There’s nothing wrong with throwing a huge backyard party and stocking the scene with all manner of canned and bottled beer in coolers packed with ice.
But it’s 2017. Which means no more will you have to choose between having an on-site, full tap-line outfitted beer truck at your party and, well, not.
Avi Shemtov, owner and operator of the famed Chubby Chickpea food truck and author of The Single Guy Cookbook, is eyeballing April 30th as the rollout date for TAPPED, his brand new mobile beer taproom and provider of suds both macro and craft. Emphasis on craft.
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It's the food truck equivalent of a brewery taproom.
“I believe people should drink what they want to drink,” Shemtov told me. “But at a private function, if you want to have an incredible Trillium Brewing Co. beer on tap but most of the guests are drinking Coors Light, you shouldn’t have to separate the two needs. And even stuff that’s high quality but not hard to find, we want to be the beer truck that can accommodate everyone’s taste.”
Anyone can throw some shoddy keg lines on a truck and call it a beer truck. But TAPPED will be pouring beers out of the kind of sophisticated tap systems that marquee chef-driven beer-focused restaurants like Row 34 and Brewer's Fork do. Only in your backyard. (It helps that Shemtov already has a full beer/wine/liquor licenses for private events catering thanks to the Chubby Chickpea.)
“It’s like the food truck equivalent of a brewery taproom,” he said. “A food truck allows you to essentially bring a full-service kitchen to someone’s driveway, or to a wedding or festival. This is the same idea, but for high quality taproom beer instead of food.” TAPPED will be generally pouring full 16 -oz. pours, but Shemtov says depending on the client they can cater to smaller pours for higher-end or harder to source brews.
Besides the aforementioned Trillium offerings, which, like Tree House Brewing will be on a case-by-case basis depending on what the breweries have available for the truck at any given time, TAPPED will regularly feature local standouts like Aeronaut, Exhibit A, Castle Island, Barrel House Z, and Night Shift.
“I’ve been traveling and trying to meet folks from out of town looking to get some kind of distribution in Boston or add to whatever inroads they’ve made,” he said, noting breweries like J Wakefield out of Florida, and fresh-to-The-Hub New Belgium from Colorado.
The truck itself will be an eye-grabber, as it’s a vintage 1966 Chevy P36 step van with keg-top hubcaps. The showpiece will be a a recessed six draft-line system built by Modern Draught, the local company that’s designed and installed systems for the likes of Night Shift, Notch and Jack’s Abby.
Unlike other beer trucks that offer turnkey tap systems (Ipswich Brewing has a beer truck focused just on their offerings, and there’s a Barmobile in the works as well), the truck’s setup will have full nitro capabilities, meaning quality but easy to find suds like Guinness and craft ciders will also be on the menu in addition to the specialty or limited-run local craft offerings.
“It’s a big difference in aesthetic from other trucks,” he said. “Not taps coming out of the side, it's a bar accessed from outside, and tap system recessed inside with built-in cupholders, multi-colored lighting for customization, and a sitting awning off the side to offer shade or cover from rain. Shemtov will constantly be scouring for new beers to add to the roster.
“The truth is we want to be able to offer anybody who is making cool new and exciting beers our clients, but we are going to be super client service-orientated,” he says. “If someone calls up and they want a keg in the fall for a brewery they know is opening around that time but not even publicly available yet, we’ll make a call to see when they can fill the order and is realistic to get kegs to us.”
Image via TAPPED.
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