Melvin Brewing Opens In Bellingham

Melvin Brewing Company out of Alpine and Jackson, Wyoming brews some pretty tasty beers.  Since they began distribution in the Seattle area in early 2016, I’ve come to really appreciate several of their offerings.  The two of their beers people around here are probably the most familiar with include their wildly popular 2×4 Imperial IPA and, of course, last year’s 3-Way IPA (brewed in conjunction with Fort George Brewing Company and Barley Brown’s).

First launched in 2009, Melvin took off quickly and gained high praise from the brewing industry, including a 2012 Gold Medal at the Great American Beer Festival for their 2×4 Imperial IPA (among other awards).  Now, they’ve launched a 3rd location, and their first full-scale brewpub, right here in Washington State.  Opened in Bellingham on June 3rd, Melvin’s brewpub offers 20 taps (including one rotating guest tap) and a full menu.

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Firestone Walker Introduces Adversus IPA

After retiring their Proprietor’s Reserve Series last year (which included one of my all time favorite IPAs, Double Jack), Firestone Walker Brewing Company embarked on two new series of IPAs.  First came the Luponic Distortion series, which is currently on version #6 and then came what is probably my new favorite IPA from Firestone Walker, Fortem; the first in their new Leo v. Ursus series.

I’ve been enjoying plenty of Fortem since it arrived in late February.  Now, I’m eager to try the next beer in the Leo v. Ursus series: Adversus.  It was released at Firestone Walker back on June 10th and should start arriving on Seattle store shelves and taps any day now.

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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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Two Special Releases From Counterbalance Brewing & 2bar Spirits

I’ve always been an advocate for Seattle’s South end breweries.  Living in the South end myself I, of course, spend a lot of time at these places and enjoy seeing them succeed.  A couple of years back I penned an article with some great reasons to visit Seattle’s South end breweries and, earlier this year, I told you about the newly formed South Seattle Brewery Coalition.

That’s why I was very pleased when I heard the news that Counterbalance Brewing Company had teamed up with 2bar Spirits (who also happens to be in Seattle’s South end) for a unique Whiskey/Stout collaboration.

Aging Stouts in Whiskey barrels is nothing new.  Breweries have been doing it for years and indeed Whiskey and Bourbon barrel aged Stouts are some of my favorites.  This time, however, things went a bit in the other direction.  2bar Spirits used the actual mash bill from Counterbalance’s Kushetka Imperial Stout to produce this particular Whiskey, then aged it for 2 years in 2bar Whiskey barrels.

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Craft Beer Monger’s Top Picks For Seattle Beer Week #9

Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like the past year has flown by so quickly.  Seattle Beer Week #8 almost feels like it was just a few weeks ago.  Yet here we are, with Seattle Beer Week #9 kicking off in just two days.  Have you had an opportunity to look over the ever-growing list of events on the official Seattle Beer Week website?  With so many events to choose from, many of which happen on the same day or even at the same time, you may have to make some difficult choices regarding which events to attend.  Here are my top picks for Seattle Beer Week #9.

Things get under way with the Official Seattle Beer Week Kickoff this Thursday, May 4th.  There are  5 stops on the Seattle Beer Week (SBW) kickoff tour.  Things start off at 4:30 pm at the new Flatstick Pub location in Pioneer Square.  The other stops on this year’s kickoff tour include: Beveridge Place Pub (6:30 pm and Cask-O-Rama will be going on), Brouwer’s Cafe (7:45 pm), Naked City Brewery & Taphouse (9:00 pm), with the evening closing out at The Pine Box (10:30 pm).

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Black Raven’s 8th Annual Flock Party & Ravenmaster Club Open Enrollment

Each year around this time, there’s a big party out in Redmond.  If you’re a fan of Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor), then you know that I’m referring, of course, to their annual Flock Party anniversary celebration.

Set to take place on Saturday, May 6th from noon – 7 pm, this year’s Flock Party will include live music, plenty of ‘rare birds’ (rare and unique Black Raven beers, including some Tiki-drink inspired infusions this year), food, a retail merchandise booth and even an outdoor cigar lounge/booth.  Well-behaved and leashed dogs will also be welcome and, if you run short on cash, there will be an ATM on site.

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Top Rung Brewing Prepares For Their Third Anniversary

What do you do when you’re a firefighter with a passion for craft beer and you’re looking for a hobby to keep you busy in your down-time?  You start homebrewing, of course.  At least that’s how things got started for Top Rung Brewing Company founders, Jason Stoltz and Casey Sobol.

First opened in April of 2014, Jason and Casey launched Top Rung to fill a need they saw for more craft beer choices in the Olympia area.  Now, they’re preparing for their third anniversary celebration.

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Pyramid Brewing Reveals New Brand Experience And Brewing Philosophy

SEATTLE (April 17, 2017) – Pyramid Brewing Co. today debuted an invigorated brand aesthetic and experience encompassing an expanded line of canned brews, the addition of Outburst Citrus IPA to Pyramid’s year-round line-up, all-new packaging and revamped digital channels across its website and social media.

The new branding for each beer is pictographic and shares the story of its ingredients by paying homage to iconic Pacific Northwest (PNW) sceneries with a bold color aesthetic. For example, Outburst Imperial IPA’s new label art celebrates the iconic Mt. St. Helens near the brewery’s founding home in Kalama, Wash. and Hefeweizen celebrates classic Pacific Northwest scenery of a tree-lined mountain lake. The bottom of 6-pack carriers will have a call-out to fans to share their adventures with Pyramid. Whether exploring mountain lakes and coastal beaches, walking orchards in Hood River County Fruit Loop, smelling the aroma of hop fields in Yakima and Willamette Valleys, or sipping brews at Pyramid Alehouse before a baseball game, these scenes honor the region’s beautiful surroundings and represent Pyramid’s brand ideals of adventure, curiosity and discovery.

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Beer Camp Across The World Kicks Off In June

Sierra Nevada Brewing Company was one of the first craft breweries I discovered years ago when I made the switch from bland, mass-produced lagers to the wonderful World of craft beer.  They’ve been at it since all the way back in 1979 – just one year after homebrewing became legal again at the Federal level in the U.S. (Thank you very much Jimmy & Billy Carter!)

One of Sierra Nevada’s biggest annual events these days is their popular Beer Camp, which first made it’s debut back in 2014. Dubbed the largest craft beer celebration around, Beer Camp 2017 is going Worldwide this year.  They’ve collaborated with 6 U.S. based craft breweries and 6 overseas craft breweries. Now, they’re preparing to take it on the road.  They’ll be hitting 8 major U.S. cities starting on June 3rd and ending with a bang in Seattle on June 30th.

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Celebrate National Beer Day With Elysian Brewing & The Return Of Superfuzz

It seems these days, there’s a ‘National’ day of… well, just about anything.  We’ve got National Rotisserie Chicken Day (June 2nd), National Golf Lovers Day (October 4th), heck there’s even a National Day The Music Died day.  It can be difficult to keep track of all those ‘National’ days out there but, if you’re a craft beer lover like me, there’s only a few you have to worry about.

One of the big ones that should be on your radar is National Beer Day, which takes place in just over one week on Friday, April 7th.  Breweries and craft beer bars around the nation will be celebrating, and I’m here to tell you about a few  selections coming your way from Elysian Brewing Company for this special day, as well as the return of a Seasonal favorite: Superfuzz Blood Orange Pale Ale.

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