Grand Openings can be a lot of fun. Normally there is some fanfare and you finally get to experience the product or service you have heard about and been waiting for. “Soft Openings” on the other hand are less exciting and even off putting. For some businesses it might be a great idea to work out some kinks before the Grand Opening. For a brewery, I find it discouraging. Two of the newer breweries in the greater Eugene area have started with a “soft” opening. The first was Falling Sky.
After hearing of a new brewery in town and that the location was the 13th and Willamette area I was very excited. A new brewery and walking distance for me. Waiting and impatient for the opening, I went as soon as I heard the doors were open for business. Come to find it was a “soft” opening. There were chairs, tables, food and all guest taps. None of the Falling Sky beer was on tap. Disappointing as that was, they did get Falling Sky beer on tap, eventually. I then made a second trip to try the beer. All was back to normal and I hoped to not hear the term “soft opening” again.
Plank Town brewing has opened in Springfield and it is a soft opening. Excited for a new brewery once again and I am waiting to try the beer. I have not visited the new location for one simple reason. They do not serve their beer. I do like breweries with good food. Hop Valley is a good example. I also enjoy restaurants serving good beer. Hot Momma’s Wing’s is an example of that. Still, if the word “brewery” is in your title anywhere, I will be coming for the beer.
I have been to the Claim 52 dock sales for a pint. There was a food cart as is normal in Eugene. They didn’t serve their own food and the location is way out west 11th in a warehouse. You can only go Fridays. The seats are old church pues and what looks like old airport seating. None of that matters. I went and will likely go again because they brew and serve their beer.
In my opinion being a brewery and not serving your beer is like claiming to be a restaurant and ordering take out for all your customers. I am sure Plank Town will have their beer available fairly soon, but I won’t be visiting them until they do. If you want to be a restaurant that makes and serves great food, that is great. If you have the word brewery in your title, brew and serve great beer.