Alaskan Brewery Co.’s new tasting room, pictured here at its Saturday, Nov. 3 grand opening, boasts 20 taps. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewery Co.’s new tasting room, pictured here at its Saturday, Nov. 3 grand opening, boasts 20 taps. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewing opens new, improved taproom

The airy hangout on Commercial Boulevard is the new face of a 32-year-old brewery

Thirty-two years in, and Alaskan Brewing Co. is still expanding.

The brewery which put Alaska beer on the map celebrated the grand opening of its new taproom Saturday on the brewery’s Lemon Creek campus.

Beer lovers flooded the space, and grabbed pints with friends during the afternoon event. Twenty taps line the wall below a blue, black and green mural depicting the northern lights over Mendenhall Glacier.

[Amid craft beer shuffle, Alaskan vows to stay put]

With 30-foot high ceilings, an open floor plan, and a location on the way to Costco, the new Alaskan taproom can better serve its primary purpose, said Communications Manager Andy Kline: sharing the brewery’s story through its ales, stouts and porters.

The old Shaune Drive taproom, located just a block away from the new one, was a bit smaller than the new taproom, Kline said, and a funky floor plan meant most of the space wasn’t well-used.

When tour groups dropped by in the summer, they’d quickly fill up the old taproom. There also wasn’t enough space to pour all Alaskan’s beer styles, Kline said.

“Our tasting room as existing was kind of fine for the winter, but in summer, you couldn’t walk,” Kline said.

Moving from just a handful to 20 taps means Alaskan can pour all of its experimental, small batch and seasonal beers at once. Back behind the new taproom, Kline showed off a walk-in refrigerator which houses its kegs.

Red lines lead from some of about 40 kegs. The new system is a big upgrade, Kline said.

“The old tasting room, we were essentially working out of kegerators. It was kind of like glorified home units. This is like ‘OK, finally,’” Kline said.

Alaskan has recently expanded facilities on either side of its beer production area. On the west side of the property, it negotiated the purchase of four lots previously owned by the City and Borough of Juneau. On its east side, the old Anchor Electric Building serves as the location for the new taproom. Alaskan closed a deal to purchase the Anchor building this spring.

Both of those purchases were largely made out of opportunity, Kline said. Space is at a premium in Juneau, and Alaskan knew both of these adjacent properties might be their only chance to secure more next-door room, Kline said.

Alaskan, like other alcohol manufacturers in Alaska, is limited in how many ounces of beer it can serve to customers on a given day. Customers are allowed to drink 36 ounces. Beer sold for off-site consumption is limited to 5 gallons. The new taproom is open 11 a.m.-7 p.m.


• Contact reporter Kevin Gullufsen at 523-2228 and kgullufsen@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @KevinGullufsen.


Beer lovers gather at the grand opening of Alaskan Brewing Co.’s new tasting room on Commercial Boulevard, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Beer lovers gather at the grand opening of Alaskan Brewing Co.’s new tasting room on Commercial Boulevard, Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewing Co.’s Andy Kline shows off a new walk-in refrigerator the brewery is using for its new taproom, which opened Saturday. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewing Co.’s Andy Kline shows off a new walk-in refrigerator the brewery is using for its new taproom, which opened Saturday. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewing Co. bought the old Anchor Electric Building on Commercial Boulevard as part of an expansion. The building houses the brewery’s new tasting room. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

Alaskan Brewing Co. bought the old Anchor Electric Building on Commercial Boulevard as part of an expansion. The building houses the brewery’s new tasting room. (Kevin Gullufsen | Juneau Empire)

More in News

(Juneau Empire file photo)
Aurora forecast for the week of April 8

These forecasts are courtesy of the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Geophysical Institute… Continue reading

A statue of William Henry Seward stands outside the Dimond Courthouse in downtown Juneau. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Juneau man convicted of sexual abuse of 15-year-old girl more than four years after incidents occur

JPD: Randy James Willard, 39, sent explicit videos to and engaged in sexual contact with victim.

Capital Transit buses stop at the Valley Transit Center on Thursday. Two bus routes serving areas of the Mendenhall Valley and near the airport will temporarily be discontinued starting April 22 due to lack of staff. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Capital Transit temporarily suspending two Mendenhall Valley routes due to shortage of drivers

Officials hope to fix situation by July; extra tourist buses also scaled back due to fleet shortage.

A fenced lot proposed as a campsite for people experiencing homelessness located next to the city’s cold weather emergency shelter, in the background, is also next door to a businesses where extensive construction is scheduled, thus prompting city leaders to rethink the proposal. (Photo by Laurie Craig)
Indefinite ‘dispersed camping’ for homeless proposed by city leaders due to lack of suitable campsite

Proposed Rock Dump site is next to long-term construction, more costly than expected, report states.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Wednesday, April 10, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Rep. David Eastman, R-Wasilla, watches as the tally board in the Alaska House of Representatives shows the vote against House Joint Resolution 7 on Thursday. Eastman supported the amendment. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
Alaska House votes down constitutional guarantee for Permanent Fund dividend

Guarantee had been discussed as part of long-term plan to bring state expenses in line with revenue.

Rep. DeLena Johnson, R-Palmer and co-chair of the House Finance Committee, speaks Thursday on the House floor about the state’s operating budget. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
Alaska House passes draft state budget amid warnings that state spending doesn’t balance

Changes during floor debate include $9M by Rep Andi Story, D-Juneau, for youth reading program.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy tells reporters that he needs to see lawmakers pass his reforms before he allows a permanent increase to funding for schools on Tuesday. (Claire Stremple/Alaska Beacon)
Alaskans support increased education funding, reforms, according to Dunleavy poll

Majority of those polled say they think “change and reform” are key to improving Alaska’s test scores.

Most Read