Tag Archives: Bocktown

#Goodbye11

I have been a very bad blogger this year for some very good reasons! A lot of other folks did some darn fine writing for me! Here’s hoping for an amazing 2012! Some of my year’s milestones, distractions and fun moments:

1) Bocktown Monaca opened September 7th! I had fun chatting about it on Should I Drink That’s Podcast

2) My wonderful brother-in-law was married on the beach in Wilmington, NC. Cheers to a beautiful couple and beautiful few days off in November!

3) Plans for the first ever Pittsburgh Craft Beer Week got underway! (Late April 2012) Here is hoping for a great week of beer events in the ‘burgh!

4) Entrepreneur Magazine stopped by to talk with me about Tabbedout! (December issue, page 45!)

5) My husband and I had dinner with Rick Sebak! He’s got my vote for one of my most favorite people ever. If you don’t know who he is, google him and buy some of his wonderful DVDs from WQED. Here is his blog: It is called Rick Sebak’s Blog which is a perfect name for it if you know him. You won’t be sorry for investing time in all things Rick (If you are on twitter he’s @rickaroundhere)

5.5) Don’t ask me why this made my little list, but this was one of my favorite badges from Foursquare ONLY because I received it for my fun ‘Imaginary Starbucks’ location! I checked in 100 times there… (in my spare time!)

6) I spoke at Beaver County Women’s Conference, Podcamp and Duquesne’s Entrepreneur’s Growth Conference, some of it was caught on video… I can’t watch it at all! I do plan on doing much more of this in 2012! Eventually I have to get good at it, right?

7) in 2011, lots of folks wrote very nice things about me, about Bocktown and about our use of social media. If you actually link through to these folks, take some time to read/subscribe to the other stories they have written!

Scott Beveridge from the Washington Observer gave me some courage at Podcamp and wrote about me in his blog: A Twitter and Business Marriage Success Story

China Millman from the Post Gazette actually noted our use of social media with Bocktown!  A 2012 goal is to get her to taste our food and beer pairings! Social Media Promote Local Food Scene

Deb Smit from Pop City notes our use of Social to build business. Business is buzzing at Bocktown Beer and Grill thanks to social media

Mike Pound from The Beaver County Times helped and helped and helped herald in the opening of ‘b2’ with this nice followup article to a very long and arduous entrepreneurial journey: B- Ready New Bocktown is Open The original article mentioning the second location was published in August of 2009! Thanks for hanging in there with me, Mike!

Bob Batz wrote a great piece about Pittsburgh’s women in craft beer, and somehow, I was the above the fold photograph on the front paper! Can you say super-size? I can’t express my thanks enough for the timing of this article. It came out one day after we opened, and three days before the premier beer event of the year, the Steel City Big Pour.  My district manager, and right hand woman, Tera Bevilacqua is also in the article along with other beer pioneers in our area. Crafty Women: In the region’s craft beer industry, women play some key roles

8) I figured out a great big analogy that I want to forget, likening my business to having a baby. I am sure that it is nothing at all alike, since I have never given birth, nor would I want to birth a 5500 sq ft dining space, but I had fun using the analogy just the same. B1 is the first born. B2 is the new little one. We can’t expect the new one to be exactly like the other. It has to crawl, before it can walk. Don’t forget to spend time with the old one, so it doesn’t get jealous…. blah blah blah. So true, but I am over it after this post! I would have been a horrible mother.

9) I bought lots of new tech stuff to help me work more efficiently. Maybe it will start showing in 2012. I hope so.

10) I think my all time best moment of 2011 will be tomorrow night at 11:59 PM when I find my  husband and pull him close for a smooch, and say “Whew! Are you ready to do this all over again? Honey, I am pregnant with our third… Bocktown 3 is a bun in the proverbial oven!” #b3ast

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Settling for silver…

I haven’t had a lot of time to post, and a lot of what I have wanted to say, I cannot post anyway.  As most of you know, I am working diligently on our second restaurant and have had many, many setbacks that will never be publicly discussed.  What I can say, is that I promise to exceed your expectations with Bocktown Monaca once it does open, and it WILL open.

Settling for silver…

Who would think that lowering expectations is a good thing?

With the holidays fast approaching, I find that everyones’ emotions are running a little closer to the surface. A customer might be impatient, a co-worker may be overwhelmed, or a friend my seem too busy for a conversation.  I am making my own personal extra effort to just slow it all down, accept what is going on around me with grace, and just enjoy the moment. In doing so I am lowering my expectations, and encouraging those around me to do the same.

With the advent of social media and hyper-connectivity, we are all moving faster mentally and physically. We are spending our time updating this or that, buying a new gadget, tagging photos and well… blogging!  Don’t get me wrong, I love the new forums and all of the crazy new badges, applications, and the tremendous ease of communication.  What I think I don’t like, is the lack of communication that also exists in this same arena.  I often see the stabs and the jabs, and I even partake once in a while… (see my #pickonbobby posts.)  One thing I won’t do is bash someone or a business, online.  It has been done to me personally (that is a whole other post that I am trying to get the courage to write,) and I have seen it done to plenty of businesses, both small and large.

I will suggest to anyone who will listen: Don’t go there unless you have exhausted every other means of communication with the person or business first.   If you don’t like a place, how about this for an idea? Quit going there. If you don’t like a person or their opinion, I have news for you: You aren’t going to change them, ever! If you ‘have it in’ for someone or someplace, keep in mind that many, many other people actually depend on that person or business, even love or derive their income from them. Why don’t we all take a step back and quit demanding our own ideas of perfection be carried out by random strangers? How about enjoy the creativity, opinions and imperfections of those around you that actually contribute to making this world interesting?

One of my best friends in the entire world, pegged me this year, by saying, “Chris, you are one of those people who always has to have gold; you never settle for silver.”  And in my heart, I knew he was right the minute he said it. I also accept that this is my fatal flaw. I am simultaneously proud and embarrassed by this fact. Hell, Bocktown wouldn’t exist without such high standards, but then again, Bocktown 2 would have been open two summers ago if I could accept silver. I also think that I have been this person in the above paragraph who has expected and even demanded that someone or something change just to suit me.  Thank the beer gods, I grew up and out of that phase!

I do understand the concept of ‘not accepting mediocrity.’ I definitely have lived that mantra. I have always been that someone who has demanded better service, selection and more attention to detail.  I expect an awful lot from the people around me.  I just will never ever get the idea of hurting people, publicly humiliating them, or destroying a reputation over one’s own higher standards. I am learning to settle for silver now and again, and I hope that some of you will too.

I hope you each have or find a friend that can help you in the way that mine did for me this year. I hope that a silver filled holiday season is in your cards and that you have the ability to enjoy and accept it!  — Chris


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