Downtown Olympia’s first brewpub to close, plus city set to hear ‘whiskey library’ plan

Fish Tale Brew Pub, the city’s first brewpub and a fixture on Jefferson Street in downtown Olympia for decades, will close, the business announced via social media.

“Our current lease expires at the end of June, and unfortunately, we were not able to come to agreement with our landlords after much back-and-forth on a lease renewal,” the owners wrote in an Instagram post. “Although this is not the outcome we had hoped for, it is the reality we must face. Our last day of operation will be Sunday, June 25.”

The Olympian was unable to reach business owner Josh Carrigan or the landlords, who have ties to a limited liability company called Solberg Brothers.

In late 2019, Carrigan and his wife, Kate Craig, acquired Fish Brewing Co., including the Fish Tale Brew Pub, out of a bankruptcy-like process known as receivership. Later, they decided to vacate the brewing space across from the pub and relocate it, although it’s not clear if that happened.

In their post, the owners thanked the staff and the community.

“These have been opportunities to adapt and evolve to grow, and we are so proud of our staff and management and how they have risen to the occasion to meet the challenges of our times over and over again. We are so lucky to have a great team.

“To our community: We want to thank all of you that have supported us over the last 3.5 years, and prior to us, for the last (30) years as this year marks the (30th) anniversary for Fish. We are so grateful for how you embraced us through COVID-19 and after, and we are grateful for the opportunity to be part of this place and the history with it.”

Other business happenings

Downtown Olympia is home to a Carnegie library building on Franklin Street, and now there’s a proposal before the city’s site plan review committee to turn it into the Carnegie Whiskey Library.

The site plan review committee hears early-stage development proposals, providing feedback on what will be expected of the project should it move forward.

“The project proposes transforming the use of the historic building into a whiskey library for the public to enjoy,” the narrative reads. “The project will consist of two stories of whiskey lounges and bars distributed around the building.

“The lower level will include accessible entries, a conference room, and lounge areas reserved for members only. The upper floor, with its significant high ceilings, will be open to all. The scope of work includes restoration work of the original wainscoting, flooring, and other interior details to be preserved. New additions to the 1914 building include interior finishes such as paint, wallpaper and furniture, both built-in and loose.

“A contemporary addition on the upper level will include an outdoor terrace, elevator, accessible restrooms, and exterior egress stair. The upper level additions will contrast with the old and are proposed on the north side of the building, above the addition that was built in 1950.”

There is a prominent name associated with the proposal. Thomas Architecture Studios, which has designed a number of downtown Olympia apartment buildings, is attached to the project. The committee meets again at 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 31.

Currently vacant, the majestic Olympia Carnegie Library is rumored as a possible new location for a whiskey bar business. Built in 1914 and operated as the Olympia library until 1978 the building has housed several restaurants, book stores and and even a church.
Currently vacant, the majestic Olympia Carnegie Library is rumored as a possible new location for a whiskey bar business. Built in 1914 and operated as the Olympia library until 1978 the building has housed several restaurants, book stores and and even a church.

Bicycle business Deschutes River Cyclery, which used to occupy a street-level corner of the Cunningham Building at Fourth Avenue and Adams Street in downtown Olympia, has moved, but not far. The business is now at 408 Fourth Ave. E.

And, as a result, Koko’s Valentina restaurant and tequila bar, which got its start in a space next to the bike business, has expanded into the former bike space.

A business called Valentina’s Lounge appears to have filled the space once occupied by Deschutes River Cyclery. The bicycle business has moved across the street.
A business called Valentina’s Lounge appears to have filled the space once occupied by Deschutes River Cyclery. The bicycle business has moved across the street.

Pints Dog House has opened in the Lacey apartment building called The Hub, according to its social media presence. The business is at 4444 Sixth Ave. SE.

So what kind of hot dogs do they serve? Quite a few, according to its menu. For example, the Edgar Dog is a beef dog with nacho cheese sauce, black olives, salsa verde, chopped onion and green onion. There’s also the Griffey Dog, a beef dog with bacon, mustard, neon relish and onions.

Pints Dog House, 4444 6th Ave SE Suite 100, Lacey, WA 98503. Photo taken, March 2, 2023
Pints Dog House, 4444 6th Ave SE Suite 100, Lacey, WA 98503. Photo taken, March 2, 2023

Three Magnets Brewing Co. is opening a beer garden and food court featuring the food truck Akashic, according to its newsletter.

The new space on their site at 600 Franklin St. SE, Suite 105, in downtown Olympia (on the same block at the Carnegie Library) is opening in early June, and is billed as dog friendly and family friendly.

They also plan to have live music and games, starting with the bean-bag tossing game known as cornhole and later tether ball, according to the newsletter.

If you know of a retailer, restaurant, coffee shop or other business that is opening, closing, expanding, remodeling, or changing its focus, send an email to reporter Rolf Boone at rboone@theolympian.com.

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