The Masonry Partners with KEXP for Farmhouse Beer Fest

February 3rd, 2017 · Events

When it comes to farmhouse ales, no bar in Seattle has more passion for these styles than The Masonry, located in Lower Queen Anne. They do more to regularly feature excellent saisons and other farmhouse ales with their 14 taps and single bottle fridge than any other bar in town.

Last February, the bar hosted an epic Farmhouse Beer Fest featuring a lineup of these styles of beers unequaled at any previous event in Seattle. It was great, but their space isn’t exactly huge. Cozy would best describe it. So, it was welcome news when they recently announced that for this year’s event they are partnering with KEXP and hosting the festivities in KEXP’s home at Seattle Center on Saturday, February 25. More information and tickets are available on the KEXP website.

The first thing a casual beer drinker might notice is the ticket price. $120? What gives? Well, first off, these are not cheap beers. Many of the beers will be pouring in Seattle for the first time ever, and even the ones you could buy at retail might cost you upwards of $30 for a bottle. Unless you are a serious beer geek, you likely won’t recognize most of the breweries on this list. I’ll assure you that they are pretty much the best of the best when it comes to farmhouse ales. With your ticket, you’ll get unlimited tastings (until bottles run out), food from the Masonry’s kitchen (which is awesome) and a commemorative glass for the event. Proceeds from ticket sales will also go to benefit KEXP.

In addition to this main event, there will also be a few other events set up at some of the best bars around town making it a “farmhouse weekend” of sorts. More info to come on that soon.

Buy tickets here.

Press Release:

Seattle – February 2, 2017 – On Saturday, February 25th, KEXP will host the Masonry’s Third Annual Farmhouse Beer Festival. Beer lovers from throughout the region will come together in the KEXP Gathering Space at Seattle Center for a celebration of beer and music showcasing some of the best farmhouse ales from Washington, across the United States, and abroad.

The Farmhouse Beer Festival is a unique opportunity for beer connoisseurs and newbies alike to sample many rare brews in Seattle in the company of the brewers who make them, all while enjoying live sets by KEXP’s top-notch musical curators including DJ Reeves and DJ Larry Rose. Some of these beers rarely leave the taproom making this a “can’t miss” event for music and beer lovers alike.

La Marzocco, the Café in the KEXP Gathering Space, will be open during the event.

The Light in the Attic Record Store will be open for visitors’ record browsing and buying pleasure.

Event Details:
Saturday, February 25th
Noon – 4 pm
Proceeds from ticket sales will benefit KEXP
Tickets are $120 per person: Your ticket includes
· Tastings, all poured straight from the bottle
· Food from the Masonry’s Kitchen
· Commemorative Event glassware

More information and tickets at KEXP.ORG

Participating Breweries Include:
· 2nd Shift Brewing: St. Louis, MO
· Ale Apothecary: Bend, OR
· Anchorage Brewing Company: Anchorage, AK
· De Garde Brewing: Tillamook, OR
· Engine House #9: Tacoma, WA
· Fantome Brewery: Belgium
· Fonta Flora Brewery: Morganton, NC
· Highland Park Brewery: Los Angeles, CA
· Holy Mountain Brewing: Seattle, WA
· Jester King Brewery: Austin, TX
· Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales: Ann Arbor, MI
· Kent Falls Brewing: Kent, CT
· Monkish Brewing Company: Los Angeles, CA
· Off Color Brewing: Chicago, IL
· Sante Adairrius Rustic Ales: Capitola, CA
· Tired Hands Brewing Company: Ardmore, PA
· And more!

What’s a “Farmhouse Ale”?
Farmhouse Ales are traditionally brewed in the winter, to be consumed throughout the summer months. Not long ago this method was close to extinction, but in recent years there has been a massive revival —especially in the US. This is a very complex brewing style; many of the offerings are very fruity in aroma and flavor. Look for earthy yeast tones, mild to moderate tartness, lots of spice, and medium bitterness. They tend to be semi-dry and many have only a touch of sweetness. Average alcohol by volume (abv) range: 5.0-8.0%

Open since August 2013, The Masonry is a small bar located in the Uptown neighborhood of Seattle. We cook all food, from our Neapolitan-style pizzas to our spicy meatballs, in a wood-burning oven. Come chat with our bartenders about our extensive beer list, watch our chefs at work, and listen to some samples from our record collection. Featuring 14 beer taps, 2 cider taps, 5 wine taps and a seasonal, rotating lunch and dinner menu.

KEXP is a nonprofit arts organization serving music lovers and artists through in-person, broadcast, and online programming. KEXP operates one of the most influential listener-supported music radio stations in the world, 90.3 KEXP-FM Seattle, with online and on-air service reaching over 200,000 global listeners each week. On KEXP’s YouTube channel, videos of exclusive live performances garner more than 2.1 million views per week. From their headquarters at Seattle Center, KEXP hosts community events and produces hundreds of live performances each year, many of which are open to public audiences at no charge. For more information, please visit

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Naked City Brewing Opening Second Location on Camano Island This Spring

January 26th, 2017 · Washington Breweries

Exciting news for Naked City Brewing!

Press Release:

Camano Island, WA – Naked City Brewing is thrilled to announce the launch of its second location, a new brewpub at Terry’s Corner on the north end of Camano Island opening in Spring of 2017.

Naked City Camano Island features the award-winning beers that established Naked City Brewery & Taphouse in Seattle as a world-class brewpub, along with gourmet comfort food and the best art and culture in the Northwest. The film noir-themed watering hole offers 12 rotating house-brewed beers, plus local ciders and wines, craft soda, a dedicated Ghostfish gluten-free beer tap, and a scratch kitchen sourcing from Camano Island farms and local vendors.

“We love Camano Island already, and couldn’t be more excited to join the great community there,” said Don Webb, Naked City’s head brewer and co-founder. Webb is concocting a new brew called Easy Island Pale Ale in honor of the grand opening, which, along with Naked City’s other beers, will be available in crowlers to go as well as on draft.

Executive Chef Tessa Roberts designed a rotating seasonal food menu for Camano Island, featuring fresh vegetables grown for the brewpub by Camano Island farmers. Naked City’s beloved favorites, including the award-winning beet burger, Naked Burger, and hand-cut fries, headline a menu that includes vegetarian and gluten-free fare.

The Ko-lut-chen Beer Garden at Naked City Camano Island is adjacent to the grass outdoor amphitheater anchoring Terry’s Corner. In summer, the pub will feature film, theater, music, and art events, and in the winter, a holiday tree with lights and a visit from Brew Santa. The brewpub boasts a library and rotating art gallery, with classic movies playing on the bar TVs.

“The American public house has a long tradition of fostering community, and Naked City looks forward to supporting all the wonderful activities and events already happening in Camano and Stanwood,” said general manager Bryan Miller, who co-owns Naked City along with Webb.

Naked City Brewery & Taphouse in Seattle was named one of the Top 100 Beer Bars in America by DRAFT magazine three years in a row. The flagship brewpub celebrated eight years of award-winning food, beer, and culture in October of 2016.

Visit for updates and grand opening events to be announced.

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110+ Beers Pouring for 8th Annual Belgianfest at Seattle Center This Weekend

January 23rd, 2017 · Washington Breweries

Belgianfest is one of my favorite local beer festivals of the year. There are plenty of local breweries that regularly offer Belgian-style beer, but this event lets many breweries that don’t typically brew Belgian styles have a little fun. Also, it’s really nice to go to a local beer festival where every brewery is not pouring its version of an American-style IPA.

You can check out the beer list with detailed descriptions on the Washington Beer Commission website.

More information:

Saturday, January 28th, 2017
Fisher Pavilion at Seattle Center!
305 Harrison St
Seattle, WA 98109
Session 1: 12-4pm
Session 2: 5:30-9:30 pm

Tickets are $37 Advance or $45 at the door. Limited tickets at the door.
Admission includes a tasting glass and 10 tasting tokens. Each taste is 4 oz.
Separate tickets required for each session.
$5 designated driver admission is available at the door. Designated driver includes includes soda and/or water.

21+ only. No refunds. No dogs. Registered service dogs ok.

2017 Belgian Fest beer list now posted!

Bread and Circuses
Lumpia World
Hallava Falafel 

The Washington Beer Commission encourages you to designate a driver or take public transportation to Belgian Fest. 

Taxi Service:
Yellow Cab (206) 622-6500
Orange Cab (206) 522-8800

Public Transportation and Directions to Seattle Center

Parking at Seattle Center.

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Sad News – Big Al Brewing Closing in White Center

January 13th, 2017 · Washington Breweries

Alejandro Brown, owner of Big Al Brewing in White Center, announced yesterday via Facebook that the brewery’s last day of business would be this Saturday, January 14. Big Al Brewing took over the Pacific Rim Brewing operations after they went out of business in 2008, and the business has been one of Seattle’s better neighborhood breweries since. It’s sad news for local beer drinkers.

Could this be a sign of things to come for other local breweries? Possibly. Increased competition from new local breweries and pressure from breweries outside the area that distribute to Seattle is the reality of the industry. Competition for tap handles at bars and restaurants across the city is only going to get more intense. I think there is plenty of room in this town for more brewpub-focused businesses, but the landscape for production breweries that rely on distribution is a completely different game.

On a personal note, I’m truly sad to see Big Al Brewing closing. While I rarely made it over to the brewery in White Center, I always enjoyed their beers when I found them around town. Some of my favorite beers of theirs over the years include the Winter Warmer, Smoked Porter and Old #1 Barleywine. And, let’s not forget the Seattle Beer News/Big Al Brewing Passive Aggressive Wheat.

Big Al also did a great job in exploring barrel-aged beers, most recently with their Time Capsule series, and earlier with their Super Kriek, Jupiter’s Blood and probably others I can’t remember. While it was on a small scale, Alejandro was ahead of the curve in Seattle with barrel-aged beers and it was something he always wanted to expand. But, it’s a tough business model to get going in large volume without having a lot of capital up front. In an interview I did with him for the Northwest Brewing News quite a few years ago, Al said, “We don’t have deep pockets to dig into, and I’m trying to make the growth happen organically. I feel like I might miss the opportunity if I don’t get on it soon. When I look at places like Cascade in Oregon I think ‘Wow, those guys are making some amazing beers.’ I’d love to be doing that.”

Alejandro is one of the nicest people that I’ve met in the industry, and his crew over the years has reflected that. He was lucky enough to work with a lot of friends at the brewery.  For those that know him, it was so very obvious how much he enjoyed pursuing his passion. Cheers to him and his wife Noelle for building a local business that was embraced by the neighborhood for 8 years. Best of luck in whatever comes next!

The brewery’s last day of business will be tomorrow, Saturday, January 14. They will be pouring a bunch of special Time Capsule beers, and the Seahawks game will be on upstairs. Stop by and say goodbye.

Alejandro’s announcement on Facebook (reprinted w/ permission):

8 years ago. Damn time flies! Every time I sit down to write this I have to stop because it’s too damn hard. But some things have to be said. Saturday January 14th will be the last day of Big Al Brewing as we know it. We are closing our doors. Phew, hard part over. There are many contributing factors that led to this decision but at the end of the day it doesn’t matter. I’d rather focus on the positive. What an amazing 8 years it has been!! I lived my dream and experienced things I could have never thought of in my wildest dreams! The support we got from the amazing brewing industry. The bars who are so dedicated to not only craft beer, but Washington craft beer, are amazing. The partnerships we formed, the friendships that will last forever. The memories, the many, many, MANY beers shared with you all. The festivals, brewers nights, collaborations, guest brewers, OUR AWESOME EMPLOYEES! And let’s not forget the friends and family who reached in to their savings account and put cold hard cash where their support was and invested in this thing! All of it, more than I ever dreamed. There are way too many to thank here, but rest assured, you’ll be hearing from me for a pint or 3 sometime soon. You know who you are, whether you have been supporting us from day one or you just got on board with this thing last year, I see you. And I’ll see you soon.
Before I sign off, I do have to acknowledge one person by name. Noelle Brown, you are my rock. You are my #1 fan and this last 8 years is because of you. You believed in me when this was just a crazy idea. You said “do it honey, I support you”. You let me quit my solid career, take my Grandparents inheritance, your equity in your condo and most important, your loving support, and you jumped right off a cliff with me. Not bad for a serial toe-dipper!! I love you, Noelle. Thank you. Oh and, there’ll be more cliffs. Sorry

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The Beer Junction Set to Kick Off 5th Annual Barrel Junction Event This Weekend

January 12th, 2017 · Events

The crew at The Beer Junction always does a fantastic job with the beer lineups for their special events, but they may have outdone themselves this time. The 5th annual Barrel Junction kicks off this Saturday, January 14 and will run through Sunday, January 22. The event will start off with 30 barrel aged beers on tap at 11am Saturday morning. Starting on Monday, January 16, they will also tap a special “daily headliner” keg at 11am each day.

Following is the opening lineup and daily headliner releases.

Opening Lineup:
1. AleSong Rhino Suit (Imperial Milk Stout Aged in Bourbon Barrels) 2016
2. Anderson Valley Huge Arker (Imperial Stout Aged in Wild Turkey Barrels) 2016
3. Ballast Point Bourbon Barrel Aged Black Marlin Porter 2016
4. Belching Beaver Bourbon Barrel Aged Horchata Imperial Milk Stout 2016
5. Cloudburst Wine Aged Saison (more details to come) 2017
6. Crux [BANISHED] Tough Love (Bourbon Aged Russian Imperial Stout) 2015
7. Deschutes The Abyss 2013
8. Elevation Oil Man (Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout) 2015
9. Firestone Walker 19th Anniversary (Blend of Barrel Aged Ales) 2015
10. Fort George Matryoskha (Four Roses Bourbon Aged Russian Imperial Stout) 2017
11. Fremont Bourbon Aged Dark Star Imperial Oatmeal Stout 2015
12. Fremont BBOMB (Bourbon Aged Winter Ale) 2014
13. Georgetown Bourbon Aged 18 Pound Imperial Porter 2016
14. Great Divide Whiskey Aged Yeti Imperial Stout 2016
15. High Water Sugaree Maple Bourbon Pecan Pie Strong Ale 2015
16. Lagunitas Willet Whiskey Aged Imperial Stout 2016
17. Laughing Dog The Dogfather (Bourbon Aged Imperial Stout) 2014
18. Midnight Berserker (Bourbon Aged Imperial Stout) 2015
19. New Holland Coconut Dragon’s Milk (Aged in Rum Barrels) 2016
20. New Holland Dragon’s Milk (Bourbon Aged Imperial Milk Stout) 2016
21. North Sound Creepy Monkey (Bourbon & Whiskey Aged Imperial Brown Ale) 2015
22. Old Schoolhouse Hooligan Stout (Oak Aged) 2016
23. Schilling Barrel Project #1 (Heaven Hill’s Boubon Aged Apple Brandy)
24. Schooner Exact Bourbon Aged Imperial Porter 2015
25. Silver City Big Magnificent Bastard (Scotch Ale Aged in Scotch Whiskey Barrels) 2016
26. Skookum Barrel Aged Breakfast of Crows Imperial Stout 2016
27. Snipes Mountain Terror in The Wood (Red Wine Aged Imperial Stout) 2013
28. To Ol Fall of Man (Bourbon Aged Imperial Porter) 2015
29. Wander Bourbon Aged Emissary Imperial Stout 2016
30. Widmer BrrrBON (Vanilla Infused Version) 2012

Daily Headliners:
January 16th: Block 15 Figgy Pudding (Brandy Barrel Aged Stong Ale) 2016
January 17th: North Coast Old Stock Reserve (Old Ale aged in Rye Whiskey and Wheat Whiskey Barrels) 2014
January 18th: Lost Abbey Deliverance (Bourbon Aged Serpent’s Stout and Brandy Aged Angels Share) 2013
January 19th: Breakside Oligarch (Imperial Stout Aged in Boubon Barrels) 2016
January 20th: Oskar Blues Barrel Aged Ten Fidy Imperial Stout 2016
January 21st: Epic Brewing Double Barrel Big Bad Baptist Imperial Stout 2016
January 22nd: Holy Mountain Deadfall (Stock Ale Aged in Westland Whiskey Barrels) 2016

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Founders Brewing Features Special Brews at Launch Events Around Seattle

January 6th, 2017 · Beer Releases

For those of you that were excited to hear about Michigan’s Founders Brewing coming to the Seattle market, the wait is over. It sounds like bottles started hitting select stores earlier this week, and there are several launch parties happening across Seattle next week.

Following are the launch parties taking place next week in the Seattle area. There will be some great beers pouring at each event, including a few new releases. Click on the links for details on the taplist and times for each event.

TeKu Tavern on Monday, January 9
Chuck’s Hop Shop on Tuesday, January 10
The Pine Box on Tuesday, January 10
Meet our Co-Founder at Brouwer’s Cafe on Wednesday, January 11
Meet our Co-Founder at The Beer Junction on Thursday, January 12
Meet our Head Brewer at Malt & Vine (Redmond) on Thursday, January 12



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Fish Brewing Targets Summer 2017 for New Location in Tacoma

December 27th, 2016 · Openings, Washington Breweries

Fish Brewing announced today that it will open a new “Pub & Eatery” in Tacoma, with a target of opening sometime in the summer of 2017. This new location will complement the original Fish Tale Brew Pub in Olympia and the Fish Brewing Tap Room, located in Woodinville.

Press Release:

Olympia, WA – December 27, 2016 – Fish Brewing Company has announced today that it will open a new Pub & Eatery on the Grand Plaza at The Shops at Point Ruston in Tacoma, WA. Craft beer fans can expect the same commitment to quality and relentless innovation the company has embodied since 1992.

President Sal Leone notes, “It’s an exciting time here at Fish Brewing Co. With a long-standing history of showcasing our products with quality food at our award winning pub in Olympia, we are excited about bringing this experience to Tacoma.  Point Ruston is becoming one of the area’s premier mixed-use destination showcasing quality restaurants, a variety of retailers, a cinema and a future hotel convention center on the shores of the Puget Sound. This new location is a perfect opportunity for Fish to expand our great tasting craft beverages and food experience to one of Tacoma’s most vibrant neighborhoods.”

The restaurant will be approximately 6,900 square feet with a seating capacity of 360 guests including a second story terrace and outdoor seating. It will feature a similar menu as the Olympia Fish Tale Brewpub including award-winning handcrafted beers from Fish Tale Ale, Leavenworth Biers and Spire Mountain Ciders as well as six wine taps featuring Piccola Cellars and a selection of fine spirits. Construction is in process, and the new Pub & Eatery is scheduled to open in the summer of 2017.

“This is a great opportunity for Fish Brewing and we are excited to be in the heart of Tacoma.” said Matt Lisowski, Executive Vice President of Fish Brewing Co. “We’re looking forward to the opportunity to connect with the community of Point Ruston and release our newest beer, Ruston Way IPA, debuting in our new Pub & Eatery. We are excited to bring the message of Fish Brewing to Point Ruston, and continue to develop our award winning craft beverages in the Pacific Northwest.

The Fish Brewing Pub & Eatery will be Fish Brewing’s third location. Fish continues to operate their original location in Olympia, WA, Fish Tale BrewPub, which was recently awarded Best Brewpub in Western Washington, and Fish Brewing Taproom in Woodinville, WA, located just north of the Hollywood School house in the heart of Woodinville wine country.

About Fish Brewing Company

Founded in 1993, Fish Brewing Company is owned by over 400 beer drinking consumers, who pooled their resources to build a landmark brewery in Olympia, WA, which is known for its quality water and artesian wells. Fish Brewing uses when possible locally sourced Washington ingredients. Fish Brewing produces hand-crafted beers and ciders under our three core brands: Fish Tale Ales, Leavenworth Biers, and Spire Mountain Cider, which can be found in 20 states and internationally, both in bottles and on draft. Fish Brewing produces award winning spirits under the brand name Vitis, which are available throughout the Pacific Northwest. Fish Brewing operates a full service an award winning pub in Olympia, WA, which was featured on the Food Networks show Diners, Drive-in & Dives, and a new taproom in Woodinville, WA. Fish Brewing believes that fresh beer and cider, fine food, and enduring friendships are what life in the Great Pacific Northwest is all about. For more information visit

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Merry Christmas from Seattle Beer News

December 23rd, 2016 · Uncategorized

Merry Christmas, everyone! Hope your holiday weekend is filled with lots of good beer.

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12 Randalls of Xmas at The Pine Box Tomorrow

December 12th, 2016 · Events

The holidays are officially here, and tomorrow (Dec 13 ) The Pine Box will celebrate with its annual 12 Randalls of Xmas event. Starting at 5pm, there will be 12 separate Randalls filled with holiday-themed infusions for 12 different beers.

Here is what will be pouring:

21st Amendment Brewery Brandied Cherry Fireside Chat
Backwoods Brewing Company Double Spruce Tip Spruce Springsteen
Black Raven Brewery Bourbon Oak Chipped Festivus
Boundary Bay Brewery Vanilla Cabin Fever
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. Citrus Hopped Wookey Jack
Floating Bridge Brewing Chili Cacoa Winter Ale
Fremont Brewing Fig & Cacoa Nib Imperial Winter Ale
Hopworks Urban Brewery Ginger Thais Basil Abominable
Lagunitas Brewing Co Cinnamon Brown Shugga
Maritime Pacific Brewery Rum Raison Jolly Roger
Port Brewing Co / The Lost Abbey Toasted Coconut Santas Little Helper Imperial Stout
Reuben’s Brews Gin Cranberry Sage Winter Gose

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Seattle Losing a Great Beer Spot: The Wurst Place is Closing

December 7th, 2016 · General Beer News

The Wurst Place in South Lake Union is one of my favorite beer spots in the city. With a laid-back atmosphere, an impressive tap list, great sausages, tots and frites, this was a perfect after work spot. My wife and I have spent quite a few nights here decompressing after work. Since opening five years ago, the bar has been a bit of an oasis in the South Lake Union neighborhood, but today owner Bob Liptak announced that they will be forced to vacate the bar sometime in February in advance of the building being torn down.

It’s a sad day in South Lake Union. The good news is we still have a couple of months to get in there and support a great small business.

Will The Wurst Place re-open in another location? No word on that, yet. I hope so.

Announcement from The Wurst Place on Facebook:

The Wurst Place is closing.

The rumor is true. Sometime in February, we are being forced to vacate our current address on Westlake Ave. as the building is being torn down. We leave kicking and screaming…we don’t want to go.

Our goal 5 years ago was to serve great sausage and great Belgian style frites paired with delicious local and craft beer. Tater tots joined the sausage party about a year later. We tried to play decent music…except not on Fridays 😉. The support from Seattle and especially SLU businesses and workers has been incredible. I’m amazed at how many patrons and staff have become close friends over the years. There’s no price to be put on that. Thanks to everyone who helped make The Wurst Place the eclectic, energetic, non-corporate place it is.

For now the sausages are still charred and juicy as hell, the frites and tots are still crispy and delicious, and the beer is still flowing like Snoqualmie Falls (just not as foamy). We’ll be having some fun events before we exit the building. Stay tuned.

If you enjoyed The Wurst Place half as much as we enjoyed you, come on down and say goodbye.

Thank you Seattle.
I hope we did ok.


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