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On Tap: Iron Goat celebrates sixth with a mix of joy and sorrow

UPDATED: Tue., June 5, 2018, 3:48 p.m.

Iron Goat celebrates its sixth anniversary Saturday with an all-day party beginning at noon.

The $5 cover includes a commemorative glass, with proceeds going to the Second Harvest food bank. After that, it’s $5 for a pint or a plate of food – brisket, pulled pork or portobello sandwiches with assorted sides – and $2 for iced tea, lemonade or soda. Live music starts at 2.

The festivities cap a year measured by both success and sorrow.

Two more IPAs were recently added to the downtown Spokane brewery’s line of 22-ounce bottles: the fruity, Mosaic-driven Brick and Steel (which debuted at last year’s anniversary party) and hazy, juicy Buzzsaw McThunder.

Longer-range plans also call for canning. In the meantime, the Goat has started selling 32-ounce Crowler cans out of the taproom; several are pre-filled with popular styles each day, and you usually can get anything else you want if the servers aren’t too slammed.

Seattle-area distribution launched last summer, and two more collaboration IPAs were brewed with bigger coastal breweries: the tart, passion fruit Goat in a Boat with Bellingham’s Boundary Bay, and spicy, triticale-based Bad Ryeligion with Astoria’s Fort George.

The kitchen continued to turn out a seasonally rotating menu centering around pizza and sandwiches and hosted its first two in-house beer dinners, with another expected by year’s end.

Clouding it all was the death of co-founder Paul Edminster from cancer last September at age 51. While coming to terms with their loss, the brewery crew scrambled to cover his specialized duties, from maintaining equipment to filing government paperwork.

“Our staff-slash-family – we think of them as family – totally stepped up,” said Heather Brandt, one of three remaining partners along with her husband, Greg, and Edminster’s widow, artist Sheila Evans.

“They picked up new skills, they jumped in, and I don’t think we missed a beat in terms of getting the job done. It was really great to see, coming out of a tragic situation.”

That includes Evans, who’s been helping out with the brewing operation. She also plans to start producing kombucha for the taproom.

On the beer side, the first wild, sour ales will be released in 750-milliliter bottles from the brewery’s growing barrel program. Fifty barrels already are in various stages of progress, with another 50 waiting to be filled.

Coming this summer under the Goat Works label are the Brett d’Or du Claret, a blend aged in Barrister cabernet franc and merlot barrels with crushed wine grapes; a Flanders red that’s spent two years in Townshend wine barrels; and a fruity Brett IPA partially fermented with wild Brettanoymces yeast.

For fall, plans are underway for an Oktoberfest celebration pairing house-brewed German styles with traditional menu items.

On the wish list for year seven is a bigger brewing system to keep up with growing demand. Production this year is expected to reach around 2,500 barrels, about a quarter of the potential capacity in Iron Goat’s current space.

“We don’t want to move, I can tell you that,” Greg Brandt said. “The west side of downtown has really, really taken off.”

Brewers Festival returns

Tickets are on sale for the third annual Spokane Brewers Festival, Aug. 4 at the Spokane Arena. This year’s event is being trimmed from two days to one and moving inside the air-conditioned Arena from its previous parking lot location.

Tickets are $25 in advance through TicketsWest or $30 at the door, which includes a tasting mug and 13 two-ounce samples (extras $1 each). A $50 VIP ticket gets you unlimited tastings including beers brewed specially for the festival. Proceeds benefit the Wishing Star Foundation.

Brewery watch

MickDuff’s took a bronze medal for its Knot Tree Porter at the North American Beer Awards in Idaho Falls over the weekend.

238 Brewing reopened for the season on Green Bluff, Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 6.

Priest Lake Brewing has opened behind the Little Store on Highway 57 in Priest River. Beers are available to go in 64-ounce growlers and 32-ounce cans Friday through Sunday from 3 to 7.

Save the date

The Hidden Mother launches Idaho distribution with a tap takeover at Coeur d’Alene’s Crafted on Thursday from 5 to 8.

Badass Backyard on Saturday features four variations on its French saison collaboration with Twelve String: dry-hopped, and a chardonnay barrel-aged version straight, with tart cherry, and with soursop and tangerine.

Post Falls Brewing and Four-Eyed Guys face off in the next Brewery Battle at Steady Flow Growler House on Saturday from 4 to 7, with the winner decided by customer voting.

Big Brothers Big Sisters will receive $1 from every pint sold at Perry Street Brewing on June 14 from 5 to 8.

Badass Backyard is featured for this month’s Fried Chicken & Local Beer Dinner on June 14 at The Yards Bruncheon. Cost is $35 for three beers and the family-style meal; call (509) 443-4410 for reservations.

Manito Tap House showcases seven Breakside beers June 14 from 6 to 8.

The Inland Northwest chapter of Beer Choir meets June 18 from 5 to 8 at Black Label.

Coeur d’Alene’s Filling Station on 5th hosts a Modern Times tap takeover June 21 from 5 to 8.


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