We may still be in the middle of Winter (damn, it was cold at my house this morning!), but that doesn’t mean we can’t dream ahead. Spring is a mere 2 months away and with the return of Spring comes the Cask Beer Festival, presented by the Washington Brewer’s Guild.
Not familiar with Cask Ale? Traditionally, Cask Ales are matured after fermentation in the container (the Cask) they are to be dispensed from, and are served without any additional carbonation beyond what carbonation they obtained from the Cask conditioning. This is why Cask Ales tend to be less carbonated and, often, served a bit warmer than their kegged counterparts.
This single day, two session event takes place on Saturday, March 19th and is Washington’s annual celebration of Cask Ales. At the festival, you’ll find over 100 different Cask Ales from over 40 different Washington State breweries.
Here is the full press release from the Washington Brewer’s Guild:
(Seattle, WA) January 14, 2016- The Washington Brewers Guild will present the Washington Cask Beer Festival, a long-running cask beer celebration on Saturday, March 19 at the Seattle Center Exhibition Hall. Cask Festival is also an important fundraiser for the Guild, a lobbying arm of the Washington brewing industry who will be representing the interest of Washington breweries during the upcoming legislative session.
As the Washington craft brewing industry continues to grow and its landscape keeps evolving the Guild is committed to educating Washington brewers and consumers and honoring the centuries old tradition of cask-conditioned beer. The event will once again feature more than 100 different cask-conditioned beers brewed by over 40 Guild members including many new comers who will be making their Cask Festival debut this year. To remain true to the spirit of “real ale” all beers are conditioned naturally without artificially introducing CO2 into the cask and will be poured by gravity or via a beer engine.
2016 Washington Cask Beer Festival
Saturday, March 19, 2016
Session 1: 12-4 pm
Session 2: 6-10 pm
Doors open 15 minutes before each session begins. Taps close 30 minutes before each session ends.
Seattle Center Exhibition Hall
299 Mercer St., Seattle, WA 98109
$40 advance tickets or $45 at the door, if still available
Admission includes a commemorative tasting glass and up to 25 sample tastes.
Designated driver admission is $5 and available at the door only.
Separate ticket required for each session.
21 and over only. Non-refundable. No dogs allowed.
Tickets are on sale online at www.washingtonbrewersguild.org. This event may sell out so advance ticket purchase it strongly recommended.
Washington Cask Beer Festival is a major highlight of the Pacific Northwest beer festival scene. It’s a rare opportunity to sample over 100 mostly exclusive or limited release cask-conditioned beers from 40+ Washington breweries. To stay true to the tradition of cask-conditioned beer the Festival requires brewers to naturally condition the beer in a firkin or other vessels without artificially introducing CO2. All beers will be poured by gravity or via a beer engine and the result is smooth ale with a thick creamy head that brings out subtle, nuanced flavors.
Also featured at the event is the Herbert’s Legendary Cask Festival Ale, a special cask beer brewed collectively by the Washington brewers in honor of Bert Grant, a legendary Washington beer icon.
Washington Brewers Guild is a non-profit organization whose mission is to build a community of Washington State brewers, advance their common interests through the legislative process and promote the quality and value of their beers.
Tickets are on sale now and this event often sells out, so don’t wait too long. If you’re new to Cask Ales and would like to sample a few before committing to the festival, I suggest you drop by one of many different local craft beer bars that often have at least one Cask Ale on for you to sample. I suggest The Pine Box or The Beer Junction. Beveridge Place Pub often puts a cask on as well (and you might want to check out their Annual ‘Cask-O’Rama‘), but not always, so you might want to call and check first.
The Washington Brewer’s Guild has released the list of breweries set to be at this year’s event:
- 7 Seas Brewing- Gig Harbor
- American Brewing- Edmonds
- Anacortes Brewery- Anacortes
- Bainbridge Island Brewing- Bainbridge Island
- Beardslee Public House- Bothell
- Bellevue Brewing- Bellevue
- Big Time Brewery- Seattle
- Black Raven Brewing- Redmond
- Boundary Bay Brewery- Bellingham
- Cloudburst Brewing- Seattle
- Diamond Knot Brewing- Mukilteo
- Dirty Bucket Brewery- Woodinville
- Elliott Bay Brewing- Seattle/Burien
- Elysian Brewing- Seattle
- Fish Brewing- Olympia
- Flying Bike Cooperative Brewery- Seattle
- Fremont Brewing- Seattle
- Georgetown Brewing- Seattle
- Hale’s Ales Brewery- Seattle
- Harmon Brewing- Tacoma
- Hellbent Brewing- Seattle
- Hi-Fi Brewing- Redmond
- Island Hoppin’ Brewery- Eastsound
- Mac & Jack’s Brewing- Redmond
- Machine House Brewery- Seattle
- Maritime Pacific Brewing- Seattle
- McMenamins- Seattle
- Mollusk Brewery- Seattle
- Naked City Brewery- Seattle
- North Sound Brewing- Mount Vernon
- NW Peaks Brewery- Seattle
- Odin Brewing- Tukwila
- Old Stove Brewing- Seattle
- Paradise Creek Brewery- Pullman
- Pike Brewing- Seattle
- Postdoc Brewing- Redmond
- Rainy Daze Brewing- Silverdale
- Ram Restaurant & Brewery- Seattle
- Redhook Brewery- Woodinville
- Rooftop Brewing- Seattle
- Schooner Exact Brewing- Seattle
- Silver City Brewery- Silverdale/Bremerton
- Two Beers Brewing- Seattle
- Walking Man Brewing- Stevenson
Further details from the Washington Brewer’s Guild:
The festival will feature 44 Guild member breweries and this year’s lineup includes many first timers who will be making their Cask Fest debut including Old Stove Brewery, Cloudburst Brewing, and Dirty Bucket Brewery while there are plenty of veteran breweries as well including Redhook Brewery who will make an appearance after a few years of hiatus. It is an encouraging sign that breweries new and established from all over the State from Eastsound to Stevenson and Pullman are making cask-conditioned beer and keeping the tradition alive for the next generation of beer drinkers.Washington Cask Beer Festival was started in 2000 by a handful of local brewers who wanted to preserve the centuries old brewing tradition here in Washington while raising money for the organization that helps protect their industry. Since its inception the event has become a prominent advocate for cask-conditioned beer by encouraging local breweries to learn how to cask and exposing younger beer drinkers to the artistry of cask-conditioned beer.Festival patrons can also feel good about attending the Cask Festival because every ticket purchase will directly benefit the Washington Brewers Guild, a non-profit dedicated to advancing the interest of the Washington craft beer industry and strengthening the community of brewers. The Guild works with policymakers in Olympia and Washington DC to ensure equal access to market for small brewers, which equals more choice for craft beer consumers. During the current legislative session the Guild introduced bills that would create a special private events permit that would give breweries a new means to engage Washington craft beer consumers and expand their sales opportunities.
Drink responsibly and stay safe out there.