Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

BikeroBrew craft brewery bicycling tours return to Tacoma

Ron Swarner

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BikeroBrew-Tacoma-Odd-Otter
This is how BikeroBrew rolls at Odd Otter Brewing Company in downtown Tacoma. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Riding a bicycle is fun. Drinking craft beer is totally awesome. What happens when you mix the two together? Totally awesome fun! And judging from the success of last year’s BikeroBrew tours, combining craft beer, city tour and cycling is an indicator of why Tacoma’s annual May Bike Month is a vibrant, popular happening.

Last year, BikeroBrew co-owners Chris Stanis and Jonathan Teeter offered several 5-mile loop, guided bicycle tours to Tacoma breweries. Justin Grisham and his wife, Jenn, lead our tour, complete with historical Tacoma tidbits and hysterical Tacoman antics. Our group busted out a beeryamid (human pyramid after drinking beers) before mounting the saddles at each brewery — Pacific Brewing & Malting Co., Wingman Brewers, Odd Otter Brewing Company and Tacoma Brewing Co. No way did the other groups touring the same loop have as much fun as we did, but all tours led off with a brewery tour of the launch-point brewery.

This year, Stanis and Teeter will offer BikeroBrew tours the first and third Saturday of the month, 2-6 p.m., beginning Saturday, May 7, and running through Aug. 20. The four Tacoma breweries return for another year. The Grishams will be back in the saddle, too.

Stanis says Dunagan Brewing Co. and The Harmon will join the 2016 BikeroBrew season. The four brewery stops will vary tour to tour.

“We’ll have five stops on each tour — four breweries and a whiskey Distillery,” explains Stanis. “Pacific Brewing & Malting Co., Wingman Brewers, Old Soldier Distillery, Dunagan Brewing and Tacoma Brewing are the stops this Saturday.

“We’ve added some history points too,” adds Stanis, “and will be highlighting more of the legend and lore of the City of Destiny — ruins of the prohibition era, Shanghaiing, underground opium dens and more — during the peddle time between venues.”

Stanis and Teeter also picked up a couple tandem bicycles from the Tacoma Bike Swap Saturday. They will be available to rent for duos needing bicycles or the desire to do the work of one.

“One of our key objectives this year is to build up a fleet of rental bikes so people who don’t own one can still come enjoy the tour,” says Stanis.

BikeroBrew cyclists slash craft beer drinkers pay a $48 registration fee to participate.

With your registration, you receive: guided tour to four breweries plus one whiskey distillery, beer and whiskey tastings (40- to 50- ounces total), discounts on brewery swag and a sweet BikeroBrew headband.

What you need: A bicycle, helmet, verification you are 21 or older, a thirst for adventure and beer, and possibly the nerve to join a beeryamid.

There are still slots available for Saturday’s BikeroBrew outing. Clicking “Register” at bikerobrew.com or the organization’s Facebook page will lead to an Eventbrite registration.

BikeroBrew requires a lot of sustenance — the kind that incorporates barley, wheat and yeast. Of course, BikeroBrew encourages responsible drinking, so anyone who becomes too sloshed will be encouraged to take the bus home. And if you miss this week’s bicycle crawl, don’t worry — there are plenty more tours this spring and summer.