Fox Island Brewing is still a nanobrewery, but it’s growing.
On May 11, owner-brewer Jim Dignam opened his new Tap-In, a taproom inside Performance Golf, the driving range in Gig Harbor.
The business is a combination restaurant and taproom that will feature the lineup of Fox Island Brewing’s beers.
The name is shorthand for “Taproom for Independent Nanobreweries.” Dignam's intent is to feature beers from mini operations, much like his own, on a handful of the 16 taps he’ll offer.
“People may or may not have heard about these breweries," he said. "I’ve found them from my travels or are friends that run small breweries throughout the Northwest.”
Those guest taps include Whipsaw from Ellensburg and South Sound breweries E2W Brewing and Bad Bulldogs Brewery.
The Gig Harbor location is a taproom only. No brewing operation will be on site.
His brewing equipment and operation will stay put on Fox Island. Why not add a taproom to the Fox Island brewery? Because it’s in a residential neighborhood. Most guys would love a taproom in their garage, but most neighbors and wives do not. Residential rules also often forbid that.
Tap-In takes over the space where a sandwich counter previously operated inside the golf center, which also has an 18-hole miniature golf course and a gaming area.
Dignam’s menu consists of beer-friendly eats. It lists seven styles of hot dogs with gourmet toppings ($7, with chips), cold and hot sandwiches ($7.50 to $8.50), pizza ($14), nachos ($8), snack plates ($6) and more.
He’ll also feature local distilleries. The opening specialty cocktail menu includes a lineup of drinks made with spirits from Gig Harbor’s Heritage Distilling. He’s also got four local ciders and five local wines on the menu.
Dignam will run the taproom with his children, Courtney and Joshua Dignam, who also work at other restaurants. Both plan to keep their other jobs and work part-time at their dad’s taproom, but Dignam has officially retired from his day job to start his next act as a taproom owner. Wife Terrie Dignam, who is a teacher, also helped out in the creation of the taproom.
For locals who have come to rely on the Fox Island beer lineup at Zog’s in Fox Island, don’t panic. Dignam’s beer still will be in rotation there. He’s been assured by the manager, who happens to be his daughter, that it will stay put.
Where: 2416 14th Ave. NW, Gig Harbor (at the Performance Golf Center)
Info: 253-882-7752 or facebook.com/FoxIslandBrewing
Hours: Noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and Sunday. Noon to 10 p.m. Friday-Saturday.