The owners of The Local Tap say they love serving customers at their new business at 7th and Ohio in downtown Sedalia.

Leon and Paige Shearer assumed ownership of what was formerly known as Craft Beer Cellar in October.

Leon is a native Sedalian. “I was born and raised here. Then in sixth grade, we moved to Cole Camp. And I finished high school down there,” he said. Leon later attended State Fair Community College, learning how to rebuild engines in the automotive program during the summer.

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“We bought the assets (from Brad Wikstrom) and rebranded,” Leon said.

When Leon first started working as an employee of Craft Beer Cellar, he admits he wasn't that big a fan of craft beer.

“We drank beer, but it was the normal Bud Light, Busch Light, whatever, and that was about it,” he said.

Leon worked half days, with Wikstrom working the first half, and Leon working the latter half.

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Leon noted that as he worked there, he found a craft beer that he liked, and slowly branched out to others that he developed a taste for.

“It was pretty intimidating at the beginning, because there's thousands and thousands of micro breweries, and craft beer breweries and new beers popping up. And Brad, you know, he was really passionate about it, talking to distributers. And they would ask questions and it was like they were speaking a different language to me. I mean, could pick up every third word they were saying,” Leon said.

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But over time, Leon gathered more information and became more sophisticated about craft beer and what customers liked.

“Once you put a face with a product and I started taking care of ordering, so I started seeing some of the same breweries and the same beers, with new ones popping up, so you kind of have your thumb on the market a little more than just a fan would,” Leon said

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He's gotten better at placing orders, noting that “We've pretty much got it figured out.” He added that he must balance seasonal beers with shelf life expectancy when ordering. “Like for instance, with an IPA beer, you want it as fresh as you can get it.”

Some beers hold their flavor profile better than others. With most of them, he said, “there's a noticeable difference when they near the end of their shelf life. But they don't really go sour, they just mellow.”

Direct sunlight is bad for beer, Leon pointed out, adding that his cooler lights don't emit any ultraviolet light waves.

The Local Tap, 700 South Ohio, is open Tuesday 3 to 10 p.m., Wednesday 3 to 10 p.m., Thursday 12 to 10 p.m., Friday 12 to 10 p.m., Saturday 12 to 10 p.m. Closed Sunday and Monday. Private parties are available. Call (660) 951-1133.

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