There are a number of breweries in Seattle that have been around and been popular for several years. As a result, it’s sometimes easy to forget that some the most popular breweries in Seattle today are actually quite young. One such youngster among us is Stoup Brewing Company in Ballard.
Not quite 4 years old now, Stoup has amassed a loyal following thanks to beers like their extremely popular Citra IPA and their award winning Robust Porter and Russian Imperial Stout. Not content with just a single celebration this year, Stoup has decided to stretch out their 4th Anniversary celebration in to a week full of events.
The end of Summer and the return of Fall is a double-edged sword in the Pacific Northwest. The downside is that we start to lose our Summer sun and Summer temperatures. The upside, however, is that Fall brings along with it all those wonderful, aromatic, tasty Fresh Hop Ales.
Hellbent Brewing Company is celebrating this Fresh Hop season in a big way. They’re throwing a big party on Saturday, September 30th, featuring the release of their own Amarillo Fresh Hop IPA.
Last night my wife and I were fortunate to attend a special beer-pairing dinner at Urbane, located in the Hyatt hotel at Olive 8 in downtown Seattle. It was a preview of a few of the new dishes Urbane will be adding to their Fall menu, all expertly paired with beers from Seattle’s own multi-award-winning (over 30 awards received so far in 2017 alone) Reuben’s Brews, one of the fastest growing breweries in Washington State with production set to increase by more than 50% this year over 2016.
The dinner was hosted by Urbane’s Executive Chef, Brian Pusztai and Reuben’s Brews was represented by brewery rep, Conrad Hermosillo. Brian, Conrad and a few other members of the Urbane chef’s team greeted us upon our arrival and we prepared ourselves for a 3-course tasting menu by getting to know each other a bit while snacking on a very tasty cheese and charcuterie board.
Some of the first Fall Seasonals I started seeing this year were appearing as early as mid August. I suppose planning ahead isn’t a bad thing but, here in the Northwest where the Summers are notoriously short, we don’t need those early reminders that our sunny Summer days are numbered. Don’t get me wrong. I love many different Fall styles and welcome their return, I guess I’m just a little sad to see Summer come to a close this year.
If there’s one thing you can be sure of when Fall arrives though, it’s that along with it comes all the different Fall seasonal craft beers (even if some of them start appearing a bit early), including pumpkin and squash style beers. I haven’t found myself as excited for the plethora of pumpkin and squash ales that always make their way to craft bottle store shelves this time of year, but there are always a few new, interesting ones that catch my attention. One such beer is Wine Barrel-Aged sQUASH Ale from Lowercase Brewing Company.
People are sometimes confused by the location of Counterbalance Brewing Company. Based on the name most locals assume, understandably, that they would be in or near the Queen Anne neighborhood. They are not. Counterbalance is, in the West end of Seattle’s Georgetown neighborhood. They went with the Counterbalance name because that’s where founders Frank Lawrence and Jeff Howell grew up.
Now that you know where they are, why not come for a visit this weekend and help them welcome the return of Fall? Coming up this Sunday the 24th, Counterbalance Brewing will host a release party for their Oktoberfestbier and Fresh Hop Ale. Come join them for these two new releases while watching the Seattle Seahawks beat the Tennessee Titans.
Firestone Walker Brewing Company has two different series’ of IPAs going right now. First is the Luponic Distortion Series, which is currently in its 7th iteration (featuring Australian hops), and then, of course, they have the Leo v. Ursus Series. Both series take an experimental approach, and they allow Firestone Walker to be constantly coming out with something new and unique – which is the industry trend these days. Innovate or be left behind.
Luponic Distortion Revolution No. 007 arrived just last month and now, Firestone Walker is ready to bring us the next iteration in the Leo v. Ursus Series: Inferos. An unfiltered Rye IPA that’s absolutely jam packed with over 4.7 pounds of Galaxy (and other) hops per barrel, Inferos sounds like a rye loving hop head’s dream. I’ve always been a big fan of beers with rye in the malt bill and Inferos has an almost unheard of 25% rye in the malt bill. With all that rye and all those hops, this sounds like a beer I’ll really enjoy.
Are you a fan of sour ales and sour ciders? Not everyone is. I wasn’t always a fan of sours. Ten years ago, the very idea seemed odd to me. Why would I want a sour beer, I thought to myself? Then again, most people don’t consider bitter a flavor they seek out, yet IPA is the most popular style of craft beer around (even before they style became flooded with murky, ‘juicy’ IPAs that taste more like citrus juice).
As with many things, the enjoyment of sour ales can be an acquired taste. Elliott Bay Brewing‘s Brother Barrel location understand this and would like to give you the opportunity to taste a few of their own sours, along with sour ales and ciders from other local local producers. They’ll all be coming together at Brother Barrel one week from today for their first ever special event: Pucker Up: Washington.
It’s harvest time up in the Yakima Valley, the #1 hop growing region in the World. Our proximity to the hop fields of Yakima Valley means that the Northwest, particularly Washington State, is in a prime location to enjoy one of the best benefits for craft beer lovers this time of year: Fresh Hop Ales.
As has become the norm, Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) was first out of the gate, releasing their Fresh Hop IPA back on August 23rd. Now, Fremont Brewing Company is ready to release the first of their Fresh Hop Ales for 2017. Field To Ferment Fresh Hop Pale Ale (each release featuring Centennial, Amarillo and Citra hops respectively) arrives today, 9/6, in Fremont’s Urban Beer Garden.
It’s still nice and hot out there, but the end of Summer is right around the corner. That means it’s harvest time, which also means it’s time for Fall Seasonals to start arriving. In the Great Northwest that means Fresh Hop beers (the first few are just starting to arrive now), but it also means other Fall Seasonals, including the Märzen/Oktoberfest style.
Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) brews several tasty Seasonal beers including Beak Tweaker Citrus IPA, Frost Beak Winter Lager and Hochzeit Pilsner. Right now, however, it’s time for their popular Fall Seasonal: Flocktoberfest Lager.
Bale Breaker Brewing Company brews some pretty tasty beers. You’re probably familiar with their popular Field 41 Pale Ale, Topcutter IPA or Bottomcutter IPA, since these three beers are part of their ‘Everyday’ (year-round) lineup. They also, of course, brewed the official beer for Seattle Beer Week 2017: Fresh Off The Farm IPA.
Now, Bale Breaker is adding a fourth beer to their Everyday series: Leota Mae IPA. It was named for the great-grandmother of one of Bale Breakers owners, and was created to honor the history of planting and harvesting hops in the Yakima valley, where Leota Mae used to work out in the hop fields.