OTTAWA – Tucked away on a gravel driveway behind a row of trees is an old barn built into a new house. Julia’s Barn, a new venue for private dining, is owned, operated and lived in by Julia Siefker of Ottawa.
“That’s what I love about this life,” said Siefker, taking off his shoes and sitting on the front patio of Julia’s Barn, taking a break in the kitchen for her big opening event which took place. held Thursday. “You are organizing a dinner; people are inside, we take care of them. They are fed and happy, the drinks are in hand. You have just come out; see you soon.
Julia’s Barn was set back from the road in a very quiet location. Siefker said there are lots of animals roaming around the property and the pond behind the house / barn is full of frogs.
She started cooking and planning events years ago when a good friend’s wife wanted to throw a surprise party after she graduated from college, she said. They wanted to change some usual places in Lima and asked her to organize the party at her house and cook for them. After thinking about it for a while, she agreed.
It all took off from there, Siefker said. It started with the holiday season, grew to include Valentine’s Day, Easter, and then birthday parties and grew from there. She cooks almost everything except dessert. She doesn’t really like baking. A few hens produce eggs, herbs grow around the property, and a small patch is home to pumpkins.
“Northwest Ohio is a great place for farm-to-table fresh food,” she said.
Julia’s Barn renovations began in October 2016. Brent Leopold, of Leopold Construction LLC in Ottawa, said Siefker had approached him about building a barn / house combination that she could use for the business. . He remembered the barn on his old property, where his hall business originally started, and suggested that he get it from his brother, who owned the property, and move it.
“I knew it would be a prime candidate to turn into a house,” said Leopold.
After contacting a moving company to make sure it was possible, he and Siefker began the design process. The barn is actually intact but new walls have been built around the barn walls and insulation has been added between them. The interior has been modernized into a house while retaining the original barn facade, Leopold said. It took about 15 months to move out and complete the renovations, he said.
The main dining room and kitchen are all open, carpeted space with many large windows letting in natural light. The beams of the barn are intact and there are old barn ladders leaning against the walls as decoration. During the inauguration, the floor was blocked but there is a room up there and more on the first floor.
Going forward, Siefker would like to have more landscaping and gardens on the property to produce more food on site. She is also interested in adding an apartment above the garage so that she can live there and open Julia’s Barn to people interested in spending the night, she said.
Julia’s Barn is located at 11165 State Route 15 and the phone number is 419-233-0064.
Julia Siefker of Ottawa cuts a turkey while preparing her menu samples for the launch event of her new private dining business Julia’s Barn in Ottawa. Siefker had a barn moved and converted into a home and business.
Contact Bryan Reynolds at 567-242-0362