South Hill’s Rainier Growlers will open for business Saturday with guest brewery Hop Valley. On tap will be five beers from the Oregon brewery, said owner Russell Hooper.
Rainier Growlers is a combination fill-up station for growlers, as well as a taproom. The store is starting with 40 beers on tap, with 90 percent of the handles rotating. Hooper’s intent is to offer a wide selection of West Coast craft beers, domestic and international beers. Wine and root beer also will be on tap.
While the opening won’t include a selection of bottled beer for purchase, that’s something Hooper is working toward. “We will be working on getting that during the winter/spring time frame,” he said.
Hooper is opening his beer store during a period of improved offerings in the East Pierce County beer market. Down the hill in Puyallup, craft beer enthusiasts can find Puyallup River Brewing Alehouse, Powerhouse Brewery and Station U-Brew. Also in East Pierce are three small brewers that maintain their own taprooms - Elk Head in Buckley, M.T. Head in Graham and the newly opened Lake Tapps Brewing in Sumner. For a detailed list of the region’s craft beer taprooms, check out this guide I published in September.