New Camp Colvos Brewing opens in Tacoma with NY style pizza, here’s a first look
Camp Colvos Brewing opened in downtown Tacoma on Wednesday, June 30, 2021. Pizza lovers will appreciate this: the menu features fat slices of New York style pizza.
The Tacoma opening is an expansion for the Vashon Island based brewery that was founded by Matthew Lawrence. Lawrence opened his first Vashon taproom two years ago, but sold as a wholesale brewer for years before that.
“Tacoma was baked into the plan from the beginning,” said Lawrence, who has been working on the Tacoma project about as long as his Vashon taproom has operated.
Lawrence promised New York style pizza and that’s what was slapped down on the table on a first visit this week.
The pepperoni pie was covered with tiny cup-and-curl ‘roni slices with crispy edges that cradled a magnificent slick of grease. The crust chewed with exquisite resistance. Perfect leoparding spanned the bottom of the pie. The menu described an 18-inch pie, but what arrived was bigger, I’d wager. Cut into six fat pieces, Camp Colvos slices are meant to be folded over and jammed into one’s mouth.
Speaking of slices, diners don’t have to commit to a whole pie at Camp Colvos. Ordering pie by-the-slice is as easy as walking up to the counter and selecting classic cheese ($3.75), pepperoni ($4.25), fancy veggie ($4.75) or fancy meat ($4.75).
Whole pies are baked to order in a gas-fired deck oven that’s on display at the rear of the brewery.
WHAT TO KNOW FOR A FIRST VISIT
LOCATION: In the Brewery Blocks development, Camp Colvos is on the lower tier of the building that also holds Incline Cider.
Camp Colvos Tacoma is in good brewing company with E9 Brewing, Blackfleet, Sig Brewing, 7 Seas Tacoma and Tacoma Brewing Co. nearby. (Side note: Did you see my story in March about Dunagan Brewing moving from downtown Tacoma to across the Narrows? Read about it here.)
The Camp Colvos space is long-and-narrow with communal tables scattered throughout a two tier dining room. There’s a sprawling outdoor space with more communal tables. Belly up to the bar now that restrictions are gone.
KIDS: They’re welcome! However, they can’t sit at the bar. Plenty of kid-friendly room to roam. And pizza is always kid-friendly.
ORDERING STYLE: Order at the counter and listen for your name for your pizza order. There is no tableside service.
BREW: The brewery produces a huge range of beer, including a kolsch and Japanese style rice lager, Belgian pale ale, a red IPA and a double fermented brett saison. This week, there were 17 tap handles. Don’t miss the brewery’s famous Imperial Munich Lager, which is aged for two years in Westland barrels (you can order a side of Westland whiskey to go with).
Find a list of seven wines by the glass or bottle, plus two local ciders from Dragons Head and Nashi, both cideries that operate on Vashon Island.
Vashon will serve as home base for the majority of brewing for Camp Colvos, but there will be a small one-barrel system in Tacoma for small projects.
COCKTAILS: Yes, there are cocktails! The menu lists classics such as a French 75 ($12), negroni ($13), old fashioned ($12), a dark and stormy ($12) and a daiquiri ($12), among others.
PIZZA MENU: The menu is quite focused during the soft opening on pizza, but expect more items to enter the menu soon. Lawrence has plans to bring over the meat pies for which his Vashon Island taproom has become known.
On the menu now are four types of pizza-by-the-slice ($3.75 to $4.75) and eight specialty whole pies ($17 to $28). For whole pies, there’s a classic cheese ($19), a marinara ($17), tomato and pesto ($26), a mushroom pie ($26), sweet fennel sausage and arugula ($28), a Hawaiian ($25) and a fabulous sounding capricciosa with artichoke hearts, Italian cured ham, mushrooms, black olives and whole milk mozz ($28).
ON A FIRST VISIT: Get the Imperial Munich lager, a shot of Westland whiskey and a whole pepperoni pie, which easily will feed 2-3 ($22).
CAMP COLVOS BREWING TACOMA
Where: 2104 Commerce St., Tacoma; 253-314-5704
NEXT UP FOR PIZZA: BAR ROSA COMING TO THE HILLTOP
Bar Rosa will be a wood-fired pizza restaurant opening later this summer in Tacoma’s Hilltop neighborhood. Read all about it here.