Drinking Eating

Have You Been to Kraftwork?

I’ve been to Kraft­work a num­ber of times now and I think I like it. I mean, it’s okay. There’s that one sand­wich that’s real­ly deli­cious, but not much else that real­ly stands out on the (recent­ly recon­sid­ered) menu. The draught list is amaz­ing, although it’s like doing surgery with a shot­gun; put enough beers on tap and you’re sure to get some­thing right, no?

But you can fix menus and curate beer lists to make it seem like you know what you’re doing, rather than not want­i­ng to get it wrong. What you can’t real­ly change is phys­i­cal plant. If you want to be clubbed over the head with con­cept, Kraft­work is the place. With­out even men­tion­ing the clunk­er of a name, you know it’s styl­ized to a fault, which real­ly dis­tracts from the things that prob­a­bly brought you there in the first place. Did I men­tion how NOISY it is? Now, I know I’m get­ting old­er, but when you have a DJ spin­ning dance music dur­ing din­ner, at a place that does­n’t have a dance floor, you’re going out of your way to seem sil­ly. I mean, at least the Abbaye had sen­si­ble brunch DJs.

Thing I hear from fans of craft beer and gas­trop­ubs in gen­er­al though is that the prices are sim­ply too high. I can get a pint of Russ­ian Riv­er Blind Pig for less than I can a tulip of the same at Kraft­work. And while the taps are more plen­ti­ful than oth­er neigh­bor­hood bars, I don’t get the sense that more thought went into select­ing what’s on them. Instead of feel­ing like you’re get­ting a deal on some­thing that’s been care­ful­ly con­sid­ered, you know you’re over­pay­ing for some­thing you can prob­a­bly get some­where else in town.

Will I keep going back? Absolute­ly. I have faith that Adam Rit­ter will get it right and, hell, who I am to say any­thing: the place is usu­al­ly full to over­flow­ing, which is a good prob­lem to have in this econ­o­my. If they can build a tasty, inex­pen­sive menu around their beer can chick­en sand­wich, then they’re already on the right track. Where else can you get a Mikkeller Break­fast Beer Geek Impe­r­i­al Stout at 10:30 on a Sun­day morn­ing?

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