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I used the self-serve beer machine at Target Field and now I shall tell the tale

Jul 14, 2014, 11:03 AM EST

MINNEAPOLIS, MN — I spied it from afar:

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I approached:

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I figured out how much it would cost me:

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I followed the rules:

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I made my choice. You can see how stressed I was by all of this:

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I poured my beer:

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That was $5.50 worth of beer. I still have $4.50 left on my $10 card. I am reserving the right to go back later though, truth be told, there is a ridiculous amount of good beer here in Minneapolis so I’m not sure I want to waste any more of my remaining liver/brain cell capacity on Bud than I have to.

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Also: look how lame that pour is. Not a professional job by any stretch of the imagination. I figure the twin-draw of this technology for the ballparks is that (a) in the long run they will save money on having to pay people to draw beer for customers; and (b) they figure people will buy more beer thanks to the novelty of it. There are probably some line-shortening/capacity efficiencies at play here too and the fact that lots of people will leave money on the card. I like to think, however, that bartending, even when it’s only about slinging American lager to people, is an art form. And part of me doesn’t much care for the mechanization of yet another aspect of life. But such is the nature of progress.

All that aside, I will give the people behind DraftServ credit for running a smooth operation. It is well-attended and administered, with someone checking IDs before handing out the cash-loaded cards and someone else in charge of roping off the area where the taps are so as to keep people from sneaking by. Macrobrews at ballparks is a volume business and this is about as efficient as you can get with that.

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Still: seek out the good beer, folks. And have a pro pour it for you. Life is way better that way.

  1. peopletrains - Jul 14, 2014 at 5:13 PM

    All this thing does is create an impenetrable bottleneck in the concourse. I had to go up a level and come back down during the break between the futures game and the softball fiasco. I can’t imagine what it will be like during the ASG.

    • jfk69 - Jul 15, 2014 at 4:36 AM

      Cal
      even machines listen and are awed
      You are truly..
      The most interesting man in the world

  2. chargrz - Jul 14, 2014 at 6:26 PM

    Craig= Chick magnet

    • nbjays - Jul 14, 2014 at 6:38 PM

      Beer = Craig magnet

  3. rickditka - Jul 14, 2014 at 6:52 PM

    Huh… I expected Craig to look just like Hillary Clinton

    • davemvh - Jul 15, 2014 at 4:18 AM

      he does.

  4. paulchi2014 - Jul 14, 2014 at 7:40 PM

    I thought the whole concept of the public paying for the stadium was to create jobs? So now they take away the most lucrative sales job at the stadium – the beer man. That said I do have to applaud the stadium – $5 a 12 oz beer is cheaper than many bars.

  5. gloccamorra - Jul 14, 2014 at 9:42 PM

    “…I’m not sure I want to waste any more of my remaining liver/brain cell capacity on Bud than I have to.”

    Come on. He’s not THAT bad a Commissioner!

  6. davemvh - Jul 15, 2014 at 4:08 AM

    Hmmm rumor has it that the self serve beer machines are fed directly from the mens room drains……cheers!

  7. jfk69 - Jul 15, 2014 at 4:49 AM

    I wish to apply as your personal photographer. Especially when you go on these beer runs. My pics speak for themselves.

  8. courtjester1234 - Jul 15, 2014 at 6:36 AM

    I think it’s a good idea. Have you ever had one of these dopes that work there pour your beer? I don’t know if they even made it passed the 8th grade and I’m supposed to give them a credit card or cash when I pay? I don’t even want to know if they wash their hands before getting back from using the facilities.
    On a side note, many years ago whisk I was in high school I found out the hard way one of the gym teachers that I had was a beer vendor at the old spectrum and vet stadium. I looked a little older and usually could get served so I wave one of these vendors over and I got a big suprise( and no beer ) when my gym teacher approached me and told me I’d be running track if he seen me or my friends with ANY beers. A few years later when I turned 21 some buddies took me out for a drink at a local watering hole and who do you think was the bartender? Yup

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