Firestone Walker Announces Generation 1 IPA – Limited Release

If you want to get noticed in today’s craft beer World, you can’t rest on your laurels.  You’ve got to continue to innovate and keep coming out with new and interesting beers to keep the buzz going.  Firestone Walker Brewing Company understand this and it’s part of the reason they retired their Proprietor’s Reserve Series of beers – which included Opal (Dry Hopped Saison), Wookey Jack (Cascadian Dark Ale) and their wildly popular Double Jack Imperial IPA.

Around the same time they retired the Proprietor’s Reserve Series, Firestone Walker proceeded to release two new series of IPAs: The Luponic Distorion Series (Currently on #6) and the Leo v. Ursus Series (which consists so far of Fortem and Adversus).  Now, Firestone Walker is preparing to release a new,limited-release IPA named Generation 1 IPA.

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Fresh Hop Season Kicks Off Next Week At Two Beers Brewing

Summer is waning and Fall is drawing closer each day.  That must mean it’s Fresh Hop time!  Each year, when it’s time for the hop harvest up in Yakima Valley, many local craft breweries prepare to brew their annual Fresh Hop beers – loaded up with fresh-picked hops right off the vine.

Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) prides themselves on always being the first local brewery each year to debut their Fresh Hop IPA, and this year is no different.  They held their annual hop picking party, and brewed their Fresh Hop IPA back on August 9th.  By next week it will be ready to serve, and Two Beers is welcoming it with a Fresh Hop IPA release party on Wednesday, August 23rd.

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Stoup Brewing Is Preparing To Throw A Yard Party

We’ve been having a great Summer in Seattle.  It’s been wonderfully warm (Oh, stop complaining! How often do we get the heat?  Plus, it’s cooler again this week.)  We broke the record for number of days without rain at 52 (breaking the old record of 51 set in 1951), and great, locally-brewed, Summertime craft beers are on tap everywhere you look.  We won’t discuss the BC smoke though…

Stoup Brewing Company has been enjoying all that beautiful weather out there too and now they’re preparing to host their largest event of the Summer – a yard party on Saturday, August 26th from 2 pm to 10 pm.  They’ll have great beer (of course!), lots of food, live bands and activities for the whole family thanks to the Seattle Children’s Museum.

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The Washington Beer Collaboration Festival Happens This Weekend

It seems like I’ve been telling you about a lot of collaboration beers lately.  There was the Chainline & Georgetown ‘Bunk Beds’ collaboration project, the American Dream Collaboration Pack from Samuel Adams, Sierra Nevada‘s collaboration with Brauhaus Miltenberger for the ultimate Oktoberfest bier, the Harvest Collaboration Series and Sesiones del Migrante collaboration from Bale Breaker Brewing and, of course, this year’s 3-Way IPA from Fort George, Reuben’s and Great Notion (which has been somewhat difficult to find this year).

With so many collaboration beers around, it seems like it would be a great idea to have a festival where you could sample several different collaboration beers all in one place.  Well, luckily for us, just such a festival is happening at the end of this week.  Coming up this Saturday, August 19th, is the 2017 Washington Beer Collaboration Festival, presented by the Washington Beer Commission.

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Ninkasi Bottles First Rule IPA

Things are moving pretty quickly in today’s craft beer World.  New craft breweries are popping up everywhere like weeds and exciting new beers are being released constantly.  Many of these new beers can only be found on tap but if they become popular enough, they usually find their way into bottles or cans.

Ninkasi Brewing Company loves hoppy beers and believes in “brewing without limitations.”  It was in this spirit that they added First Rule IPA to their Rare & Delicious Series back in March.  Now, they’re ready to promote this beer that’s been so popular on tap to their Special Release Series in 12 oz and 22 oz bottles.

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Bale Breaker Announces Sesiones del Migrante Mango IPA

Just last week I told you about the Harvest Collaboration Series form Bale Breaker Brewing Company, in which they paired with four different craft breweries to create the beers for the series.  They’ll have staggered releases from August through October.  Now, while they’re still in the collaborative mood, Bale Breaker is at it again with the upcoming release of Sesiones del Migrante Mango IPA in six-packs.

Sesiones del Migrante is a series of beers that Bale Breaker has brewed in conjunction with Mexican and American breweries, in a collaboration that spans 5 breweries and 2 countries.  Created in celebration of the Mexican migrant workers who travel to the Yakima Valley each year to help harvest the precious hops for all those wonderful craft beers we all enjoy, it’s due to arrive both on tap and in cans on September 7th and will see distribution throughout Washington and Northern Idaho.

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The Brewmaster’s Taproom Prepares For Their 1st Anniversary

There are quite a few breweries and craft beer bars right in Seattle, North of Seattle and East of Seattle.  South of Seattle though, until you get down closer to Tacoma, breweries and even craft beer bars become more sparse and difficult to find.  As far as breweries south of Seattle city limits go, we’ve got Odin in Tukwila, Elliott Bay in Burien and Airways Brewing (CBM Sponsor) in Kent (plus Strong Arm, Four Generals and Herbert B. Friendly in Renton).

Craft beer bars seem even more sparse South of Seattle.  The only ones that come immediately to mind are the Dog & Pony Alehouse (Renton), Pit Stop Taproom & Pub (Burien) and, of course, The Brewmaster’s Taproom (Renton).  Just a reminder, though, the the grand opening for Burien’s newest craft beer bar, Flight Path, happens tomorrow at 5 pm.

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Bale Breaker announces the Harvest Collaboration Series

Collaborations are all the rage these days.  I recently told you about the Samuel Adams Brewing The American Dream Collaboration Pack and this year’s 3-Way IPA from Fort George Brewing (plus Great Notion Brewing and Reuben’s Brews) has been flying off shelves so fast that it’s been a bit difficult to find this year.

Now, Bale Breaker Brewing Company is ready to get in on the action.  They’ve partnered with Georgetown Brewing, Founders Brewing, Cloudburst Brewing and Pinthouse Pizza & Brewpub to create the Harvest Series Collaboration Series.  The beers have staggered release date from August through October.

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Melvin Brewing Bellingham Expands Their Hours

Just a couple of years ago, beers from Melvin Brewing Company out of Wyoming started appearing in the Seattle area.  Being a big fan of hoppy beers as well as strong beers, I was immediately drawn to Melvin’s offerings, which satisfied both of these cravings quite nicely.  I can recall drinking quite a bit of their Melvin IPA and, of course, their extremely popular 2X4 Double (some might say triple with its 10% ABV) IPA.

Fast forward now to 2017 – just a few months ago.  Melvin Brewing decided it was time to expand and opened their first brewpub up in Bellingham on June 3rd.  I visited them a few weeks after their opening but  had to plan my day out carefully, because Melvin’s Bellingham location wasn’t set to open until 4 pm.  That’s about to change.  Starting on Monday, August 14th, Melvin Brewing Bellingham will start opening at 11 am and serving lunch.

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Join Schooner Exact For A Hop Field Trip This September

Each year, as Fall approaches in the Northwest, it’s hop harvest time.  That can only mean one thing: Fresh Hop IPAs are coming.  Most beers are brewed using kilned or dried hops, usually in the form of compressed hop pellets.  Fresh Hop or Wet Hop beers, on the other hand, utilize fresh, un-kilned hops straight off the vine.  This allows them to retain all of their natural oils (some of which can be lost or reduced during the kilning/drying process), and impart a more Earthy and natural character to the finished beer.

When brewing a Fresh Hop Ale, the hops must be utilized with 24 – 48 hours after picking to ensure freshness.  Any longer and they’ll start to become soggy and begin to develop mildew and rot.  So, when the season arrives, you’ll see plenty of trucks from local breweries making day-trips up to the Yakima Valley to procure their fresh hops for brewing.

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