By Kevin Collison
For Kevin and Jodie Gittemeier, it’s been a great love story since they met at the University of Kansas in the early 1990s, whether it was his passion for brewing beer or for each other.
Now, after full lives as professionals and raising six children, the couple are embarking on a new family adventure in the East Crossroads.
They’ve opened Nimble brewing at 1735 Oak and began selling his beers take-out last weekend in 16-ounce cans.
When the pandemic health restrictions are finally lifted, they’ll join a crew of other nearby microbreweries in what’s been tagged the Neigh-Brew-Hood.
“The other (East Crossroads) brewers all are welcoming and have offered to help us market when we get going,” Kevin said. “We’re trying to get food trucks to park in a common area.”
The latest addition to the downtown brewing scene also has a unique twist. Besides selling its small-batch beers, Nimble also will feature a full bar with all the additional alcoholic beverages a full liquor license allows.
But the emphasis will be on beer. Kevin picked the name Nimble to reflect his single-barrel brewing approach, it allows maximum flexibility.
“We’re not going to do any flagship, constant recipes every time,” he said. “We’ll be brewing a little bit different.
“We do a lot of New England-style hazy IPAs and sours and red ales.”
And the business will be a family affair. Kevin’s day job as an accountant will remain unchanged. Jodie teaches science to fifth and sixth graders at parochial schools in the Kansas City, Kan. Diocese.
Their children, ages 10 through 20, not only helped get the new place in shape for the opening, but will help with operating the business.
After meeting at KU, Kevin left for awhile to work in Portland where he savored the new microbrewery scene taking off at the time. He then returned to Kansas City and the couple married in 1997.
“He has a passion for beer and a taste for it like nobody I know,” Jodie said.
Nimble has a strategic location with its entrance off Oak Street and the rear opening onto the alley next to the new Brewers Alley parking lot. At some point, there’s hope the alley might be closed for a community beer garden.
Nimble’s hours are Fridays and Saturdays, noon to midnight; Sundays, noon to 10 p.m., and Tuesdays through Thursdays, 4- to 10 p.m.
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