San Juan Island Brewing Co.

Brothers Tim and Sean Alyward teamed up with their stepfather, Verne Howard, to open San Juan Island Brewing Company in July 2017. But don’t let being the new kids on the block fool you. These guys know what they’re doing.

The big, beautiful brewery and (kid-friendly) restaurant is just a couple blocks from the Friday Harbor ferry landing. A basket of stuffed foxes named Barley, their mascot, greets visitors. Laid-back, alternative, island-inspired music from bands like Dirty Heads and Sublime blares through the speakers. You’re going to like it here.

All the brews are named after San Juan-inspired concepts like the Lane 4 Vienna Lager after the old ferry lane designated for Friday Harbor passengers and the Bull Kelp ESB named after the well-known Pacific Northwest seaweed floating in our waters. If you can’t decide what brew to try, order a sampler of five 5-oz. beers ($13). When asked which beer was his favorite, one customer had a tough time choosing. He even enjoyed the IPA, which most breweries make too hoppy for his taste.

For food, start with a sharable pretzel with Quarry No. 9 beer cheese dipping sauce ($9), or fresh ahi poke with fried wontons and cucumber sesame salad ($14). If they weren’t in the business of brewing, San Juan Island Brewery would be in the business of pizza. Order one of their wood stone pizzas and you won’t be disappointed. There’s a thin crust that’s crispy on the bottom, but still soft and chewy. It holds the toppings well. A fan favorite is The Pig War ($16) topped with Italian sausage, prosciutto and pepperoni—in honor of the San Juan Island’s historic war, sparked by the death of a pig but settled without a shot being fired. Another great choice, the Farmers Market pizza ($16), is topped with sweet caramelized onions, salty feta, mozzarella, sweet sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, and peppers. Eventually you’ll have to relinquish your seat, but at least you can keep the good times rolling with a take-home growler of your favorite brew.

For more content like this, check out other Restaurant Reviews here!

410 A St., Friday Harbor
360.378.2017 |

"You’re going to like it here."