Seattle’s Pike Brewing Expands, Adds New Dining Concept

News by | Jun 2017 | Issue #125

Pike Brewing Company, one of the oldest breweries in the Pacific Northwest, will expand for the third time in 28 years when it opens Tankard & Tun next to Seattle’s Pike Place Market at the end of June. Originally founded in a homebrew supply store by Charles and Rose Ann Finkel in 1989, Pike has grown into a 350-seat pub and brewery that produced approximately 12,000 barrels of beer last year.

The tourist-friendly downtown location has been advantageous for Pike throughout its history, but a need for additional brewing capacity and a desire to be more creative with the menu prompted ownership to begin looking for other options citywide several years ago. Fortunately, vacant retail space in the same building spared Pike the difficult decision of moving some of its business off site.

“Our driving force has always been beer and food together,” says Drew Gillespie, owner and vice president of operations. “And we’re already in Pike Place Market, which is synonymous with food.”

Tankard & Tun will add nearly 100 seats to the multi-level Pike complex, while a new fermentation cellar will increase the company’s brewing capacity by 30 percent. Designed by local architecture firm Bumgardner, the expansion will be spread across three areas: a main dining room with views of Elliott Bay, a lounge next to the cellar with counter-height seating, and a smaller mezzanine looking down on the brewery’s mash tun and The Pike Pub, two stories below.

Chef Gabe Spiel, who started his culinary career at Pike and spent time as the executive chef at Washington’s Crystal Mountain Resort, will oversee a rotating 12–14 item menu focused on seasonal ingredients and seafood grown, foraged, or caught in the Northwest. The bar program will consist of craft cocktails and several guest beers and ciders along with a variety of flagship and small-batch beers from the brewery.

“We’ll really be encouraging more small pours, more experience-based pairing,” says Gillespie, explaining the plan to offer 8- and 12-ounce servings of beer in Teku glassware. “We’re tying to build a restaurant that’s adaptive. It’s an opportunity to do more of what we love in a different way.”