Orlando, FL – Each year the beverage team and beer experts at Yard House spend an average of four months conducting the restaurant’s annual Beer Review. This year guests of Yard House were invited help craft the beer menu by participating in an online survey. Those who weighed in, along with members of Yard House’s eClub and social media channels, will be the first to see what new brews will have a place at the beer head for 2017, which get tapped companywide on Monday, March 27.
“We’ve always sought the opinions of our guests informally,” said Gregory Howard, director of Beverage Strategy for Yard House. “This year we wanted to make them part of the process, so we invited beer novices and enthusiasts to take a simple, two-question survey that required them to select up to three Yard House locations that they frequent, and to name the beers they’d like to see on tap. We received thousands of responses, which really helped to shape and define the new menu.”
In addition to the survey, Howard added that the Beverage Team also sought the input of local distributors, those on the frontline including servers and bartenders who regularly engage with guests, and the brewers themselves to learn what new and seasonal recipes are in the works.
As a result of the Beer Review, Yard House will add a total of 1800 new taps of draft beer to its curated line-up of American craft and import beers with approximately 40-percent being offered at Yard House for the first time in the restaurant’s 20-year history.
While Yard House averages 130 taps per location, the focus remains on offering as many local and regional beers as possible. As a result, no two beer menus are alike.
“We really try to showcase the local and regional brewers,” added Howard. “Even if you have a Yard House in the same county, their beer menus will be slightly different. We try to source the best local, regional and imported brands available so that the menu is varied and has wide appeal.”
While each location adds about 25 to 30 new beers once Beer Review is complete, it also removes just as many beers to accommodate the new offerings – those removed tend to be the lower selling brands and flavors. IPAs remain steadfast among beer aficionados with sour beers continuing to gain in popularity.
Yard House’s Beer Review also plays an instrumental role in showcasing the restaurant’s innovative “Chalkboard Series,” which is reserved for seasonal and small-batch selections. These beers rotate frequently and are displayed on a digital chalkboard above the signature island bar.
With the Beer Review complete, the next order of business is to begin an intense training with servers and bartenders who will come into direct contact with guests when the beers are tapped on March 27. Guests can belly up to the bar to enjoy one of the new selections served in a traditional pint, goblet or signature half-yard. Select locations also offer growlers to-go, allowing guests to enjoy their favorite brew at home.
While having one of the best beer selections is its calling card, Yard House is also known for its menu of American favorites with more than 100 items made from scratch daily. The restaurant is open daily for lunch, dinner and late-night dining. For more information, visit yardhouse.com or follow on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram @yardhouse.
About Yard House
When Yard House opened in 1996 in Long Beach, California, it revolutionized the restaurant industry by creating a 250-tap draft beer system.
Twenty years and 65 restaurants later, Yard House still leads the way with great food, classic rock and a vast selection of draft beer while evolving into an award-winning dining destination known for its menu of American favorites, crafted cocktails and endless fleet of tap handles featuring the best American craft beers and imports. The exhibition kitchen creates more than 100 items made from scratch daily with quality ingredients and globally-inspired flavors. The menu reads like a road trip across America and guests can select from an array of items, including grilled burgers, gourmet salads, street tacos, steaks, seafood and house favorites.
Each Yard House has its own distinct beer list with a handful of taps reserved for local and regional brewers along with an offering of seasonal and small-batch selections as part of the rotating “Chalkboard Series.” The glass-enclosed keg room showcases hundreds of steel barrels containing as much as 4,000 gallons of beer that flow to the center island bar through an extensive network of tubing positioned overhead. From there the beer is fed to the taps where it’s served ice-cold by the pint, goblet or half-yard glass container. Yard House is also well-known for its classic rock boasting a library of 5,000 songs with each location having its own distinct playlist.
Each Yard House features a modern and lofty design with a mix of warm woods and steel accents. Walls are graced with original and bold artwork commissioned from California artist Jerome Gastaldi – providing a striking contrast compared to the more whimsical tap handle art displayed at the island bar. A collection of flat screen televisions positioned overhead allows guests to catch the latest sporting or newsworthy events from nearly any seat in the house.
Yard House is open daily for lunch, dinner and late-night dining.