Parkway Tavern

Parkway TavernParkway Tavern
Parkway TavernParkway Tavern
Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

313 N I St
Ste 1
Tacoma, Washington, 98403-3905
United States

(253) 383-8748 | map

View: Place Reviews
Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 25 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by beertaster13:
Photo of beertaster13
3.75/5  rDev -15.2%
vibe: 2 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 3 | food: 3.5

I found myself in Tacoma yesterday and looked up this place since it came highly recommended by other BA's. It is true it is very relaxing but I found the atmosphere to be rather dull. There were 4 of us in the entire place at that counts 2 of my friends and one other guy at the bar. That being said, the service was incredible. They pour a full pitcher and then fill up all of the glasses and charge you pitcher price witch was only 7.00 for Bridgeport IPA. The selection isn't overpowering but they did have some of my favorites on tap including Moosehead, Moosedrool, Mac and Jacks and Bridgeport. We each shared a pizza that was good but nothing spectacular. Free pool is always a nice touch and the jukebox played great music. If I ever find myself in Tacoma again, I will go here simply for the cheap pitchers of Bridgeport.

 831 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4.4/5  rDev -0.5%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.5

Historic dive bar with big comfy booths, tables and outdoor seating as well. The quality of the beer selection is very good. Our server was cool and had good beer recommendations for everyone at our table. Selection is excellent with over thirty beers on tap. The burger was excellent even though the bun was a little stale. The halibut sliders were delicious.

 360 characters

Photo of nelks42
3.89/5  rDev -12%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 2.5

Best tap selection in Tacoma. Has become beer snobby in the last few years, so the vibe gets docked a bit. Also gets docked points simply because it is often very busy, which makes it less desirable in my opinion. Service is efficient, but sometimes get the feel that regulars get a lot more attention (which is typical and generally deserved). Food is weak compared to other Tacoma bars.

 388 characters

Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
4.23/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.25

This was one of the last beer stops I needed to try in Tacoma, and talk about saving the best for last.

Vibe was nice. We were there late afternoon on a Saturday, so it was mellow. Wood everywhere, I think the building is old. Lots of cool wood all over the place.

Beer selection is phenomenal, and vast. I think there were roughly 20 taps. Probably the highlight was a Terminal Gravy 2012 barleywine. Lots of other great stuff though.

The chicken quesadilla was great, and so was the soup. Prices are great, especially for the area. Will definitely be back.

 561 characters

Photo of ccnorthwest
4.09/5  rDev -7.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Great place to find good beer on tap. I have had multiple occasions with poor service here, but other than that, good food and beer.

132 characters

Photo of grittybrews
4.54/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

Photo of TheBungyo
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Braz
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%

Outstanding beer selection that's always changing. Must try for any beer geek in the south sound. Always busy anytime I've gone. Nice servers. Kind of has an old lodge feel to it. Simple menu but done very well. They have celebratory days like barley wine day with a bunch of them to try but haven't been able to attend one yet.

 328 characters

Photo of Phi_Psi_OR_Beta
5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of llschommer
5/5  rDev +13.1%

Photo of kmahe
4.61/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of paul_db
4/5  rDev -9.5%

Photo of Erik-P
4.75/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of bundtcake
4.3/5  rDev -2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Parkway is one of the standard places to hang out, once in awhile, in Tacoma for myself and pretty much everyone I know. The tap list is large, and it's typical for them to have some really, really good kegs. The staff is always nice, and ordinarily very attentive but they can get really busy.

It can get to the point when the mob trying to order is backed from the bar to the front door, particularly during events like brewer's nights. The huge crowd is more or less the only bad part about going to the Parkway. But usually it isn't a problem; usually there's not a huge mob.

The events like the Stone showcase and Barleywine Fest are the best things about Parkway in my mind. Barleywine Fest is the only annual event I look forward to (its better than Christmas and a birthday combined). This year, the standouts for me were the Big Al barleywine and a small wooden keg from the local Wingman brewery, but of course they always have stuff from the big breweries that everyone loves. For Barleywine fest they also have a tent out back with music and a few different selections. Everyone should go to Barleywine fest. Stone Brewers night was also cool, but the coolest part was that it took awhile for them to get to the bottom of all the kegs so there was delicious beer there all weekend.

The food at Parkway is real tasty. The guys I know all recommend the Philly cheese steak. It is good. Its hard to do better than Parkway.

 1,435 characters

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.45/5  rDev -21.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

A: It depends. Been here about 100k times. If you go on a weekend, Friday and Saturday night you might find elbow to elbow and tough to grab a brew. It is very much of a social spot. Many times its not to bad and I can usually grab a seat at the bar. Some good beer talk most of the time w/ some cool people but it seems to be a hub for wannabe beer know it alls which is annoying as heck.

Q: Always good.

S: Service is average to good, the place is run by the locals, some of the servers are slow and the majority of them could not tell you the differene between a hop and barley. One server is a true brewer and industry guy who is phenom! Glassware is usually a fail as everything is served in a pint glass or schooner.

S: Very hop heavy with some not so good mainstays to please the masses. However, they have great brewers nights and a rotate really ood barleywines on throughout the year plus really nice gems on a whim. They are missing the Belgian edge. Lots of WA, OR and CA beers. Even have many, many CO and East coast beers.

I cannot take this place seriously as a beer mecca like most tout this place. If you let uneducated/unqualified beer bloggers and your other buddies judge your "legit" beer contests you're not professional and do not belong in the big leagues. Some swear by it and think this place is the best thing since sliced bread. If you've ever been to true beer bars of the world you will know this place is just another local bar with a very good beer selection

 1,496 characters

Photo of mfavoino
4.78/5  rDev +8.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Been here a handful of times and am always able to try something new that you wouldn't see on tap at most places.

Atmostphere: Nice space with darts, shuffle board, and not a TV overload like some bars. Tall ceilings and appropriate lighting make it a comfortable place. I've done everything from go with a group of people on a busy night, to stopping by in the afternoon to read a book while I down a pint.

Quality: Top notch. Kegs are switched out with new ones all the time. Always fresh.

Service: Usually good, although it can get a bit slower if you're trying to order food and there is any semblance of a crowd. Most employees are friendly and knowledgeable about their beer.

Selection: Best in Tacoma in regards to quality/quantity of taps.

Food: Nothing to write home about, but still good. Quesadillas and Thai Chicken sandwich are solid choices.

 864 characters

Photo of Bookseeb
4.83/5  rDev +9.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

This is a great place, strange setting as far as where it's located in a neighborhood, so you have to park on the street like your going to someones house. Not a big selection of food, but simple and very well made. Alot of taps available and always rotating, they seem to have a lot of IPA's to choose from more than any other style available, even Pliny the elder at the time.

My wife and I hit this place twice in one weekend and both experiences with the food, beer and service were excellent. I would definately make this my go to hangout if I lived in Tacoma.

 566 characters

Photo of djeucalyptus
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

figured a recent and non-washintonian viewpoint might be a good thing. Swung by the Parkway on a recent visit to tacoma.

atmosphere: awesome traditional pub-style place... dark wood, nice grand bar, high ceilings, tap handles all over the cross-beams. interesting mix of people, which was cool to see. didn't really have a specific 'vibe' other than an awesome place to enjoy some solid brews.

quality seemed top-notch. everything as I'd expect, nothing that made me question any quality.

service was friendly, prompt, and succinct. just how I enjoy it. The few things I asked for had just been finished off and the list hadn't been updated yet, which kinda irked me, but more because I had got my mind set on somethin' and then it was gone. but it's okay, because the selection was impressive, with a wide variety of local oregon, washington, and california brews, including some harder to find oregon stuff that I can't even find in oregon! Selection is top notch.

Food was pretty decent given everything. solid pub food. I don't usually eat red meat, of which there was a pretty tasty sounding selection, so I opted for the salmon patty burger (which I was a tad cautious about) but it was awesome.

all in all, this is pretty much a must-stop, whether in Tacoma or just passing by. I feel like for the quality, tap selection, and value, I should have heard more about it. all around awesome experience.

 1,411 characters

Photo of trevorjn06
4.68/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I live a few blocks from here and couldn't be happier! They have about 30 beers on tap, many of them rotate weekly or bi-weekly and almost ALL are micro/craft brewers from the Northwest. It's great to see so many small and local places represented and sometimes there is an import or two thrown in the mix. The staff is pretty knowledgeable and helpful, the food is above average bar food and they have shuffle board, pool and darts.

The crowd that hangs out here is very friendly and I always end up striking up conversations with strangers and fellow beer lovers.
The only problem I have with this place is that I get drunk every time I go because they have sooo many great beers on tap and I want to try them all, not to mention I get to walk home. When the weather is nice you can sit out front and enjoy a drink.

 820 characters

Photo of czechsaaz
4.72/5  rDev +6.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

Under strange circumstances I've made it in here twice in the last month.

The first visit I was pretty impressed. It's a nice room, feeling like a converted house with a big dark wood front room and down the hall is a small shuffleboard table and a pinball machine. Another small room is off the hall in what looks like it might have been a bedroom a very long time ago. Tons of tap handles hang from the ceiling. A few from historical long defunct first wave craft breweries and some stellar one-offs.

The taps are all quality (except for Pabst) and all U.S. Micro. I'm down with this but for me a 5 on selection will need to mix in some imports for balance. But smaller Washington breweries are well represented. The tap list aside from their core list that's printed on the tables had almost completely turned over in the 2.5 weeks between my visits. And it was still all good stuff. So that tells me that they have a good rotating stock and are busy enough that nothing sits for very long.

So while Parkway had a definite neighborhood feel and a cast of regulars, it's worth checking out as a special trip. I'm shooting for being back for their Barleywine fest in April to see how it stacks up.

 1,202 characters

Photo of ccrida
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Ducked in here today on my way home for a few pints and dinner.

Atmosphere is pretty cozy, from the outside it looks like a random neighborhood bar (literally surrounded by houses). Inside the front bar has a bit stained wood paneled cathedral ceiling, lots of wood beams, almost ski lodge, tap handles everyware, still had their nice xmas display going, very well decorated without being pretentious or kitschy. In the back is a game room with a dart board, pinball and shuffle board, more booths, and a second back room that can probably host small private parties.

Quality of beers was pretty good, a nice selection of seasonal from all the best of the Sound, 18-20, plus a cask. Some were from OR, CA and CO as well, but all pretty solid, save for a few Mac & Jac's handles. Wine list looked like cheaper regionals, not sure about bottles, they had some memorabilia but I didn't see a bottle menu. Ok, now that I've had 3 beers that weren't tasting to hot (and scored way less then their average), I can't help but wonder about the quality, either freshness or tap-lines. Could just be I picked 3 duds. The first was Maritime's Xmas, which was horrible, and had to be the beer. The 2nd was a Seattle staple pale ale, Manny's, that I've never got around to having before but tasted different from the reviews. The last was a cask from Boundary Bay that was pretty disappointing, maybe a stale cask? I don't know, as I've never had any of them before and didn't have time for a 4th of something I've had to compare...but it cost them a 1/2 point, in overall experience at the least.

Service was good, laid back but rather attentive. Comfortable, they made a point of remembering my name immediately even though I was only passing through, and I caught them helping some local's remember the beer they most enjoyed on their last visit, as well as greeting them all by name as they walked in, but not in an obnoxious way.

Selection, like quality, was good (I don't see a big difference between these two categories).

Food was killer, I had a cheese steak that was solid, nice fresh sourdough roll, and the real topper was for an extra 50 cents I upgraded from chips to the soup of the day, which was an FANTASTIC tomato basil with Gorgonzola, all for only $7.50. Awesome.

Value was pretty good, beers were $4, and food was a steal, over all more then reasonable, especially considering the quality. This place was very cozy, a great spot to sample Seattle's finest. Still not sure if I just prefer Oregon beer that much more or if it really was a dirty tap issue...but must add that caveat.

 2,602 characters

Photo of John_M
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Stopped off here for lunch on the way to Portland today.

Parkway Tavern is a smallish pub, just off the downtown metro area. So it's actually located in something of a residential area, and I'm sure is a very popular destination for the locals.

The pub has a very laid back, informal, relaxed vibe, with lots of wood and green painted walls. There is pool in the back, as well a couple of TV sets in the front room. As you walk in, there are a few scattered tables, with an L shaped bar to the front and right. It sort of reminds me of some small Irish pub, except no pub has the kind of draft list this place has. Seemed to me they had around 20 tap handles, which included one cider and one macro swill handle. I believe they typically have one beer on cask and nitro as well, though this day the cask Jubelale was blown. Otherwise, the draft list was very impressive, made up almost exclusively of beers from Washington and Oregon. They did have one California beer, but as it was Pliny the Elder, one can hardly quibble or complain. Service was pretty good, though it took a bit longer then I thought it should for a pretty basic lunch of nachos, salmon chowder and taco salad. Likewise, the food was fine for what it was, though certainly nothing memorable. Prices were generally reasonable, with most pints going for $3.75 a pop. The Pliny was a bit more ($5), but still reasonable I thought.

I really liked this place and plan to make it a regular stop when driving between Seattle and Portland. Nice to come across another good beer stop in the Tacoma area.

Edit from visit in 5/11. Tap handles are up to over 30 now, and the quality level continues to be outstanding. Just an all around excellent place...

 1,718 characters

Photo of beerandhotdogs
4.85/5  rDev +9.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

My regular local. 20 taps (which also includes one cask and one nitro handle). Knowledgable staff about what they serve. Exceptional selection that rotates often. Brewer's nights are always awesome, which usually have every handle represented for the featured brewer on tap. They also have an annual Barleywine fest, IPA Fest, Barrel-aged Fest and other events highlighting different styles. Free shuffleboard in the back, and killer burgers. The Parkway keeps a nice, clean, comfortable atmosphere. Love it.

 508 characters

Photo of Hortus
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

Time to give you an update on this pub. It has been remodeled and the local crowd seems to be bigger than past reviews indicate. Definitely has developed a neighborhood following. It depends on when you go. Usually 5-10 people during a slow weekday and packed to overflowing during weekend nights. There is nothing exceptional about the decor. Just an ordinary pub with pool, darts, a golf video game, and shuffleboard. The remodel is still happening with brick being laid out front and a newly pained room (dark red walls and black tables and chairs) in back. I think they are trying to become a little hipper. The improvements look good.

15+ taps with good pacific NW beers. Lately have been doing a 'Randall' on Friday evenings. This is when they hook up a 2-foot hop column to a keg and pour the beer through the hops and into your glass. The two times I have seen it they poured Deschutes Inversion IPA and Bridgeport IPA through a column of cascade hops (UPDATE - have now had Boundary Bay IPA through Randall). Usually have a cask beer on the hand pump on weekends (a friend went in on Monday and said the cask was empty). The two casks beers I have had are Snoqualmie Wildcat and Skagit Scullers. I have also had Allagash Triple and Walking Man Homo Erectus on regular tap. They usually have an Imperial Stout or strong porter on tap.

The food is good and priced in the $6-7 range. A good deal considering the burgers, sandwiches and salads are actually pretty good.

Service is good. I am actually really happy with the guys that are working there now. Let's hope they stick around. They are friendly, will answer questions about the beer and serve you promptly. Hard to ask for more.

 1,695 characters

Photo of damjadi
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

The Parkway is a friendly little neighborhood bar with a diverse selection of beers despite having less than 20 taps. Occasionally has a beer on the hand tap. The atmosphere is friendly, and there is free pool in the back (although it is worth bringing your own stick, because most of theirs are warped). All the bartenders are helpful, and go out of their way to make newcomers feel welcome.

 392 characters

Parkway Tavern in Tacoma, WA
Place rating: 4.42 out of 5 with 25 ratings