February 1

Beer Here

Take a Peek Inside TeKu Tavern

High-tech beer bar TeKu Tavern is named after the TeKu glass, a gorgeous vessel designed specifically to enhance the experience of drinking craft beer. Owners and spouses Karrie Stewart and Rich Powell serve local and international beers from the stunning row of 50 taps in these curvy glasses. The pair opened 21-and-older spot in October 2016 with hopes of elevating Seattle’s beer scene.

“We wanted to create a place where beer quality is the most important thing. There is a lot of great beer being made in Washington, but there just aren’t enough places focusing on taking care of that beer and presenting it as the brewer intended, from the appropriate glassware, to the way the beer is poured, and how the beer is taken care of,” Stewart said.

She explained that all of TeKu Tavern’s taps have their own regulator and options for four different gas blends—varying percentages of CO2 and nitrogen. “We can adjust the pressure to properly pour the beer at the correct dissolved CO2 content. We also have a strict line-cleaning regiment to ensure that every beer we pour from our taps tastes the same as it would if you were at the brewery’s own tap room.”

The airy space is dotted with a few standing round tables and several large tables with benches, which make it a great stop for groups. Aside from the 50 taps, the tavern sports 29 fridge sections that hold bottles and cans of beer, cider, sake, mead, and even some non-alcoholic options. Growler fills are available from most of the taps, and customers can purchase 32 and 64 ounce growlers, too.

The owners are all-in on offering an unparalleled beer menu. “Our approach is to get the best beer that we can get our hands on. There’s a lot of really great beer being made here in Seattle and in the Pacific Northwest and we have a pretty solid local and regional representation. That said, there’s a lot of great beer being made elsewhere, so we also have a mix of beers from around the country and world,” Stewart said.

The tap menu shifts away from listing styles. Instead of a big list of IPAs, stouts, and the like, customers can make their selections based on flavors. “We think that flavor profiles are a more natural way to organize beer in a menu. While a beer style might give you an idea of what to expect, you need to already be familiar with that style. A menu of up to 56 different draft beers can be intimidating enough, but if you aren’t super familiar with beer styles it can be overwhelming. We think that giving an idea of what the beer flavors are makes the menu a bit more approachable,” she said.

TeKu Tavern holds plenty of beer-centric events. The beer hot spot recently held a Belgian beer week that featured more than 20 authentic Belgian beers on tap, and customers can expect a sour beer tap takeover in February. Other events include trivia nights, beer pairings, and more. There is no kitchen but TeKu Tavern sells a limited amount of small snack items, and patrons are encouraged to bring food from local restaurants and nearby food trucks. This spot is for folks 21 and older, but dogs are welcome here and tavern dog Kona will likely greet you as you enter.

TeKu Tavern is located at 552 Denny Way and it is open Monday through Thursday, noon–10pm; Friday, 11am–midnight; Saturday, noon–midnight; and Sunday, noon to 10pm.

Story and Photos by Ethan Chung

At The Center

SLU is the geographical center of Seattle