Should We Add Food to Our Tap Room Menu?
POSTED BY Josh Gilbert ON Wed, 09/05/2018 - 19:22

Our wholesale distribution channels opened 5 years ago this month, with our tap room coming 3 months later. We've only sold snacks made by other vendors in the tap room (chips, jerky, and other salty bites), but we're thinking of putting in a small kitchen (or purchasing an already-outfitted and licensed food truck).

The menu would be limited: burgers, hummus, fries, other fried stuff, veggie options, etc., and the focus of the tap room would still be on beer. The atmosphere would remain casual: order at the bar, no servers, no reservations, communal tables. In other words, it still feel like a tap room and not a restaurant.

Has anyone added a kitchen or a hot food option to an existing tap room that previously had only snacks and beer (or just beer), and if so, did you see a jump in tap room beer sales? Since the margins on food are not nearly as high as beer served in a tap room, I am considering increased beer sales as the important metric and trying to get a sense if the investment would offer a return in a reasonable amount of time (less than a year).