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Soda gun at bar in tasting room? Yes or no.


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Hello.  For people that have gone down this path, do you have so guns behind the bar?  If not, do you wish you did?  There's alot of upkeep and expense to getting these and keeping them clean, etc. 

Background:

We are nearing the end of a buildout for a tasting room for beer & spirits.  This is a second location, with our production distiller and brewery in another town nearby.  Our brewery has a tasting room, no food.  We are forced to have food at the second spot in order to do craft cocktails.

We are planning on doing craft cocktails with our own spirits (single malt, gin, vodka and some liqueurs primarily -- might get into light rum at some point later on). 

None of the cocktails will have soda -- and if we do a special one, we are thinking that cans/bottles of the soda would be adequate.  Sodas at the brewery are sold in cans as a non-alcoholic option, and plan on similar options at the second location.

We don't want to be thought of as a restaurant, but as a brewery/distillery that has a small food menu serving simple meals that satisfy the "bonafide meal" requirement of our state.  So, thinking sodas and common cocktails with soda won't generally be on the menu.

We had initially planned on having soda guns, as most bars we have researched have them. 

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We build a draft tower, and have some beers on tap, but also pour mixers and batched cocktails off it from 5 gallon Corney kegs. Better looking and cheaper than a soda gun, especially if you already have a draft system and keg refrigeration place. 

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Absolutely put in the soda gun.  We have already changed from a 10-button to a 12-button.  We also have a good tonic and ginger beer from Top Note which is available on the gun.  Mules are popular and that brand is a great compliment!

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For us the soda guns did not work out.  We could never seem to get the taste down, even with multiple trips in by the vendor supplying the syrup.  We tried different water, ratios, etc and our customers still preferred canned soda in the cocktails we made.  After around a year of fighting it, and trying everything we could think of, we switched back to canned sodas only.  Maybe we had a bum system, maybe it was operator error, but in the end cans won out.

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