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Oakland pub crawl organized to support struggling taprooms

Pub crawl organized to support struggling Oakland taprooms
Pub crawl organized to support struggling Oakland taprooms 02:24

OAKLAND — In Oakland, a group organized a pub crawl to get those in the East Bay to support local craft taprooms and spread some holiday cheer

Brian Chan is the owner of Tiger's Taproom near Jack London Square. To say 2023 has been tough would be an understatement. 

Chan said, "I was thinking of thinking of closing down in October."

Tiger's Taproom opened in 2018 as a place for people to gather and enjoy the best of local craft beers. 

He said, "I didn't think I would be in this situation five years into after being open. I thought I would be flourishing at this point."

In those last five years, he's seen a number of fellow business owners be forced to close up shop. 

He added, "It's stressful. It's very stressful. Honestly, to get through this winter, I've had to cut staff hours. I've had to cut inventory to survive."

Chan said it's not just about the crime in Oakland. Weather has played a key role as well with rain this past year wiping out the outdoor beer garden for months. 

Then, there's the economy and inflation. 

He explained, "Beer is made of grain, the cost of grain and bread has gone up because of the war in Ukraine and that impacts everything so people have less to spend."

So, on Wednesday night, the craft beer community came together. It was a pub crawl of six local craft beer bars and restaurants, to toast for a better year in 2024.

Pub Crawl Organizer Tom Morgenstern said, "I feel like today is a great example of people showing up and answering the call to help."

Chan responded, "It means everything, especially this time of year."

December and January are the toughest months for his business, he said. While it's been a struggle to keep his doors open, having these events gives him hope for the future. 

He said, "Instead of focusing on the negative, we would like to focus on the positive. We are all trying our best. We have a lot of loving people that are helping to support us."

Morgenstern said the pub crawl was such a success that the goal is to hold similar events targeting different communities in the Bay Area in the future.

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