Boulevard Brewing Company was Kansas City’s First Major Brewery. Since its conception in 1988, Boulevard has been hand crafting beers that Kansas citizens crave. When people in Kansas City think beer, generally the first place they think of is Southwest Boulevard, where Boulevard Beer was founded. The Yard House in Kansas City carries five handles of Boulevard: Unfiltered Wheat, Pale Ale, Tank 7 (Smokestack Series), a Seasonal (right now it’s a delicious Irish Ale), and the Smoke Stack Series Rotating Handle. (Unfortunately we are currently out of the Rotating Handle.)
However the latest Rotating Handle was Chocolate Ale: a collaboration between Kansas City’s own Christopher Elbow (the foremost chocolate maker in Kansas City) and Boulevard Brewery. Last year was the first year that Chocolate Ale was available. It literally sold out all over Kansas City in less than a day – so this year they increased the production level of this beer! Every restaurant, liquor store, grocery store, etc. that sells Boulevard was allocated a certain amount of Chocolate depending the amount of the Smoke Stack Series they sold. We sell more Smoke Stack Series on draft than anyone in Kansas City, so we were allocated ten of their 5 gallon kegs. We were pretty sure that we wouldn’t have this beer long… and we were right. On Thursday we ran through 9 kegs by 6pm, which was a pretty amazing feat in itself, and when we brought out the last keg on Saturday at 1pm – it sold out at 1:28pm.
No other beer in this area has ever created as much buzz as this beer. Since I have worked for Yard House, I have never seen people go absolutely crazy for a beer. Every day that we had Chocolate on Tap, we were getting 40 to 50 phone calls about it. I also spoke to our delivery driver Steve and he said that people were following him to where ever he was going to see if they could score some Chocolate. People were lined at the front door of every liquor store just for the chance that someone who was already on the waiting list might not want their beer… bottles of this beer even appeared on Craigslist and EBay!