The Whole Foods Market at 1146 Blossom Hill Rd. in San Jose has opened a new Tap Room inside its store, and news of the recent soft opening has been quickly spreading. An official grand opening gala will take place on Fri., Oct. 30 from 5pm-10pm.
Featuring eight beer taps, a cask ale beer engine – a second beer engine to come soon – and two wine taps, Tap Room hours are 11am-10pm daily with a weekday $1 off “happy hour” special on all draft beers and wines on tap from 4pm-6pm.
The Tap Room is spacious with plenty of indoor seating. Beer and wine – with plenty of bottled options as well – can also be enjoyed in the adjacent outdoor patio, with seating for up to 60-70. The Tap Room is well integrated within the front area of the store. The store itself is the first Whole Foods Market in San Jose, opening five years ago.
The Tap Room menu includes, among other items, artisan cheese plate, charcuterie plate, jalapeño popper mac and cheese, classic burger and fries, forest funghi personal pizza, spicy tuna crunch roll, tuna carpaccio and salmon carpaccio.
On a recent visit, Wesley Miller – Specialty Associate Coordinator for Northern CA – and Nate Kaufmann – South Bay Metro Marketing and Community Relations Lead – were on hand to talk more about the Tap Room and the grand opening celebration.
A major point of emphasis, according to Nate, is to foster a relaxed vibe where customers can enjoy learning about the varieties of beer styles from the knowledgeable, yet down-to-earth, staff. Wesley adds that the beer lineup – curated by tap specialist Brien Celestre – focuses on a variety of beer styles from mainly local Bay Area breweries. He recommends TapHunter as the beer lineup will rotate through quickly.
On my visit, the beer lineup included Lagunitas Born Yesterday Pale Ale, Almanac Pumpkin Sour, Faction Anomaly White Chocolate Milk Stout, Heretic Chocolate Hazelnut Porter, Lagunitas Fusion 32 IPA, Boulevard Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale, Allagash Speciale Blonde and Dogfish Head Punkin Ale. Look for limited-release beers from San Francisco’s Fort Point Beer Company and San Jose’s Santa Clara Valley Brewing in the near future.
Additionally, cask ales will be featured on an ongoing basis at the Tap Room. Wesley says, “It’s something different and unique and allows us to work with the local brewers on seasonal, fresh offerings. Cask ales harken back to how beer was made centuries ago and provides an educational opportunity to teach more about the history of beer.”
As for the grand opening on Friday, look for giveaways and complimentary food – sliders, sushi, wings, cheese plates, and charcuterie board – while they last.
Tap specialist Brien has already scheduled the Tap Room’s first beer events – Oakland’s Ghost Town Brewing Tap Takeover on Fri., Nov. 6 from 6pm-10pm and San Diego’s Ballast Point Tap Takeover on Fri., Nov. 20 from 6pm-10pm to include a cask of Grunion Pale Ale with pineapple and passion fruit.
The opening of the Tap Room at the Blossom Hill store continues Whole Foods’ contributions to the local beer scene and follows the opening of the Brew Hub tap room in the Cupertino store last December and the Mission Creek Brewing Company and tap room at the Whole Foods on The Alameda in downtown San Jose.
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