The minute a brewery opens a taproom they're in the restaurant business. There's open, prep, service, and close. There are specials and seating charts and maybe even reservations. There's the ebb and flow of a normal day in a place that serves fresh food and beer.
Almanac Beer Company, which has been a contract brewer at Drake's and then Hermitage, two prominent Bay Area breweries with their own footprints, finally opened up a taproom this year over on 24th street, near the highway between Portrero Hill and the Mission in San Francisco. Not only do they have all of their sours on tap, but they add taproom-only specials, and good food to boot.
Food means a long day of ins and outs, punctuated by music. Jesse Friedman, Brewmaster and Co-Founder at Almanc, collected playlist reports from each of his teams. "During prep, the kitchen plays lots of Gov't Mule, Devil Makes Three, and other classic rock," Friedman described. Time to keep it mellow while setting up the scene.
It gets nuttier when the people arrive. "Then, during service, it’s usually the front of house picking music – lots of Gucci Mane and Chance the Rapper right now," said Friedman. Give the people what they want.
That's not fair, responded Friedman. "The decision is made by whoever is here and cares the most, and it's often changing though the night based on how busy service is."
But there's always a time to settle down as the end of the night approaches. That's the time for Black Keys and some guitar rock.
Cleanup goes to Me First and the Gimme Gimmies, full stop.