About a month ago Luke and I visited Parallel 49 Brewing’s newly renovated tasting room on Triumph Street. To say that I was excited would be an understatement. I’ve always had a soft spot for Parallel 49…they were one of the first craft breweries that I stepped foot in, and are largely responsible for developing my passion for craft beer. I’ve spent more than a handful of Sunday afternoons enjoying a flight with friends in their taproom, and have come to appreciate their consistent quality, wide variety of beer styles, and their unique label artwork (shout out to Combination13).
With that being said, Parallel 49’s old tasting room had always left a little to be desired. The original space was bare bones, with the focal point being the beer, not the decor. When compared to the spaces of other B.C. craft breweries, they were lagging behind. As new breweries continue to pop-up, it’s become increasingly important to have a well-designed space that complements the high-quality products that are being poured from the taps. When paired with top-notch beer and delicious food, a sleek and comfortable venue gets people talking and keeps them coming back.
Parallel 49 knew that updates needed to be made. After closing their tasting room down for a few months of renovations, their new taproom dubbed “Parallel 49 Street Kitchen” is now open for business (and has been for a couple months now). Needless to say, it’s quite the upgrade!
Here are the highlights:
OVER 20 BEERS ON TAP
Gone is the chalkboard beer list. Parallel 49 installed a massive digital beer list that looks similar to a flight schedule board. Oh, and did I mention? They now has OVER 20 BEERS ON TAP in their tasting room, including an experimental IPA series, employee pilot brews, barrel-aged creations, and numerous guest taps. And yes, they’ve got cider too. I guess the airport-style board makes sense when you’re pouring as many tasty brews as YVR is offering flights. Don’t quote me on this…I didn’t actually do the math.
HELLO, STREET KITCHEN!
A common sight at the old Parallel 49 was seeing a local food truck parked outside. As part of the renovation, the brewery has decided to bring the food – make that food truck – in-house. Literally. They’ve parked a permanent food truck inside the brewery, hence the new name for the taproom/restaurant – ‘Parallel 49 Street Kitchen’. No need to step out onto the curb to order some delicious eats – they’ll bring it right to your table now 🙂
The menu, created by head chef Jason Harper, is no joke either. Luke ordered fish tacos while I enjoyed their pork belly tacos featuring three different kinds of pickled veggies. They also have solid comfort food options like chicken and waffles, which are acceptable as brunch (yes, they have BRUNCH now) or lunch, dinner, between meal snacks…you get the picture.
MORE SEATING + NEW PATIO
Parallel 49 has developed an open concept for their new tasting room by installing multiple garage-style doors along the wall facing the street. This allows them to open the doors and let in a lot of natural light. They’ve upped the amount of seating as well, so you’re less likely to wait for a table. You can also walk through the massive doors and onto their new patio, featuring bar-style seating the parallels the sidewalk!
SEPARATE ENTRANCE FOR GROWLER FILLS AND CAN/BOTTLE SALES
One problem for those that visited P49’s old space was that on busy nights where the tasting room was at capacity, you would have to wait for people to leave to purchase beer-to-go. This was less than ideal, so P49 has created a separate entrance for off-sales. Don’t want to sit in the tasting room for a beer? Get in, get your growler fill or bottles/cans, and get on with your day!
One bathroom wasn’t cutting it. They now have a lot more. Enough said.
The brewery staff graciously took Luke and I for a tour of Parallel 49’s facilities. Although I’d been to the brewery many times, and had checked out their barrel-aging room and packaging area during the Brews Brothers Vol. 3 launch party, I hadn’t actually seen their brewing facilities before. Needless to say, with the amount of beer that they’re producing, the facilities were quite impressive.
We got to smell some hops, taste delicious malts, and sample some of P49’s Wobbly Pop Pale Ale straight from the bright tank, which was pretty dang fresh.
Touring a craft brewery and learning about their operations and the intricacies of the brewing process is always a fun experience. We were told that Parallel 49 is currently brewing 24 hours a day, five days a week – utilizing a day crew and night crew – to keep up with demand. That’s pretty impressive for a B.C. brewery that only started their operations a few years ago!
The new upgrades to their facilities are especially great to see because they reflect the success the brewery has had so far, and give their beers a proper platform to shine. Congrats to Parallel 49, and thanks for your hospitality during our visit to the brewery. We’ll be back soon!
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