3801 S Truman Road, No. 1, Washougal, Wash., 360-844-5932, 54-40brewing.com. 2-8 pm Wednesday, 2-10 pm Thursday-Friday, noon-10 pm Saturday, noon-8 pm Sunday.
54°40' sits deep in a Washougal industrial park, past the well-signed entrance to a garbage transfer station. To hear brewer-owner Bolt Minister tell it, that makes it a perfect location. "We've got a bunch of guys who come in after work there," he says. "They crush some beers, let me tell you." This tells you pretty much everything you need to know about Minister, who brought home several notable awards to Portland's Old Town before starting his own spot, taglined "The Everyman's Craft Beer." Minister favors a camouflage ball cap and clean, sessionable IPAs. His new spot loosely channels a Brady Bunch-era split-level, with a gas fireplace and tall wall of wood paneling, which pairs well with a soundtrack of late-Moon Who vinyl. The business is mainly aimed at producing bottled IPA and Kölsch for distribution, but there's a steady stream of one-offs at the taproom
Drink This: Minister experiments plenty, but his real strength is in balanced classics. I'm partial to the Kascadia Kölsch.