#WAbeer – PorchDrinking.com
Seattlites have tolerated a lot of Mother Nature this year. We endured the snowiest February ever recorded followed by the hottest winter day ever recorded. Then April gave us the longest rain streak we’ve ever seen. Thankfully, the month of May is here to bring us relief in the form of Seattle Beer Week! The event, now in its eleventh year, was created to celebrate and showcase the close, collaborative beer community of the Northwest. This year’s Seattle Beer Week runs from May 9-19 and features hundreds of events across the city of Seattle and beyond, including camel visits, Battle of the Beer Bands, and dozens of beer dinners and tasting events.
What do you call these hazy IPAs that seem to be everywhere? This style goes by many names; NEIPA, Juicy IPA, Hazy IPA. But whatever you call these juice bombs it seems they’re here to stay and in full effect from coast to coast.
Readers of PorchDrinking.com, I’d like to introduce you to Seattle’s pale ale. That’s right – in the city with the most craft breweries in the entire country, known for pioneering brewers and enthusiastic hopheads, I’m daring to single out one brew as Seattle’s illustrative pale. Please raise a glass and introduce yourself to Manny’s Pale Ale from Georgetown Brewing Company.
If you’re not familiar with Holy Mountain Brewing out of Seattle, then this beer, The Ox, will motivate you to change that. This barrel-aged saison is brewed with orange zest and Cascade hops, fermented in oak barrels (drooling). I had the pleasure of trying some of their brews for the first time recently and was floored by both the innovation of their brewing and quality of beer, particularly this saison.
In case you missed it, glitter beer is a thing. Glitter beers are typically brewed with edible glitter dust – fine grains of glitter made from sugar-based compounds. Matchless Brewing in Tumwater, WA is the latest Washington brewery to venture into this trend. Their Built to Spelt with Glitter NEIPA is a delightfully flavorful interpretation that goes above and beyond the expectations of a simple trendy beer. It’s a juicy, fruity mouthful of liquid pizzazz.
Guy Fieri may be an unconventional catalyst toward opening a successful brewery, but when a video store manager and a truck stop bartender marry and open a restaurant in Washington’s capital, you may as well expect the unexpected. So when Nathan and Sara Reilly’s restaurant was featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives in 2013, they decided to capitalize on their 15 minutes of fame — Three Magnets Brewing was born, and Big Juice Smoothie was not far behind.
It’s hard to overstate the natural beauty of Washington state. The state is home to mountain ranges, temperate rain forests, desert plains, active volcanoes and other natural wonders that are so varied and abundant, you could easily spend every weekend of the year in a new terrain. Even from my home base of metropolitan Seattle, the closest mountains are less than 30 minutes outside the city and you can book a whale watching tour that leaves from downtown.
If you’re a beer drinker in Seattle, you’re a Holy Mountain Brewing drinker in Seattle. It’s as simple as that. Even in a city renowned for its thriving and creative craft beer scene, Holy Mountain effortlessly stands out thanks to a niche it has filled in the heavily-hopped Pacific Northwest market: Holy Mountain is your go-to for great Belgian styles, or any beer that has been flirting with mixed fermentations or barrel-aged ingredients. One of Holy Mountain’s latest releases, Afterswarm, is an ideal case-in-point.
Like any story worth sharing, it started with a night of drinking wine with his grandparents. The moment of clarity slapped Dick Mergens out of sleep at 3AM, and he saw it immediately through a boozy haze: “I should open a brewery.” The 23-year-old Lowe’s employee crawled out of his grandparents’ basement the following morning and shared his vision with his coworker Dylan. Soon enough, two other longtime friends were on board. It was only a matter of time before I walked into their brewery to taste Molten Peaches.
The Yakima Valley in Eastern Washington accounts for nearly 80% of the United States hop crop, and the team at Bale Breaker Brewing Company have established themselves as leaders in the Yakima Valley hop scene, both as growers and as brewers. The brewery is located amongst hop fields that were first planted in 1932, and the brewers at Bale Breaker have made a point of showcasing Yakima Valley hops in virtually every Bale Breaker brew. Though a relatively young brewery (they opened in 2013), Bale Breaker has become one of the most well-known IPA producers in Washington and is a leader in the Eastern Washington brewing scene. Today we present an Ultimate 6er dedicated the people who made Bale Breaker what it is today: 6 Reasons to Love Bale Breaker Brewing Company.
Sour styles in any incarnation were my beers of the summer and although I love stouts, the transition into the colder, rainier reality of stout season has been harsh this year. That’s why I was so excited to find the perfect middle ground: the Frambuesa Moka, a tart, dark potion from Engine House No. 9 in Tacoma, Washington.
Just 60 miles north and a short ferry ride from Seattle sits Port Townshend, a favorite weekend getaway destination for Seattlites at any time of year. Located on the eastern edge of the Olympic Peninsula, Port Townshend truly has its bases covered as an ideal getaway destination: it boasts a state park for hiking, a marina for whale watching trips and boat tours, and a charming downtown full of local goodies. Highlights include a seriously legitimate tea shop, waterfront ice cream, an inspiring bookstore, and – last but not least – Propolis Brewing.
ABV: 5.8% | IBU: 38
Just in time for summer barbecues, weekend camping trips and sunny beach days, Counterbalance Brewing Company has released its first two canned beers: Raconteur Rye Pale Ale and Counterbalance IPA. Both of these beers are available for purchase in 6-packs throughout Washington as of the beginning of July, but today’s showcase will focus on the delightfully refreshing Raconteur Rye Pale Ale.
There are beer events, and then there is the Fremont Brewing Heron Hunting Club.
Though the celebration of spring isn’t exclusive to one certain place or city, the city of Seattle, I can assure you, is especially elated. The welcoming of spring is more than a changing of the seasons — it’s a changing of lifestyle. It means leaving umbrellas at home, closeting the rain boots, planning outdoor happy hours, and spending countless hours on WTA in search of the perfect hike. And as all of this is underway, there’s nothing that I want more in-hand than the Summer Ale from Fremont Brewing.
It took more time than we would have liked, but spring has hit Seattle. Temps are over 50, the shy sun is starting to peek through grey skies, and patios are flooded with Vitamin D deprived Seattleites. And, as we’re always looking for reasons to fill our glasses, let’s use this seasonal shift as our next excuse. Get yourself a New Money IPA, from Skookum Brewery for this particular occasion.
A few weeks back, Seattle beer drinkers gushed over the announcement of Fremont Brewing’s latest endeavor: The Black Heron Project. The introduction of the project was accompanied by releases of three brews, including the Raspberry Silence. It’s a brew that completely captures the creativity, innovation and beauty of Fremont Brewing and Black Heron Project.
ABV: 8.5% | IBU: MYOB
ICYMI, March 8 was International Women’s Day. This yearly event celebrates women’s contributions to society, from the political to social to cultural spheres. In the U.S., International Women’s Day serves as a kickoff to Women’s History Month, which spans the entire month of March. In honor of all the hardworking women in the craft beer industry and beyond, we’ve decided to devote this showcase to a beer that celebrates the influence of women: The Sister Imperial IPA from Fremont Brewing.
Photo by Silver City Brewery
Well folks, Silver City Brewery has done it again. After a busy 2016 celebrating their 20th anniversary, the Bremerton-based brewery isn’t showing any signs of slowing down, instead releasing a new year-round beer onto the market: The Tropic Haze IPA. This juicy brew hits it out of the park – playing into the “haze craze” that is sweeping the nation while also maintaining an element of mystery and allure for the drinker due to a certain, classified ingredient.
Beer lovers rejoiced last week with the announcement of Fremont Brewing’s Black Heron Project. The endeavor, a farmhouse brewing experience that is inspired by the ingredients and seasons native to the Pacific Northwest, will feature beers that (in the words of the brewers) are oak-fermented, bottle-conditioned and patient. To us, they are experimental, delicious, and wild – a complete testament to the famed brewery’s unwavering creativity and passion.