Scotch Ales are a style the often gets overlooked by your average craft beer drinker. They aren’t as prominent out there as Pale Ales, Stouts and, of course, IPAs, but if you enjoy a robust, malty beer that’s perfect for this chilly Fall weather we’ve been having, then give a Scotch Ale a try.
There are a few local breweries that make some excellent Scotch Ales, and one of my favorites is the award winning Second Sight Scotch Ale from Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor). As good as Second Sight is, however, it gets even better when Black Raven ages it in Bourbon Barrels and christens it with the name of Splinters.
Bottle releases have become a pretty big deal in the Seattle area. It feels like just about every other weekend, there’s a new release (or several) coming out at one local craft brewery or another. Fremont Brewing Company has definitely had their share of sought after releases, including their recent release of The Ancient One series (Dark Star & B-Bomb versions). I heard the line for those bottles started as early as 4:30 am.
Your possible adverse feelings about standing in line for a beer release notwithstanding, the time has come to let you know that Fremont Brewing will be releasing the 2016 Version of B-Bomb in just over one week on “B-Bomb Friday”, November 25th.
My craft beer World was rocked recently by the news that Firestone Walker Brewing Company was going to be retiring their Proprietor’s Reserve Series of beers, which includes one of my all time favorite IPAs: Double Jack. As dismayed as I was by the news, the announcement actually follows a trend that seems to be taking hold in the craft beer World. Perhaps you’ve heard the term being thrown around out there: The death of the flagship.
It seems, if you want to remain popular and buzz-worthy in today’s craft beer World, you can’t just rest on your brewing laurels. The breweries that are garnering the most attention and publicity are those who are constantly coming out with something new. Well, if you want to brew something new, that means you often have to stop brewing something old.
There are lots of great craft breweries in the Seattle area, and many of those breweries were founded by people who started off as homebrewers before making the leap to professional brewer. Adam Robbings, founder of Reuben’s Brews is one of them.
As a call back to Adam’s homebrewing roots, Reuben’s Brews has announced a homebrew competition as a means to help inspire other homebrewers to chase their own brewery dreams. The winner will receive a cash prize but, more importantly, will brew their winning homebrew with the crew at Reuben’s Brews and see their beer on tap at Reuben’s and in limited distribution around the Northwest. So fire up those brewing kettles and bring out your very best homebrew recipes, because (in my best Ryan Seacrest immitation) this… is Hop Idol!
Pyramid Brewing Company has been around for quite a while. They began as Hart Brewing way back in 1984 and have been through several small changes, including changes in ownership, since then. While their main brewing operation today is in Portland, they continue to produce beer at their Seattle brewery location on 1st Avenue South, right across from Safeco Field. Pyramid produces a number of different Ales, including their popular Winter Warmer, Snow Cap.
It’s amazing to think that Pyramid has been producing Snow Cap for 30 years now. That’s longer than some of you reading this have even been alive. Now, Pyramid is preparing three special releases in celebration of the 30th Anniversary of Snow Cap.
Last September, Lowercase Brewing Company was one of many breweries I mentioned in a Craft Beer Monger feature article about Great Reasons To Check Out Seattle’s South End Breweries. They’ve been operating out of a space in Seattle’s South Park neighborhood since January 2014, but in early 2016 Lowercase found out they would have to close their taproom in South Park, so they started looking for a new location, and they found one in Georgetown.
Since then, they’ve been working hard to get the new Georgetown taproom ready for business. Some initial permitting delays pushed back their original opening date but now they’re ready for their big reveal. Lowercase Brewing is pleased to announced that the grand opening for their new taproom, on Airport Way in Georgetown, will be next Friday, November 11th starting at 4 pm.
I love this time of year. I may be a serious hophead (I’ve been in hop-lovers Heaven this fresh-hop Season), but I think most of my favorite craft beers are still dark beers. When Stout, Porter and Winter Lager season rolls back around, you’ll always find me with a big smile on my face.
Well, Black Raven Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor) is helping me out with that Winter beer smile. Just two weeks ago they releasedGrandfather Raven Imperial Stout. Last week they brought usFrost Beak Winter Lager and now, set for release this coming Saturday the 5th, is their Gunpowder Plot Nitro Porter. Brewed to commemorate Guy Fawkes Day, Gunpowder Plot is rich and complex. Brewed with bourbon-soaked coffee beans and cocoa nibs and served on Nitro, its a true pleasure to the palate.
It’s time once again to celebrate at Two Beers Brewing Company (CBM Sponsor). Coming up just one week from tomorrow, Saturday, November 5th, Two Beers Brewing will celebrate their 9th Anniversary from 1 pm to 7 pm. For this year’s Anniversary celebration, Two Beers is revisiting their past a bit. They’ve dug into both their pantry and their cellar to bring back some special cask infusions that were more prevalent during the previous iteration of The Woods taproom, as well as some vertical tastings of their Alta Series’ beers, including the now retired Ascension 2013, High Divide 2013 among others.
Also returning in time for the Anniversary celebration is Two Beers’ popular Jive Espresso Stout, and they will be debuting the latest addition to their lineup: Tipsy Toboggan Winter Ale. This Winter Warmer comes in at 6.8% and will be available on draft and in 12 oz cans starting on November 5th.
One of my favorite California breweries has hit an amazing milestone. This year, Firestone Walker Brewing Company celebrates their 20th year. To help them celebrate, they are, of course, releasing the latest version of their annual anniversary Ale: XX Anniversary Ale.
I’ve been enjoying Firestone Walker’s Anniversary Ales since their XIII Anniversary Ale release back in 2009. Each release is expertly blended together from a plethora of other Firestone Walker Ales by an entire team of experienced brewers and winemakers, and the blend is different every year. Some have been more malty and some a bit more boozy, while others have been more on the hoppy side. I’ve enjoyed them all, but I think their XIV Anniversary Ale may still be one of my favorites. I’m really looking forward to tasting XX Anniversary Ale.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year at Fremont Brewing Company. After a successful Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Star release on October 1st and their launch in Oregon State just 2 days ago, Fremont is ready to release their 2015 Vintage Bourbon Barrel Aged Abominable Ale – more commonly known as B-Bomb.
This rich, intense, caramelly, fruity, bourbony, vanilla-ish stout is one of my annual favorites and, now that I think about it, one of my very favorite bourbon barrel aged beers period. In fact, my own personal craft cellar has a rather high preponderance of B-Bomb (and Darkstar) bottles in different varieties. Last year’s Coffee Cinnamon B-Bomb variant was one of my absolute favorites. I covet the few bottles I have left and save them for special occasions.