Seattle Beer Week 2023

A Six Pack of: Family-Friendly Taprooms

Most breweries are great for kids (and dogs). A few go above and beyond.

By Allecia Vermillion and Eric Nusbaum May 26, 2023

Chainline Station, an offshoot of nearby Chainline Brewing Company, offers excitement of both the  IPA and train variety.

Image: Amber Fouts

Seattle Met is celebrating Seattle Beer Week with a daily six-pack of brewery or beer recommendations.

Most taprooms are, by definition, hospitable to kids: casual, slightly noisy spaces that offer washable surfaces and a generous attitude toward bringing your own food. (Of course, plenty of drinkers are over taprooms that resemble preschools, so thank goodness for 21-plus breweries like Standard Brewing, Aslan, and the original Cloudburst, Holy Mountain, and Black Raven taprooms.)

A few places, however, go the extra distance for patrons still too young to imbibe their product. Some offer great snacks, activities, or just room to explore without bothering other customers. Here are some spots where both parents and offspring can while away an afternoon.

Chainline Station


Chainline Brewing Company brews (and pours) in its sleek taproom over at the Kirkland Urban development. But a satellite taproom occupies a converted caboose parked along a former railroad corridor, converted to a public park. The railway station–themed beer garden even has some stools inside the caboose, plus pizza and ice cream sandwiches on offer alongside the accessible ales and lager. The taproom is flanked by an urban garden, a splash area, pickleball, basketball, and sand volleyball courts, and lots of room for kids to explore within parents’ sight lines (sorry, beer can’t leave the patio).

Bale Breaker and Yonder Cider


A titanic brewer from Yakima and a beloved local cidermaker run this joint taproom in the thick of Ballard’s brewery district. To be clear, both beer and cider are top-notch, but the real reason families descend on this spot might have something to do with the enormous walled-in yard. Little kids can explore the ramps, planters, stairs, and benches without getting in anybody's way. With a little supervision, the photo booth and fire pits also provide lots of fun. If all else fails, offer up your phone so kids can admire the “Dogs of the BBYC Taproom” Instagram account.

One of the best smash burgers in town just so happens to reside at Rooftop Brewing.

Image: Amber Fouts

Rooftop Brewing Co.

Queen Anne

The hospitable hangout near the Ballard Bridge’s south end supplies chalk so kids can draw on the metal walls outside. Cornhole and Jenga sets make an appearance in warmer months. The taproom stocks juice boxes, chips, and Mexican Coke to tide minors over while you settle in with a Gateway hazy pale ale. Sometimes families come just to grab smash burgers and crinkle cut fries from Smash That Burger, the food truck permanently parked out front (younger customers dig the Chester, a hybrid between a grilled cheese and a plain cheeseburger).

7 Seas Brewing

Tacoma, Gig Harbor

The 7 Seas taproom in Tacoma is the kind of place that works well as a backup plan if your family picnic gets rained out. With long tables, high ceilings, and plenty of space for everyone, it has the feel of an indoor park—just one that happens to have a bar in the middle, shuffleboard, and pinball. You can bring your own food, or get down on smash burgers, tater tots, and even a lobster roll at the in-house food counter Canteen by Camp Colvos. 

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Beer for the parents, apples for the kids at Fremont Brewing’s urban taproom.

Fremont Brewing


Back when it was slightly less massive, the seminal brewery led the way on establishing Seattle’s taproom culture. Drinking a B-Bomb while your kids played with a box of old fire trucks and ate free pretzels felt novel, even a little daredevil. Now, of course, things are different. And Fremont’s Urban Beer Garden has evolved into a sprawling indoor-outdoor hang, with more space, and seemingly more kids and more dogs with each passing year (the taproom now offers free apples as well as pretzels).

Optimism Brewing

Capitol Hill

Is it a brewery or a highly versatile third place that happens to make beer? The small dedicated play area in one corner of this enormous taproom sees heavy action. The tables in the immediate vicinity are in constant use by families (kid-averse drinkers can stick to the other side of the building). A food truck sets up shop in the courtyard most days, but Optimism also lets visitors bring in their own food, a boon for parents whose kids aren’t into spicy noodles or poke bowls—and for the toddler birthday parties that proliferate here on weekend afternoons.

Guide to Local Beer

Here's what's on tap for the rest of Seattle Beer Week

Best of the Beer Aisle | New Breweries | Local Lagers | Breweries with Food | Family-Friendly Taprooms

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