Veronica Salvatore – Lead Writer/Draft Writer
Victoria Vorsas – Photographer/Interviewer
Cheyanne Clay – Interviewer/Caption Writer/Photographer/Primary Editor
Erika Anderson – Researcher/Interviewer
Charles Parker IV – Final Editor
September 25, 2015
Word Count: 1,007
New draft house in Tyler embraces the craft beer trend
TYLER, Texas – The crisp, bubbly sound of local beers on tap combined with the laughter of friends and strangers coming together fills the atmosphere at the Rose City Draft House & Bar.
38-year-old Jeremy Nayfa, a Denton native, opened the draft house in April 2015. Nayfa was inspired by the thriving nightlife of his hometown Denton, Texas, and decided to open a place of his own that would bring a different experience to the small town of Tyler. This experience brings all types of people together to have a drink and enjoy each other’s company.
“I wanted something in town that would be a place that I would wanna go,” Nayfa answered after asked why he decided to start the draft house. “I wanted to do something that was more of a bar, as opposed to a restaurant.”
This is not the first experience in the business world for Nayfa. During his time in college, he worked in bars and restaurants, as well as managing restaurants. After trying his hand at different jobs, including hurricane insurance claims, he found an opportunity franchising for the Fuzzy’s Taco Shop corporation. In turn, he opened different restaurants around the country, which led to him settling here in Tyler.
Simply defined as “the craft beer oasis in Tyler, Texas,” the Rose City Draft House & Bar offers 57 beers on tap. From IPAs to stouts, the choices in beer seem infinite, and the emphasis is placed on locally brewed beers as well as beers from around the country. The draft house also includes a full bar for those customers who prefer mixed drinks or a glass of wine.
Where you sit to enjoy your preferred drink also plays a part in the experience. Other than the typical bar seating, there are indoor tables available along with a spacious patio. Whether you want to chat with one of the many friendly bartenders, have a secluded conversation with a loved one, or just want to enjoy the mixture of the crowd, there is a seat for your specific need.
“They have a nice outside area, while I think most bars here in Tyler have just inside spaces,” a new customer Ekaterina Lloyd, 27, said, while holding a glass of Moscato from the Kiepersol local winery.
This friendly atmosphere is enhanced by the presence of arcade games, and the unique trivia game-nights on Wednesday that encourage strangers to come together, have fun, and bond over a good beer. There are prizes to win, including a free bar tab, t-shirts and even tickets to The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing events.
“That’s always a fun time that brings all kinds of different people in,” Nayfa said. Still, the fun and festivities do not stop there. Once a month, the draft house collaborates with local radio station 95.3, 102.3 The Breeze to organize parties, such as the hosted pre-party for the Ink Life Tour: Tattoo and Music Festival. They also plan to host an Oktoberfest party on Oct. 15, featuring bands, bratwursts and exclusive Oktoberfest beers.
Nayfa acknowledges the growing trend of hometown bars and community beer makers to the 2008 recession. In a season when people lost their jobs and their homes, local brewers sold their beers even cheaper than wine. From 2008 to 2013, shipments of craft beer rose by 80.1 percent to a total of more than 16 million barrels, or 7.6 percent of the U.S. beer market according to the article “Beers Americans No Longer Drink” by Alexander E.M. Hess posted on Dec. 15, 2014 on the 24/7 Wall St. website. That is when people started to buy craft beer, because they were drawn in by its accessibility and inexpensive nature. For this reason, Nayfa believes that the craft beer movement will not see a decrease in popularity, and he is confident that his business will continue to thrive.
“I would love to think that we’re still around five to 10 years from now,” Nayfa said. “I think that specifically because of what we do-being a draft house, being for craft beers-I think we really have an opportunity to thrive.”
One reason the Rose City Draft House & Bar is here to stay is simply because Nayfa likes what he does. Even though sometimes the service industry requires him to make sacrifices, such as not having weekends off, he truly enjoys what he does. To him, this is important because there have been times in his life when he made good money, but he was not happy at his job.
“You want to find something that you like to do for a career,” Nayfa said. “I like what I do… that motivates me.”
Every day, eclectic crowds gather at the Rose City Draft House & Bar to relax and have a good time. From young professionals in their early 20s to men and women in their 60s and 70s, the place blooms with a good mixture of people of every age, style, personality, and profession.
“I like it,” Lloyd said. “They have a good environment and a great atmosphere.”
During the weekdays, they offer happy hour from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. On Sunday nights, they have a special happy hour dedicated to the service industry workers, even though anyone can take part in it.
“We try to take care of people that are in the [service] industry,” Nayfa said. “You work all day. You get off. You want people to come here.”
As you exit the building, you feel a familiar sense of togetherness, the young crowd mixing with the older crowd, the bikers talking to the housewives. It does not matter what walk of life you come from, anyone can walk into Rose City Draft House & Bar and enjoy a blend of brews and culture. Everyone is equal here, and the warming taste of a good beer and good conversation is what keeps you coming back. So as the beers keep brewing, so do the good times.
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