With Spring here and Summer just around the corner, it’s definitely IPA season and Firestone Walker Brewing Company continues to expand their offerings with their latest release: Nectaron IPA, available exclusively in their “Crafted Thru Hops” IPA mixed pack.Continue reading
This year is the 33rd year the Phinney Neighborhood Association (PNA) has hosted their Winter Beer Taste. This year, however, due to COVID19, the PNA Winter Beer Taste is going virtual, with three different online events starting November 12th.
After purchasing your tickets for each of the three events, you’ll have to take a trip down to the PNA Center 5 days before each event to pick up your beers. Make sure they’re chilled, and then kick back and enjoy them in the comfort of your own home.
I know. I know. It’s still technically Winter and many of you are still in Barleywine and/or Imperial Stout mode, but I’m betting that hasn’t stopped you from enjoying some tasty IPAs too. After all, anytime is a good time for a tasty IPA.
Apparently Hellbent Brewing Company agrees. They’re set to release four different IPAs this month, and will be hosting their annual Poké & Pints For Public Lands event with the fourth release just after Spring arrives on March 20th. One of the IPAs is experimental. One is a POG. One is hop-forward and tropical, and the last is a PTG (Passionfruit, Tangerine, Guava) and will make wanna you hang loose. Say hello to Test Flight, Pau Hana, Expansion Pack and \m/ Shaka.
Seattle certainly has its share of craft beer events and festivals. I’ve been to more than my fair share and I’m betting many of you have as well. Some of my favorite annual events take place at one of my favorite craft beer bars in the city: Brouwer’s Cafe. I first discovered Brouwer’s way back in 2005, the year they opened, and immediately fell in love. They have great, Belgian inspired food and always have a great tap selection – especially during events/festivals.
Brouwer’s has several great events coming up over the next month. It all kicks off with the 18th annual Hard Liver festival coming up this Saturday, February 29th and culminates with their 15th anniversary celebration on March 28th. Now I know what you’re thinking. How can this be the 18th Hard Liver fest but only Brouwer’s 15th anniversary? Not to worry. This is a logical explanation for this discrepancy. The first few years of the Hard Liver fest were held at the Phinney Ridge Neighborhood Center, before Brouwer’s Cafe opened.
There aren’t a whole lot of breweries in Seattle that focus primarily on Belgians, Sours and Farmhouse/Wild Ales. Some of the best known are probably Holy Mountain Brewing and Urban Family Brewing (who has returned to Ballard – opening tomorrow at noon). A few others with a similar focus have opened fairly recently including Best of Hands Barrelhouse a year ago and the just opened Fair Isle Brewing in Ballard. However, there’s another brewery in Seattle that has been quietly producing Belgians, Sours and Farmhouse/Wild Ales for nearly 6 years now. That brewery is Tin Dog Brewing in South Park.
Since opening in 2014 they’ve kept a somewhat low profile. It took them a couple of years to begin bottling, but they’ve been packaging more and more beers and just this week started sending out kegs to local craft beer bars. They have also recently rebranded themselves as a blendery (there will be no name change, however). In their own words:
There are lots of different foods that pair quite well with beer. In fact, I really wish more high end restaurants would put as much care into curating their beer lists as they do their wine lists, because I believe there’s a craft beer out there suitable to pair with pretty much any meal.
Don’t get me wrong though. Food and craft beer pairings shouldn’t be limited to just high end restaurants. While I do indeed love to pair a good sirloin steak with a hoppy Pale Ale or pair a steamed lobster tail with a nice Belgian Tripel, I still enjoy more classic pairings like pizza and a good IPA or a mushroom Swiss burger with a smoked Porter. One of my favorite beer and food pairings though is a bowl of chili and… well, it can depend on the type of chili. Many people love to pair a good chili with a hearty Stout. Others might prefer an assertive IPA – especially if the chili is extra spicy – and still others would select a nice Saison.
Arts and crafts was never really my thing. I’m creative. I used to play guitar all the time, but don’t ask me to draw anything. It would come out looking like it was made by a kid in the 4th grade. I was a bit better at working with clay, sculpting and using a pottery wheel, but I only dabbled a bit and never really got into it long term. These days, I let my creativity come out in my writing instead, but I still wish I was a better at drawing.
Do you have a gift for the artistic – or would you like to work on your artistic skills? If so, Tin Dog Brewing Company has an event coming up that might interest you. On Wednesday, March 18th, Tin Dog’s Art Series will have local artist Amanda Caps in house to host a class on creating pieces of art using Precious Metal Clay (PMC), which is clay infused with copper or brass. You can use this special clay to create your own pieces of metal jewelry to keep for yourself or gift to others.
The iconic Pike Brewing Company, situated near the waterfront in Seattle’s historic Pike Place Market, has been brewing now for more than 30 years. Founders Charles and Rose Ann Finkel are well known and well loved in the local craft beer scene, and with good reason. Their dedication and perseverance helped elevate craft beer from a small ‘hobby’ for enthusiasts to a nationwide and indeed Worldwide powerhouse of, literally, thousands of small, independent breweries most of which, in my opinion, put out beers that put most mass-produced American lagers and Ales to shame.
Pike is also a big supporter of the local restaurant industry as well as local cideries, wineries and distilleries. One way they showcase their support for these ‘sister’ industries is their annual Chocofest, where you can find some of the very best our local producers offer and, of course, delicious Pike Brewing Company beers. Chocofest isn’t until early February of 2020, but tickets are on sale now and this event usually sells out, so don’t delay.
I’ve got an Urgent message for all you Hot Blooded classic rock fans out there, and you won’t have to go a Long, Long Way From Home to experience it. On Monday, September 16th from 5 – 8 pm legendary rock band Foreigner will be playing an intimate set, including a meet and greet with the band, at Pike Brewing Company.
These Juke Box Heroes are set to play the Washington State Fair on September 18th, but you can see and meet the band at Pike instead for far less than you’d spend for the VIP experience at the Fairgrounds. Enjoy an intimate acoustic set, meet the band, and enjoy some Cold As Ice Pike Beers.
I’ve been following Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) ever since they first began, taking up just a small portion of the building at 14679 NE 95th Street in Redmond. Today they occupy virtually the entire building and just recently opened their 2nd location at 15902 Woodinville Road in Woodinville. Over the years they’ve provided us with so many amazing and memorable beers. Some of those that stick out the most in my mind include: Trickster IPA, Wisdom Seeker Double IPA, La Petite Mort (and La Mort Bourbon!), Kitty Kat Blues, Second Sight Scotch Ale, Great Grandfather Raven Bourbon Imperial Stout, Gunpowder Plot Nitro Porter and many, many more.
Their new Woodinville brewery and taproom is quite impressive. The taproom is a big, open space with large windows behind the bar, allowing you to see right into the brewery. If you haven’t had the opportunity to visit yet, then here’s your perfect excuse. This Saturday, August 17th, Black Raven Brewing Company will celebrate their 10th Anniversary with the 10th annual Flock Party at their new Woodinville location.