Best Brewers in Spokane

Field Report No. 20180313RC

Topic: Spokane Breweries, ultra-short list
Conditions: Hazy, in more ways than one

COMMENTS: Outside the front doors of The Blackbird, near Spokane's Riverfront Park, the hazy exhaust from the smoker has me thinking about lunch already, and it's not even 10. Inside, as the chefs stoke the fires, I accuse Patrick McPherson of intentionally using exhaust to divert the aroma toward the sidewalk, drawing people in. He denies it.

Patrick is a busy person, with both Manito Tap House and The Blackbird, so I keep it short, asking him just a couple rapid-fire questions.

QWhat are your favorite of the Spokane breweries that have popped up in the past few years, strictly by the quality of the beer?

A: I'll give you two that are putting out really interesting beers. First, I'd say Perry Street Brewing for sure, because Ben Lukes and the crew are in such a consistent groove over there. Second, for me it has to be Whistle Punk Brewing [downtown in the former Brooklyn Deli spot in Railroad Alley]. Particularly, a lot of brewers don't have excellent hop-forward beers when they first start, but right out of the gates, Matthew Hanson has done a great job. I've really enjoyed some of the hazy beers and interesting flavors coming out of there. I just wish they had more capacity so we could have more of their stuff on tap. 

Q: Shifting to food, what are your favorite menu items right now at each of your spots?

AI love the Tap House Empanadas up at Manito, and down here, it has to be the General Tso's Cauliflower -- and I don't even like cauliflower.

Q: No further questions.

A: Okay.