There are several breweries in the Seattle/Tacoma area that make some truly excellent Sour Ales. Breweries like Holy Mountain, Urban Family, Mirage and Engine House No. 9 immediately come to mind, among others. I visit them all fairly regularly to satiate my thirst for delicious sours.
Before we had such great sour options around the Sound, however, the best Sour Ales Seattlites could hope to find came out of Portland – specifically Cascade Brewing. Their Sours are legendary around the Northwest and, while we have many great local options now, Cascade is still putting out World class Sour Ales that still catch my interest. They’re a must visit every time I’m in Portland. Now Cascade is preparing to release their latest offering: Mango Road.
I recently attended the 9th annual Belgian Fest at Seattle Center. I’m a big fan of well-made Belgian style beers and Belgian Fest offers some of the very best Belgian beers made by breweries in Washington State. This year’s event featured well over 40+ Washington breweries, each pouring their very best Belgian Ales.
With so many breweries pouring so many different Belgian Ales, you’d think there would be no reason to go back for a 2nd sample of anything, in the interests of trying as many different beers as possible. You’d be right to think this way but that’s now how things always work out. The goal of trying every single beer offered at a festival is noble but usually unrealistic. Believe me. I’ve tried. These days, if I find a beer at a festival that I truly enjoy, I’ll definitely go back for more.
Some of the first Fall Seasonals I started seeing this year were appearing as early as mid August. I suppose planning ahead isn’t a bad thing but, here in the Northwest where the Summers are notoriously short, we don’t need those early reminders that our sunny Summer days are numbered. Don’t get me wrong. I love many different Fall styles and welcome their return, I guess I’m just a little sad to see Summer come to a close this year.
If there’s one thing you can be sure of when Fall arrives though, it’s that along with it comes all the different Fall seasonal craft beers (even if some of them start appearing a bit early), including pumpkin and squash style beers. I haven’t found myself as excited for the plethora of pumpkin and squash ales that always make their way to craft bottle store shelves this time of year, but there are always a few new, interesting ones that catch my attention. One such beer is Wine Barrel-Aged sQUASH Ale from Lowercase Brewing Company.