Discover A New Take On Some Familiar Hops With Luponic Distortion Revolution No. 006 From Firestone Walker

Firestone Walker Brewing Company puts out some truly exceptional beers.  Their Proprietor’s Vintage Series (which includes beers such as Bravo, Parabola, Stickee Monkee and more) can’t be beat and they make some excellent IPAs as well.  Their Double Jack Imperial IPA used to be my favorite (determined through repeated blind tastings) but, in late 2016, they decided to retire their Proprietor’s Reserve Series of beers which included Double Jack, Opal (a dry-hopped Saison) and Wookey Jack (Black Rye IPA).

I was initially disappointed when Firestone discontinued Double Jack but I later realized that they were merely adjusting to the ever changing landscape defined by all the craft beer enthusiasts out there.  Lately, the underlying attitude seems to be that having a few well known beers, even if those beers are excellent and highly rated, isn’t enough anymore.  Sure, you’re still respected and people will still think highly of your beers but, if you want to keep that buzz going and stay on the forefront of what’s happening in the craft beer World, you have to keep constantly coming out with something new and exciting.

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Foggy Noggin Is Hosting A Barleywine Vertical Tasting Event

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Are you a fan of English style barleywines?  If you aren’t familiar with the style, English barleywines, as compared to American style barleywines, tend to be just a bit more on the sweet side with a more subdued hop character and more fruit esters.

Are you also a fan of small batch breweries?  Then Foggy Noggin Brewing Company out of Bothell (ones of Washington’s smallest production craft breweries) has an event coming up that should be right up your alley.  Next Friday, February 17th from 6 pm – 8 pm, Foggy Noggin is hosting a vertical tasting (2013, 2015, 2016) of their English style barleywine: Duck’s Ass.  There are only 20 spots available for this special vertical tasting and the cost is $30 per person.

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Bravo Is Coming In 12 oz Bottles From Firestone Walker

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Firestone Walker Brewing Company has been quite busy lately.  They introduced their new Luponic Distortion series of IPAs. They discontinued their Proprietor’s Reserve Series of beers (including: Opal, Double Jack and Wookey Jack), and they recently celebrated their 20th Anniversary including, of course, the release of their XX Anniversary Ale.

Now, Firestone Walker is ready for another first.  All of Firestone Walker’s Vintage Reserve barrel-aged beers will be moving from from 22-ounce bombers to individually boxed 12-ounce bottles. The first beer up for the 12-ounce treatment is Bravo Imperial Brown Ale, which is being bottled for the first time in 12 years.

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Pyramid Celebrates 30 Years Of Snow Cap Winter Warmer – UPDATED

 

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Pyramid Brewing Company has been around for quite a while.  They began as Hart Brewing way back in 1984 and have been through several small changes, including changes in ownership, since then.  While their main brewing operation today is in Portland, they continue to produce beer at their Seattle brewery location on 1st Avenue South, right across from Safeco Field. Pyramid produces a number of different Ales, including their popular Winter Warmer, Snow Cap.

It’s amazing to think that Pyramid has been producing Snow Cap for 30 years now.  That’s longer than some of you reading this have even been alive.  Now, Pyramid is preparing three special releases in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of Snow Cap.

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XX Anniversary Ale Arrives Next Month From Firestone Walker

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One of my favorite California breweries has hit an amazing milestone.  This year, Firestone Walker Brewing Company celebrates their 20th year.  To help them celebrate, they are, of course, releasing the latest version of their annual anniversary Ale: XX Anniversary Ale.

I’ve been enjoying Firestone Walker’s Anniversary Ales since their XIII Anniversary Ale release back in 2009.  Each release is expertly blended together from a plethora of other Firestone Walker Ales by an entire team of experienced brewers and winemakers, and the blend is different every year.  Some have been more malty and some a bit more boozy, while others have been more on the hoppy side.  I’ve enjoyed them all, but I think their XIV Anniversary Ale may still be one of my favorites.  I’m really looking forward to tasting XX Anniversary Ale.

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Firestone Walker Retires Proprietor’s Reserve Series Beers

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Sometimes, saying goodbye to an old friend can be difficult.  While selecting just one beer as my favorite is a virtually impossible task, I do have a few favorites for several different craft beer styles.  Firestone Walker Brewing Company‘s Double Jack double IPA, for example, is on my list of favorite IPAs (double IPAs actually).  Now, it looks like I’ll have to say goodbye to Double Jack and a few of his brothers.  Read on to find out why.

Part of the reason I don’t have a single favorite beer or a large number of set favorites is that new craft beers come out at such a brisk pace these days.  It seems you can hardly go a week lately without discovering one or more new beers on tap each time you visit your favorite craft beer bar or even some local breweries.  Sure, there are some breweries out there who come out with their set list of beers and hardly ever change or introduce something new, but that approach can seem downright boring next to the plethora of breweries who are constantly coming up with something new.  After all, craft beer drinkers are explorers.  Most love trying new things, so we don’t tend to fall into the same rut as those who prefer mass-produced American Lagers like Bud or Miller.

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Reuben’s Brews Celebrates Their 4th Anniversary This Weekend

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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!

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2016 US Open Beer Championship Winners

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The winners have just been announced for the 2016 US Open Beer Championship.  Unique in it’s format, the US Open Beer Championship is the only brewing competition to allow award winning home brewers to compete against commercial breweries Worldwide.  Beers from 95 different categories (including non-alcoholic) were ranked and the top 10 breweries and medal winners were also listed.

Four different breweries from Washington State took home awards, including: Reuben’s Brews, Heathen Brewing Company, Icicle Brewing Company and a sweep in the gluten free category by Ghostfish Brewing Company.  Congratulations to all the winners.  I’d also like to offer a special congratulations one of my favorite breweries, Firestone Walker Brewing Company, for being named National Grand Champion (details below).

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Firestone Walker Celebrates 20 Years With Nitro DBA

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Firestone Walker Brewing Company makes some delicious beers.  Their Parabola is one of my all time favorites and their Double Jack is one of my top (if not my top) IPAs.  Also, in case you weren’t aware, the 2016 release of Stickee Monkee is out now.  Hurry and grab yourself a bottle before it’s all gone.

Another beer from Firestone Walker that is very popular is their flagship DBA (Double Barrel Ale).  They also made a special version called Double DBA for a couple of years, but it has since been discontinued.  Now, Firestone Walker is ready to bring us another DBA variant.  This week, they are launching Nitro DBA as a new year round draft offering in all Firestone Walker markets, including Seattle.

Also, to help celebrate their 20th Anniversary this year, Firestone is releasing Unfiltered DBA (UDBA), a 100-percent oak fermented and unfiltered version of DBA, which will be available in all Firestone Walker markets for a limited time.  Get it while you can.

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Tribute Porter Arrives Tomorrow From Black Raven

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Are you familiar with the traditional English Porter, Samuel Smith Taddy Porter?  It’s a classic example of the style and is even listed as one of the commercial examples for the style in the 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines (Style 13C. English Porter).

Now, through a special arrangement with Samuel Smith, three Washington breweries have been allowed to brew tribute versions of Samuel Smith’s beers for Seattle Beer Week 2016.  Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) has elected to brew a tribute to Taddy Porter.  I think Porters are an under appreciated style since so many people seem to favor Stouts.  I certainly enjoy a good stout myself but also seek out the occasional porter, so I’m curious to give this one a try.

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