Oysters and Beer - Part 2

In a previous post, we went through the execution of a dentist-themed pub design (a sure-fire winner!), using the “Oyster” method.  After going through that exercise, I sort of promised to reveal the concept drawings in the next blog for the pub at Wild Parrot.  Well, that felt like jumping the gun a bit, so instead, this post will be about the design vision.  Let’s take a ride back to a post from last February where I kind of poo-pooed on the whole visioning process, opting instead for three goals for Wild Parrot.  Here is goal number two:

“Create a tap room at the brewery that becomes a neighborhood meeting place and loved community establishment.  I want the tap room will be where people first think to go to when they want to hang out, meet up with friends and drink beer (The vision of the tap room will be the subject of a future post as well).  The tap room is also absolutely crucial to a brewery’s revenue.”    

(Hey, it only took me 11 months to come through on my blog promise!)

In thinking about how to accomplish this goal, let’s dissect what it means for a brewery to be a neighborhood meeting place.  Here are a few things come to mind:


  • It needs to be approachable.  This is a place where you feel comfortable going once a week with your family or just dropping in on your way home from work when you are trying to avoid your family.  Not too upscale, not too gritty.

  • It should be anchored in something that connects with the locals.  History of the area, quirky local phenomena . . .

  • It needs to take into account the needs of the local population.  In our case, a major consideration is creating a place where families can come and not feel like they are ruining the experience for the rest of the customers.  Conversely, the family-friendly aspect should not obscure the fact that this is a place primarily built to drink beer. If this brewery was in Isla Vista, it would be a place where floors can easily be hosed off.

  • It must have a brewery feel.  Breweries are cool looking and you want people to know they are in the place where their beer is made.  Those stainless steel tanks cost a lot of money so you should show them off!


It is a bit of a trick to combine these ideas into a cohesive design and at the risk of sounding like a marketing executive at Applebee's, one possible description of the design vision is “a modern take on the classic neighborhood pub.”  A less aneurysm-inducing description is a cool place that has a low-key neighborhood party atmosphere.  Working with an architect, we looked at examples of brewery pubs and tasting rooms that have aspects that reflect that vision.  This analysis included looking at the materials they used, how the space was laid out, the style of furniture and decorations, and the special features that made each place unique.  Each image below shows certain qualities or design ideas that we think hit the right note.

I promise that the concept renderings will be the focus of one of the next two blogs.  

Quick Update - The holidays slowed things down a bit, but progress continues on the fundraising front.  We have secured our own investment cash and hope to be able to start accepting outside investments within the next few weeks.