By Margo Greenman
The craft beer movement has gained a lot of popularity in the past several years. With new breweries, beer bars and bottle shops emerging at light speed, sometimes it’s hard to keep up. Tacoma, like the rest of the Pacific Northwest, has joined the bandwagon and is home to several local breweries and craft beer bars. What I love about Tacoma’s craft beer scene is that it offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a thirsty University of Puget Sound student, a cyclist looking to refuel, or a beer drinker with an appetite, Tacoma’s craft beer scene has you covered.
Engine House No. 9
Originally a firehouse built in 1907 to protect the people of north Tacoma, Engine House No. 9. is now a beloved Tacoma brewery and restaurant. Brewing four signature beers, E9, as it’s more commonly referred to by locals, also features more than 25 beers on tap, as well as a variety of bottled and canned beers.
611 N Pine St, Tacoma, WA 98406
The Red Hot
If you haven’t been to The Red Hot, add this one to the top of your list. This popular 6th Avenue bar has been a hit since its opening in 2007. Featuring an extensive tap list which changes daily, The Red Hot is more than just great beer. A full menu of gourmet hot dogs all cleverly named after iconic Tacoma landmarks sets this beer bar over the top. It’s no wonder The Red Hot has received positive press from Travel & Leisure Magazine, the Food Network and more.
2914 6th Ave, Tacoma, WA 98406
Narrows Brewing Company
A chic and modern setting, this young Tacoma brewery has an old and rugged history. Located at the historic Tacoma Narrows Marina, Narrows Brewing Company looks out upon breathtaking views of the Puget Sound and the iconic Narrows bridges. Come by land or by sea to enjoy this brewery’s rotating tap.
9007 S 19th St, Tacoma, WA 98466
Serving specialty and hard to find beers, patrons can purchase beer to go from this Tacoma bottle shop, or enjoy a pint in the tap room. With 10 brews on tap and 16 cooler doors brimming with craft suds, Pint Defiance is a must for any beer lover looking to fill their fridge or just grab a cold one after a long day.
20129 Mildred St W, Fircrest, WA 98466
Harmon Brewery & Eatery
Take a walk down Pacific Avenue and it’s hard not to breathe in the aroma of fresh hops wafting from this Tacoma brewery. Featuring a selection of brews named after local places, the Harmon has three other South Sound locations including Tacoma’s the Hub, the Harmon Tap Room, and their new Gig Harbor location.
1938 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402
A rotating tap of year-round favorites and seasonal specialties, you can enjoy a pint of Wingman in their tap room on Puyallup Avenue, or look for the bomb shaped tap handle at your favorite local watering hole. In addition to producing outstanding beer, Wingman Brewers also love supporting the community and a portion of every Wingman sale benefits a Tacoma-local charity.
509 ½ Puyallup Ave, Tacoma, WA 98421
Tacoma Brewing Co.
If you’re looking for something a little out of the ordinary, this St. Helens Avenue brewery has just the ticket. With a wide selection of beers to choose from, Tacoma Brewing Co. features experimental brews like their pomegranate porter, peanut butter & chili stout, big & spicy golden authentic ginger beer, and more.
625 St Helens Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402
Pacific Brewing & Malting Co.
A resurrection of Tacoma’s past, Pacific Brewing & Malting Co. was a Tacoma staple in the early 1900s, until getting shut down as a result of prohibition. Updated for the modern Tacoma, this Tacoma brewery is making its long awaited return and is set to open early 2014.
610 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402
Located in Tacoma’s historic Stadium District, this beer bar and eatery features a rotating tap of craft beers, a menu of gourmet burgers and bar food favorites, pool tables, shuffleboard, arcade games and more. Spend the day at nearby Wright Park or enjoy purusing local shops, then hit the Parkway for a couple cold ones and a bite to eat.
313 N I St #1, Tacoma, WA 98403
For the thirsty cyclist there’s Hilltop’s Broken Spoke. With a selection of more than 90 canned beers and ciders, Broken Spoke is the premier place to refuel after a long ride. Conveniently located just blocks from 2nd Cycle, this beer bar adds to the reason why Hilltop is Tacoma’s hub for bicycle enthusiasts.
1014 Martin Luther King Jr Way, Tacoma, WA 98405
As a lover of all things beer, I have always appreciated Tacoma as a sort of mecca for craft beer enthusiasts. From experimental brews, gourmet grub and destination breweries, Tacoma truly encapsulates the culture of craft beer. Cheers!
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