Diamond Knot ready to crack open new alehouse

  • Thursday, March 28, 2013 8:45am

By Debra Smith

HBJ Freelance Writer

MUKILTEO — Diamond Knot Brewery’s flagship alehouse on the Mukilteo waterfront plans to reopen its doors April 6 after an extensive renovation and expansion.

The alehouse is located in a decades-old wooden building not far from the ferry landing at 621 Front St.

Diamond Knot has expanded into the other side of the building and plans to offer coffee, ice cream and family-friendly restaurant seating. By summer, there should be outdoor seating, too.

The city asked Diamond Knot to expand and offer ice cream, coffee and the like after the previous tenant went out of business. It seemed like the right time, given the upgrades to nearby Mukilteo Lighthouse Park, said Diamond Knot communication director Sherry Jennings.

Workers spruced up the alehouse, adding a new bar top fashioned from reclaimed wood, opening up the walls to reveal wooden beams and adding a kitchen.

Regulars take note: the renovation didn’t smooth out all the delightful rough edges. This is still the type of place a man who get his hands dirty at work would feel comfortable drinking a pint.

“Crusty industrial” is how Jennings jokingly describes the alehouse decor.

“The outcry was please keep it the same,” she said. “But we still want to celebrate the history of the building.”

Former Boeing employees Bob Maphet and the late Brian Sollenberger founded Diamond Knot in 1994 after their beer-brewing hobby got a little out of control.

The two founders started brewing their signature India Pale Ale in the 300-square-foot brewery still in operation at the back of the alehouse on Front Street. In 1999, they expanded and opened the alehouse.

Today, most of Diamond Knot’s beer is brewed at a separate facility off Chennault Beach Road. The company is one of the top craft breweries in the region, distributing ale to 12 states, Jennings said.

The company also operates two other restaurants: Camano Lodge on Camano Island and the Pizza House on Lincoln Avenue in Mukilteo.

It’s not clear how old the Front Street building is, but in the early 1970s, city records show that it was used as a bus barn. The old roll-up door is still on site.

Workers were scrambling to finish the last details before the scheduled April 6 opening, Jennings said. The most up-to-date information is available at the Diamond Knot Facebook page or by calling 425-355-4488.

The alehouse plans to christen their digs at 1 p.m. March 30 by smashing a growler of beer on the outside of the building.

The company is named for the 1947 Port Angeles collision of a freighter into the Diamond Knot, a cargo ship loaded with several millions of dollars worth of canned salmon from Alaska. A Herculean rescue effort saved the valuable cargo.

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