The South Sound is quickly becoming a hub for fine breweries and cideries, and new taprooms are opening all the time. The local populace is thirsty for more options, and local brewers and cider-makers have responded.
With summer on its way, we thought now would be an excellent time to round up some of the up-and-coming taprooms in our region.
Triceratops Brewing Company
After years of brewing beer out of their garage, the brewers at Triceratops Brewing Company finally got their own tasting room in Tumwater in June 2017. With at least a dozen beers to choose from, and a community-supported-brewery model (think CSA for beer), this local brewery has a lot to offer. Check out Triceratops’ Facebook page for upcoming events, or stop by on a sunny day to sit in the taproom’s patio area and sip some delicious beer.
In its first year of business in 2016, Matchless Brewing took home two prestigious awards: RateBeer’s Best New Brewer in Washington award and a fifth-place finish in the Best New Brewer in the World category. With a variety of different style on tap, food trucks, and live music, this Tumwater taproom is well worth a visit.
Tart Hard Cider
Tart Hard Cider just opened its brand new taproom at Deschutes Landing in Tumwater this April. And it’s a good thing, because the local cidery needed a place to show off its delicious ciders, which are brewed from Pacific Northwest-grown apples. Try its flavors Granny’s Grudge, Apple Pie, Mojito Madness, and Ginga-Berry at the taproom, or purchase them in your local grocery store’s craft brew aisle. You won’t be disappointed.
Gig Harbor Brewing
It took two years, but Gig Harbor Brewing is now in Gig Harbor. The 10-barrel brewery chose to start brewing in Tacoma for lack of affordable space across the bridge. The decision paid off, and the brewery spent the last two years expanding and gaining distributors until it was able to open the new space in Gig Harbor in April. The taproom serves the brewery’s five beers — Giggly Blonde, Round Rock IPA, Sturdy Gertie Dbl IPA, Racing Rooster Red, and GH Imperial Stout.
Forward Operating Base Brewing Company
DuPont’s first brewery, Forward Operating Base Brewing Company, is catered to “America’s Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and those who love them.” The brewery, which started in 2017, serves housemade beer and great food, and provides an environment that the military community of DuPont will feel right at home in. Military-themed décor and memorabilia make this brewery the perfect home base for local service men and women.
Whitewood Cider Co.
If you’ve been to Downtown Olympia lately, you might have noticed the Whitewood Cider Co.’s “Teeny Tiny Taproom” that opened in 2017. Nestled in the food truck park, in what used to be an espresso shop, this adorable taproom serves as a perfect showcase for the cidery’s unique and exquisite cider varieties. Though most famous for its Red Cap dry cider, the South Sounder — made from 100 percent South Sound apples — is obviously our favorite.
Sluggo Brewing, Tap, & Kitchen
Sluggo Brewing isn’t exactly new — but its location is. Started in 2015, then closed in 2016, the so-called “nano-brewery” re-opened in a new space in 2017. The brewery and taproom are now located in Anmar’s Mediterranean Grill by the Tacoma Dome, where the two businesses team up to serve great beer (two of which are brewed by Sluggo) and great food. Sluggo’s happy hour is fantastic, the perfect way to spend an afternoon or kill time before a show at the neighboring dome.
Black Fleet Brewing
Black Fleet Brewing is set to open in downtown Tacoma sometime soon.
Locust Cider Taproom