Photos and story by Innkeeper Shelley Sharp
There’s a new tap room in town and it’s all about small-batch beer. Welcome to Cease and Desist.
Meet the Man Behind the Counter
Sporting a hipster beard, black-rimmed specs, and “Dwarves” t-shirt, entrepreneur and co-owner Phil Carvalho says of Friday Harbor’s newest watering hole, Cease and Desist, “The concept is unique rotating taps that you won’t find anywhere else on the island. Our passion is craft beer from independent brewers who aren’t afraid to mash-up undiscovered flavors.” Case-in point, the Imperial Peanut Butter Stout I sampled from Nut Crusher Brewery in Redmond, Oregon was unlike anything I’ve ever had the pleasure of drinking — thick, rich, frothy, with a strong nutty aroma and taste — like drinking a strong dark beer and eating the best peanut butter cookie of your life at the same time — dessert anyone? A few other offerings during my visit included: No Collusion Stout from Double Mountain and Old Bruin from pFriem, both Hood River, Oregon brewers; Streams Wild Ale from Garden Path Fermentation in the Skagit Valley; and Viva la Pineapple! from Portland’s Uncle Nat’s Cider. Expect 12 to 15 offerings when you visit.
Belly Up to the Bar
The tap room itself has an local, intimate, industrial vibe. Sparse, with metal stools at a long wood bar, wood plank paneling, and a few oars and flotation rings as wall art, the establishment welcomes residents and visitors at its waterfront location under Downrigger’s Restaurant. “After working in the Portland beer scene for a number of years,” says Carvalho, “my business partner Justin Heikkinen and I wanted to move to a small waterfront town where we could share our knowledge and love of craft beer with the community. We were blown away that this space, with its incredible views, was empty and available.”
Since their soft-opening in July, it appears the pair picked the right place to set up shop. Word-of-mouth business is already good and they have plans to expand seating. “We also want our customers to become more excited and knowledgeable about what’s going on in the Pacific Northwest beer scene,” Carvalho explains. “We plan to start a monthly “bottle-share” event where anyone can bring in a beer or cider they want others to sample. Then we’ll open it and pour it for guests to try.”
Crowlers not Growlers
Also on their docket are selling crowlers (individually seamed and sealed aluminum cans) of their current selections. Hailed as more effective way of at keeping your brewskie fresh and effervescent, the crowler machine prototype was developed in Colorado and has now caught on with beer geeks like Cavalho and Heikkinen. “We’ve ordered our crowler and are just waiting for it to show up!”
A Focus on Liquid Libation
Cease and Desist is a beer joint, and that’s okay by me. Bar snacks will be available soon, and there aren’t plans for a food menu. “We want to be known as a place for friends to gather,” Cavalho says. Currently, you can find them open from 2pm to midnight most days. When things slow down they’ll close on Mondays and Tuesdays. A pint will run you $6 to $10 and is worth every sip.
Cease and Desist Brew House is located at 10 Front Street, #105, on the Friday Harbor waterfront