Why: Loowit Brewing, in the heart of downtown Vancouver, is a taproom and pub that opened its doors for business in 2012 with three taps. Now Loowit offers 18 taps with award-winning brews and cider. The food menu is a well-rounded selection, from appetizers to burgers, with made-to-order fresh options.
What I tried: My dining companion and I started with the Spundekase from the appetizers. I had the house green salad with pulled pork, and my dining companion settled on the brewer’s grilled cheese for our entrees.
The Spundekase is a large, delicious, golden pretzel served piping hot with a generous side of chilled German-style cheese dip loaded with paprika, minced onion and garlic. We found the dip paired well with the pretzel; the flavor reminded us of a spicy, freshly created cheese ball.
The house green salad is arranged in a basket with all the salad’s ingredients separate and at the diner’s discretion to either mix together or not. Mixed greens are flanked by crispy fried and chopped bacon, a sliced hard-boiled egg, grape tomatoes and sliced cucumbers. I opted to add pulled pork to the salad, as well. There are also a few types of dressing offered. I thoroughly enjoyed the salad and was especially impressed with the freshness of all the ingredients. I found the pulled pork was too dry, so I added dressing to it, which helped a bit. In my opinion, the pork would be ideal if it possessed a juicy BBQ presence.
The brewer’s grilled cheese sandwich comes with a diner’s choice of seasoned fries, a house green salad or slaw. My dining companion chose the fries. The sandwich is made on sourdough bread with tomato, bacon, and basil-topped cheese. My dining companion was very satisfied with the sandwich and especially liked what the basil brought to it.
Dining Out review: Loowit Brewing Company
Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
Where: 507 Columbia St., Vancouver.
Contact: 360-566-2323, loowitbrewing.com
Health score: Loowit Brewing does not have a routine inspection score on file but is scheduled to receive one. Zero is a perfect score, and Clark County Public Health closes restaurants with a score of 100 or higher. For information, call 360-397-8428.
We paired our meal with a couple of the beers on tap and found them agreeable.
Menu highlights beyond what I tried: Caprese, nachos, street tacos, chicken wings, and corn fritters are included in the appetizer and small plates selection. Sandwiches include a Cubano with braised pulled pork and sliced ham topped with pickles, Swiss cheese and dijon on a pressed baguette, and a BLT made with Loowit sauce on toasted sourdough bread. A Loowit burger made on a ciabatta roll and a black bean burger completes the burger options. Soft drinks include Boylans cane soda and Kombucha. Beer on tap is available in 12-ounce and 16-ounce sizes.
Atmosphere: Loowit has a cozy, relaxed vibe and a moderate amount of seating at the bar and standard height and tall tables and chairs. Above the sealed concrete floor, the walls are painted in a pleasant shade of blue trimmed with wood. Behind the bar, the wall is faced with wood. Taps emerge from a silver, metal mountain feature that is representative of Loowit’s logo of Mount St. Helens. Ceiling fans with decorative, cage-style lights add interest to the ceiling. Large-screen TVs, darts, and classic arcade games provide entertainment.
Other observations: The service is friendly and casual. On the evening of my visit, it was a full house and our food arrived quickly. Check Loowit’s website for their live music entertainment and event schedule. There is usually something on the calendar. Loowit offers to-go and pickup.
Cost: Appetizers and small plates range from $4 to $10. Sides are $2 and $3. Sandwiches cost $7.50 to $11. Burgers are $10.50 and $11. The house salad ranges from $9.50 to $12.50 depending on a protein addition. Soft drinks cost $1.38 to $4.61. Loowit swag and other merchandise starts at $1 and tops out at $69. Beer on tap runs $4.25 to $6. A growler fill costs $12.