26 January 2010

The upcoming City Tap House in Harbor East

I wanted to wait until I had something far more substantial than Sam Sessa's blog post and secondhand innuendo to work with on this story, and now I just may have it:

First, from Sam's post:

The City Tap House, a spacious restaurant and bar with more than 100 craft American and European draft beers, plans to open by late August in Harbor East.
A new concept being rolled out by restaurant developer/chain Public House (which also runs the new Field House in Canton), the City Tap House will have a beer sommelier, private tasting lounge, open kitchen and wood-burning pizza oven, according to owner Brian Harrington.
The Tap House, which will occupy the space next to RA Sushi near the intersection of South Eden and Lancaster streets, will seat 175 in the dining areas as well as 60 around the island bar. ...
Harrington plans to bring in local and national brewers for tastings, and have the kitchen staff create four- and five-course meals around the beers.

The catch?  Here's a report on another outlet of this company/franchise (and they DO appear to be corporately connected), from fellow blogger Don Russell, Philly's "Joe Sixpack":

West Philly’s beer scene (or University City, at least) continues to grow. Word arrived that the City Tap House (3925 Walnut St.) expects to open in late February or early March. It’s from the same group that runs the Field House near Reading Terminal and Logan Square’s Public House and Mission Grill.
Andy Farrell, formerly of Bridgid’s, reports he’ll be overseeing the beer program, and he forwards this note from Gary Cardi, one of the owners:
 City Tap House will be providing 84 draft lines with 42 imported and domestic craft beers. [emphasis by Joe Sixpack]

I should emphasize that I have not spoken with any representatives of the Baltimore project yet, but that if this is any indication, we could most likely be looking at a situation where the bar has 100 taps but only 50 draft beers available, with at least some of those being mass-market popular beers.  If that is the case, then Max's Taphouse, currently planning to expand to 100 different draft lines by mid-March (they have around 100 taps already, but many are duplicated between downstairs, side bar, and/or upstairs), will still reign as city/state/regional draft champion. On the other hand, this company/outfit/whatever does seem to be trying to hire competent, beer-knowledgeable staff (Brigid's is a noted Philly craft tap house).


Robyn said...

What ever happened to this project? I never saw anything about an opening and can't find any information on the parent company's site. Did they can it?

Alexander D. Mitchell IV said...

I'll be perfectly honest: I did some good ol'-fashioned foot-leather-pounding yesterday in search of answers, and got none. I'm waiting until after Baltimore Beer Week to start working the phones for hard answers.

Not necessarily related, but the Philadelphia City Tap House received a scathing review in a recent Philadelphia Inquirer review by Craig LaBan..... http://www.philly.com/inquirer/columnists/craig_laban/20100919_City_Tap_House.html