One of the best things about the cold, dark days of Winter are all of the dark, delicious Stouts that come along with it. Sure, you can drink a good Stout anytime, but Fall and especially Winter are when our palates seem to turn more towards the dark side and crave all those deep, rich, coffee/chocolate/roasty and often barrel-aged flavors that a good Stout provides.
February is Stout Month and Fort George Brewery is ready to celebrate with a full month of events and beer releases. Don’t worry if you can’t make it down to Oregon for some of the Traveling Carnival Of Stouts events. They’ve planned 5 events for Washington Fort George fans as well.
Now, with February almost upon us, Counterbalance Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor), is getting ready to celebrate their 3rd anniversary with 2 days of celebration and 2 beer releases, including their first ever Barleywine: Flight Risk.
As I mentioned in a few articles earlier this week (the return of Ground Control from Ninkasi and today’s release of Overhang from Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor)), barrel-aged season is back. I just loves all those thick, dark, woody, bourbony releases that start flowing this time of year, and now Pike Brewing Company is getting in on the act.
Arriving tomorrow, Friday, November 3rd (which also happens to be International Stout Day), Pike will be releasing their 2017 Pike Entire Barrel Aged Imperial Stout. Aged for four months on Woodinville Whiskey bourbon barrels, Pike Entire is rich with chocolate and espresso flavors and clocks in at 9.9%
With so many breweries in Seattle, it seems like there’s always an anniversary celebration just around the corner (not that I’m complaining or anything!). Over the past few months I’ve told you about anniversary celebrations from such local breweries as Lucky Envelope, Hellbent, Stoup and Naked City and there’s still more anniversary celebrations to come before the year is out.
Now Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) is getting ready to celebrate a major milestone. Coming up on Saturday, November 4th, they’ll be celebrating their 10th Anniversary. Rather than celebrating for just one day, however, Two Beers has nearly an entire week of events lined up, culminating with the Grand Celebration on the 4th.
This time of year, my taste buds are always in eager anticipation of all the upcoming delightful, dreamy, dark and delicious barrel-aged beers that begin to arrive as our days grow shorter and shorter. My wallet isn’t always so happy about it (There are a lot of releases to keep up with!), but my taste buds usually win that battle.
We’ve already seen a few barrel-aged releases this season and now Ninkasi Brewing Company is ready to get in on the action with the return of their popular, ‘space yeast’ utilizing, Ground Control Imperial Stout. This November they’ll be releasing two Bourbon Barrel-Aged versions of this popular brew in 22 oz bottles. It will also be available on draft in select markets. You can also get a taste of Ground Control at two special Oregon events: the Ninkasi Space Beer Dinner at OMSI on November 7th and the Space Oddity Ball at the Ninkasi Tasting Room on November 11th.
Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) makes lots of excellent beers. Their popular Kitty Kat Blues was recently added to their year-round lineup and what is probably their most overall popular beer, Wisdom Seeker, just made it’s annual return as well. Now, Black Raven is preparing to bring back one of my absolute favorites. Arriving this Friday, March 24th is their popular and award-winning La Mort Bourbon.
Part of Black Raven’s Corbeaux Series and crafted by aging their equally popular La Petite Mort in Kentucky bourbon barrels, La Mort Bourbon is a complex beer that satisfies fans of Belgian Ales and bourbon-barrel aged beers alike. I’m a big fan of both, which helps explain why this is one of my favorite offerings from Black Raven.
I love this time of year. I may be a serious hophead (I’ve been in hop-lovers Heaven this fresh-hop Season), but I think most of my favorite craft beers are still dark beers. When Stout, Porter and Winter Lager season rolls back around, you’ll always find me with a big smile on my face.
Well, Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) is helping me out with that Winter beer smile. Just two weeks ago they releasedGrandfather Raven Imperial Stout. Last week they brought usFrost Beak Winter Lager and now, set for release this coming Saturday the 5th, is their Gunpowder Plot Nitro Porter. Brewed to commemorate Guy Fawkes Day, Gunpowder Plot is rich and complex. Brewed with bourbon-soaked coffee beans and cocoa nibs and served on Nitro, its a true pleasure to the palate.
There are several breweries in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood. Most of them do great work but, for me, there are a few standouts who are head and shoulders above the rest. One of those standouts is Reuben’s Brews. They’ve earned over 100 medals at various competitions since first opening back in 2012 (quite an achievement for such a young brewery), and they make some of the best Rye beers I’ve ever had.
Now it’s time to celebrate those achievements in style. Coming up this weekend is Reuben’s Brews’ 4th Anniversary celebration. They’ll be tapping 25 different beers, including a brand new IPA dubbed Hopped off the Press!
Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) has had great success with their La Mort series of beers. It all started with La Petite Mort, a strong, Belgian Style Dark Ale that always draws a long line whenever Black Raven brings it (or its variants) to Belgian Fest or other local craft beer festivals.
After La Petite Mort came the award winning La Mort Bourbon and the award winning La Mort Rouge. These variants took an already amazing and complex beer and enhanced it even more by aging it in bourbon barrels or wine barrel respectively. The timing for the annual release of these variants can change, since Black Raven makes their decision on when to release these beers based on how they are maturing in the barrels. Fortunately for us, Black Raven has decided that the time has come for the release of 2016 La Mort Bourbon.
How can anyone limit themselves to just a single style of beer? Sure, I’m a serious hophead at heart, but I never limit myself to just IPA’s. I’m a fan of all styles but I do have to admit that, especially in the cold of winter, I’m a huge fan of barrel aged beers.
There’s just something special that happens to a beer when it’s aged in Bourbon, Whiskey, Tequila, Brandy, Wine or other barrels. They impart complex flavors, new characteristics, perhaps a slight boost in ABV, etc. That’s why I’m glad that the 4th Annual Barrel Junction at The Beer Junction in West Seattle is almost here.