Seattle certainly has its share of craft beer events and festivals. I’ve been to more than my fair share and I’m betting many of you have as well. Some of my favorite annual events take place at one of my favorite craft beer bars in the city: Brouwer’s Cafe. I first discovered Brouwer’s way back in 2005, the year they opened, and immediately fell in love. They have great, Belgian inspired food and always have a great tap selection – especially during events/festivals.
Brouwer’s has several great events coming up over the next month. It all kicks off with the 18th annual Hard Liver festival coming up this Saturday, February 29th and culminates with their 15th anniversary celebration on March 28th. Now I know what you’re thinking. How can this be the 18th Hard Liver fest but only Brouwer’s 15th anniversary? Not to worry. This is a logical explanation for this discrepancy. The first few years of the Hard Liver fest were held at the Phinney Ridge Neighborhood Center, before Brouwer’s Cafe opened.
Even though I knew it was coming, Seattle Beer Week (SBW) kind of snuck up on me this year. I can’t believe it kicks off in just 2 days! There are a few events that happen each year that I usually attend so I’m set there. However, I didn’t find much time until this past weekend to look over the rest of this year’s SBW events and choose which ones I’d either like to attend myself and/or that I’d like to suggest to you. I’m here to fix that.
How about you? Have you found the time to look over the ever growing list of events on the official Seattle Beer Week website? If not, don’t worry. I took the time to read through the details of every event that’s been posted for this year’s festivities, and I’m here to give you my suggestions for the best events to pick from for Seattle Beer Week #11. Here we go!
Seattle is known for many different things. Two of the most prominent are, of course, coffee and craft beer. What some of you might not know, however, is that Seattle has a huge video game and comic book community. The annual PAX (Penny Arcade Expo) started here (which I used to report on annually when I wrote about video games), and Emerald City Comic Con has been happening every year since 2003. Last year’s attendance was over 95 thousand comic fans.
A few years back, Fremont Brewing Company partnered with ReedPOP, producer Emerald City Comic Con (ECCC), to create an ECCC-themed beer. The result was Dark Heron IPA. Now returning for its fourth year, Dark Heron features artwork by local Seattle artist Julia Reck and will be available on tap throughout ECCC’s run, and in cans for the first time.
Even though we have a large number of breweries right here in Seattle, many of us often take trips away from the city to explore breweries farther away or perhaps to visit some favorites we’ve found on previous craft beer excursions.
One popular destination for those leaving Seattle on one of these excursions is the city of Bellingham, WA. I myself am a big fan of many Bellingham breweries including: Wander, Kulshan, Chuckanut, Structures and, of course, Aslan. Well, if Aslan Brewing Company is on your list of favorite Bellingham breweries, then I’ve got some great news. This Summer, Aslan will open a location in Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood.
Seattle is a city that’s just bursting at the seams with craft breweries. No matter were you are in the city, you’re likely not more than a few stones throws away from a craft brewery. With so many breweries to choose from though, how do you decide who the standouts are? How do you know which breweries to recommend to people here for a visit or those asking about which Seattle breweries they need to keep an eye on?
Two factors that can help you decide are, of course, the quality of the beers the brewery is putting out, and the demand for those beers whenever there’s a new release. By those two measures, among others, Fremont Brewing Company has become one of Seattle’s best known breweries, even outside of Washington. Many of their beers, particularly their barrel-aged offerings, have caught the attention of craft beer lovers both near and far. They even have a super secret society of members who “solemnly swear to devote themselves to the pursuit of the finest beers that ever were” – the Heron Hunting Club. Fremont Brewing already distributes their beers to 6 states, including Washington, and now they’re ready to expand into Montana with the help of Hayden Beverage Company.
Don’t be sad that our Seattle Summer is winding down and Fall is set to return. Instead, rejoice in knowing that the hop harvest is upon us and that means the return of Fresh Hop beers. Several local breweries make Fresh Hop beers each year but one brewery really goes all out, releasing multiple Fresh Hop beers for us to enjoy each year. That brewery is Fremont Brewing Company.
Each year, they release multiple versions of their Field To Ferment Fresh Hop Ale, each one featuring a different hop. The first release in this year’s Field To Ferment series arrives today, 9/7 and features Centennial hops. Also, set to return soon is their wildly popular Cowiche Canyon Fresh Hop, using hops grown exclusively for Fremont on a single farm at the mouth of the Cowiche Canyon Conservation area in Yakima.
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.
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.
What could be better than enjoying some delicious craft beers and tasty food from some of Seattle’s favorite breweries, food trucks and restaurants on a crisp, Fall evening in October? I know, enjoying those tasty beers and delicious food all while helping raise money to help sick children’s dreams come true.
Make-A-Wish Alaska and Washington is in the business of making children smile. They do whatever they can to grant as many wishes as possible to local children with life-threatening medical conditions and now, they’ve teamed up with several local businesses to bring you an event filled with beer, cider and food samplings from some of Seattle’s favorite breweries, food trucks and restaurants.