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Draft Cocktails on a Wrap-Around Porch: Craftsman is Coming to Cesar Chavez

The new bar project from a longtime industry veteran will create "a fun house party" in a renovated 1920's home.

Craftsman's Plywood
Craftsman's Plywood
Meghan McCarron/EATX

A 1920's era home which previously housed Cap's Gameroom will get a new life as Craftsman at 2000 E. Cesar Chavez. The project's mastermind is Brandon Testa, a longtime restaurant industry veteran in Austin who most recently worked at Speakeasy. Testa plans to create a "fun, house party" environment in the house, which features a wraparound porch. The drinks program will focus on draft cocktails and other options that don't "take 30 minutes to make." They'll also serve "standard bar fare," like cheap tallboys and well drinks, in an effort to define Craftsman first and foremost as a neighborhood bar.

Testa previously attempted to open Dram Shop on East 6th in 2011, but was shot down by neighbors nervous about allowing any more bars onto the street. His current project's previous identity as a bar was a huge part of the draw, and he reports the neighbors "are excited" by the new businesses popping up along the longtime commercial strip. Testa hopes to open at the start of 2015, and will be chronicling their progress on Facebook.