The West Seattle Beer & Music Festival Returns In August

I don’t live in West Seattle, but I do spend quite a bit of time there. It’s one of my favorite Seattle neighborhoods and offers a little something for everyone. There’s a lot to do down by the waterfront, the restaurant scene is great and the craft beer scene is on point with two of Seattle’s best craft beer bars: Beveridge Place Pub and The Beer Junction.

Last year’s first annual West Seattle Beer & Music Festival was a wonderful celebration of microbrews and music from the Northwest, and now it’s set to return for a second year at the Alki Masonic Center on August 23rd & 24th.

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Best Of Hands Barrelhouse Is A Welcome Addition To West Seattle

Yesterday evening, I attended a preview event for Seattle’s newest brewery, Best Of Hands Barrelhouse.  I first told you about Best Of Hands back at the end of January, when they announced their opening date of Friday, March 8th.  Since then I’ve been eagerly anticipating the opening, and with good reason.  These guys really know what they’re doing, and the beers I enjoyed yesterday proved it beyond any doubt.

If you visit The Beer Junction in West Seattle with any regularity, you may recognize two of Best Of Hands’ founders: Gregory Marlor, and Nicholas Marianetti (both are level II Certified Cicerones®).  They both worked at The Beer Junction before leaving recently to launch Best Of Hands with their partner, Chris Richardson.  The Beer Junction was also the first place to tap Best Of Hands’ Phantom Boots IPA last month.

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Best Of Hands Barrelhouse Opens March 8th

There are lots of great breweries in Seattle and the surrounding area, and many of those breweries are definitely worth the short or even long trip required for a visit.  Most of the time though, unless there’s an event or a gathering that might draw us farther away, or we’re out specifically to try a new place/new places, most of us tend to drink more often at the craft breweries that are closer to where we live. That’s a part of the reason I’m such an advocate for breweries that are more in Seattle’s South end (including West Seattle), but definitely not the only reason.  Sure, their proximity to me and my commute route makes them convenient, but most of them also make some damn fine craft beers.

There aren’t that many craft breweries in West Seattle (although Future Primitive Brewing did recently open in White Center), but now we have another newcomer nearly set to go.  Coming up on March 8th, Best Of Hands Barrelhosue will open their doors to the public.  Founded by Gregory Marlor and Nicholas Marianetti (former servers at The Beer Junction – and level II Certified Cicerones), along with their partner Chris Richardson, Best Of Hands will specialize in mixed-fermentation barrel aged sours and European inspired farmhouse ales.

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Craft Beer Monger’s Picks For Seattle Beer Week 10

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.

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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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The Washington Hop Mob Triple IPA Roadshow Returns Next Month

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A few years back, IPA fans in Washington were dismayed to discover that Russian River Brewing would no longer be distributing their beers to Washington State.  That meant no more Pliny The Elder or Pliny The Younger for Washington (among many other great Russian River beers).  That drought of Pliny (and the over-the-top clamoring for it during the years when we could still get it here) led many Washington breweries to start crafting their own Triple IPAs.

The first two Triple IPAs I recall seeing, which were intended partly as a joke due to the insanity surrounding Pliny releases, were Big Time Brewing Company’s ‘Whiny The Complainer’ and Naked City’s ‘Cry Me A River’.  Super strong and over-the-top hoppy, I was an instant fan of both.  Since that time, more and more Washington breweries started crafting their own Triple IPAs and soon after the Washington Hop Mob Triple IPA Roadshow was born.  That first year, just 14 Washington breweries participated.

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Beer Church IPA Arrives This Saturday

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If there’s two things Seattle area breweries do well, besides brewing great craft beers of course, it’s collaboration and doing what they can to benefit worthwhile charitable causes.  That’s what Beer Church is all about.

This year, Beer Church has teamed up with Georgetown Brewing Company (recent winner of the GABF Gold Medal for their Bodhizafa IPA), Airways Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor), Big Al Brewing Company and Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) to brew this year’s Beer Church IPA.  Proceeds from this beer will go to benefit the the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America.

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The Eleventh Annual IPA Cask-O-Rama Starts This Thursday

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One month ago, on September 29th, Beveridge Place Pub in West Seattle (one of Seattle’s best local craft beer bars) kicked off their annual ‘Hoptoberfest’.  More than just a celebration of Washington-brewed IPAs, this month-long festival is their way of selecting their House IPA for the next year.

If you’re a regular at Beveridge Place Pub, then you know how this works.  For the uninitiated, Beveridge Place whittles down over 48 Washington IPAs to just 3 finalists based on your votes. Today and tomorrow is your last chance to vote on those 3 finalists, which must be done by blind ballot.  Order a taster try with all 3, and vote for your favorite without knowing which is which.  This year’s 3 finalists are: Reuben’s Brews‘ Crikey IPA, Georgetown Brewing‘s Bodhizafa IPA and Counterbalance Brewing IPA.  Visit Beveridge Place Pub today or tomorrow to have your blind tray and cast your vote.  I’ve already voted once, but I’ll probably go back and cast one more vote before the end of tomorrow.

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The Beer Junction Celebrates Their 6th Anniversary

 

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Finding a good tap and bottle shop around Seattle isn’t all that difficult.  We’re fortunate to have several options for where to go beer shopping while enjoying a few pints on tap at the same time.  One of those places that stands out for me in particular, however, is The Beer Junction in West Seattle.  Offering Seattle’s largest selection of more than 1,300+ different beers (plus cider and mead) and an incredible 70 taps of beer, cider, mead and wine, The Beer Junction has become my favorite after-work destination to enjoy a few cold ones from their always excellent and diverse tap selection and check out what’s new in bottles and cans.

Each year, as their anniversary approaches, The Beer Junction teams up with a local brewery to create a special anniversary beer to help them celebrate.  Last year it was Cinq Houblon, a Saison brewed by Sound Brewing out on the Kitsap peninsula.  The year before that it was Black Sands Coconut Cream Imperial Stout, from Fort George Brewing in Astoria, Oregon.  I’m still aging a bottle of that one in my cellar at home.

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Nearing The Halfway Point Of Seattle Beer Week #8 – UPDATED

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Today, Monday May 16th, is day number 5 of Seattle Beer Week #8, which means we’re about halfway through.  Things kicked off last Thursday at Reuben’s Brews with the official tapping of the first keg of the official Seattle Beer Week beer: Daily Pale, followed by the opening night pub crawl.  I had to drop by Reuben’s, of course, for the kickoff and then found my way to Beveridge Place Pub for stop #3 on the crawl.

Since then, the events have been coming pretty much non-stop.  The highlights for me so far have been the Underberg Back In Black Stout Fest at Brouwer’s Cafe, Satanic Metal C.O.W. Night at Toronado and, even though I had to leave a bit early, Firestone Walker & Holy Mountain last night at The Pine Box.

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