The Fairmont Hotel near Millennium Park has revamped their bar concept to embrace Chicago’s ever changing beer culture. Columbus Tap replaces Aria as a 120-seat gastropub with 16 taps dedicated the Midwest. The focus on locality extends to the menu where meats are sources from Green City Market and breads from Publican Quality Bread.
The taplist is a symphony that balances between well-known producers and quality driven nano brewers. General Manager, Joe Bunke is proudly opening the bar with a collaboration he created with Maplewood Brewing in Logan Square. When Life Gives You Kumquats is a Citrus Saison that was paired with a Grilled Asparagus Salad for the launch party.
The idea for the team at Columbus Tap is to create an experience at the hotel that resonates with local residents and tourists alike. With 7000 condos within walking distance and events all Summer long at Millennium Park, the space has potential to be more relevant than its predecessor.
A steady rotation of local breweries will appear at Columbus Tap. Offerings from Begyle, Aquanaut Brewing and Une Année on were draft. A three-year vertical of Revolution’s Deth’s Tar resides in the cellar.
GM/ Beverage Director, Joe Bunke is a Chicagoan by way of Florida who spent a few years in San Francisco where he acquired a heightened appreciation for curating beer and food pairings.
With local restaurants like DMK Burger Bar and Porkchop moving into nearby Navy Pier recently and projects like Columbus Tap making efforts to spotlight local suppliers…things are slowly changing on the New East Side.
Take a look at the five course pairings during the launch party.
Open Faced Toast (trio)
…crushed avocado, lemon, shaved radish, hot pepper
…rotisserie chicken, bacon, lettuce, tomato, smoked ranch
…spring peas and mint, whipped ricotta
Sunday Session IPA, Ale Syndicate- Logan Sq, Chicago
Mini Grilled Asapargus Salad
perfect egg, shaved asparagus, green goddess dressing
When Life Gives You Kumquats Citrus Saison, Maplewood Brewing,- Logan Sq, Chicago. (in collaboration with Columbus Tap)
chimichurri, roasted garlic mayo, cracklings
Akari Shogun American Wheat Ale, Half Acre – Lincoln Sq, Chicago
Whiskey Honey Ham Hocks
maitake, peas, cabbage, cauliflower
mashed potatoes, pan drippings, spring vegetables
Tickle Fight American Strong Ale, Solemn Oath Brewery- Naperville, IL
Beer Float w Vanilla Ice Cream
Hello My Name Is Joe, Imperial Coffee Wheat, 3 Sheeps – Sheboygan, WI
Four Star Pils, German Pilsner, Goose Island, founded in Chicago, brewed in Baldwinsville, NY
Ginger Liqueur, Koval Distillery, Ravenswood, Chicago