So, come connect with us. Connect with each other. Connect with the beer community. All in a welcoming atmosphere where you, your family, and friends can sit down to drink a fantastic beer or cider and eat great food worthy to be paired with the hand-crafted drinks we serve. We are thankful and honored to call you our friends, and Erie our home.
– Mike Yeager
Cider Dreamer, Creative Nerd & Beer Lover