Coming Soon: Seasonals from Pyramid Brewing Co, Slippery Pig Brewing, and Narrows Brewing. Oh, and the upcoming Gig Harbor Beer Festival. Wow! I better get going! April 15, 2014
Catching Island Fever April 10, 2013
Here in the PNW sunny days are few and far between. When the sun does come out the best thing to do is get into your car are drive somewhere with a gorgeous view. Bainbridge Island is one of those places. Just a ferry ride from Seattle, the island is quaint, picturesque, and laid back.
There are a couple of places I like to hit when I visit. For lunch, I usually stroll into The Harbour Public House. Just steps from the village this hip public house serves delicious, organic cuisine and some of the freshest craft beers on the island. 12 on tap and 1 on cask to be exact! You won’t find Coors or Bud Light in here. You also won’t find children. The Harbour is 21 and over.
Located in a fully restored 132 year old house, The Harbour prides itself on using only fresh, locally grown ingredients in their dishes, pouring local craft beer, and showcasing local artists in the decor. On a clear day the famed Seattle skyline is visible from the back patio along with a lovely view of the harbor below. The Harbour is a “must see.”
Another “must” is the Bainbridge Brewing Co. Just off the beaten path, the brewing company captures the laid back spirit of the island. The tap-room is pretty, open, and welcoming. The beer? Well, it’s pretty darn tasty!
Kommenter Kolsch (4.8% ABV) – Golden Grahams aroma. Sweet, crisp, effervescent. Lightly malted. Sweet finish.
Northwest Pale Ale (5.4% ABV) – Malty. Very nicely hopped. Smooth, caramel notes throughout. Very easy to drink.
Eagle Harbor IPA (6.0% ABV) – Hoppy aroma, soft citrus. Tart grapefruit finish. Only 60 IBU’s so very easy IPA to drink.
Puget Sound Giant Hoptopus IPA (8.8% ABV) – Hop/floral aroma. Sweet and malty for an IPA. Lovely grapefruit finish. Another IPA for the IPA fearful!
Battle Point Stout (6.6% ABV) – Smokey aroma. Rich, malty, dark chocolate bitterness. Smokey finish. Definitely a sipper.
Bainbridge Island is a great place for a day trip. To get there from the peninsula you can cross the Agate Pass Bridge just outside of Poulsbo. From Seattle you can hop on the ferry. And you don’t need to wait for a sunny day to enjoy it, because let’s face it…it’s the PNW!
Coming soon…New Glarus Brewing, Rogue Brewery, Puyallup River Brewing Co, and Lagunitas! February 14, 2013
Sailing the 7 Seas January 5, 2013
The pride of Gig Harbor has moved to a new pad. 7 Seas Brewing, home of the “Ultimate Proper Pint,” re-opened their doors last month. Newly located in what was the QFC grocery store and just steps from historic Gig Harbor waterfront, the new spot is bigger, shinier, and full of 7 Seas’s best brews!
Co-owners Mike Runion and Travis Guterson started the brewery three years ago in a tiny tasting room just off of Hwy 16. Having a deep concern for the environment, Mike and Travis pride themselves on operating a “green brewery.” They can their beers instead of bottling and recycle spent grain to local farmers for livestock feed. When it comes to setting up the tasting room, Mike used reclaimed wood when he built the long, gorgeous tables for patrons to sit at. The benches came from the recently demolished Tacoma Elks Lodge. Want to know more about the artifacts and stuff around the tap room? Just ask! The entire staff is very friendly and fun.
But enough of my jibber jabber. Let’s get to the beer!
British Pale Ale (5.4% ABV) – One of my favorites of the bunch, this pale ale is crisp and clean. Biscuity with floral notes. Very easy to drink and great year round.
Rude Parrot IPA (5.8% ABV) – This one is for the hop heads! Simcoe and Citra hops give this beauty the kick IPA fans lust after. Lovely grapefruit aroma and taste. And at 75 IBU’s, this is one rude beer!
Ballz Deep Double IPA (8.4% ABV) – 7 Seas most popular beer, Ballz Deep is another delightful IPA that would please any hop head. Surprisingly malty for an IPA but that is a plus! This is a very lovely, very drinkable IPA. Don’t get me wrong, this is a hoppy beer. 82 IBU’s to be exact. But if you don’t like to get punched in the face by hops then I highly recommend this baby.
Wheelchair Barley Wine (10.6% ABV) – You may want to sit down for this one! Thick and syrupy with a raisin and plum fruit aroma. Very warming. Very strong. Definitely a sipper. There’s a reason they names this vixen “Wheelchair.”
Cutt’s NW Amber Ale (6.15% ABV) – Very nice. Pretty hop aroma. Citrusy and floral characters with a nice malt/hop balance. Great choice for a growler.
Port Royal Stout (6.8% ABV) –Another one of my favorites! Ink black color. Brown head. Malty and full-bodied, this stout has a lovely warming, toasty flavor notes of dark chocolate and espresso. The finish is smoky. Great as a desert beer or sitting by the fire.
Depth Finder India Red Ale (5.9% ABV) – One of 7 Seas newest seasonal releases this beer has a pretty dark red color. Hoppy aroma with clear body. Crisp and clean with a hoppy, floral finish. Very nice.
Reign Man ESB (5.5% ABV) – Another new seasonal creation, this lovely beer is malty and sweet with a nice hop finish. Crisp and clean this ESB would go great with any meal.
Belgian Imperial Stout (9.0% ABV) – Do you like chocolate covered bananas? If so you will LOVE this beer. I do! Dark brown teetering on black color and full-bodied. Malty, dark, bitter chocolate aroma and taste with hints of banana and coffee. Very smooth, rich gem.
There is no food in the tap room but patrons are more than welcome to bring in food of their own. The tap room is now open 7 days a week : Sun through Tues from 11:00-8:00, Wed through Sat 11:00-9:00.
I can’t say enough about 7 Seas except that I love this brewery! I have been coming here since their opening in 2009 and will continue to come back for years to come.
Give the gift on knowledge! November 21, 2012
With Black Friday just days away, I’m sure many of you are thinking “What do I get for the beer lover who has everything?” How about something to read while enjoying his or her holiday pint? Over the last few years there have been many great books published about everything in the craft brew culture from what to drink, where to drink, and what exactly are you drinking. There is a book out there for every level of beer enthusiast.
For the craft beer newbie there is The Naked Pint: An Unadulterated Guide to Craft Beer (2009). Written by the original “beer chicks”, Christina Perozzi and Hallie Beaune, The Naked Pint is a wonderfully comprehensive and humorous guide to the history of beer, various beer styles, flavors, characteristics, beer by regions, and even recipes to try your hand at making some home brew. This book is perfect for anyone just starting out in the craft brew scene or even the beer connoisseur who just wants to learn a bit more about the beer culture. Fantastic read!
Craft Beers of the Pacific Northwest: A Beer Lover’s Guide to Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia (2011) is a great book for the beer lover who has never been to the Pacific Northwest but would like to make the trek. Lisa Morrison (AKA the Beer Goddess) put together a wonderful book for the beer traveler. She discusses the PNW micro-brew culture that exploded into the craft brew culture the region is known for today. Lisa lists the breweries that are worth a looksy and what to have once you get there. She shares stories of her visits and what special pub crawl or bottle shop to hit along the way. This book is a must have for your next road trip to the PNW!
For the beer historian in your life Brewing in Seattle (2012) offers a glimpse into the history of Seattle breweries and where the Seattle beer culture is today. Beautiful, rare photos, vintage advertisements, and interviews from some of Seattle’s best-known brewers saturate this little paperback. From the earliest brewery established in 1864 through Prohibition and then on to the beer mecca Seattle is today, Brewing in Seattle is a must have for any beer historian near or far.
For the well learned beer enthusiast there is The Craft of Stone Brewing Co: Liquid Lore, Epic Recipes, and Unabashed Arrogance (2011). Stone Brewing Company shares the history of the company along with a behind-the-scenes look at what has made the company the fastest growing brewery in the USA. Homebrew and food recipes, beer & food pairings, and gorgeous photos are just some of the wonderful features in this hardcover.
Does your home brewer want to make a business out of it? Well, Sam Calagione, founder of Dogfish Head, has written the book on it. Brewing Up a Business: Adventures in Beer from the Founder of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery (2011) tells Sam’s story about taking his home brewing kit and turning it into one of the country’s best craft breweries. He discusses his successes and failures, strategies in marketing, competing and keeping up with other companies, and what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur. This is a must have for anyone starting a new business.
I own all 5 of these books and highly recommend them. There is more to beer than just drinking it. Knowledge truly is power and the gift of books will never go out of style. Feed your brain and always continue learning more about your hobby or craft.
Drink a beer, save a butterfly! October 7, 2012
I received this press release earlier this week. Another great brewery doing wonderful things…
– Pelican Pub & Brewery and conservation partners launch Silverspot IPA –
SEATTLE — Pelican Pub & Brewery, in conjunction with Woodland Park Zoo and other conservation partners, have teamed up to craft the new Silverspot IPA that not only delivers a great taste, but supports an important conservation mission.
Silverspot IPA was created by Pelican brew masters to celebrate the population augmentation of the threatened Oregon silverspot butterfly in its native grassland habitat.
The silverspot was once abundant along the coasts of Washington, Oregon and California until determined threatened in 1980. Through the Oregon Silverspot Captive Rearing program, Woodland Park Zoo and its conservation partners continue to restore the silverspot population. Pelican Pub & Brewery joined the efforts and raised a glass to conservation with a portion of proceeds of Silverspot IPA benefitting the butterfly conservation program.
Pelican brew master Darron Welch selected the blend of Sterling, Fuggle and Meridian hops to deliver an herbal, floral, spicy and tangerine-like flavor for the 6% abv IPA. Silverspot IPA is a medium-bodied brew with a brilliant golden color and complex hop aroma. The new English-Style IPA offers a distinctly different flavor than Northwest IPAs. Traditionally, Northwest IPAs are rather hoppy and bitter in taste. Though, Silverspot IPA (55 IBUs) offers a balance of malt and hops, with less emphasis on assertive hops.
Silverspot IPA is the sixth addition to Pelican’s core lineup, making it available year round and distributed by the bottle throughout the Northwest.
“To us, this seemed like a natural partnership,” said Ken Henson, Pelican Pub & Brewery general manager. “We have been waiting for an opportunity to produce an English style IPA, which will be a little more accessible to the average beer drinker. We’re excited about the cross-promotional opportunity and for the public awareness of the Oregon silverspot.”
The Oregon Silverspot Captive Rearing Program is a collaborative habitat restoration and augmentation program helping to increase the silverspot butterfly population. Program partners, including Woodland Park Zoo and Oregon Zoo, raise caterpillars in captivity until they become pupae and eventually emerge from the pupae as butterflies. They are then released into protected areas along the Oregon Coast in an ongoing effort to increase the population. One of the protected areas is Cascade Head, visible from the deck of Pelican Pub & Brewery.
“In August, Woodland Park Zoo released more than a thousand silverspot butterflies back into their natural habitat along the Oregon Coast,” said Erin Sullivan, a collection manager at Woodland Park Zoo. “It’s a very important conservation initiative to us, and we’re thrilled Pelican joined us and our partners to help raise awareness and support for the silverspot population.”
The Oregon Silverspot Captive Rearing Program recently earned a Significant Achievement Award from the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, the accrediting organization for more than 200 zoos and aquariums in North America.
The new brew will be available in Seattle the first week of October at select PCC Natural Markets, Whole Foods and QFC locations for $4.99 per 22 oz. bottle. For a full list of retailers, visit www.zoo.org/silverspot. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this beer will help fund conservation efforts for the Oregon silverspot butterfly.
To learn more about the Pelican Pub & Brewery Silverspot IPA, Oregon Silverspot Captive Rearing Program or its conservation partners, visit www.zoo.org/silverpot.
Silverspot IPA Launch
Brewing for a Cure August 8, 2012
Dick’s Brewing Company
Second Annual Beer for a Cure
Centralia, WA based Dick’s Brewing company is giving back; and in a big way! For the second year in a row the brewing company is holding the Second Annual Beer for a Cure event featuring live music, a homebrew competition and awards ceremony. Throughout the day a silent auction will take place, while food and pints fresh from the brewery will be on sale. Proceeds from the event will go to the American Cancer Society.
Professional brewers from Dick’s Brewing Company in Centralia have volunteered to help judge the homebrews and give the amateur brewers some words of advice on how to improve their crafts.
WHEN: Saturday, August 18th, 2012, 2:00 to 8:00 p.m.
WHERE: 3516 Galvin Road, Centralia
For more info on how to enter your homebrew or on the event itself visit their website: www.dicksbeer.com.
What better reason to drink beer than to help find a cure!
An afternoon in t-town June 21, 2012
Since I couldn’t make the Washington Brewers Festival last weekend I decided to hit a couple of Tacoma’s breweries for some much-needed liquid sunshine. Wingman Brewing Company and Engine House 9 Brewery have a few new (and interesting) releases. First stop: Wingman Brewing. Wingman has brewed something a bit lower in alcohol but not on flavor. Pomegranate Weizen is a very different beer for this brewery. A light pomegranate aroma hits the nose as soon as you raise your glass. A lighter bodied beer, there is a hint of hops and sour fruit. The finish is crisp and snappy. And the alcohol? A nice 5.2% ABV is a little more manageable than the bigger beers Wingman is known for. I loved this beer so much I filled my growler!
Another interesting beer from Wingman is a triple IPA specially brewed for the Über Tavern’s anniversary celebration at the end of this month in Seattle. Operation Cross Roads Triple IPA is one highly hopped beer. One might think the 100 IBU’s would be enough to cause even the biggest “hop head” to lose his faculties. Surprisingly, Operation Cross Roads is very malty for an IPA. The aroma is floral with grapefruit acidity. The body is thick and syrupy. The taste is very sweet, I mean REALLY sweet but the hops mellows it out a bit. Definitely a sipper this beer is not for the faint of heart; it’s also not for anyone driving. 16.8% ABV to be exact, so pleeeaaassseee proceed with caution!!
Moseying over to my usual hang out, Engine House 9 Brewery, I decided to try one of their newest creations. E9 is trying out a program where they select a recipe from one of the Tacoma’s many homebrewers and brew it on the big tanks. This month’s creation is a fun and quirky Pale Ale. So what makes this pale ale so quirky? They threw in Hot Tamale candy, and named it Parky. Yes, you read correctly…Hot Tamales! Hot cinnamon spice in the aroma and flavor and the color is unusual shade of red. Sweet and light Parky is a fun beer that brings back childhood memories. The candy part, not the beer part.
A guest beer currently making an appearance at E9 is Double Mountain Brewing’s Clusterfuck. Again, you read that correctly. Not only is this beer fun to order (cover your ears Grandma) but it is a great beer to drink. This single IPA is a true “hop monster” that packs a hoppy punch. Grapefruit aroma and strong citrus finish. This beer has been very aptly named and hubby loved it!
Grab these beers while you have the chance as they are only on tap for a limited time.
What to do on Father’s Day weekend? June 13, 2012
WHEN: Friday, June 15 4-9pm (21+ Only) Saturday, June 16 11am-9pm (Families Welcome) Sunday, June 17 11am-6pm (Families Welcome)
WHERE: Marymoor Park in Redmond, WA
HOW MUCH: Friday – $15.00 tickets available online or at the door and includes a tasting cup and 5 tasting tokens. Sat & Sun – $25.00 tickets available online or at the door and includes a tasting cup and 6 tasting tokens. Designated drivers are only $5.00.
65 breweries will be bringing over 200 different beers. Live music, good food, and wine & cider tasting are just a few of the other activities at the festival. What do you do with the kids? Craft booths, a kids playground and a root beer garden will entertain the tykes.
So grab your Dad and spend a great weekend enjoying some amazing craft beer!
Silver City strikes gold! June 7, 2012
Just when you though Silver City Brewing couldn’t get any better they go and open a taproom! And not just any run of the mill taproom; probably one of the nicest tap rooms I have been to (and I’ve been to a lot!). The outside of the building is beautifully designed and the inside is very casual, open, and inviting. The bar area opens up into a 2nd room to sit back at a high table and enjoy your beverage. A flat screen TV hangs high on the wall along with vintage posters of drinking days gone by.
But the “magic” happens next door in the brewery itself. Windows in the bar area give the patron a chance to view where the brewing process happens. To be honest, there is nothing prettier than large, shiny, mash tons and kettles!
What did I drink on this day? I’m glad you asked. For my first pint I enjoyed a lovely pint of Silver City’s Deluxe Spring Lager (6.2% ABV). One of my favorite seasonal beers from Silver City, the Spring Lager is crisp, sweet, and very flavorful yet the body is light to medium. Light hop/floral aroma and finish really make this baby something special. My next pint is a crowd favorite among Silver City fans: Ziggy Zoggy Summer Lager (5% ABV). I get excited every year when this gem is released. Unfiltered, sweet, spicy and elegant, this German-style “Zwickelbier” is sure to make you smile. Honey Malt and Pilsner Malt give Ziggy Zoggy the pretty sweetness I love and the finish is smooth with a touch of honey.
Food is not served at the taproom but they do offer pretty darn tasty peanuts but you are welcome to bring your own food. Brewery tours are available Wednesday through Saturday at 4:00pm but they also offer private parties and tours on Mondays and Tuesdays so check with the taproom for available times. The taproom itself is open Wednesday through Sunday and is a perfect way to spend an afternoon!