Tuesday, January 21, 2014

All hopped up in Spokane Valley

   Passing through Spokane recently, I remembered I had started an Inland NW Ale Trail passport at Republic Brewing last fall, and decided to seek another stamp.  An exit onto Sprague Ave. in the Spokane Valley area led to a brewpub called Hopped Up, in an A-frame along the highway.  The building style just shouted "former restaurant" and yes, it had been an IHOP (International House of Pancakes).  So points for a cute name that recalls some former business activity in the beer-making space.
   Hopped-Up is owned and operated by Steve Ewan, who comes from years of homebrewing, and his wife, and they had more than half a dozen ales on tap in the bright, cozy pub area.
   They offer samplers at a dollar a pop in unusual little sampling mugs.  I had to try their Lemon Cream Ale in one of these guys.
   The deal here is that they make a cream ale with whatever fruit is in season (strawberries in June, huckleberries in September, etc.) and in January you take lemons and make lemon cream ale.
     The Ewans' brewing equipment, like their building, is recycled, in this case the stuff that No-Li used, back when they were Northern Lights Brewing here in Spokane.  No-Li has moved on to a much bigger system to serve the large area they now distribute in, and the old gear has a new home here.
As their webite indicates, Hopped-Up has a distinct preference for variations of the brown ale and cream ale styles, having two of each on when I was there.
(Visited 01/15/14)

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