Located in downtown Bloomington, The Tap has almost too many beers to choose from. With 16 house beers and 50 guest beers, you'll have a hard time deciding.
My overall rating:
I made my annual visit to Indiana a couple weeks ago, and my parents took me to a new brewery in Bloomington: The Tap. They not only brew their own beers, but they are also a tap bar with 50 other beers from all over. It’s so exciting and a tad overwhelming!
The Tap is located downtown, right next to Fountain Square mall. Bloomington has a really cute downtown, so plan in some time to walk around and check out the area too if you’re visiting.
The lighting was completely against me when I was here, so I apologize for the overall photo quality of this post. I can’t blame it all on the lighting I suppose, I honestly have no idea what I’m doing with a camera.
The menus are fairly unique, using a little scale to describe your beer. It also shows you the type of glass it will come in, which I know my family found really cool. There’s tons of beer to choose from. The front and back of the first page are all the house beers. These all have descriptions and the scale for each one. The next page is a giant list of all their guest beers on tap. If you decide to go the house beer route, they offer flights of four. Flights aren’t available for the guest taps though, so you have to try to figure out how to not be indecisive to pick one of those. My dad and I each went with a flight, so I got to try eight of their house beers.
That’s a root beer in the middle. Can you guess which flight is mine?
The flights come with cards that you can take notes on for each of your beers. That’s something I don’t see very often, and it’s very helpful. I’m not a very good beer taste reviewer, so bear with my notes here.
I tried and reviewed the beer on the end after the one before it. The Immoral IPA really ruined my tongue for anything I had after it. If I waited a bit and drank some water, the Bionic Dragon IPA wasn’t as “weak” as I originally thought.
“A stouty stout.” You see what I mean about my reviews?
My only real gripe about The Tap is the size of the tables. I was in a group of four and we barely fit at our table once the food arrived. Actually, since my mom and I split some tacos, we had more room than if we all ordered our own meals. I’m not sure how bigger groups manage to work out seating here. It would be fine if this was just a place to get beer and hang out, but the food aspect makes me wish for a bigger table. There are hooks under the tables though, so at least our purses weren’t also contending for space.
Small tables aside, the atmosphere is nice and it wasn’t too crowded or loud at all. This of course will be largely affected depending on if the students are on campus or not. Thankfully, IU was already out for the summer when I visited. My family was saying there are times people get turned away over how crowed The Tap gets. There’s a small amount of seating outside as well, but for groups larger than three you’ll have to push tables together. I think it would be a good place to sit up at the bar. There’s lots of tap handles to look at.
The food here was awesome. I had some pineapple pulled pork tacos and they were fantastic. The pretzel appetizer was also delicious, they definitely have their cheese dip nailed down. I failed to actually take pictures of the food, sorry about that. The menu changes seasonally, and of course the beer list changes frequently, but they keep their website up-to-date with it. I’d really recommend stopping here if you’re in Bloomington, IN ever. You never know, they might have a guest beer on tap that you’ve been dying to try but can never find in your area.