Have you been tracking down any of the wet, wild and wonderful Fresh Hop beers out there? They just keep on coming this time of year, and that’s just fine by me. Now, Counterbalance Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) is ready to get in on the action.
Coming up next Saturday, March 29th from noon to 9 pm, Counterbalance Brewing is hosting their 2nd annual Fall release party, where they’ll be releasing their 2018 Fresh Hop Ale on draft. Also making its return on that same day is one of Counterbalance Brewing’s early favorites, and the first beer they ever brewed commercially, Bad Wolf Dark Ale.
Each year, as Seattle’s Summer starts to wane, our palates grow eager with anticipation of one of the best Seasonal craft beer styles for hopheads: Fresh Hop Ales. Ordinarily, Fresh Hop Ale season doesn’t get started until late August or even early September, as the hop harvest gets under way. This year, however, hops at Puterbaugh Farms in Yakima Valley were ready early thanks to ideal growing conditions.
As a result, Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor), always first out of the gate each year with their Fresh Hop IPA, is bringing it to you even earlier than usual. In just two days, on Friday, August 3rd, come down to Two Beers Brewing for the release of their 2018 Fresh Hop IPA.
Of all the breweries in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, I think I’d have to say my favorite is Reuben’s Brews. The quality and consistency of their beers are top notch and I honestly have yet to be disappointed with any of their releases. So when I heard they were getting ready to launch their first barrel-aged sours, I was intrigued and delighted.
Reuben’s has show themselves to be the masters of Rye beers, hazy and West Coast IPAs, Goses and more, so I have high hopes that their new sour Ales will be at the same high level of quality I’ve come to expect from Reuben’s. Over 17 months in the making, the first releases from their barrel-aged sour series will be “Brettania” and “Tropical Funk”.
At first you wouldn’t think a brewery and a barbershop would have much in common and, for the most part, you’d be right. However Rudy’s Barbershop and Reuben’s Brews, both founded in Seattle, have similar sensibilities when it comes to community and making their customers feel comfortable and at ease in their establishments.
That’s why Rudy’s has partnered with Reuben’s Brews to create a beer that celebrates their 25th anniversary. Set for release this coming Saturday, June 9th, Reuben’s well release Good Hair Day Pale Ale. A portion of the proceeds from Good Hair Day will be donated to Equal Rights Washington to help support LGBTQ rights.
Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) has had quite the journey. They started off back in 2007, brewing just 100 barrels per year and, since then, they’ve never stopped growing. Year after year, Two Beers has just kept on expanding. They’ve updated and upgraded their taproom, The Woods, several times since 2007 and, back in 2013, they announced the launch of their wildly successful sister company: Seattle Cider Company.
Then just two years ago in 2016, Two Beer announced that they had been acquired by Agrial Group, a leading French agri-business cooperative. Since that acquisition, however, not much has changed. Now comes the first big announcement since that acquisition. Two Beers Brewing Company is pleased to announce the launch of their newest sister company: Sound Craft Seltzer Co.
Ten years ago. That’s when it all began. That’s when Seattle area craft beer lovers got to experience the first ever Seattle Beer Week and the first ever official Seattle Beer Week beer (a double IPA from Pike Brewing Company). Back then, many of our favorite local craft breweries and craft beer bars didn’t even exist yet. Whereas today, it seems, we have a craft brewery or craft beer bar around almost every corner.
More craft breweries and more craft beer bars means even more Seattle Beer Week events. Are you ready? Surviving the week (actually 11 days) will take careful planning. I’m here to give you some suggestions on which events you might want to check out. So sit back, if you’ve managed to pick up any yet, grab yourself a can of this year’s official Seattle Beer Week beer – Citrus Galaxy IPA from Georgetown Brewing Company – and take a look a Craft Beer Monger’s Picks for Seattle Beer Week 10.
Everyone loves a good party, especially when that party involves craft beer. Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) definitely knows how to throw a great craft beer party, and they prove it every Spring with their annual Flock Party/anniversary celebration.
This year is Black Raven’s 9th anniversary/Flock Party and it’s set for Saturday, May 5th from noon till 8 pm. As always, the Flock Party will feature several live music acts, plenty of ‘rare birds’ (rare and unique Black Raven beers, including some special cask infusions), delicious food, a retail merchandise booth and they usually also have an outdoor cigar lounge/booth.
Have you ever been a member of a craft brewery mug club? If you find that you’re a frequent visitor to some craft breweries more than others, joining a mug club could be a good way for you to save some money over time and even get access to special events and special releases. I myself have been a member of the mug club at Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) for several years now. Since they’re one of the breweries closest to my house, I tend to stop there quite a bit.
Now, with Spring upon us, Two Beers Brewing has announced the annual renewal for their mug club memberships. As with most mug clubs, not every member renews their membership each year. Any un-renewed membership slots are then available for new members to join. If you are already a member and are renewing your membership, there may be a few benefits for you as well.
Bicycling and beer seem to just go together. There are even several cycle-themed breweries here in the Northwest, including HUB in Portland, Flying Bike in Greenwood, Peddler in Ballard and, of course, Chainline Brewing Company in Kirkland. Situated along the new Cross Kirkland Corridor Trail, they’re in the perfect spot for craft beer lovers who prefer 2-wheeled, human-powered transportation.
I’ve been to Chainline Brewing several times (I drive there though – sorry), and I really enjoy their beers. Their Polaris Pilsner (2016 – GABF Silver Medal winner) and Tune Up New England Style IPA (2016 Best of Craft beer awards Silver Medal Winner) are solid and I’ve also enjoyed many of the special one-off beers they’ve produced. Their Flowtron Strawberry IPA was definitely one of my favorites and, lucky for me, it’s making a return for Chainline’s 3rd anniversary celebration coming up this weekend along with their first ever canned beer (Polaris Pilsner).
Seattle is definitely a wonderful place to live if you’re a fan of great craft beers. The high concentration of excellent breweries in the city make it one of the best craft beer destinations in the nation. However, don’t forget to take a trip out of town every now and then, because there are several breweries outside Seattle – from the Oregon border all the way up to Canada – who are doing great work.
One outside-of-Seattle destination I don’t make it to very often is the Olympia area, which is home to several craft breweries including Top Rung Brewing Company in Lacey. You may not be as familiar with Top Run as some other Olympia area breweries, because they haven’t started bottling or canning most of their beers yet, but they’ve been brewing good beers in Olympia for nearly four years now, and it’s time to celebrate. This Saturday, April 21st, Top Rung Brewing Company will celebrate their 4th anniversary.