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Thursday, February 21, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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On Tap: Favorite brewery haunts hosting holiday parties

The bar was crowded for Slate Creek Brewing’s final night on Oct. 18. (Carolyn Lamberson/The Spokesman-Review)
The bar was crowded for Slate Creek Brewing’s final night on Oct. 18. (Carolyn Lamberson/The Spokesman-Review)

Halloween is all about candy, of course, but it can also include beer. Among your foamier options for celebrating the season:

The Dark Woods night at Coeur d’Alene’s Filling Station on 5th, on Friday starting at 8, will feature mostly barrel-aged beers from Deschutes, Firestone Walker, Fremont and Grand Teton. There will be a Halloween costume contest with male, female and duo/group categories.

Look for the likes of Deschutes’ Black Butte XXIX imperial porter and Abyss imperial stout; Firestone Walker’s Parabola imperial stout, Velvet Merlin oatmeal stout, Pacific Gravity weizenbock and Stickee Monkee quad; the coffee and Spice Wars versions of Fremont’s bourbon barrel-aged Dark Star imperial oatmeal stout, plus its rare Unicorn Tears cherry stout; and Grand Teton’s barrel-aged Black Cauldron imperial stout and Double Vision doppelbock, Coming Home rye barleywine and Sour Brown.

Community Pint’s Halloween Weekend from Friday through Sunday will include rotating Randall-infused versions of the house Community IPA along with Dogfish Head’s Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout and Almanac’s sour Pumpkin Pie de Brettaville. Come in costume and get $1 off drinks.

Post Falls Brewing’s Halloween Bash on Saturday will offer family fun with treats for kids from noon to 4 p.m., live music from 1 to 4, food from Pi-daho Artisan Pizza until 8, a costume contest and a dance party starting at 6.

Mad Bomber’s third annual Halloween party Saturday starting at 8 will include singles and couples costume contests, a pumpkin carving contest, beer specials, merchandise giveaways each hour and live music.

Badass Backyard’s Halloween Haunted Beer Bash on Tuesday from 5 to 9 will feature new beer releases, a costume contest and games.

Drink and do good

Community Pint presents a Lands Council night Thursday from 7 to 10, with the environmental organization receiving $1 from every glass pour and growler fill.

Hopped Up hosts an all-ages Fall Frenzy fundraiser Saturday starting at 2 for the Rock Star Wheelers, an off-road vehicle group that supports local charities. There will be pumpkin painting, a pie-eating contest, candy for kids, raffles and more.

An Iron Goat pint night Saturday from 5 to 11 benefits the Global Neighborhood refugee assistance program, with live music.

Remembering Paul

Iron Goat celebrates the life of late co-founder Paul Edminster with a Scottish wake on Sunday starting at 5. Edminster died Sept. 30 from complications of cancer at age 51.

Freshly tapped

Perry Street has released this year’s version of its big Belgian-style tripel (11 percent alcohol by volume, 24 International Bitterness Units).

Bellwether’s Stout Porter (11.2, 35) is an imperial oatmeal milk stout brewed with Demerara sugar, lactose and toasted oats.

Post Falls Brewing is pouring a sessionable Villianous Vanilla Stout (5.5, 20).

This year’s SpoHop community fresh hop (8.5) from Iron Goat is a rich, malty imperial IPA with accents of the homegrown hops contributed by customers.

The Vol. 3 release of Whistle Punk’s imperial IPA (9.2) is brewed with Columbus, Citra and Vic Secret hops and double dry-hopped with Vic Secret for big berry, peach and orange notes.

English Setter has brought back its fall Open Season Apple Ale (7.4, 20), brewed with fresh cider from Green Bluff.

A closing note

Two North Idaho breweries announced last week that they’re closing their doors.

Wednesday was the final night for Slate Creek’s taproom, one week after the four-year-old Coeur d’Alene brewery was offered for sale online.

And Downdraft’s final weekend after three years of operation will be Nov. 17-19. Owners of the Post Falls brewery said they can’t afford the time and money it would take to succeed in an increasingly competitive market.

Five years ago, there were nine operating breweries in Spokane and Kootenai counties. Now, even after those closures, there are 33 with at least nine more in progress.

“Unless there’s a burst in the population of craft beer enthusiasts, every time a new brewery opens, there’s a brewery somewhere else that struggles,” said Jeff Whitman, who opened Selkirk Abbey in Post Falls five years ago.

“It’s a tough business,” Whitman said. “We’re struggling. I know a lot of other people are struggling. It comes down to who can stay the distance until things shake out.”

In a panel discussion at the Great American Beer Festival earlier this month, No-Li’s John Bryant told fellow brewers, “In this room, we can look left and right, and we probably all won’t be here in three years. … It’s getting really crowded out there.”

But craft beer culture is growing locally, Bryant said last week, and he hopes No-Li can help make the area a visitor destination for beer drinkers to bring in outside dollars.

“I’m still incredibly optimistic about Spokane,” he said. “A number of breweries here are going to do well. There are headwinds to anything, but there’s definitely an upside.”

For a full rundown of local beer events and news see

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