WEST OGDEN — Kym and Pete Buttschardt are no strangers to setting restaurant standards. They opened the original Roosters on Historic 25th Street pre-revitalization — you know, back when you had to have a compelling reason to go down there. Now they’re doing it at the Trackline development. And the bar is sky-high.
They’re not going it alone. Pete tapped Brandon Bingham, Roosters’ national sales person, to head up opening the B Street taproom. Bingham successfully led the opening of the Layton location, so he was the natural pick for this opening.
The challenge for the B Street location, according to Bingham, is bar service. “Getting people to order at the bar has been hard,” Bingham explained. “The servers will walk around and take orders when they can, if it’s not too busy, but we encourage people to order at the bar.”
Unlike the sit-down restaurant atmosphere on 25th Street and in Layton, B Street promotes being social.
“Get up and move around and socialize,” Bingham says. “You’re not assigned a table here.”
And the seating is designed to get people talking. In addition to the bar, you’ll find three long tables lined with bar stools. The shared arrangement fosters getting to know your neighbor.
To start a conversation, why not talk about the beer? That’s the real reason we’re hanging out at B Street — and there’s a peck to choose from.
You’ll find Roosters staples like Bees Knees Honey Wheat, along with seasonal creations, plus guest beers.
The styles and flavors available are a reflection of the brewers at all of Roosters’ locations.
Steve Kirkland, the head brewmaster who’s been with Roosters since day one, is a huge fan of The Clash, hence the Guns of Brixton dark English ale that was on tap Sept. 12, and the London Calling English ale that was available in August.
Jacquie King, out of the 25th Street location, is on the cutting edge of flavors. Her current creation is the Tropical Tea IPA. This beer has a soothing coconut and oolong flavor with hints of pineapple. It’s the perfect IPA for those who don’t generally like IPAs.
She’s also the woman behind Femintation, a smooth Cascadian dark ale, made smoother this past year by aurora hops. Unfortunately, you may have missed this year’s iteration. “We have maybe another week left,” Bingham said of Femintation stock.
Matt Bishop out of Layton is a fan of traditional ales. Go ahead and guess which brews he’s behind.
Follow Roosters B Street on Facebook to see the latest draft board and hints about what’s to come.
We’ll spoil on upcoming flavor for you: Roosters will be dropping its first pumpkin beer soon. Bingham said they’ve never been that interested in this seasonal flavor, but they’ve developed a doozy. The Cosmic Autumn Rebellion will be a fresh take on everyone’s favorite fall cookie: pumpkin chocolate chip.
And while these phenomenal fermentations are fabulous, we can’t forget about the scrumptious eats.
Originally, B Street was going to feature a brief menu of bites, including the brisket sliders. They weren’t necessarily meant to stick around. Buttschardt described how they used a food torch to melt the cheese on them at the soft opening because the kitchen wasn’t ready for use yet. The sliders were a test run that kept running.
Now the food menu is longer, and it’s got some delectable dishes unique to B Street.
Naughty Brussels are a “healthier” version of the Naughty Fries. Instead of potatoes, you’ll get crispy Brussels sprouts with naughty dipping sauces. If you love Brussels sprouts like we do, you’ll love this appetizer.
Not so much an appetizer, the B Street Loaded Nachos come on a baking sheet and are topped with chicken, bacon, guacamole, pepper jack cheese and fresh sliced jalapeños. This mound of spicy scrumptiousness is a meal if you don’t share it.
Delving into the realm of impossibilities at a bar is the Impossible burger. Which is, to be cliché, impossibly delicious. You wouldn’t know it’s not meat. Even Bingham didn’t know. “Pete tricked me into eating one,” Bingham tells. At least it was a tasty trick!
Saving the best for last is a burger that you can also get at Buttschardt’s other downtown restaurant, Union Grill. Be sure to use the knife to cut this one into pieces to share. The Tennessee Jed is a burger topped with savory brisket, barbecue sauce, grilled onions and Beehive cheese.
While the food and beer is enough to draw you in, there’s one other aspect of B Street that makes it special: the atmosphere. It’s a lot more casual than the other locations.
“It’s the vibe of it,” server Erin Sayachith says. “I know that’s cliché. It’s chill and a nice atmosphere.”
”No kids, if that’s what you’re looking for,” she adds. We agree, Erin. Definitely one of the draws.
Brittni Thomason, also a server, urges, “Come and hang out with your friends. You’re not stuck in one seat because of the dining style. Enjoy yourself and not feel restricted.”
”Pete has a great thing going,” exclaims J.J. Thurgood, a cook. “The brew line is amazing. The entrepreneurial spirit. Seeing what he built over time is amazing.”
”The place has a great vibe,” says Brad, who works the door. “It’s the coolest place in town.”
We concur and will add that it’s the people who work there that make the atmosphere what it is, as much as it is the layout, beer and food.
And the atmosphere is only bound to get better with some changes happening in the coming year.
There’s a skybox that Bingham expects to be open by the end of the year. It’ll be for overflow and private parties. He also enthused about events collaboration with Ogden’s Own Distillery, which will open next spring or summer. And he has grand plans for a dog-friendly patio.
So walk, bike, run (like the Ogden Pub Runners, whom you’ll see there on any given Thursday) or commute on over to Roosters B Street for some good social vibes.