E9's original impressario, Dusty Trail, right, with a bartender in 1994.
First, there was Tacoma Brew, a tribute to T-Town's beery history. Now, there's Centennial Ale, on tap through the end of the year to celebrate the 100th birthday of Engine House No. 9's -- the fire house, not the pub.
Engine House No. 9 celebrates two milestones this summer: the 100th anniversary of the historic fire house's construction, and the 35th anniversary of the restaurant's creation.
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To mark the occasions, E9 brewer Doug Tiede brewed Centennial, a dry-hopped pale ale with a burst of citrus, a cloud of copper and a dry finish. At about 50 IBUs – International Bittering Units, which measure the piney punch of beer – it's a crisp quaff.
"It's got more aromatics and flowers rather than bitter," Tiede said. "It'll keep the attention of beer geeks."
Centennial Ale will be on tap (and in growlers to go) through the end of the year, E9 manager Craig Dickens said.
Dickens also sketched out party plans for the E9 fire house, a brick building that's on the National Register of Historic Places for its architecture and social history. Starting July 23, Dickens said, there'll be a week-long round of trivia games and maybe some music, culiminating with a family-friendly barbecue and carnival that may include buggy rides, a dunk tank, and relay races.
Stay tuned for solid info.
In the meantime, care to share your memories of Engine House No. 9?
I know Dusty Trail turned a seedy rock 'n' joint into an iconic restaurant in 1972. I know E9 became Tacoma's first brewpub in 1995. I know it led the way in smoke-free dining.
But I want to know if it's true that Kip, a horse from the old fire house, is buried on the south side of the building, in what is now Masa's parking lot.
Fill me in on memories and history, folks.
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