The co-owner of downtown Dayton’s oldest bar is celebrating a major anniversary of his own.
The Century Bar, 10 S. Jefferson St., dates back to 1942 under that name and that location.
Joseph Head, the bourbon house’s co-owner with Diane Spitzig, started working there as a bartender 20 years ago.
The Dayton native became an owner a few years ago.
A big anniversary party will be held starting at 7 p.m. tonight, Feb. 1, and will feature the bar’s Knob Creek Private Barrel.
Once a rough-around-the-edges, long-haired arrogant youth, Head credits Spitzig, Century’s longtime owner, with taking a chance on him and eventually making him the bar’s manager when Tony Trick, now of Spent Grain Grill inside Warped Wing Brewery, left.
“It was a way bigger job than I was capable of, or probably deserved,” Joe told us during our podcast interview.
Together, the pair has transformed the Century into one of the most raved-about bourbon houses in the nation over the past few years.
“One hundred percent this is a bartender’s dream,” Joe told us during the podcast interview. “I’ve been a door guy. I’ve been a bar back. I’ve been a bouncer. I’ve bartended in all sorts of different kinds of bars, but I never would have guessed the 23 year-old me would be sitting here (as) this 43-year-old. I’ve made a ton of mistakes. I grew up in The Century.”
Joe reflected on his journey in a recent Facebook post: