Though Pyramid Alehouse closed its last Bay Area outpost in mid-January (following the path of its Berkeley sibling), the Walnut Creek space has already been snapped up by a new occupant. Sauced BBQ & Spirit has signed a lease on the prime spot, with plans to open a third location of the restaurant, which is already in Petaluma and Livermore.
The burgeoning local chain showcases a variety of barbecue styles, from Texas beef to Carolina pulled pork; a large selection of bourbons and whiskeys are also part of the restaurants' draw. The original location opened in Livermore in 2012, a project from Barrett Gomes and his cousin Brenden Scanlan, who brought his signature barbecue techniques from Atlanta. The original location was followed by a second location in Petaluma last year; in addition to the new Walnut Creek location, plans for a Sacramento restaurant are also in the works.
Also of note: the restaurant recently attempted an all-inclusive tipping model, with an automatic service charge of 20 percent added to each check. Instituted on December 28, 2015 the move brought enough criticism from patrons to cause the restaurant to walk back their decision on January 25, 2016 reverting to the more standard tipping model. On Facebook, the company says they plan to continue to offer benefits and 401K options to their employees, despite rescinding the service charge.
Sauced Walnut Creek is aiming for an opening in late Summer. Stay tuned for more details.