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5 Tap Room Considerations for Start Ups

  1. How will you train your staff? Do not assume your taproom staff are naturals. It’s more important to have someone passionate about your brand and building experiences, than someone with pre-existing Craft Beer knowledge. Sure, it makes it a bit easier if your staff are already knowledgeable about the industry, but training includes a lot more than your beer list. Take the time to educate your staff on your story, your mission, your beers, and train them on the experience you aim to create.

  2. How will your guests order? Will there be a central ordering location (i.e. bar)? Will you have servers that visit guests at their seats? Will guests simply order through their phones and then their order be delivered? Consider which model works best for your space, and also consider the type of experience you wish to pair it with.

  3. What type of menus will you use? Yes, there’s an “S” at the end of menus. Having a giant wall menu is a valuable visual for when guests first walk in. It provides information, removes confusion, and can make the ordering process smoother. However, also consider physical menus. Physical menus are anything a guest can hold in their hand. When a guest is provided a physical menu, they spend 35% more than guests without.

  4. What’s on your menu? Before you go all out on your fancy new wall menu, make sure you plan out what content it will include. A successful menu is easy to read, includes beer names, the style, alcohol content, sizing options, and pricing.

  5. Where will your merchandise area be? You read that correctly. I didn’t say “will you have a merchandise area?” You need to have a merchandise area. And when you do, make sure it’s in a visible location with clearly marked prices. A space that is 6 feet wide by 8 feet high can provide ample room to display the product from a well thought out product plan. Don’t you want your guests walking around town repping your brand?

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Contributing Author

Andrew Coplon                                Founder, Secret Hopper & Craft Beer Professionals


Andrew Coplon is the Founder of Secret Hopper and Craft Beer Professionals. He is passionate about the growth of beer and helping businesses be more successful.


How to Properly Attach Your Tap Handle

Ben Weston, Hoptown Handles

One question we frequently get asked from our new brewery clients is: "How do I get my new custom tap handle to face forward?" Many people new to the world of operating a tap lineup mistakenly believe that how a tap handle is due to tap handle itself. In fact, it's a simple part of the tap called the collar that allows you to orient your tap in the desired direction every time.

1. Admire your awesome custom tap handle and decide which way it should face.
2. Screw the tap handle down to gently meet the collar. Do not tighten.

The 30-Second Conversation

Andrew Coplon, Secret Hopper & Craft Beer Professionals

Engagement is an essential factor in maximizing your guest experience. Staff have a greater opportunity to build this relationship during slower times; however, even during the busiest shifts, a bartender or server can create a memorable connection with your guests. Here is a formula to maximize engagement during these times.

The first part of your 30 Second Conversation begins with your greeting. This doesn’t have to be fancy, just a simple, “Hi, I’m Andrew. Welcome to Andrew’s Brewery.” When staff introduce themselves, guests tip 13.6 


Planning Your Tap Room Draft System for Success

Neil Witte, Tap Star

When you’re planning for your brewery taproom, there are several things to keep in mind. Making the right decisions now can keep you from having headaches later. Here are a number of things to keep in mind for your draft system.

1. Keep the system short.

Long lines can pour great beer too, but short systems have definite advantages. For one, short lines don’t waste as much beer. Changing kegs and cleaning lines incur costs from dumped beer and the longer the 

Waitress Tap Room Scene

Behind the Scenes in the Tap Room: Service Models

Nancy Trigg, Arryved

The country is starting to reopen, but things aren’t going back to “normal” anytime soon. Adaptation is the name of the game and implementing a floating service model maintains a top level of hospitality while keeping staff and guests safe.

As states and municipalities reopen their economies, many regulations remain in place for the safety of employees and patrons. There are restrictions on party sizes, table spacing, maskwearing, and more*. Many of these restrictions are forcing businesses to change their service models—but where do you begin? In this 

Tap Room Interior

Your Oyster - Nice Vibe

Tom Hennessy, Colorado Boy Brewing

I want to talk about probably one of the most important things you can do for your brewery that will impact your sales, but really, won’t cost you a dime. It’s a lot to go over, so I won’t even get into why I call it the oyster, but for this article let’s just say it’s your breweries “vibe”. I don’t think there is anything in the brewing business I’m more passionate about.

The Oyster is made up of five things:

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  • Determine Layout of Tap Room

  • Buy/Install Equipment/ Furniture

  • Design/Decorate Interior

  • Interview/Hire Tap Room Management

  • Integrate/ Train on P.O.S.

  • Staff Training Beer/ Food/ Service

  • Organize Food Options/ Kitchen

  • Determine/ Purchase Merchandise Options

  • Set Up Online Purchase/ Ordering

  • Coordinate Grand Opening


  • Establish Daily Staff Routine

  • Experiment with Service Options

  • Hire/Train Additional Staff

  • Communicate with Brewery Team

  • Streamline Merchandise/ Online Purchasing

  • Review Reporting/ Accounting Daily

  • Coordinate with Marketing Team

  • Execute Programming/ Events

  • Maintain Draught Lines/ Equipment

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  • Evaluate Outdoor Expansion

  • Consider Additional Food/ Merchandise

  • Create Additional Programming

  • Expand Staff Continuing Education

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