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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2017 Old Birdbrain Barleywine Arrives This Weekend From Black Raven

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Barleywine season is almost here.  The 15th Annual Hard Liver Barleywine Festival is coming up next month at Brouwer’s Cafe and the 15th Annual Barleywine Bacchanal will happen at Beveridge Place Pub in March.  With these and other barleywine festivals on the way, local breweries are working hard to get their 2017 barley wines ready to go.

To that end, Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) is just about ready to release their 2017 Old Birdbrain Barleywine, which has been a multiple award winner at the annual Great Alaskan Beer & Barleywine Festival. This year’s vintage will arrive this coming Friday, Jaunary 27th.

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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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Seattle Beer Week Kicks Off Today

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I don’t know about you, but I’ve had a pretty crazy last week or so leading up to Seattle Beer Week #8.  Between being busy at work (both of them), still mourning a bit for our dog, Bailei, and trying to plan out my Seattle Beer Week 2016 schedule (picking from, literally, hundreds of events), I’ve barely had time to breathe.

The event list for Seattle Beer Week seems to get a bit bigger each year.  There are always a few days where there are at least 2 or 3 different events all happening at the same time on opposite ends of town, so you have to make a choice.  Hitting every single event is absolutely impossible (and severe liver abuse!), so you have to pick your battles (or is it bottles?)

Now, it’s here.  Seattle Beer Week kicks off this evening at Reuben’s Brews in Ballard.  They’ll be open at noon today, but the official opening ceremony for Seattle Beer Week won’t take place until 5 pm.  The first keg of Daily Pale, the official beer of Seattle Beer Week #8, will be tapped and the Mayor’s Proclamation will be read.

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Craft Beer Monger’s Picks For Seattle Beer Week 2016 – UPDATED

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I’ve been a fan of great craft beer ever since having my very first craft beer (a Red Tail Ale from Mendocino Brewing Company, if memory serves).  However, I didn’t really immerse myself into the Seattle Craft Beer scene until sometime in 2010.  Before that I was, of course, still enjoying craft beer, but my journalistic focus was geared more towards the console video game market.  I used to operate a couple of console gaming review sites (focusing mostly on Xbox), which are now closed down.

That means I haven’t been attending Seattle Beer Week for as many years as some of you out there.  The first time I attended a Seattle Beer Week event (and actually knew that I was doing so), was back during Seattle Beer Week #4 in 2010, and the first Seattle Beer Week I ever wrote about was Seattle Beer Week #5 in 2011.  Right now, that sure seems like a long time ago.

Now, with 2016 upon us, we’re just one week away from the kickoff of Seattle Beer Week #8.  That means it’s time once again for me to give you my picks for what sound like the best events at this year’s Seattle Beer Week, just as I’ve done each year since 2012.

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Craft Beer Monger’s Picks For The Best Local Craft Beer Bars

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Each week on Twitter I take part in what’s known as Follow Friday.  If you follow me (or anyone else) on Twitter then I’m sure you’re familiar with the concept.  In my Follow Friday (#FF) tweets, I always give a shout out to a few of my favorite local craft beer bars including: The Beer Junction, Beveridge Place Pub, The Pine Box, Toronado, Brouwer’s Cafe (and Burgundian), The Noble Fir, Stogies N Hops (CBM Sponsor) and The Red Hot and Parkway Tavern down in Tacoma.

I don’t always get to each of these places as often as I’d like, which is unfortunate.  The two I tend to make it to the most often are The Beer Junction and Beveridge Place Pub, both in West Seattle.  With only a minor detour, both places are basically on my way home from work.  Don’t get me wrong though.  Convenience is not, by any means, the only reason I frequent these two places.  In fact, Beveridge Place is regularly named one of Seattle’s best pubs on many ‘Best Of’ lists and The Beer Junction was just awarded Best Bottle Shop In Washington for the 4th year in a row from Rate Beer.

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Barleywine Season Is Almost Here – UPDATED

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There seem to be a lot of high alcohol beers around lately.  With Barrel Junction wrapping up at The Beer Junction (lots of high ABV, barrel-aged beers – a few are still on tap) and the Washington Hop Mob Triple IPA Roadshow right around the corner (starting this Thursday at Brouwer’s Cafe and running through the 14th at various locations), we really have to pace ourselves.  That can be difficult to do, however, when even more high alcohol beers are right around the corner.

Each year, as Spring approaches, I look forward to the annual return of Barleywines from all around Washington State and all across the U.S.  Two of the biggest and best local events for enjoying all those wonderful Barleywines are returning soon.  I’m talking, of course, about the Barleywine Bacchanal at Beveridge Place Pub and the annual Hard Liver Barleywine Festival at Brouwer’s Cafe.

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The Washington Hop Mob Triple IPA Roadshow Returns

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Oh hops, how do I love thee.  Let me count the ways.  Actually, I’d better not. With so many amazing hoppy beers out there, counting them all would take quite a while.  For the moment, I only want to worry about a particular set of hoppy beers that are back and ready to hit the road.  Returning for its third year and kicking off this week is the Washington Hop Mob Triple IPA Roadshow.

I first told you about this event last month and now I wanted to update you with the full details.  Set to make its first stop this Thursday the 4th at Brouwer’s Cafe, the Hop Mob Roadshow will also hit several other locations around the Sound, bringing you the biggest, boldest, strongest and, of course, hoppiest beers around.

Originally inspired by the rather ridiculous amount of hype attributed to a particular Triple IPA from a well known Northern California brewery, the Hop Mob set out to prove that Washington Brewers can make triple IPAs just as well (and in my opinion even better) than just about anyone else.

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Lots Of Great Events To Keep You Busy Till Spring Arrives (UPDATED)

 

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It’s really pouring out there, but I’m not talking about the weather.  It’s raining craft beer events; enough to keep your liver plenty busy between now and the arrival of Spring.  Get you calendar out, because I’m going to tell you about 8 local craft beer festivals and other events coming your way between now and March 20; the first day of Spring, 2016.

Most of these upcoming events are free to attend.  The amount you’ll spend only depends on how many beers and how much food you decide to purchase.  The other two are ticketed events, where you’ll want to get your ticket(s) in advance to make sure you can attend.

(Please note – this is not a comprehensive list of ALL local events happening between now and March 20th.  I’m merely highlighting some of the events I think my readers would be most interested in.)

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The 13th Annual Hard Liver Barleywine Festival & Brouwer’s 10th Anniversary

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It may only be early March, but Spring has indeed sprung in the Northwest.  While the East, Midwest and even the South have been having a pretty harsh winter, we have, for the most part, been unseasonably warm this year.  I don’t really hear anyone complaining, except perhaps ski and snowboard fans, who had a rather limited season this year.

Perhaps all those disappointed winter sports fans can console themselves with the realization that barleywine season has arrived.  The biggest and boldest beers of the year are here.  Get out there and get yourself some.  This year’s ‘Barleywine Bacchanal’ (with a rotating selection of at least 30 barleywines on tap each day) has already been going at Beveridge Place Pub since this past Saturday, February 28th and will continue through this coming Saturday, March 7th.  Also, coming up late next week is the 13th annual Hard Liver Barleywine Festival at Brouwer’s Cafe.

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