TAPS AT HERITAGE

Partners Allison White and Ray Frye are embracing the craft beer craze at their new pub at Heritage Station.

By Jean Hardiman

Giving people options is always a good thing.

Those are the words of Ray Frye and Allison White, partners in business and in life, who recently opened a quaint craft beer establishment at Heritage Station.

TAPS is a few doors down from White’s SIP Wine and Whiskey Bar, and it not only aims to complement the food and drink menu there, but also the steadily expanding craft beer scene in Huntington.

Jon Elmore

It was an opportunity to be part of an exciting industry, and they seized it.

“We basically took a crash course in craft beer over a four-month period,” said White, who has a background in tax and corporate accounting as well as catering. “The local distributors and breweries were very helpful and supportive of our venture, along with other local small business owners.”

Their focus at TAPS is the overall experience, White said.

That includes “personable bartenders, a bright and clean atmosphere and, of course, great selections of beers and ciders,” she said. “We put a lot of effort into our 14 taps and our bottle and cans menu. We have had great feedback on our menu. We like a nice balance of imports and American breweries and try not to go too heavy into one style of beer. We listen to our customers and do our best to bring great beers from West Virginia, and the region, into the bar.”

“The fact that Black Sheep, Bahnhof and Summit are all on the DigitalPour System (an online way to see what beers restaurants are offering) allows all of us to keep an eye on what is on tap and create a nice selection for the area,” she added.

This year, White and Frye have been excited about expanding their facility to provide an outdoor entertainment area.

“We are currently working with our friends at the Park & Recreation District to make this happen in 2018,” said Frye, a veteran who served as a combat medic during Desert Storm, and who also has a business background.

“So far, we have had a surprisingly nice start with TAPS. We even host our own beer and bluegrass festival in May called ‘BrewGrass.’ Also in May, we are offering a ‘Craft Beer Experience’ at the St. Mary’s Foundation Gala,” he said.

Jon Elmore

Why do people love beer?

“There are so many varieties of craft beer, people enjoy trying them all,” Frye said. “People are always looking for a reason to meet socially. Why not do it over an adult beverage you’ve never had before?”

Their establishment recently tapped a beer from Weihenstephan, part of a town in southern Germany.

“Ray was stationed in Germany in the early ’90s and would drink this beer at the local beer garden pretty regularly,” White said. “He hadn’t had the beer since he left Germany over 20 years ago, so his first pint was super nostalgic. It brought back so many wonderful memories of his service overseas. He never imagined he would get that experience from a glass of beer.”

 

TAPS AT HERITAGE

210 11th St., Huntington

(681) 378-0605

www.tapsatheritage.com

 

JEAN HARDIMAN is a freelance writer living in Huntington, West Virginia. She is a university relations specialist at Marshall University.

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