Firestone Walker Introduces Old Man Hattan

Most of the time when I’m drinking, I’m drinking craft beer. I sometimes enjoy a cocktail (or even just straight bourbon), and the occasional glass of wine or cider but, for the most part, craft beer is my go to. My enjoyment of good cocktails, bourbons and wines though is likely a big part of the reason I’m such a fan of barrel-aged beers. There’s just something about barrel-aging a craft beer that adds character and a complexity that simply can’t be achieved without the barrel aging.

Firestone Walker Brewing Company is a master of barrel aged beers and they’ve won many awards over the years for their multitude of barrel aged offerings – particularly those from their Proprietor’s Vintage series. They’ve also become more experimental over the past few years, trying new grains, new hops and new techniques and I applaud their daring and creativity. Now, Firestone Walker is set to release their newest barrel aged experiment: Old Manhattan. This multi barrel aged and blended Ale is designed to invoke the classic cocktails: the Old Fashioned and the Manhattan.

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Best Of Hands Barrelhouse Is A Welcome Addition To West Seattle

Yesterday evening, I attended a preview event for Seattle’s newest brewery, Best Of Hands Barrelhouse.  I first told you about Best Of Hands back at the end of January, when they announced their opening date of Friday, March 8th.  Since then I’ve been eagerly anticipating the opening, and with good reason.  These guys really know what they’re doing, and the beers I enjoyed yesterday proved it beyond any doubt.

If you visit The Beer Junction in West Seattle with any regularity, you may recognize two of Best Of Hands’ founders: Gregory Marlor, and Nicholas Marianetti (both are level II Certified Cicerones®).  They both worked at The Beer Junction before leaving recently to launch Best Of Hands with their partner, Chris Richardson.  The Beer Junction was also the first place to tap Best Of Hands’ Phantom Boots IPA last month.

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Pike Opens New Brewery Beer Garden

Seattle’s iconic Pike Brewing Company has been going through a few changes over the past year or so.  They’ve expanded their brewery operations, opened the new Tankard & Tun upstairs from The Pike, and now they’re ready to open a new brewery beer garden for the Summer.  Situated right in the brewery itself, Pike’s new brewery beer garden will be right near the brewery doors that open onto Post Alley below Pike Place Market.  In

In other Pike Brewing News, the Flight of Dreams Opening in Nagoya Japan, featuring Pike Brewing, has been pushed back to September and Pike has also been named ‘Most Iconic Brand’ in Seattle Magazine’s 2018 beer awards.  They also have two new beers about to release: Citrus Summer Ale and Hopsie.

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Homebrew Con Comes To Portland This June

Do you homebrew?  I started homebrewing way back in the late 80’s and I have more than 25 years of homebrewing experience.  Sadly though, when I moved a few years back I didn’t have a good place to brew so I actually wound up selling my 10 gallon, all-grain brewing system rather than let it sit, gathering rust and dust (I’d rather see a brewer put it to good use).  I have every intention of getting back into brewing again – and on an even larger system – but I’ll have to wait a few more years before I can make that happen.

I still have a great interest in homebrewing, even though I’ve allowed me membership to the American Homebrewer’s Association lapse until I have a new system, and I’m often impressed by some of the stellar beers being produced by homebrewers today. Equipment has improved, techniques are evolving all the time and homebrewing is as popular as it ever was, if not more so.  This year marks the 40th year for the National Homebrew Conference (Homebrew Con), and thousands of homebrewers from across the nation will come together in Portland this June 28 – 30 to talk homebrewing, attend workshops, learn new techniques and more.

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Foggy Noggin Brewing Prepares For Their 8th Anniversary

Many craft breweries start out small, then slowly expand as they find some success and the demand for their beer grows.  A few breweries, on the other hand, start out small and prefer to stay small by choice.  One such brewery is Foggy Noggin Brewing Company in Bothell.

Since first opening their doors to the public back in 2010, Foggy Noggin has been brewing on a tiny 1/2 barrel system.  1 barrel is approximately 31 gallons, so brewing on a 1/2 barrel system means that Foggy Noggin produces just 15.5 gallons of beer per batch.  That’s about enough to fill just one full size keg, though most of their beer finds it’s way into 1/6 barrel (5 gallon) or 1/4 barrel (7.5 gallon) kegs.

Now Foggy Noggin is preparing to celebrate their 8th Anniversary, with a 3-day-long celebration from March 23rd to 25th and the release of their special 8th Anniversary Ale.

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Beard And Bine Arrives This Friday From The Lagunitas Seattle Tap Room & Beer Sanctuary

Back in late July, I told you about a special brew day I attended at the Lagunitas Seattle Taproom & Beer Sanctuary. I joined Lagunitas and a whole host of their hop and barley farming partners to brew what would become the first Seattle exclusive beer to come out of the brewery since they took over their space in Ballard from Hilliard’s.

From what I could tell, this was a rather experimental brew with no strictly set recipe.  In the end, it wound up including Caliente, Ron Mexico, and Galaxy hops, giving it a burst of tropical brightness on top of a smooth, blonde, 2-row malted barley backbone.

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Lagunitas Brews Their First Seattle Exclusive Beer

I’ve always enjoyed the beers coming out of Lagunitas Brewing Company.  I even used to live in Petaluma, CA but I moved to Seattle just a few years after they opened and never had the opportunity to visit the brewery there (it was also before I started writing about craft beer).  That’s why I was excited when the news broke last year that Lagunitas would be opening a brewery right here in Seattle – taking over the space formerly occupied by Hilliard’s Brewing.

After a media/friends/family sneak peek, The Lagunitas Seattle Taproom And Beer Sanctuary opened their doors back on January 12th.  At the time, there was a rumor going around that the new Seattle location would be producing some pilot batches of new, unique beers that would only be available in the Seattle market.  Those rumors were quickly confirmed, but no date was set for when those Seattle-only brews would begin.

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50 Craft Breweries Unveil Their Recipes For Homebrewers

Are you a homebrewer?  Even if you aren’t, but you are a craft beer fan, I’m willing to bet you know at least a few people who are homebrewers.  I myself first started homebrewing well over 20 years ago (but I’m between systems right now, which is killing me!) and back then, just like today, many homebrewers started out by trying to recreate some of their favorite craft beers at home.

Back in my early days, when craft breweries were few and far between, the holy grail for many homebrewers was to successfully reproduce or ‘clone’ beers like Sierra Nevada Brewing‘s Pale Ale.  If you could do that as a homebrewer back in the early 90’s, then you really knew your stuff.  The challenge was that you pretty much had to come up with the recipe on your own.  The homebrewing community was much smaller, there were few helpful recipe guides and there was no brewing software like BeerSmith or Brewtarget  to help you out.

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Tankard & Tun Opens Today

Last night my wife and I, along with several other members of the local media, were fortunate to attend a special preview night at Seattle’s newest craft beer and gourmet food spot: Tankard & Tun.  Created by Charles and Rose Ann Finkel, the same people who brought you Seattle’s iconic Pike Brewing Company, this Oyster bar and restaurant is a bit more upscale and, fittingly, is right upstairs from The Pike.

I first told you about Tankard & Tun back in April, when it was first announced and the Finkels were deep into construction and planning.  It’s a beautiful, spread out space with a moderately sized bar area (the only section that is 21 and over only) a fermentation deck and few separate seating areas, including a private event mezzanine that’s upstairs but somehow still doesn’t make you feel removed from the market.

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Pike Brewing Announces Tankard & Tun

Pike Brewing Company has been a fixture of the Seattle craft beer scene since way back in 1989.  Founders Charles and Rose Ann Finkel have also been instrumental in helping expand the craft beer scene across Seattle and indeed across the nation.  Their tireless work to help promote craft beer as well as all the wonderful craft beer and food parings that are possible out there has been an inspiration to countless brewers and chefs.

Now, Charles and Rose Ann are preparing for Pike’s biggest expansion in over 21 years.  Pike Brewing Company is pleased to announce Tankard & Tun.  Coming this Summer, Tankard & Tun is a new restaurant, oyster bar and brew deck that will also provide Pike with an expanded brew cellar.

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