With The Tap opening, newest cycles back to oldest
The Tap's grand opening at 306 N. Delaware St., on Oct. 3 showcased an ambiance tailored to add zest to the new Pulliam Square apartment and townhouse motto: “Stellar Living in the Heart of Indy.”
The Tap founder Nathan Finney shared his attention to detail with NUVO during a tour on Oct. 1, pointing out that anchoring the northwest corner of New York and Delaware means merging “new” within an historic neighborhood and matching what Pulliam Square calls “fine finishes, style of living choices and modern expectations.” Thus The Tap’s 7,000 sq. ft. interior three-part layout offers patrons a choice of spaces to gather and dine –a spacious sleek modern sports bar with a thrust stage from an upper level for local bands; a smaller fire-place-centric lounge-feel space for relaxed family and group dining, and a cozy brewpub room with its own entrance off N. Delaware St.
Along New York St. a Biergarten features tall tables and chairs, a wall of plants, festive lighting and smaller fire-place-centered spaces with a home patio feel, continuing the interior choices for dining to suit personal style.
Finney opened The Tap at 101 N. College in Bloomington in the Fall of 2012, with an ambiance amenable to students and the community-at-large with a program of craft beer education on-site. The Tap’s print menu surrounds each beer with full descriptions covering style expectations, ingredients and brewing technique, and how best to approach and enjoy each beer. With each flight of four comes a card with a prompt on how to approach a beer and space to make notes. It’s a take home to build a personal craft beer catalog.
- Casey Parmerlee
The Tap Beer Co. with a 10-bbl brewing system opened Nov. 2014. Finney told us the impetus for establishing The Tap Beer Co. at 204 W. Kirkwood, adjacent to The Tap just around the corner, was “a desire to offer our guests the very best of local and national craft beer along with a brewery that had The Tap stamp on our own local beer.”
“The stamp” gained national cachet at the 2015 Great American Beer Festival. NUVO asked head brewer Jarrod May, ‘With a Gold Medal win for 'Electric Stinger,' The Tap Beer Company’s first GABF entry, what do you feel you have accomplished? What standard have you set?’
“Accomplishment in my eyes is never truly fulfilled,” replied May. “While we had a great showing with one of our beers I always feel that I can build upon success and make something better than before. I'd have to say with such a strong showing among so many amazing beers it sets my standards even higher than they were before.
“Each brewery in Bloomington has something to offer that sets it apart from others,” said May. “I like to feel that we have something on tap that meets all walks of what people are looking for; from our American light lager (Local Lager) to Tipsy Cow, our milk stout, and onto Atomic Polecat, an imperial IPA. Whatever you are looking for I like to think that I can meet those desires.
“I try to have at least two seasonals such as Tap-O-Lantern pumpkin ale and Taptoberfest in the fall, Frostbite (Belgian Noel) and Snowdrift (English Strong ale) in the winter, etc. Because of the vast amount of beer we carry it does allow me to brew more lagers. Typically craft breweries have such a fast pace turn-over with beer there is not time to brew a lager as they can take up to 6 weeks from start to finish. We typically have 3 to 5 lagers on tap at all times.”
While The Tap in Bloomington hosts many events for Indiana University, particularly showcasing “musicians from Jacobs School of Music on our live music stage,” Finney expects the Indianapolis location to feature established and emerging local bands.
Jarrod May brings “close to 20 years working in the restaurant industry” to his Head Brewer position at The Tap Beer Co. He started as a dishwasher and worked his way up the ranks before enrolling in the Culinary Institute of America in 1999, followed by stints with The Coyote Cafe in Santa Fe, NM, The Mercersburg Inn Mercersburg, PA, and the Belvedere Mansion in Staatsburg, NY.
“While pursuing a degree in nutrition and dietetics I discovered home brewing,” he relates. “After several years of experimentation I began entering competitions and took several medals for Oktoberfest, Kolsch and Schwarzbier styles. Followed by a career serving and cooking at Iron Hill Brewery and Restaurant in Media, PA where he worked his way into the brewery to apprentice with Bob Barrar, and later in Phoenixville with Tim Stumpf, both heavily awarded brewers. While working with Barrar, May helped to earn several gold, silver and bronze medals at both GABF and World Beer Cup for Russian Imperial Stout, Old Ale, and Bock styles.
- Casey Parmerlee
“Upon acceptance of the position with The Tap Beer Co. I moved my wife Alison, stepson Bishop and daughter Penelope to Indiana. I love it here!"
Cellarman Matt Groff started as a bartender at The Tap in Bloomington and says he “has grown his love and passion for beer into a full-time career as cellerman both in Bloomington and in Indianapolis. Groff was a history major at IU.
“Historical foods, beverages and techniques on their preparation have captivated me for years and drew me to homebrewing and craft beer,” he said. And while his homebrews focus on worldwide traditional and historical styles, when it comes to a go-to beer Goff says it would be 8-Bit Pale Ale from Tall Grass Brewing in Kansas.
The Tap Bloomington and Indianapolis hours are:
Sunday – Thursday: 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 a.m.
Friday – Saturday: 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 a.m.
October 10 is a huge Biergarten Day in Indy
In addition to continued inaugural events surrounding The Tap’s Biergarten with the installation of an Indiana Limestone fire table, Biergarten related activities abound around greater Indianapolis to close out the 182nd motherlode Oktoberfest in Munich.
The Seventh Annual GermanFest at The Athenaeum, 401 E. Michigan St., is “open to all German and non-German adults, children and pets alike, [and] brings Germany to Indy,” says The A’s CEO Cassie Stockcamp.
Noon to 8 p.m. it’s family festival time with host and popular TV personality Cowboy Bob, The Durstig Games, the famous Wiener Dog Races (dachshunds only), Bavarian Stone Lift, costume and yodeling contests, German log dancers, and OktoberFAST 5K featuring a free Kids Fun Run. New this year are Cars from the Central Indiana Region Porsche Club of America (CIR PCA) lining Michigan Street and the Indy Urban Flea market featuring 100 local artisan vendors.
Tickets: $8 Adults, $2 Kids – buy here in advance. Proceeds will support the mission of the Athenaeum Foundation and help maintain one of the city’s historic architectural treasures, the Athenaeum.
Traders Point Creamery celebrates their 9th annual Oktoberfest noon-7 p.m. with two Biergartens on Oct. 10.
The Sun King Biergarten features their Oktoberfest, Sunlight Cream Ale, Wee Mac Scottish Ale and Osiris Pale Ale.
The German Biergarten features import and national craft beers.
Events include hayrides, petting zoo, games and crafts.
Traders Point Rural Historic Districts is a nonprofit organization that protects green space around Eagle Creek for the enjoyment of generations to come, according to a news release. An additional 2,600 acres have been added to the National Register of Historic Places with the help of proceeds from their Oktoberfest. The fundraiser has raised over $130,000 in the last 8 years. Tickets $10, $8 in advance, children 10 and under free.
New to the Biergarten concept is the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art’s 2015 Buckaroo Bash, Oct. 10, 7 p.m. to midnight with complimentary Sun King beer. Proceeds from the Buckaroo Bash go toward educational programming for the more than 24,000 school-aged children the Eiteljorg serves annually.
Rounding out Oct. 10 is Barrels On Bonna, featuring tastings of barrel-aged beers from 20+ Indiana breweries at 5529 Bonna Ave., Black Acre's new production facility, 1-5 p.m.. Brewers who have barrel programs at their facilities will present a round table discussion noon-1 p.m.
Tickets: $50 at barrelsonbonna.com
Here's the Facebook page.
For the record, Biergartens are as American as apple pie, with some saying the enjoyment dates back to 1671 in Philadelphia, as a gathering place at a public landing established by founder William Penn. Philadelphia remains a lodestar for Biergartens that operate all year long in addition to fair weather spots including new citywide pop up gardens, similar to what popped up at Monument Circle in September, where public Biergarten events took place. Most Indiana craft beer locations sport a patio—some are converting ‘naming’ to Biergaten. The Athenaeum reportedly houses Indianapolis’ earliest Biergarten.
More info can be found here.
New Brews & Brewery News
Redemption Alewerks, 7035 E. 96th St., is now brewing on-site. First up is Genesis, a London Milk Stout.
Sun King/Bagby Beer collaboration brew Department of Leisure, a ginger and Makrut lime infused Belgian-Style Ale in pack cans are on special at Kahn’s until 9 p.m. on Oct. 7.
October Sun King releases include Fistful of Hops showcasing the tropical fruit character provided by azacca, nelson sauvin, and liberty hop varieties; Tip Off, a German-style Altbier. Mojo Finger Brown Ale with smooth malt, chocolate, and cocoa flavors, Draft Only; King's Reserve Rainbow Blindness, a Sour Brown Ale fermented with wild yeasts and aged in port barrels, producing a ménage à trois of oak, cherry, and leather flavors with a delicate finish.
St. Joseph: Pew Buster dry hopped oak flavored DIPA launched Sept. 29, for ten house brews on tap. A St. Joseph notice reads: “Our owner just became an ordained minister (on line!) So now we can make beer and marry people.”.
Oaken Barrel expects to release their annual Apple Buzz on October 19. OB owner Kwang Casey reports, “Cider is little less sweet this year, giving it a more of the apple taste. It should be a great batch. Please check our
Facebook for updates."
Mad Anthony "Out of the Box Series," dedicated to bringing a unique mix of Mad Anthony draft beer options straight to your fridge celebrates everything from seasonal madbrew offerings to special brewers reserve batches. The first madbrew breaking out of the box is Hop Wang fresh hop beer set to hit area liquor stores and drafts on Oct. 12. This series features new packaging.
Crown Brewing has their Pumpkin Beer in cans with 15 other brews available in bombers, howlers and growlers from the brewpub in Crown Point.
Chilly Water reports: “The Harvest Moon Autumn Ale has been a huge hit with its hints of vanilla and cinnamon so we brewed back to back batches to keep it on through October...hopefully! Also look for our Chilly Water Lager along with our White Room Cream Stout and Rust Never Sleeps Amber Ale.Fall brings changes to the menu with the addition of a Chicago Style Hot dog, Chili Dog, Pizzadilla and new Paninis. Look for a variety of new soups as well. Also, on October 17th we will be participating in the Chocolate Festival at the Dallara Indycar Factory. We'll have both beer and Skip's Balls there.” For more...www.chocolatefestindy.com
Half Moon head brewer John Templet writes, “Dunkel is German for "dark". Therefore, The Funky Dunkel is a funky, yeasty "dark" ale made with the same yeast as our Heavenly Hefeweizen. The yeast imparts notes of banana and clove that give this brown ale a smooth banana/chocolate and gently spiced character.”
Brew Bracket reports: “We hit our goal of raising funds on Kickstarter to make the at home hosting kit a reality, and have been working feverishly to have the kits ready by the holidays. We're proud to source our core hosting kit from entirely US made components.”