Tin Man Brewing Kokomo (TMBK) is the brewery you need to add to your next beer trip. They have a name that may sound familiar, but they are nothing like you can imagine.
Here’s why you might recognize the name: A brewing company by the name of Tin Man emerged on the scene in 2012 in Evansville, IN. After some quick growth and notoriety, things turned south and their taproom closed permanently in 2018. Luckily, Amanda Lewton signed a deal allowing her to use the iconic robot at her own brew-house, in Kokomo Indiana. In 2017, TMBK opened as an entirely new entity, free to brew its own beers and forge it’s own path.
Alas, a name carries certain baggage. The fallout of the original Tin Man put a damper on the growth that a craft brewery in a great location, with fantastic beer should be experiencing. TMBK is headed by a determined owner with a deep history in the beer world, though. She plans to keep brewing great beers, keep innovating, keep growing her local community and to show the state of Indiana what a female owned and operated brewery can do, while proving her place is not the same Tin Man from years past.
The establishment itself is not hard to find. Located in the Historic Train Depot of Kokomo off of E. Jefferson Street, a straight shot off of U.S. 931 (old 31), you’ll find a sprawling outdoor space with a ping pong table, foosball table and a set of cornhole boards (yes all those things are concrete. I’ve never seen that before but it was awesome! The table is even on the cover of the Kokomo website!) backed by the gorgeous red bricked building emblazoned with the Tin Man Brewing Co. logo.
Parking along the right side of the building, the entrance is a white door beneath a Tin Man sign. Walking through the doors, you’re introduced to a fully remodeled but wholly unique space. Brick comprises the lengthy walls, while refinished wood and a custom bar are on the shorter ends. Wooden tables of all sizes are everywhere with the two longest, banquet style, ones being the most popular.
Your Time At Tin Man
TMBK is family and pet friendly and for good reason. Amanda’s history in craft beer dates back decades. Her grandfather and father started craft beer and wine distribution companies in the Kokomo area. Due to this, Amanda learned a LOT about beer while growing up. She remembers her father with a beer in his hand, surrounded by family and friends, laughing and loving. He was no fool either. Jim Schembre, a successful beer aficionado himself, taught his daughter the importance of knowing what beer is and the responsibility it takes to enjoy it. These memories are cherished and ones she would love for others to create at her business. To her, it’s more than a brewery. It’s a community hang out spot. A place that provides an opportunity to grow closer to family and friends. So, bring a board game if it’s cold outside (don’t forget those awesome games outside if it’s warm), grab a beer and spend some much needed time with the important people in your lives.
The one thing you can’t do at Tin Man is order food from their kitchen. They don’t have one! This place is community focused remember, so they encourage you to grab something from the surrounding restaurants and bring it in. Some fantastic options are Marble the Steakhouse, 3 Amigos or if you’d just like some delicious pizza, you can order from Oscar’s and it will be delivered right to your table.
While you’re enjoying some much needed family time, hanging with long lost friends or waiting for your dinner, you also have a plethora of beers to choose from! TMBK has a whopping 19 beers on tap, all but one unique to Tin Man Kokomo. Ingot, the lone carry over from the original days of the brand, lives on in a new form. I assure you, it’s better now than it ever was. TMBK’s head brewer, Jack Sramek, has total freedom to work his brewing magic and WOW has he nailed everything they let me try (and I tried it all!).
The Kokomo Kolsch is a fantastic introductory beer for anyone new to the craft beer game or new to TMBK itself.
Branching out from that, I encourage you to try the Mango Malfunction (an American IPA and a local favorite!), Marvin the Marzen, Snow Cap, Putin on the Ritz and for my sour fanatics out there, Database with any fruit flavoring you want!
While you’re enjoying your beer, and watching Jack brew the beers you love through the glass behind the bar, you might just catch a glimpse of some Woodford Reserve and Heaven Hill barrels, awaiting their turn on tap.
While you’re enjoying your beverage, or if you have a break in your conversation, you have plenty to look at. The stained glass window above the door to the brewery entrance , the door itself (yes the window is operational) here’s your proof!
The bar itself is highly customized and is something Amanda is very proud of and there’s this cool looking furnace door above the entrance. Reminiscent of the buildings history
There are also bad ass robot heads on the bathroom doors.
If you’re looking for a brewery to add to your travels, I highly encourage Tin Man in Kokomo. Bring your family and friends, drink their beers, order food from local restaurants, tell everyone you know, then repeat because THIS Tin Man is here to stay.
Tin Man Brewing Kokomo will also be at Lore’d of Hops Beer Fest! Get your tickets here
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