Friday, May 26, 2017

Romero's K-9 Club and Tap House in Lafayette, Colorado

The first time I heard of this tap house I was a little wary because of the k9 aspect, all I could image was dogs running all over the venue. I have to say, I was wrong! It is a wonderful place to have a beer and you don't have to worry about the other patrons dogs either. Romero's is one of a handful of tap houses that has a wonderful tap list, I think with Lenny's background in beer helped shaped the venue.
On any given day they could have some local and out of state breweries, Romero's also has wine on tap and canned beers which is for drinking on premises only. You can buy pretzels from a local company and snacks for your pooch.

Lenny and Maria have it worked out. First you have to register your dog with all of the dog's information. Secondly, they also have house rules that are fairly enforced. The tap house has a nice size bar with a few tables that have carbine clips to secure your dog's leash. There is a large patio area that is enclosed during cold weather and two areas for dogs to run under owners supervision. Since it is a dog friendly bar, children under 16 aren't allowed. Lenny and Maria are very adamant about that, it is a lawsuit waiting to happen.

Lenny Torres and Maria Redondo started this idea of a tap house in 2013 while on vacation in the Southeast.  My husband and I met them at Oskar Blues taproom, The Tasty Weasel around 2014. They were on a beer vacation so we recommended a few of our favorite beer venues and also told them about our beer app, The Colorado Beer Tour. So we were surprised to see that they opened a tap house in our neck of the woods in Lafayette, Colorado. In Boulder county, there's a high per capita of dogs to people so I imagine that was a selling point.

In an email interview, Lenny told me that it was Maria that got him into craft beer. She was a bartender at World of Beer in Orlando, Florida and became infatuated with craft beer. Maria went from bartending to Opening Coordinator for the WOB franchise where she traveled to many cities outside of Florida. In that position she trained all new employees in beer, such as the background and the different styles.  Maria continued to work at the World of Beer as a Product Manager and General Manager when they moved to Colorado.

Lenny background was in distribution of beer. He started working as an assistant product manager at a farm to table restaurant when an opportunity came his way for an accountant manager position at a specialty beverage distributor in Florida. There he was able to make beer connections with the top breweries from around the country. When they moved to Colorado, Lenny was able to get a sales position with Crooked Stave Artisans, the distribution part of Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project in Denver.

It really didn't take long before they had a business plan, secured capital, and found the right location for the tap house. They have been open since August 12, 2016 and will be celebrating their first year soon. Some time late 2017 they plan to have a permanent food truck on site and they will also continue hosting other food trucks. Due to the Health Department rules of forbidding animals in food production areas, Romero's can't have food preparations in the taproom.