We are happy to share that the Tasting Room is now a truly family-friendly establishment!
When we first opened the Tasting Room last fall, the Yukon didn’t have a means for a liquor manufacturer to operate a family-friendly pub. So we were left with trying to make things work with the basic Liquor Primary Licence*. As part of this licence, parents weren’t allowed to hang out with their kids in the seating area. We had to rope-off our licensed seating areas where beer would actually be consumed to exclude minors. However, the ropes still allowed for parents to be able to fill growlers or pick up bottles to go, while bringing their kids along. This was not our ideal set up, but at least people didn’t have to leave their kids in the car!
These ropes had to go!
Still we were constantly asked if parents could bring their kids along when they came to enjoy our beer. Being new parents ourselves, we found it frustrating that many establishments in the Yukon don’t allow minors, and therefore we wanted to ensure we could make our Tasting Room more inclusive. We have always wanted to create a more family-friendly and community oriented craft beer space at our brewery.
In other jurisdictions it's very rare to find a craft brewery that is not kid friendly – just visit the various brewery lounges across BC and you’ll know what we’re talking about! This winter we were also down in San Diego, California, considered the ‘Craft Beer Capital of America’, where breweries fully embrace craft-beer loving families.
Beer Holiday in San Diego 2016 - we visited over a dozen family-friendly breweries.
So since opening Winterlong, we’ve been working hard with the Yukon Liquor Corporation (YLC) and the Yukon Liquor Board (YLB) to come up with a more permanent solution. Last month, we prepared a proposal and presented the problems with the roped-off areas along with potential solutions. We looked to BC for examples of how brewery lounges were licenced to allow for minors. We were then given an opportunity to meet with the Board this month to discuss, and have come up with a solution that could be used by any liquor manufacturer in the territory.
It’s a huge relief that we could make this work, thanks to the YLC and YLB! Now thirsty parents can bring their kids along and we are one step closer to creating more of a community-centered, family-oriented craft beer culture in the territory!
* A Liquor Primary Licence is the basic licence for any pub/bar. A Food Primary Licence (which allows minors) is a licence where there is a kitchen and where food makes up a significant portion of the sales. For us a kitchen was not an option and would have required significant monetary investments, renovations and property improvements. Not to mention we’re in the beer making business and not aspiring restauranteurs at the moment.