Starting a small Tavern in rural Northern California. Barley and Hops Tavern catalogs the trials and tribulations of the restaurant biz, and teaching wine country to love beer.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The first month

Our first month has come and went. As we softly opened on the 23rd, and July 23rd rolled around, it hit me that we'd accomplished a full month of what we set out to do, and I wasn't prepared. We had a quick short of ... I can't remember which draft, and went on with our usual 18 hour day... Now, Monday night or Tuesday morning, depending on whether or not you live by the clock, or by a sleepytime to sleepytime schedule, I've finally had a moment to reflect on exactly what it is we've managed to accomplish, what we've learned, and what we're going to do in the future.

I've learned that three back-to-back double shifts bumping us to over 80 hours a week are more than mere mortals can handle. Even though my blood contains about 30% caffeine at any given moment, and my shoes are fairly comfy, I'm snarking a bit with our hours so we can sleep, which is something I vaguely remember having to do with feather filled rectangles, or bears or acorns or something.

On the beer front, I have some newbies going on the list such as the venerable Fullers ESB which isn't particularly bitter, as with most bitters. I suppose a dry wine is fairly wet as well, so I should stop complaining. In addition, I've gotten some He'Brew Origin Pomegranate ale, which is basically a very balanced IPA with something in the background that turns out to be pomegranates if you think about it really hard, or look at the label which has the word "pomegranate" on it. Also, I have Tetley's English ale, which is a nitrogen can filled with a perfect pub ale, perfect for, you know, drinking and stuff. Hair of the Dog brewing is being a pain in my pomegranate, so no more blue dot for a while, and Maine's blueberry is out as well for not restocking. I've changed out Lagunitas IPA for the Lucky 13, which is their premium IPA, which means it's better. Whenever something is premium it's better. Ever had an off brand saltine? Then you know where I'm coming from. Which is here at my laptop at 1:30am.

I'd also like to point out that Mirjam has been kicking butt back in the kitchen. If you've eaten a good burger at BH Tav, there's a strong possibility it was made by her. Yeah, I said BH Tav. It's what ALL the kids are calling Barley and Hops Tavern. They're all "Yo, Troy, let's hit BH Tav, they have hella good pub grub", and then Troy is all "ok, that sounds delightful". And then I'm all "Welcome to Barley and Hops" and then they go "you mean... BH Tav!" and then we all laugh.

Oh, and so this band called "sound connection band" was in town. I'm not sure what a sound connection is, but apparently it involves a good-sized group of some of the most fun people I've ever met. It was one of those things where it made me cool to be around them. Earle did kill my keg of Rat Bastard, though. Thanks a lot Earle. He's the guy in the picture who looks like he killed a third of a keg of Rat Bastard pale ale.

Also, I'll be brewing a batch of beer soon. It's a bit of a secret project at the moment, so I won't go into details yet.


Meg said...

Totally excited to try your new spot! Your opening beer list looked awesome, Abita, Green Flash, Rat Bastard, damn...yes please! And stoked to see the vegan Bohemian burger on the menu, thanks for lookin' out for the veggies! It would be great if you could keep a semi-updated list of what beer are on tap, the right beer can be a great motivator to make the trek out to Occidental!

Jaya Schillinger said...

Congrats on your first month. (Saw you in the RR Times.) Now that you've done all the heavy lifting of start up, you get to do MORE heavy lifting with day to day ops. *winks* Your place looks super fun though.

Glad to have a new pub nearby. I'll round up some friends and drop by soon.