Update: Old Brooklyn Cheese Co
. is now open inside the Market Hall at Van Aken District. See below for original story (dated 07-07-20) that discusses owner Michael Januska's decision to expand the reach of of his 4-year-old business across town.
Since before it even opened the doors, Van Aken District has been pitching Michael Januska to join the food-filled Market Hall in Shaker Heights. In that time, his Old Brooklyn Cheese Co
., which he launched in 2016, has continued to expand its product line, audience and reach. After years of holding them at bay, Januska says that he’s finally ready to open an east-side satellite of his popular west-side cheese empire.
“I think it will be quite popular, and a lot of our customers come from the east side anyway,” he explains.
The build-out nearly is complete on the 150-square-foot stall, which will stock a line of award-winning cheeses and mustards, all of which are produced by Januska in the Old Brooklyn production facility. Shoppers can expect the tidy tile-lined shop to open before the end of July.
Januska, a chef whose 26-year career took him from Cleveland to London and back to Cleveland, put his experience as a hobby cheesemaker to good use. His small-batch cheeses start with raw grass-fed cows’ milk from Ohio before blooming into cave-aged gems like O'Toole's cheddar, paprika-spiced Punk! and tomme-style Treadway Creek. Those world-class cheese products join exceptional mustards like Pepped Up and Original IPA, both made with pickled mustard seeds and beer.
Old Brooklyn’s cheeses and mustards can be found at numerous grocery stores nationwide, as well as at many of the finest area restaurant and catering company menus.
In advance of the new shop opening, Januska is relocating the original Old Brooklyn retail cheese shop to a smaller site right around the corner that is connected to the production facility.
“We’re basically splitting the big cheese shop on the west side into two, with one on the east side and one still in Old Brooklyn,” he says. “It was giant for a Cleveland cheese shop.”
When it opens in a couple weeks, the Van Aken District shop will carry all of Old Brooklyn Cheese Co.’s products along with other fine domestic and Ohio-made cheeses.