Late last summer, I started seeing posts on Beer Advocate and social media streams about a new craft beer focused bar in Bloomington called The Tap. I put it on my list to visit one day, but they were not yet open when Meghan and I were last in Bloomington for a wedding, so it stayed on the back burner. After seeing people wearing jackets and T-shirts with their logo at Winterfest, I made it a priority to get down there sooner rather than later. Meghan and I had some spare time on Sunday, so we headed south.
The Tap is located on the square in downtown Bloomington. It boasts 50 tap lines and an impressive bottle selection that is divided into two, tall, glass door units that sit behind the bar. The cooler is organized by region (and state within the US), but the menu is organized by style which caused some initial frustration when trying to figure out what some Belgian bottles were, but we got over it quickly.
One of the most impressive features is above the taps and glassware. Instead of having to move chairs and tables around for live music acts, The Tap built the stage above and behind the bar. There is also a room (and the rest rooms) in the hallway behind the stage so the sound has plenty of places to go.
The Tap focused on maximizing their serving space, so you will not find a full kitchen in house. They do offer some pretzels with cheese, but they also have an open carry-in policy and even have a menu of some local places that will deliver for easy decision making.
Overall, we were really impressed. We sat at the bar and got to know the bar tenders and sampled beers from a Kriek to a bomber of Arctic Panzer Wolf. They said that Friday and Saturday nights are usually pretty busy where it can be hard to get a drink and find a place to stand, but if you go on a Sunday afternoon, it is a fantastic place to wind down the weekend.
They are super active on Facebook and Twitter with updates about what has recently been tapped which helps encourage the 45-minute drive from Indy.