Northwest Military Blogs: Served blog

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January 21, 2015 at 11:11am

Beer Here: Elysian IPA Fest, Firestone Walker, Hammerhead Ale, Manny Chao, Gigantic Brewing ...

Wish the Hammerhead Ale a happy 29th birthday at the McMenamins Spar Cafe in Olympia Sunday. Then drink it.

When it rains it pours, and although the forecast calls for rain Thursday through Sunday, it's pouring beer in the South Sound starting today ... or something.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 21

Remember last week when you were staring at The Red Hot's chalkboard and you actually shouted "Breakside boyyyeee!" over the XTC song "Life Begins At The Hop"? You were all hopped up for Breakside Brewery Brewer's Night at the Sixth Avenue craft beer and hot dog joint. You were going to have some gold medal Breakside IPA and life would be dandy. Well, I have some bad news that isn't bad. Breakside night broke, and its Elysian IPA Fest night instead at The Red Hot (2916 Sixth Ave., Tacoma). That's right, Annie will be in the Hot house with the Seattle brewery's mainstay IPAs - The Immortal, Savant, Space Dust, I imagine - as well as some of their taproom-only IPAs. Oh, and a special shout out to Elysian for mailing me their new Sub Pop tribute pale ale, Loser. Digging the light, tropical flavors and seven percent ABV as I type this. ...

The Swiss Restaurant and Pub (1904 Jefferson Ave., Tacoma) has their beer dinners dialed in, offering multiple food courses paired with beer, beer production and history from brewers and reps, preparation details from the kitchen and lots of laughs. This month, Silver City Brewing teams up with The Swiss kitchen on a Wednesday night. Drop by the historic building with $40 to secure a delicious, fun time.

THURSDAY, JAN. 22

Details are still scarce, but what's certain is Firestone Walker Brewing Company from California will be at the ParkWay Tavern (313 N. I St., Tacoma) with beers and prizes, beginning at 5 p.m. Will 18th Anniversary Ale be available? Let's hope so. Its blend consists of nine different beers aged in various bourbon, plain oak and brandy barrels. The beers are Parabola, a Russian imperial oatmeal stout; Helldorado barleywine with buckwheat honey; Bravo imperial brown ale; Stickee Monkee quadrupel; Velvet Merkin oatmeal stout; Hydra Cuvee dark ale; Wookey Jack black rye IPA; Ol' Leghorn barleywine and Double Jack double IPA. Please, please, please ...

FRIDAY, JAN. 23

Hands On Children's Museum (414 Jefferson St. NE, Olympia) hosts "The Art & Science Behind Craft Brews" at 6:30 p.m. The museum will host beer tastings, beer-themed science experiments, art projects and more. The $25 admission fee includes free beer tastings and a souvenir glass. Barbecue will be available to purchase. Duh, adults only. Buy tickets at www.hocm.com/adultswim.

Several South Sound breweries will be getting weird at the Strange Brewfest in Port Townsend Jan. 23-24. Wingman Brewers, Ram Brewing, Fish Brewing and 7 Seas Brewing are among the 30 breweries pouring beers while bands go nuts for $30 at brownpapertickets.com or $35 at the door.

SUNDAY, JAN. 25

In 1983, unemployed Mike McMenamin bought the former Fat Little Rooster tavern in Portland and renamed it the Barley Mill. Brian McMenamin soon joined in and today they own threescore pubs, taverns, clubs, hotels, dance halls and a village called Edgefield. The McMenamins have the golden touch - to convert desuetude into quirky, funky, artful joints to gather and drink. One of the early McMenamins beers, the Hammerhead Ale, celebrates its 29th birthday. It's a classic Northwest pale ale and McMenamins top selling beer. The beer's signature Cascade hop nose and intense hopped flavor blend nicely with the caramel tones from the crystal malt. McMenamins Spar Café (114 Fourth Ave. E., Olympia) toasts the Hammerhead's old age by offering $3 pints of the 5.93 percent ABV ale all day Sunday.

If building skills to distinguish between beer flavors is your New Year's Resolution, then join Pacific Lutheran University Sous-chef Erick Swenson for his workshop on identifying flaws in beer at 2 p.m. in the 208 Garfield restaurant (208 Garfield, Parkland). He'll pull out the Siebel Institute Sensory Training kits, which contain 24 vials of pre-measured "standards" representing some of the most important flavors and aromatics found in beer. More details can be found here.

The Top Rung Brewing Co. beer pairing dinner with artisan catering company EZ Foods of Olympia has sold out.

TUESDAY, JAN. 27

Some 20 years ago, Manny Chao was the first employee at Mac and Jack's Brewery. With Chao's help, Mac and Jack's amber ale became the third best selling craft brew in the state. Five years later, Chao left Mac and Jack's and by 2002, he and his housemate, Roger Bialous, homebrewed their first beer - Manny's Pale Ale. In 2003, Chao was the number one employee at his Georgetown Brewing Company located in Seattle's Georgetown district. In 2013, Chao and Bialous produced 52,300 barrels of beer - the second highest in the state behind Red Hook. Meet Chao at the Georgetown Brewing Brewer's Night from 5-7 p.m. at Pint Defiance (2049 Mildred St. W., Tacoma), drink his Manny's Pale, Lovely Rieda Imperial IPA, Lucille IPA and Barrel-aged Chopper's Red Ale, learn the stories behind the beer names and maybe win a raffle prize.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 28

Last month, Gigantic Brewing released its 2013 Massive! Barleywine. The aptly named barleywine always features one malt boiled for at least nine hours in the direct fire kettle, resulting in toffee and caramelized sugar malt flavors and evaporation over the long boil results in higher finished alcohol - 13.5 percent. Gigantic! Conquer this beer and meet its founder, Ben Love, when Pint Defiance (2049 Mildred St. W., Tacoma) hosts the Gigantic Brewing Company Brewer's Night from 5-7 p.m. The Portland brewery, which opened in 2011, will also tap its Gigantic IPA, Ginourmous IPA and Saboteur Baltic Porter. Go big!

In 1991, Homebrewer Jeff Lebesch opened New Belgium Brewing Company in Fort Collins, Colorado. The brewing company has ridden its Fat Tire amber ale across the country - most recently building huge plants in North Carolina, especially Asheville. There are other reasons they have become so big and successful. Le Terroir, La Folie and Tart Lychee are three of those reasons, but there are dozens more. Chat up and drink New Belgium beers at The Swiss Restaurant and Pub (1904 Jefferson Ave., Tacoma), beginning at 6 p.m.

January 7, 2015 at 1:55pm

Beer Here: Hop Valley, Tacoma Runners, Guzzling For Gorillas, 7 Seas Brewing ...

Powerhouse restaurant & Brewery has unleashed its Jan-u-cherry saison. Best get on that before it's gone. Photo courtesy of Facebook

Well looky here, it's 2015. And we hope you rang in the New Year exactly how you wanted to. But just because some of us may have partied hard last week, doesn't mean we're not going to take January lying down. Hell no. We're going to get out there and live it - and so should you.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 7

Powerhouse Restaurant & Brewery (454 E. Main, Puyallup) has been releasing its Sourhouse series of barrel-fermented saisons over the past month. This week, their merlot barrel fermented saison with dark cherries Jan-u-cherry has hit the snifters.

Pacific Brewing & Malting Co. (610 Pacific Ave., Tacoma) proclaimed their New Year's resolution is a happy hour every Wednesday-Friday until 6 p.m. And it is so. Expect dollar off pints and discounts on growlers.

Puyallup River Alehouse (120 S. Meridian, Puyallup) hosts Bainbridge Island Brewing for a brewer's night, 6-9 p.m. Expect to drink Eagle Harbor IPA, Puget Sound Giant Hoptopus, Arrow Point Amber, and a barrel-aged olde ale.

THURSDAY, JAN. 8

Hop Valley Brewing Co. out of Eugene, Oregon, will head to the house of burgers and brisket - Stuck Junction Saloon in historic downtown Sumner - for brewer's night festivities and HVB beers, including Double D Blonde Ale, Alphadelic IPA, V.I.P (Vanilla Infused Porter) and Festaroo Winter Ale, their winter warmer. HVB rep Rob Brunsman will kick off the craziness at 6 p.m.

Forget light and low-carb beers. The Tacoma Runners have a better method for fighting fat: They run then drink beer. They're the classic drinking group with a running problem. They meet at 6:30 p.m. every Thursday at a Pierce County alcohol-slinging joint, run 3 miles and then return to the starting line to celebrate. This week, the group will meet at the Pacific Brewing & Malting Co. for Moon Yard Ales, Dirty Skoogs IPA, Donkey Puncher ESB and elevated heart rates.

SUNDAY, JAN. 11

Pacific Lutheran University Sous-chef Erick Swenson offers a four-part, beer-tasting class launching Sunday at 208 Garfield restaurant, running consecutive Sundays through Feb. 1. Read the full story on Swenson's classes here.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 14

In the late '80s, only 248 mountain gorillas remained in the wild, no thanks to civil wars, dangerous diseases, poaching and the devastating consequences of increased habitat loss. And although the number of gorillas living in the wild has now risen to more than double thanks to the efforts of such groups as the Mountain Gorilla Conservation Fund, the situation is still tenuous. Disease remains rampant, and logging and land development continue at an alarming rate. Clearly, there's only one thing to do: drink beer. Tacoma's Drinking for Conversation folks present "Guzzling for Gorillas," where 50 cents of every draft beer sold at Doyle's Public House will be donated to the MGCF. If you enjoyed Drinking for Lynx last month at the ParkWay, you'll certainly enjoy guzzling beers at Doyle's Public House (208 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma), beginning at 5 p.m. Who's wearing a gorilla suit that night?

7 Seas Brewing in Gig Harbor is unleashing head brewer Travis Gutterson on Pint Defiance (2049 Mildred St., Tacoma) to answer questions and hug it out with his fans, beginning at 5 p.m. In Gutterson's trunk will be a bunch of 2013 Wheelchair Barleywine. The Pint Defiance folks will also run 7 Seas' Rude Parrot IPA through a Randall full of fresh hops.

Harmon Brewing Co. will takeover the taps at Ammar's Mediterranean Grill (409 E. 26th St., by Tacoma Dome) from 5-7 p.m. You'll receive a raffle ticket with every Harmon beer.

SATURDAY, JAN. 17

Wingman Brewers (509 ½ Puyallup Ave., Tacoma) will host their annual Porterpalooza in which they'll offer creative variations on their flagship P-51 Porter, from 2-11 p.m. Expect to drink the following variations on their Porter theme: Coconut, Peanut Butter Cup, Vanilla Rum, Chili Pepper and Sichuan Pepper Corns, Maple Pecan, Chocolate Orange, Smoked Sea Salted Caramel, Mexican Chocolate and Cinnamon Raisin. Also available during PorterPalooza will be Wingman's Bourbon Barrel Aged Big Baby Flat Top, aged in Willet Distillery barrels from Kentucky. So good! A $5 cover secures a commemorative glass and a first pour; all other pours cost $4 each.

Bayview School of Cooking teams up with Elysian Brewing to present "New Year- New Beer, A Brewery Dinner with Elysian Brewing" at 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17. Bayview chefs and Elysian's regional manager will pair beers with a five-course dinner, and discuss all aspects at the school (516 W. Fourth Ave., Olympia). The dinner will include Avatar Jasmine IPA partnered with chicken wings in a spicy peanut sauce and the Split Shot Stout matched with coffee and ancho chili flat iron steak with a green chili apple relish and garlic mashed potatoes. Nice. Tickets are $75 and reservation is required at 360.754.1448.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 21

The Swiss Restaurant and Pub (1904 Jefferson Ave., Tacoma) has their beer dinners dialed in, offering multiple food courses paired with beer, beer production and history from brewers and reps, preparation details from the kitchen and lots of laughs. This month, Silver City Brewing teams up with The Swiss kitchen on a Wednesday night. Drop by the historic building with $40 to secure a delicious, fun time.

January 5, 2015 at 12:49pm

208 Garfield Beer Geek offers beer-tasting classes in January

208 Garfield in Parkland will host a series of beer-tasting classes using the Siebel Institute Basic Sensory Training Kit.

New Year resolutions are a manifestation of looking back and seeing all the foolhardy, self-serving, reprehensible qualities that have so bedeviled you in the past, then resolving to do better in the upcoming year. But, within the first few weeks of January, approximately 100 million Americans walk the same path. It's a path filled with empty promises to quit smoking, lose weight and exercise more. Trying to quit smoking can be as tough as Parker Posey in Dazed and Confused. And even though you're totally BFF with Mother Earth these days, did you really need those jeans made from cotton grown by blind monks? Maybe make this the year you get a grip on your finances. Consider education as a resolution. Expand the horizons of your mind. Put your mind to the test, because with every new thing you learn, another door opens. This could be something as easy as reading a novel, or learning the science behind tasting beer.

If building skills to distinguish between beer flavors is your resolution, then Pacific Lutheran University Sous-chef Erick Swenson has your, er, tongue. His four-part, beer-tasting class launches Sunday at 208 Garfield restaurant, running consecutive Sundays through Feb. 1. Titled "Perfecting Your Inner Beer Geek," Swenson is the perfect geek to teach the class. When he's not creating cuisine at PLU's dining facilities or catering departments, Swenson runs the monthly beer nights at neighboring restaurant, 208 Garfield. The brain trust at 208 Garfield endearingly dubs Swenson their resident "beer geek," encouraging him to help with their beer selection. In return, Swenson oversees the food production at the PLU commissary kitchen that supplies 208. With 20 years in the culinary field, it's surprising 208 doesn't call Swenson their "food geek."

"I have embraced the label of ‘geek'," says Swenson. "I use it as an alternative to ‘snob.' A geek is someone who finds a passion for a subject and then plunges in deep to learn as much about that subject as they can. A geek is excited about what they have learned and wants to share it with as many people as possible. In addition to that, a geek is looking for things to love about their subject where a snob would be looking for things they don't like. ‘Have you tried this? It is amazing,' says the geek. ‘I would never drink that. It's a domestic,' says the snob. I think that geeks are more fun to talk to and we want our events to be a fun experience with the chance to learn something."

Swenson has also been a home brewer for 17 years.

"I started with Charlie Papazian's books, of course, and I read as much as I could get my hands on. I also got a lot of useful advice from Beer Essentials and Larry's Brewing Supplies. I really went off the deep end when I read Ray Daniels' book, Designing Great Beer. That is the best primer for beer styles and ingredients that I have found. I have not taken any courses from the Siebel Institute but I was impressed with their website when I was researching Cicerone training. When I pitched the idea of doing a Sensory training course the Siebel Institute's kit made the most sense.

The Siebel Institute in Chicago, created by John E. Siebel in the mid-1800s, has graduated many a professional brewer. The school's training kits contain 24 vials of pre-measured "standards" representing some of the most important flavors and aromatics found in beer. With the help of the kits, Swenson will lead participants through four flavor trainings: earthy/spicy/acidic Jan. 11; vanilla/grainy/bitter Jan. 18; identifying flaws in beer Jan. 25; Cicerone Certification Program training Feb. 1. To reserve a spot, click here.

"We will be exploring six sensory characteristics per session by tasting the sample, comparing it to a neutral sample and then talking about the differences we taste," says Swenson. "I will be giving a short talk on each one of the samples to guide the tasting but it will be largely interactive. It is important when training the palate that you are able to make personal associations in your mind. For example, Duchesse de Bourgogne reminds me of a really nice raspberry vinegar and that is now what I look for in Flanders Sour Red beers. The samples have been roughly broken up into the four sessions. The first and second sessions will be mostly flavors that are common to specific styles of beer, the third session will be flaws in beer and the fourth session will cover the characteristics that are tested in the Certified Cicerone test. 

Zeroing in on the various flavors in different beers will help you begin to isolate the styles that you like the most. Is it bitter? Earthy? Are there fruity flavors? Smoke? How about grassy, herbal flavors? The tasting series offers a guided tour through important flavors in both brewing and drinking beer, but it is not officially sanctioned by the Siebel Institute or by the Cicerone program.

Where does Swenson get his beer geek on?

"At 208, of course," he replies. "I also enjoy the selection at the ParkWay. I have been following Wingman brewery since they started. I love their P-51 Porter, and I really like what Odd Otter Brewing is doing in downtown Tacoma. Mamma Otter's Pancake Porter ... wow!"

As I said, all those good intentions will fall by the wayside some time before Groundhog Day. A far easier resolution to uphold would involve adding awesomeness into your life rather than denying yourself it, such as Swenson's beer tasting series. That's why I typically start the year by promising myself to drink better beer than the year before. I haven't failed yet. And I wish you similar success.

PERFECTING YOUR INNER BEER GEEK, 2 p.m., Jan. 11, 18, 25 and Feb. 1, 208 Garfield, 208 Garfield St. S., Tacoma, $10 a class, $36 for series, 253.538.5990

Filed under: New Beer Column, Parkland, Tacoma,

October 20, 2014 at 2:56pm

Narrows Brewing collaborates on Coffee Cardamom Stout - drink it wearing a morbid costume or with beer historian Ron Pattinson

Spend Halloween at Narrows Brewing Co. in Tacoma. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Looking for a Halloween costume idea? Why not dress as a victim of the London Beer Flood of 1814?

Friday marked the 200th anniversary of an event in London that unleashed a tidal wave of porter, killing eight people in neighboring tenements. When a vat exploded inside Henry Meux's Horse Shoe brewery, it forced more than 570 tons of beer through the brewery's back wall and out into the slums behind it in a vast wave at least 15-feet high, flooding streets and cellars and smashing into buildings. Founded early in the reign of King George III and famous for its porter, the brewery produced more than 100,000 barrels of the dark-colored nectar each year.

I mention this disaster for two reasons. One, Narrows Brewing Co. will host its Hoppy Halloween Party on All Hallows' Eve, unleashing its new Coffee Cardamom Stout for costumed beer drinkers - including those donning London Romantic-Era clothing stained with blood and dried porter. Two, one of the world's foremost brewing historians, Ron Pattinson - who researches old breweries and digs up dusty beer recipes for his website, Shut Up About Barclay Perkins, and will visit Narrows Brewing in early November - is well aware of the 1814 brew bomb and the killer porter.

"Meux's brewing records haven't survived, so it wouldn't be possible to brew an exact clone," Pattinson said via email from the road. However, "it wouldn't be hard to come up with a recipe that was close. It would have been fun to do for the two hundredth anniversary, but I've missed that."

Pattinson, a stout lover and member of the British Guild of Beer Writers, is on tour behind his new book, The Home Brewer's Guide to Vintage Beer: Rediscovered Recipes for Classic Brews Dating from 1800 to 1965. He'll visit Narrows Brewing Saturday, Nov. 8.

Hoppy Halloween Party

Narrows Brewing's Coffee Cardamom Stout is a collaboration brew with Northern Pacific Coffee Company in Tacoma's Parkland neighborhood. Narrows' head brewer, Joe Walts, admires the coffee company's beer selection, and NPCC proprietor Ed Cedras holds Walts in high esteem. 

"I heard about the opening of Narrows Brewing through a friend down at Beer Essentials while buying brewing supplies," explained Cedras. "There was also quite a buzz around their opening throughout the brewing community in Tacoma. I met Joe at the brewery and told him how much of a fan I was of his beers and that we carried all of them at Northern Pacific. It was about that time that we started talking about a collaboration beer."

Walts and Cedras set out to brew an original coffee beer.

"Joe mentioned a cardamom stout that he had done in the past," continued Cedras. "We used that as a baseline to develop the recipe for a Turkish coffee stout. The spices were all sourced by our friends at Mad Hat Tea Company and the coffee roasted by our roasting partners at Olympia Coffee Roasting Company. I used a similar methodology in cold brewing the coffee for this beer [as I have with] others I've brewed in the past ... slow and low ... meaning brewed slowly at low temperature to extract all of the brilliant notes of the coffee while reducing acidity for a balance between the coffee and malt in the beer. Joe brought in a secret weapon to add a creamy finish."

"We brewed an easy drinking stout - 4.2 or 4.3 percent alcohol - then added cardamom and cinnamon in the whirlpool and lactose to the boil," added Walts. "Ed made concentrated cold-steep coffee, which we added to the fermenter."

According to Walts, Northern Pacific sells an amazing amount of beer, including a lot of Narrows Brewing's beer, as well as beers exclusive to Pierce County from such brewers as Deschutes.

"I think awareness of what breweries are working on seasonally, limited runs, and collaborations in tandem with establishing strong relationships with breweries and their sales reps led to the allocations of limited-release beers at Northern Pacific over other outlets," explained Cedras. "We've built a reputation of being 'picky' about the beers we serve and are often offered special releases with right of first refusal."

Northern Pacific Coffee Company will host a Narrows Brewing Brewer's Night Tuesday, Oct. 28, shining a spotlight on the new Coffee Cardamom Stout.

The new beer will also be on tap during Narrows' Hoppy Halloween Party Oct. 31. The Coffee Cardamom Stout will be on tap all day. Ice Cream Social created a Coffee Cardamom Stout ice cream flavor and will serve it during the party as well as beer floats with other flavors. Food trucks will park out front. A costume contest with a $100 gift card prize for the winner will begin at 8:30 p.m.

So what costume will Cedras wear at Narrows' Halloween party?

"President James A. Garfield. He's an interesting guy," he said. "Check out his assassination story. Alexander Graham Bell was involved. Super kooky stuff."

Ron Pattinson at Narrows Brewing

Beer historian and beer travel writer Ron Pattinson is certain to be another interesting guy. For years, the England-born-turned-Amsterdam resident has gobbled up obscure books on beer history - including brewery logbooks - and in 2007 began sharing his findings in a conversational pub tone on his blog. Pattinson has also regenerated hundreds of historical beer recipes, mostly British styles, and some lost German beer styles such as Broyhan, Kotbusser and Salvator, which was a precursor to Doppelbock. Though it was a chore to chronologically decipher, Pattinson has pared down his more than 3,000 blog posts and recipes into a succinct read, The Home Brewer's Guide to Vintage Beer.

An avid reader of Pattinson's blog, Walts noticed a gap in the author's upcoming Pacific Northwest book tour. A simple request via email secured the historian for an afternoon of beer history at Narrows Brewing at 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 8. Although he worked in a brewery during his youth, Pattinson won't be recreating old beer recipes at the Tacoma brewery.

"Beer recipe recreations is just one of the things Pattinson does," said Walts. "He spends most of his time in libraries and public archives, researching breweries that have been around for hundreds of years, examining old English, Scottish and German beer styles. It's a lot of numbers and tables and debunking beer legends. He also provided a lot of historical details for Mitch Steele's IPA book. His visit will be fascinating for beer and history geeks who want to gain greater appreciation about the development of beer, recipes, breweries and the changing palates of beer drinkers over the course of centuries of brewing."

This fall book tour will be Pattinson's first venture to Washington state, where most of the nation's hops are grown.

"You might be surprised how little the handling of hops has changed over the years," said Pattinson. "In the 19th century, they were already packing the hops as tightly as possible to keep them away from the air and to store them cold."

He says beer geeks in the Netherlands have certainly heard of Washington state beers, but he doubts the country's general population is aware of our brews.

For those who don't want to dress as a corpse killed by an ancient porter, but would rather attend Narrows' Hoppy Halloween Party dressed as a beer, Pattinson says the scariest beer ever is the Danziger Jopenbier, an old top-fermented German beer that had a peculiar smell and taste reminiscent of port wine.

"The wort is left to spontaneously ferment," Pattinson explained. "First of all, a thick blanket forms on the surface, on which all sorts of molds grow. These blankets in various vats are again very different from each other in appearance and strength, depending on the points of attack the molds have found. ... The head, which is often so strong that a 20-gram piece won't fall through it, begins to lift itself. ... For eight to twelve days, the beer often pushes out large amounts of loose foam. What can you say about the fermentation, other than that it sounds scary and disgusting at the same time."

There you go. Halloween costume suggestions, a new coffee beer and ice cream to enjoy and an opportunity to geek out on old beer - all held at a Tacoma brewery that shouldn't explode.

NARROWS BREWING CO. COFFEE CARDAMOM STOUT RELEASE PARTY, 6 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 28, Northern Pacific Coffee Company, 401 Garfield St. S., Tacoma, no cover, 253.537.8338

HOPPY HALLOWEEN PARTY, dusk, Friday, Oct. 31, Narrows Brewing Co., 9007 S. 19th St., Tacoma, no cover, 253.327.1400

BEER HISTORIAN AND AUTHOR RON PATTINSON, 3 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 8, Narrows Brewing Co., 9007 S. 19th St., Tacoma, no cover, 253.327.1400

October 15, 2014 at 10:23am

Beer Here: Green Flash Treasure Chest, 7 Seas Brewing experiment, Oktoberfests, pumpkin beer floats, Pike Brewing turns 25, fresh hop beers ...

ParkWay Tavern in Tacoma will pour Green Flash Treasure Chest beer to fight breast cancer Oct. 15.

The only thing more radical than autumn in the South Sound is drinking good fall beers during fall in the South Sound.

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 15

One in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer annually. One such individual was Green Flash Brewing Company co-owner Lisa Hinkley, who was diagnosed in 2010 and, through proper treatment and her strong will, has since come out the other side victorious. With the support of her San Diego brewery, Hinkley helps raise funds to fight breast cancer with an ale brewed specifically to benefit Susan G. Komen - Green Flash Treasure Chest. The style changes each year. This year, the Treasure Chest is a barrel-aged Belgian-style farmhouse ale made pink with the addition of plum purée. Beginning at 5 p.m., the ParkWay Tavern will tap the new beer, as well as 11 other Green Flash beers. The 2014 Treasure Chest is fruity and flowery with a very subdued spice that comes on in the finish. There will be loads of Green Flash prizes, a fancy gift basket from Deschutes and the ParkWay's own "garage sale."

Pints & Quarts Pub allows Firestone Walker Brewing Co. to take over its taps beginning at 6 p.m. Tastes are a $1 for each beer. Shell out $4, and drink a whole pint, as well as keep the glass.

Read more...

September 17, 2014 at 2:02pm

Beer Here: Your week in beer in the South Sound

If you do one this this week, be sure to drink Top Rung's My Dog Scout Stout through a Randall loaded with coffee and cocoa nibs. Bow wow yo yippee yo yippee yay!

As the autumn leaves begin their annual shift from gold and green to deeper hues, so should your drink. Variety is the spice of life, so visit several South Sound breweries this week and fall in love with the autumn flavors of the changing seasons.

THURSDAY, SEPT. 18

Top Rung Brewing Co. will run its My Dog Scout Stout through a Randall loaded with coffee and cocoa nibs from 4-9 p.m. I can tell you first hand the flavor will blow you away.

208 Garfield offers another Beer & Bacon night beginning at 6 p.m. Hosted by beer geek Erick Swenson, you'll receive an assortment of beer and bacon to mix and match for $10.

Puyallup River Alehouse hosts Cockrell Hard Ciders' launch party at 6 p.m. Puyallup's First hard cidery will tap its four ciders: original, Dry, Dry Hopped and Valley red raspberry. Expect T-shirts and growler raffles as well as glassware giveaways.

FRIDAY, SEPT. 19

You have to drink beer on Friday. So, fill up the tank. The Odin Brewing Company and taproom has moved to 402 Baker Blvd. in Tukwila, about a half-block due east of the Southcenter shopping mall. The grand opening offers live music, raffles for Odin schwag and tasty bites from 5-7 p.m.

SATURDAY, SEPT. 20

Narrows Brewing Co. head brewer Joe Walts celebrates the release of his Oktoberfest beer with a party on the deck. That's right Hans, live music, food vendors and a German Marzenbier-ish beer with Munich and Vienna malts from 6-11 p.m. There's no cover during Oktoberfest, Franz.

Morso wine bar will pour seven beers from German brewery Ayinger, including its Oktoberfest, beginning at noon. Expect a brewplate special.

Wingman Brewers hosts Made In Tacoma, a Tacoma-based business veritable farmers market featuring 21 Cellars Winery, Bluebeard Coffee, Comeback Sports, Creative Colloquy, Dave's Meats, Ice Cream Social, Libertine Tacoma, Lifestyle Brewery Tours, Tacoma Tree Salvage and Wingman beers from 5-11 p.m.

Dick's Brewing Company hosts the 4th Annual Beer for a Cure, a fundraiser for the Lewis County Relay for Life event. Homebrewers will square off for a chance to have their beer brewed in the Dick's Brewing system. Also expect raffle prizes, food carts, live music and a silent auction from 2-8 p.m.

Celebrate the Hub at Gig Harbor's first year anniversary all day at its digs next to the Tacoma Narrows Airport (1208 26th Ave. NW). Expect food and drink specials, a raffle for a Fly and Dine package and live music.

WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 24

Hold onto an anchor because 7 Seas Brewery is blowing into The Swiss Restaurant and Pub for a brewer's night featuring Cascadian Dark Ale, Ballz Deep Double IPA and Life Jacket Session IPA to name a few. Expect raffle prizes and beards from 6-8 p.m. 

June 25, 2014 at 12:35pm

Scenes from the new Red Hot's opening ...

The first "cheers" at the new Red Hot on Tacoma's Sixth Avenue. Photo credit: Kate Swarner

Calling all imbibers: Get thyselves to The Red Hot. After months and months of permit issues and construction, The Red Hot has finally re-opened in its new, larger neighboring space.

A lined formed before 11 a.m. today waiting for co-owner Chris Miller to open the door. A few tried to enter early but were 86'd as the inspector was still inside. Early this morning, Miller stood outside the city of Tacoma's permit desk to pay a 30-day Temporary Occupancy fee while he worked out accessibility issues at the new Red Hot. With permit in hand, Miller led the inspector through the new space. At roughly 11:30 a.m., the inspector left the building and the beer began to flow.

Tacoma band Plastards front man Bill Schlanbusch - who entered the joint the backdoor (natch!) - received the first beer. Bartender Carla's first pull was a couple of Scrimshaw Pilsners.

As you can see below, the new Red Hot is much larger, with 25 tap handles, a larger chalkboard than the previous spot, couches (!) and the trademark red and yellow walls.

Below are a few photos we snapped during the first few minutes of the new Red Hot.

THE RED HOT, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday, 2914 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.779.0229

June 4, 2014 at 9:55am

Beer Here: Harmon Brewing and Farrelli's Pizza team up, Washington Beer Awards and beer events ...

Margaret Farrell and her sister, Mary Mulkey, the inspiration behind Two Mama Blonde Ale, which pours tonight at Farrelli's Pizza in Parkland. Courtesy photo

A year or so ago, Farrelli's Wood Fire Pizza partnered with Tacoma's Harmon Brewery Co. in the development of its Two Mama Blonde Ale, named after Farrelli's founder and matriarch Margaret Farrell and her sister, Mary Mulkey.

For every pint of the brew sold, 25 cents is earmarked specifically for the Joint Base Lewis-McChord's Fisher House, which houses families while an ill or injured service member undergoes treatment at Madigan Army Medical Center.

Last year, $3,500 was riased, and this year, the partnership is expanding to include a new brew for each season.

Expect an amber in the fall, a brown ale in the winter and an IPA next spring. Though not yet named, the chosen monikers will have a play on family similar to the currently available Two Mama Blonde Ale.

Speaking of Two Mama Blonde Ale, the Farrelli's Pizza in Parkland will pour the Blonde tonight at 7 p.m., once again donating 25 cents per pint to the Fisher House.

Hoist a pint while at Farrelli's and help military families. It's a win win.

BEER NEWS

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, age-gated children born in 1993 and beyond, the annual Washington Beer Awards have been doled out. Well, at least in the private world of the 40 judges who gathered at Elliott Bay Public House & Brewery May 10. The lucky 40 judged 460 brews from 70 state breweries, awarding medals for various styles, as well as spotlight categories Best Small Brewery and Best Large Brewery of the year. The winners won't be announced until Saturday, June 14, at the Washington Brewers Festival at Marymoor Park in Redmond. Standing before a crowd of folks wearing pretzel necklaces, fake cheese hats and that one guy who wears The Beeriodic Table T-shirt, 33 medals will be handed out, including Best Washington Agricultural Product Inspired Beer.

How will the South Sound fare? Not even The Beeriodic Table Guy knows. Here's the South Sound medal count last year:

STRONG LAGERS

Silver: Fish Brewing Company - Leavenworth Navigator Dopplebock

Bronze: Ram Restaurant & Brewery (Tacoma) - Maibock

WHEAT/RYE BEERS

Silver: Ram Restaurant & Brewery (Tacoma) - Big Horn Hefeweizen

BROWN PORTERS

Silver: Harmon Brewing Company - Puget Sound Porter

AMERICAN AMBER ALES

Gold: Fish Brewing Company - Fish Tale Organic Amber Ale

STRONG ALES

Silver: Fish Brewing Company - Fish Tale 10 Squared Barley Wine

BELGIAN & FRENCH ALES

Gold: Ram Restaurant & Brewery (Northgate) - BPA

Bronze: E9 Brewery - E9 Belgian White

BELGIAN STRONG ALES

Bronze: Dick's Brewing Co. - Dick's Grand Cru

SPICE, HERB, & VEGETABLE BEERS

Silver: DUO Brewing - Twin Ports Coffee Porter

The much-anticipated 9th Annual Washington Brewers Festival takes place June 13-15 at Marymoor Park. The Washington Beer Commission welcomes more than 330 beers from 88 state breweries, including locals 7 Seas Brewing, Dick's Brewing, E9 Brewery, Fish Brewing, Harmon Brewing, Northwest Brewing and Wingman Brewers. Admission is $20 for the 21 and older, Hell's Belles rockin', 74 brewery Friday night; $25 for the all-ages Saturday or Sunday affair. Jump on Washingtonbeer.com for details and tickets.

BEER HERE

Here are a couple beer-related events going down this week. ...

Wednesday, May 4

The ParkWay Tavern hosts Dogfish Head Brewery beginning at 5 p.m.

Friday, June 6

Northwest Brewing Company will be at Emerald Downs race track with $2.50 craft pounders, Ottomatic DJ, prize drawings and more from 5-9 p.m

Saturday, June 7

7 Seas Brewing will release its Life Jacket Session IPA Saturday night at Cheney Stadium during the Tacoma Rainiers' game against the Albuquerque Isotopes. The Life Jacket Session IPA - loaded with Amarillo and Nugget hops and juicy hop aromas of tangerine and grapefruit - will be at several locations in the ballpark for the 5:05 game. Kendall Jones, a freelance writer and founder the Washington Beer Blog, will throw out the first pitch.

Tuesday, June 10

Dirty Oscar's in Tacoma hosts 7 Seas Brewing for a brewer's dinner at 6 p.m. Four 7 Seas beers - including the Life Jacket Session IPA - will be paired with a light four-course dinner by Chef James Bacher and sous chef Robert Orlando. Tickets are $50 per person. There are only 22 seats available, so RSVP now at Jennifer@dirtyoscarsannex.com.

Wednesday, June 11

Puyallup River Alehouse hosts Georgetown Brewing Company for a night of Georgetown beers, giveaways, raffles, dollar tacos and more from 6-9 p.m.

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Served, a blog by the Weekly Volcano, is the region’s feedbag of fresh chow daily, local restaurant news, New Beer Column, bar and restaurant openings and closings, breaking culinary news and breaking culinary ground - all brought to the table with a dollop of Internet frivolity on top.

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