The Best Spots in Golf: Go inside the Pebble Beach Tap Room

September 25, 2019
Modernized over its 70-year history— but certainly not overly modernized—the Tap Room harkens back to a simpler time.

The Lodge at Pebble Beach opened 100 years ago when Prohibition was the new law; there was no bar. With Prohibition’s repeal in 1933, the Monkeyshines Room — delightfully decorated with murals of monkeys in various states of inebriation — opened at what would later become the Tap Room.

In December 1949, the Tap Room was transformed into “A Museum of Western Golf,” which is how the perfect 19th hole looks today. While selecting from a menu that includes artichoke soup, beef-rib potato skins, Kobe brie burgers, filet mignon and prime rib, you can gaze upon images of myriad golfers who have made history at Pebble Beach from the early state and national championships to the modern PGA Tour.

The century-old Lodge at Pebble Beach ages gracefully above Carmel Bay.
Julian P. Graham/Pebble Beach Company

Each photo, like the room itself, has a story to tell. Like the one about Payne Stewart, who was the defending champion for both the 1992 and 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. In 1999, while promoting the 2000 Open, Stewart quenched his thirst at the Tap Room bar. A group sitting at a nearby table debated whether or not it was actually him.

To end the debate, the fellow certain it was not Stewart went up to him and asked, “Will you tell my buddy over there that you’re not Payne Stewart?” To which Stewart said, “But I am.” The guy was insistent, “No, you’re not.” Payne was amused. “If I can prove it, will you buy the champagne?” he said. The man agreed. Stewart left the room and returned soon after with the U.S. Open trophy in tow. He put it on the bar and told the bartender to fill it with champagne, then he said, “Give him the bill!”

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