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New West’s first craft brewery celebrates a milestone — and you're invited

Steel & Oak celebrates a decade of brewing in New West at its SO10 - beer, music, magic and more.
Jamie Garbutt and Jorden Foss, from left, are the cofounders of Steel & Oak Brewing in New Westminster.

Steel & Oak Brewing Company is celebrating a milestone at it annual summer party — a decade of brewing in New West.

This year’s anniversary party, set for Sunday, June 23, marks the 10th anniversary of New Westminster’s first craft brewery.

“I’m still in awe of the amount of people who join us at our anniversary parties,” said Jorden Foss, co-founder of S&O. “It really feels like the unofficial kickoff to summer, and I’m looking forward to celebrating with everyone again this year.”

Because of this year’s special anniversary, Steel & Oak is throwing an even bigger party than ever before. The all-ages event is on Sunday, June 23 from noon to 5 p.m. at 1319 Third Ave. and includes an afternoon filled with beer, food and entertainment.

The day’s highlights include: Vinyl Alley (featuring a diverse selection of records from eight local vendors); food trucks (Between2Buns, CrackOn, VegOut, and Crema Ice Cream); kids’ activities; roving magic (Shawn Farquhar from Hidden Wonders will perform magic from noon to 1 p.m.); and live music (Social Medium and Worst Kept Secrets will be spinning vinyl and acoustic acts will be performing in Vinyl Alley.)

Attendees will be able to choose from 14 different beers, cider, wine from the Pacific Breeze Lounge, and house-made lemonade. To ensure that folks have a safe ride, Key West Ford will be on site with two Ford Mach-E’s to shuttle folks to New West Skytrain station.

“Bring your friends, family, and fellow craft beer enthusiasts to join in on the festivities. SO10 is an all-ages, dog-friendly, event,” said a S&O news release. “Whether you're here for the music, the magic, the beer, or the food, there's something for everyone to enjoy.”

Marking a milestone

It was 10 years ago that Foss and Jamie Garbutt decided to open a brewery in their hometown.

The upcoming SO10 bash is seen as a time to celebrate the brewery’s milestone – and the community that has supported the business throughout this past decade.

“What I've loved the most about operating Steel & Oak in New West over the past decade is all the amazing people I've been able to meet because of it. … It's my favourite part of this whole thing,” Foss told the Record. “Meeting people and learning about them.”

Along the way, Steel & Oak has undergone expansions to its tasting room and has won more than 30 awards for its brews.

Foss said he’s a planner by nature, but things change quickly in the brewing industry – so S&O must be ready to change its plans.

“This has happened repeatedly in our business,” he said.

What does the future hold for Steel & Oak?

“It's been no secret that Jamie and I are always on the lookout for another spot in the city to expand into but more on the hospitality side,” Foss said. “We almost signed a lease prior to COVID, and in all honesty got lucky that it fell through.”

While the brewery’s founders would like to “do something new” in New West, Foss said they’ll do it when the time is right for the business and for the owners, who both have young families.

“While we wait for the next opportunity, we'll continue to improve our customer experience at Steel & Oak,” he said. “We now have the Between 2 Buns smash burger truck permanently here Friday to Sunday, and we'd like to slowly grow that to seven days a week. So just become a more well-rounded hospitality space while working around the limitations we have being a manufacturer in an industrial park.”