It’s more upscale, like a Starbucks, but it serves alcohol.
That’s how owner Frank Tweten describes the renovations at The Blue Goose Tavern, which reopened last month.
It may not look it yet from the outside, but a higher quality than your typical fast food, a wide selection of drinks and the same tight-knit community are all promised by Tweten to be revived there.
The tavern was purchased by Port Orchard’s Tweten in June of last year, undergoing a year’s worth of renovations to fix major issues with the plumbing and windows, among other things.
Tweten, who has made his way through several restaurant projects in the Pacific Northwest over the years, called the purchase an investment in Port Orchard, saying, “We’ve got a lot of new stuff coming along with the community center, the walkway, Kitsap Bank, and I just wanted to participate in it.”
The Blue Goose originally called the Annapolis-Retsil area home before moving to its current space in 2014. Those who know the tavern well will note how much has changed. A sports-centered compass coats the floor, a fresh pool table is at the center of the layout, and a fresh bartop and set of tables gives the establishment a clean look.
“It wasn’t going to be the same,” Tweten admits about his process. “The only thing that is the same is the name.”
That much, Tweten continued, was vitally important to reopening, knowing that no matter what it would be called, it would always be The Blue Goose. He now hopes it to be that same community gathering spot, just a little more upscale. “It’s got the feeling of a Starbucks, but we serve alcohol,” he said. “It’s a meeting place, a community gathering. Taverns have been around since, I’d like to think, they invented alcohol. So we’re back—a neighborhood place.”
The tavern comes with special hours, reflecting not just a breakfast menu, but what Tweten refers to as the graveyard shift of U.S. Navy country. “The overnighters that get done with their workday at 4-5 a.m., this is their ‘late night’, so to speak. We want to recognize that, especially in this part of the country with our 8 a.m. opening.”
Much work is still to be done, both inside and outside the tavern as well as beginning the grand scheme of turning half of the original tavern into a family friendly pizza restaurant. An outdoor patio is in the works as well, and roof wrapping gives it the look of still being under construction.
However, it’s open and ready, another business that hopes to see a bigger flow of customers with the construction of the Bay-Bethel roundabout closer to completion. “We haven’t seen a large influx of customers yet, for obvious reasons,” Tweten said, “but we know people want to be here, and they’ll come.”