The Beach Chalet: A labor of love and "literal" legwork

Don't be fooled by the great location: San Francisco's adjoining restaurant/brewpubs Park Chalet and Beach Chalet are definitely not the tourist traps we've come to expect from oceanfront restaurants. As I found out with a recent visit, the Chalets attract a loyal following of locals with distinctive beers and tasty food (and great weeknight specials.)

The genuine, laid-back vibe seems to have started at the top: The Chalets are run by a down-to-earth husband and wife team who founded the business with a leap of faith in 1997, when they were in their mid-20's. 7x7 Magazine recently sat down with Lara Truppelli to talk about running a business with her husband. I've excerpted a few of my favorite bits below. Enjoy!

"We met in 1988 in San Luis Obispo while both working at Woodstock’s Pizza.... It was a kind of hippie-family-party place to work….super fun."

"Gar was in his last semester at SF State and I had recently graduated when the Beach Chalet building came up for lease. We lived in the Sunset and Gar had his eye on the site as the spot for his dream restaurant. We were also home brewing so we decided a brewpub would be the perfect type of operation for the Beach Chalet."

"I was 25 and Gar was 24 when we started to develop the project. When the Beach Chalet opened we were 28 and 27.... In hindsight, it was a total long shot given our age and lack of a track record, but that’s often where many great businesses begin: with a dream and a whole lot of hard work."

"...Since I had just graduated and was a new mom, I did a bunch of leg work, literally- this was before the web, so our market research included my walking on the beach and stopping surfers to check in on what they’d eat after a good session or what their favorite beer styles were."

"We do talk about business almost constantly. I think we have all come to terms with that and instead of resisting it."

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