Great Reasons To Check Out Seattle’s South End Breweries

Counterbalance Brewing Company

Counterbalance Brewing Company

Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood gets a lot of attention for the number of breweries in such a small area, and rightly so.  Ballard has, to many, become known as Seattle’s ‘Brewery District’.  The South End however, if you include SoDo, Georgetown and South Park, actually rivals Ballard in the number of available breweries to visit.  There’s even more if you include the Columbia City area of Rainier Avenue South.

SoDo has Two Beers Brewing (CBM Sponsor), Schooner Exact Brewing, Ghostfish Brewing (Gluten Free), Epic Ales (recently closed for transition to ‘Molusk‘) and Seapine Brewing. Georgetown has Machine House Brewing, Counterbalance Brewing and, of course, Georgetown Brewing.  Cross the first street bridge into South Park and you’ll find Burdick Brewery, Lowercase Brewing and Tin Dog Brewing.  Head the other direction towards the Rainier Valley and you’ll find Spinnaker Bay Brewing and Flying Lion Brewing.

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What Makes A Good Craft Beer Bar?

As the voting winds down for CraftBeer.com‘s Great American Beer Bars poll (Voting ends tomorrow – don’t delay!), it got me thinking.  What exactly makes for a great craft beer bar?  Opinions vary wildly, as they do with most things these days, regarding what it means to be the best.  Is it the biggest tap selection?  Is it the best food/food pairings?  Is it the location and hours?  Is it the knowledge and demeanor of the staff?  Is it the decor and ‘feel’ of the place?  Is it all of these things?  Let’s take a look:

Biggest/Best Tap (or Bottle) Selection:

Choice is important.  In fact, other than quality, choice and variety are close to the top of the list when discussing what sets craft beer apart from the mass-produced stuff we constantly see from Bud, Miller, Coors, etc.  Craft beer means choice, and there are quite a few great craft beers across this nation (and internationally) to choose from.  However, is choice the most important factor in determining which craft beer bar is the best?  That can depend on a few different factors.

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