Artist’s Longtime Dream Comes to Fruition

A longtime vision to create an arts district that celebrates all things local and handmade is finally manifesting for Jason Wein.

A longtime vision to create an arts district that celebrates all things local and handmade is finally manifesting for Jason Wein.

It only took 30 years, the right location and a global pandemic.

Wein, a glassblower and woodworker who owns Cleveland Art in Auburn Township, has always wanted to build an arts community that served as an “alternative events space.”

After trying his hand at it three decades ago along West 25th Street in Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood — which didn’t take off the way he had hoped — Wein moved his business and family to Auburn Township and has been slowly creating an “Auburn Arts District” on the corner of Washington Street and Ravenna Road.

“We’re trying to finally do the dream of the artists and community,” said Wein. “COVID has been a good chance for us to reinvent ourselves. We’re trying to … make Auburn a cultural destination. Our attempt is to integrate what is going on in the community.”

The latest addition to his dream district is taking handmade to a new level — craft cocktail making.

“We love handmade things. When I sell to a customer, I explain to them that everything in my house may not be the most expensive thing, but it has meaning,” Wein said, adding handmade craft cocktails felt like a natural addition to their offerings.

“We like the story behind how things are made,” he said. “We’ve really been exploring different combinations of drinks, from classics to making our own. It’s a family affair. My son, Morris, he has a screenwriting and journalism degree. He deals with all of the artists. And my wife, Debby, she’s the business person behind it all.”

The family — which owns several properties at Auburn Corners, including Reithoffer’s Art, Spirits & Entertainment — will debut their craft cocktail menu Feb. 11-12 at “Hoff’s,” as it’s known, during its vintage and antique market.

Wein, whose Cleveland Art business is known for turning vintage goods, antiques and industrial salvage into furniture and lighting, will be set up with some of his favorite vintage pieces at the February event at 17711 Ravenna Road, along with local vintage and antique dealers Glenn Hawk, Dick Russell and Teresa Runion.

Wein’s hope is to create synergy and cross-promotion with area businesses, such as breweries like Eighth Day, Crooked Pecker and Bummin’ Beaver, as well as local honey and maple syrup producers.

“Everything has to be made by hand. That’s what we’re trying to bring to the community and the area,” he said. “Our ideal would be to have sidewalks and bike paths. We are right by LaDue (Reservoir). We want to highlight the natural beauty. The nature and the wildlife in the area is really nice.”

Named after John Reithoffer — a real estate agent, auctioneer, barber and World War II veteran who called the venue his home until his passing in 2016 — Hoff’s has been repurposed as a cocktail bar and speakeasy to pay tribute to its previous owner. He had an eye for what many would call junk, but which a team of glassblowers, welders, woodworkers and fabricators at Cleveland Art call treasure, Wein said, adding many of the items Reithoffer left have been repurposed into property or products made by Cleveland Art.

Until now, Hoff’s had operated in partnership with Cleveland Art, which has helped build hotels, restaurants and clothing stores all over the world, Wein said.

“Reithoffer’s wouldn’t be what it is today without Cleveland Art,” he said. “But now that we’re so close to getting our liquor license, it’s time for Hoff’s to stand on its own feet. With John’s love for old junk and antiques, I think this is the perfect event to kick things off. Between the two bars on the bottom floor and two art galleries on top, I think John would be happy to see what his home has become. He would have loved all the old stuff we used to restore the place and all the amazing antique dealers coming to the show.”

The event will be held from noon to midnight Feb. 11 and from noon to 6 p.m. Feb. 12.

To see photos of some of the goods featured at the event, follow @clevelandart, @tradewinds44044, @dick_russell_liquidations, @rare_bird_curios and/or @reithoffers on Instagram. For more information on the event, email

What: Craft-Cocktail Debut

Where: Reithoffer’s Art, Spirits & Entertainment, 17711 Ravenna Road, Auburn

When: 12 p.m.-12 a.m., Feb. 11; 12-6 p.m. Feb. 12


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