Finding success right off the bat may be tough for young franchisees. There is a whole intricate process of getting approved by the franchisor and then opening up shop. Kerri Gatz, the general and operating manager of The Brass Tap in Orland Park, Illinois, said they signed the franchise agreement about three years ago and spent almost two years finding the perfect location.
“Our first choice was Orland Park. My family has been in Orland for 30 years,” Gatz said. “Through being part of the community and on the board of Orland Youth Association we’ve met so many people and made so many friends.”
Gatz said the idea of running a Brass Tap came from her father. She said her dad discovered the brand while taking a trip to Florida a few years ago. He was so infatuated with the restaurant that he approached the owner, Jeff Martin about becoming involved with the company. Gatz herself was working at bars in Chicago and became a self-anointed “craft beer geek.” Her father thought she would be the perfect partner to go into business with, thanks to her restaurant and bar experience. She said that having a specific restaurant in the area will make it a prime spot for people to go to.
“I think the concept of a craft beer bar with daily events and live entertainment on the weekends is something that Orland Park was lacking,” Gatz said. The Brass Tap stands apart from the other bars in Orland Park because with 60 draft lines and 130 different beers in bottles we’re not just carrying your standard craft beer favorites; we’re introducing you to your new favorites.
Along with their eclectic line of beers available to consume, the franchise offers several different event-driven activities such as trivia nights, music bingo, meet the brewer night and not to mention their Brew Crew rewards program, which rewards bar patrons with a bar tab if they sample different amounts of beer available.
Still in its infancy, Gatz said they don’t have any immediate plans for expansion, but they will be having a bigger beer garden next year. She said one of the best parts of the job is interacting with the customers.
“The best part of my job is meeting new people and hanging out with our guests. We’ve created a community though our Brew Crew Club of some of the most amazing people,” Gatz said. “And, when a “day at the office” involves talking about new beer releases and checking out new local breweries, I’d say my job has a few perks.”