Wednesday, June 1, 2016
It is possible to grab a local craft beer on International Drive in Orlando. For real. At Yard House.
Looking for a pint of beer while on vacation in Orlando? Looking to try a local craft beer while visiting Disney World or Universal Studios? Look no further than Yard House on International Drive in Orlando -- deep in the heart of tourist town. Located at the I-Drive 360 complex, directly under the Orlando Eye, Yard House is the perfect upscale respite from the tourist madness on busy International Drive.
The beverage team and beer experts at Yard House have just completed their annual Beer Review, and the results are in: The award-winning restaurant will add a total of 1,581 new taps of draft beer to its curated line-up of American craft and import beers with more than 50-percent appearing on Yard Houses menu for the first time.
Its an intense--yet very thoughtful--process we undergo each year, said Gregory Howard, beverage manager for Yard House. Our Beer Review process takes approximately three months to complete. During this time we talk to local distributors, our own server and bartender teams as well as the brewers themselves to find out what is new and what is being called for in each location.
Local brews played a pivotal role in this years Beer Review.
There was a huge call for us to focus on local brews, and I believe our team answered that call, added Howard. What youll find is a much more interesting and defined beer menu with each location having its own distinct list of the best local, regional and imported brands available.
Yard Houses Beer Review begins with feedback from guests and team members, who are on the frontline at each location observing first-hand which beers are in demand and are moving quickly. Every team member, from dishwashers to general managers, are also surveyed and asked to put together a wish list of what they would want added to their restaurants beer head. After the information is collected the beverage team meets, tastes and reviews more than 1,000 beers that span the spectrum--in terms of style--and include everything from local brewers and well-known domestic brands to imports.
Ultimately we select from 20 to 30 new beers to replace the lowest selling brands at each restaurant, shared Howard. That equates to nearly 1,600 tap handles companywide. And, of course, each Yard House will have a couple of taps that are exclusive to that particular location.
While IPAs remain popular, sour beers are on the rise as evidenced by the handful Yard House is adding to its menu. These styles are deeply rooted in European brewing traditions, and each location will feature both European sour offerings as well as some amazing American craft sours.
Yard Houses Beer Review also plays an instrumental role in what will be offered during the year as part of the restaurants 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 for Yard House 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 28. Thats the day guests can belly up to the bar to enjoy one of the new selections served in a traditional pint or goblet. Yard House also offers beer in 9-ounce glasses known as shortys as well as its signature 32-ounce half yard. Select locations also offer growlers to-go, allowing guests to bring home their favorite beer from Yard House.
Yard House, which boasts on average 130 taps of beer per location and offers a menu of American favorites from its scratch kitchen, is open daily for lunch, dinner and late-night dining. For more information, visit yardhouse.com or follow on Facebook at facebook.com/yardhouse, Instagram and Twitter @yardhouse
To learn about Yard House and its annual Beer Review, visit http://www.yardhouse.com/beers/annual-beer-review or catch the Beer Review video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DMfZGRr6bw
When Yard House opened in 1996 in Long Beach, California, it revolutionized the restaurant industry by creating a 250-tap draft beer system. Its lofty design, warm wood accents, and industrial vibe with the use of steel and chrome, made it a dining destination from the start.
Nearly 20 years and 63 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 and import beers. 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.