Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Boundary Bay Brewery

1107 Railroad Avenue
Bellingham, WA 98225

I have wanted to go to Boundary Bay Brewery since the summer of 2008.  That summer was my first Oregon Brewers Festival.  I went with Jess Stedman and we both shared a love for extremely hoppy IPAs. At that time my favorite was Boulder Beer Co.'s Hazed and Infused, I had been to the brewery the year before and it held up to my expectations.  Well, at the festival Jess and I (the second day we were there) grabbed samples of all the hoppy IPAs there and judged.  Boundary Bay, you will be glad to know that Jess voted for your brew but I stubbornly held on to my love for Hazed and Infused.  I know this isn't the way the story should be going for a review of Boundary Bay but that taste stayed with me.  Also did the intrigue of this northern washington brewery.  

So, over 2 years later, the ferry back from Alaska dropped us off within walking distance of this brewery that has been on my mind for all that time.  Jonah and I met up with Tommy McGinley, who we've beer-adventured with before, and Dani Hess, who I worked with up in Alaska.  Crazy enough, I did not get the IPA!!!
I don't know but I must have been in a dark beer mood, I started with the Dry Irish Stout and ate some wonderful stew.  I finished it up with the Imperial Oatmeal Stout.  Both beers were fabulous.
Plus, the merchandise rocks!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Skagit River Brewery

404 S. 3rd Street
Mount Vernon, WA 98273

Jonah and I arrived in northern Washington off the ferry from Alaska, where our good friend Tommy McGinley lives, so we decided to stay with him to hang out before we headed the rest of the way south.  We got there early so had some time to kill.  After showering the ferry off us we went brewery cruising and found Skagit River Brewery.
I was floored when I saw that these were the guys who made Sculler's IPA!
I drank so much Sculler's IPA in college.  I had a roommate Brandy Rodtsbrooks who I explored beer with at our excellent local grocery store, and Sculler's was one of our awesome finds.
Sadly, they didn't have it on tap!  Now I will definitely have to go back, maybe I'll drag Brandy with me ;)  
Instead of the Sculler's IPA I had the Skagit River "Steelie" Brown Ale.  It was a solid brown but I will still have Sculler's on tap on my mind.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Haines Brewing Company

Haines Brewing Company
PO Box 911
Southeast Alaska Fairgrounds/ Dalton City
Haines, Alaska 99827

On our way back south, after spending the summer in Alaska, Jonah and I occupied the time waiting for the ferry to leave by fruitfully journeying to Haines Brewing Co.  The directions we received seemed easy enough turn right onto Haines Highway, then turn left after the school, following the signs to the fairgrounds.  Haines is a small town so we decided to walk.  We followed the directions and found a "fake city," Dalton City, the grounds of the Southeastern Alaska State Fair and the old set for the 1989 movie White Fang.  I wasn't until closer inspection that we realized this movie set was also the location of the brewery. 
I was already hooked at that point, but the visit kept getting better.  Paul Wheeler, the brewer hung out with us for the entire hour and a half we were tasting beers.  He told us a range of stories from the origin of the beer names to his opinions of other breweries.  We realized our commonalities of a history with the Forest Service and love of Portland brews; Paul even encouraged us to start our own brewery, a dream of mine and Jonah's.
On top of all that, the beer was awesome!  We got to try the Dalton Trail Ale, DMMDI IPA, Eldred Rock Red, Lookout Stout, Spruce Tip Ale, Black Fang, and the Barley Wine.  If visiting I would definitely suggest trying them all, HBC has tall tasters for $1.25.  If you can't then try the Spruce Tip Ale, it's Paul's number one sellers and is quite unique.  Also try the Black Fang, a local favorite, this imperial stout should be high on your list.  Definitely fit in the DMMDI IPA too, on second thought if you're all the way in Haines Alaska, drink them all!  It's worth it.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Moose's Tooth

(907) 258-2537
3300 Old Seward Hwy
Anchorage, AK 99503
The Prince William's Porter.  I didn't do the usual beer sampling at Moose's Tooth (Designated Driver, Drink Responsibly!)  I thought for this entry I'd spotlight a single beer.
It was so nice to have a good porter after a long day of work then traveling.  I'm a big fan of porter, best of both worlds I think; you get a dark, rich beer with lightness and hop-flavor.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Midnight Sun Brewing Company

8111 Dimond Hook Drive
Anchorage, AK 99507
(907) 344-1179

Hello excellent Alaskan beers!  It has been sad that since I've moved up to Alaska that I've certainly taken a hit with the amount of breweries I can explore.  But my few trips to Anchorage have absolutely quenched my thrist.  The company is not-so-bad either, Mary & Weston always show us a good beer time and this time added DeAnna to the review. 
Midnight Sun Brewing Co. ranges from beers you want to drink sessionly to beers that knock your socks off after one.  Their warehouse-like restaurant/ brewery is filled with 22 oz bottles, funky t-shirts, good food, and of course, fantastic beer!  Hope for a sunny day and head out to the porch.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Dreams coming true!

Well at least a taste of my dream coming true. Went out to get some drinks in Cordova last night and ended up at a bar, the Reluctant Fisherman that hasn't quite reopened and is still doing some remodeling. After talking to the bar manager Adam for awhile we got to talking about beers, one of my favorite topics, and we discussed MY opinions on what he should fill in taps with! It was awesome, I got to look through the distributor catalogs and imagine the variety that would appease a wide group ranging from tourists to fisherman, skiers to locals. I can't wait to open my own bar!!!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Hopworks Urban Brewery

2944 Southeast Powell Boulevard
Portland, OR 97202
(503) 232-4677

I was glad to have Hopworks as my last brewery visit before heading up to Alaska; these guys don't disappoint. Their regular beers are always tasty but it's the seasonal beers that truly impress me. This visit I had the Secession Black IPA and damn! that is good. (Plus the shirts dedicated to this beer are very awesome.) Black IPA seems to be a new trend with Oregon brewers and I have to say I am enjoying it. Here's another blogger's opinion of this trend: http://beervana.blogspot.com/2009/01/on-black-ipas.html. The other beer I had was also very very good, it was the seasonal RED but I can't remember the name and can't find the name of the seasonals anywhere on the website.
I visited the brewery with Jonah, my finance and Tommy, the man who will marry us. Actually it was here that decision was made. I am grateful to both of them - with their help I have visited all the Southeast Portland breweries! This picture is actually from California but I didn't take any photos while at HUB so this is all you get.

Now for the breakdown:
Year-round beers include
HUB Lager
Hopworks IPA
Velvet ESB
Crosstown Pale AleDeluxe Organic Ale
Survival Stout

They have a full dining area with delicious food.

Hours include:
Sunday - Thursday 11:00 am - 11:00 pm
Friday - Saturday 11:00 am - 12:00 am

Black Lotus Brewing Co.

1 East 14 Mile Road
Clawson, MI 48017
(248) 577-1878

I love how much my family loves beer! What I love even more is that they like me enough to try to squeeze in as many breweries on my short trip. Black Lotus Brewing Company was the finale of my Michigan brewery tour and an excellent last impression.
I wanted to put stats on their beers but forgot to steal a menu and their website is getting revamped. Instead go check it out for yourself and make sure to bring your aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandma!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Kid Rock's American Badass Beer

American BadAss Beer
brewed by Michigan Brewing Co.
1093 Highview Drive
Webberville, MI 48892
(517) 521-3600

Sports and beer have always gone hand-in-hand, but watching the Detroit Red Wings while drinking Kid Rock's lager is a match made in heaven. It is the premier beer from the musician's new company, American BadAss Beer Company and it's pretty damn good. It is light enough to be a good game beer with more flavor than you'll get from any of the macrobrews. Bob Ritchie you've done well.
Here's some pics from the game...

Friday, March 19, 2010

Kuhnhenn Brewing Co.

5919 Chicago Rd.
Warren, MI 48092
(586) 979-8361

First impression: well impressed impression, daily beer list is always a good sign. Second, they have a tremendous about of beer, not all are on tap but you will be in for variety if you make this pub your hangout. And to round out the trifecta... you can brew your own beer here!
This brewery started as a hardware store run out of business by Lowe's but you can't see that know. It's a beautiful place with a steel horse-shoe bar and they have the beers to compliment.
My favorite is a contest between to very different beers. DRIPA is a double rice IPA, but don't shy away because of the rice thing this beer tastes like biting into a big dense hope flower and racks up a 10.5% alcohol stat. It's competitor for my taste buds is the Imperial Creme Brulee Java Stout. It's think and aromatic, you have to love a beer you can smell before it hits your lips. Keir liked the Classic American, and it lives up to it's name - a good ole fashioned session beer. It's hard sometimes to visit all these breweries, taste all the beers, try to stay sober enough to pass judgment. Ok, I know you don't feel sorry for me but a beer that's light and crisp sometimes just hits the spot.
For the rest of them the list of beers is too extensive to list here but you can find it here:

Mon. - Thurs. 11am - Midnight
Friday - Saturday 11am - 2am
Sunday - Call for hours

They release new beers on Thursday - go check it out!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Dragonmead Microbrewery

14600 E. 11 Mile Rd
Warren, MI 48089

Ugh, sooo disappointed: 25 minutes sitting there waiting to get helped then 5 tasters of boring beer. Take it I did only try 12.5% of the beers (5 out of 40, now you don't have to pull out the calculator), but those 5 did not leave me wanting more. I really wanted to like this brewery, I like that they had different styles categorized: Russian Ale, American, Scottish Ales, Barley Wine, Belgian Ales, Czech Lager (the only decent one I tasted), English Ales, German Ales, German Lagers, Polish Porter, then there's Mead and Wine. Hopefully with all those choices most can find something they like.

Somthing nice to say... the tap handles are cool and the sampler tray is hardy giving you 6oz of 5 beers.

Vertigo Brewing

21420 NW Nicholas Ct. ~ D7
Hillsboro, OR 97124

Two of my favorite things came into play at this brewery: one I already knew topped my list of brewery favorites and that is warehouse breweries. I love when breweries are still small and therefore put their all into their brews and that shows at Vertigo Brewing. My newfound favorite is beer sampling. Jonah, my finance and I showed up at this warehouse brewery to sample for our wedding day beers. This is an important stage for us because well, to put it simply we love beer and want everyone to enjoy the beers we pick. Mike Haines, one of the brewers and owners, was awesome in helping us sample all these beers. We called ahead and he basically said to just come on over. We sampled all the beers and are now seriously debating getting all our wedding kegs through Vertigo Brewing, they were all delicious: my favorite being the Black Pearl Porter.

Other brews include:
Schwindel Alt
High Altitude Amber
T.B.D. Blonde Ale
High Dive Rye
Friar Mike's IPA
Friar Gone Wild (pumped version of the IPA, awesome!!!)
Apricot Cream Ale
Razz Wheat
Seasonal: Arctic Black Vanilla Porter

Although they don't have a pub, their website is very easy to use and has a list of bars that do offer their brews: http://www.vertigobrew.com/taplisting.html.

Talking to Mike while sampling he informed us that expanding is in the works. I sure hope so, I think every beer drinker would be able to find a favorite from Vertigo.

Friday, February 26, 2010


Now, I was looking through registries today for my upcoming wedding and ran into a problem. I own pint glasses from almost every brewery I've been to and if you've seen the list, I've been to a lot. Now here's the complexity, I kinda want sets of all the different type of glasses: wheat, pilsner etc. they all need different glasses. Damn, I'm going to have soooooooo many glasses.

It may be poison, but it sure is delicious.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Mountain Sun Brewery ~ Vine Street Pub

Mountain Sun Brewery
Vine Street Pub
1700 Vine St.
Denver, CO 80206
(303) 388-2337

Mountain Sun Brewery is bringing some Boulder to Denver. After living in Eugene, OR for quite awhile it's places like these that make me feel at home; the brewery's motto is "Beer, Food, Music, Love What else Do You Need?" Don't head to this pub if you're looking to watch the game, you won't find a TV here. Although there is certainly entertainment, every Saturday night from 10pm - 1am there is live bluegrass and never a cover. You think this is a deal? There seems to always be a deal going on at Vine Street Pub.

Sat - Thurs 4-6pm ~ Kids Eat Free
Burger & Beer Mondays
T-Shirt Tuesdays
Taco Thursday 10pm- 12am

Happy Hours
Mon - Sat 4- 6pm, 10pm- Close
Sun 4- 6pm

Colorado Kind Ale (Amber)
Isadore Java Porter
Annapurna Amber
Illusion Dweller IPA
Quinn's Golden AleBig Krane Kolsch
Hogback Dopplebock
Claymore Scotch Ale
Raspberry Wheat
XXX Pale Ale
Chazz Cat Rye
Belgian Dip Chocolate Stout
Cleveland Brown Ale

Orlando Brewery

1301 Atlanta Ave.
Orlando, FL 32806

I flew into Orlando, Florida with a list of breweries to go to but in the end there was only one: every other brewery on my list has closed within the list year. It's a sad event for Orlando but at least they were left with a damn good one, "Florida's only certified organic brewery" conforming with the German Purity Law in 1516.

It's kinda hard to reach in an industrial district off of I-4 but I think that adds to the ambiance. The taproom is in a corner of the brew-house, one of my favorite brewery set-ups. Every time I find myself in space like Orlando Brewery I think of the evolution. I like the idea of growing up with your beer; brewers starting small, just trying to find their inspiration then slowly growing up, carving a part of their brew-house into a taproom. Outside they have seating and a stage which they play music quite often.

Organic Brewing Blonde Ale
Organic Brewing Pale Ale
Organic Brewing Red Ale
Organic Brewing Brown Ale
Organic Brewing Blackwater Porter
Organic Brewing Eagle Stout
Organic Brewing Olde Pelican
Organic Brewing European Pilz
Organic Brewing Pompous Ass

Hours Open:
Mon - Thurs 3-10pm
Fri & Sat Noon - Late
Sun 3-9pm

Happy Hour: Open - 6pm $3 pints
Brewery Hours: Mon - Sat @ 6pm
Free Wireless
Tuesday 2 for 1
Thursday Ladies Night

Ok,, let's get started

I have been meaning to start this blog for awhile but it's hard to know where to begin. I have been visiting breweries around the country for years, and while I've been taking good notes (most of the time) it's hard to review them all. So I will start with trying to list them all, then one by one I'll post the reviews sound good. Plus you have my solemn oath that I will try very hard (most of the time) to keep up with my new adventures.
** I'm going to use the double star as an indication of a brewery that has no pub and I couldn't get into the brewery for a sample, but found a bar close by with their beers.
): I'm going to use the frown face for pubs that I found out too late don't brew the beer on premise.

East Coast:
Trinity Brewing Co. ~ Providence RI
Boston Beer Works ~ Fenway Park, Boston MA
Salem Beer Works ~ Salem MA
Cottrell Brewing Co. ~ Pawcatuck CT **
Harpoon Brewery ~ Boston MA

Orlando Brewing ~ Orlando FL

Motor City Brew Works Inc ~ Detroit MI

Odell Brewing Co. ~ Fort Collins CO
The Fort Collins Brewery ~ Fort Collins CO
New Belgium Brewing ~ Fort Collins CO
CooperSmith's Pub & Brewing ~ Fort Collins CO
Mountain Sun Pub & Brewery ~ Vine Street Pub, Denver CO
Estes Park Brewery ~ Estes Park CO
Golden City Brewery ~ Golden CO
Breckenridge Brewery ~ Coors Field, Denver CO :(
Flying Dog Brewery ~ Denver CO :(
Great Divide Brewing ~ Denver CO
Wynkoop Brewing Co. ~ Denver CO
Bull & Bush Pub & Brewery ~ Denver CO

Brownstone Restaurant & Brewpub ~ Idaho Falls ID
Trail Creek Brewing Co. ~ Twin Falls ID
Sun Valley Brewery ~ Hailey ID

Suds Brothers Brewery ~ Evanston WY
Bitter Creek Brewing ~ Rock Springs WY
Altitude Chophouse & Brewery ~ Laramie WY

Fish Brewing ~ Fish Tale Brew Pub, Olympia WA
Roslyn Brewing Co. ~ Roslyn WA
Big Time Brewery & Alehouse ~ Seattle WA
Elysian Brewing Co. ~ Tangletown, Seattle WA
Hale's Ales ~ Seattle WA
Snoqualmie Brewery & Taproom ~ Snoqualmie WA
Walking Man Brewing ~ Stevenson WA

Calapooia Brewing Co. ~ Albany OR
Standing Stone Brewing Co. ~ Ashland OR
Barley Brown's Brew Pub ~ Baker City OR
McMenamins ~ http://www.mcmenamins.com/
Back Stage Bar ~ SE Portland OR
Bagdad Theater & Pub ~ SE Portland OR
Blue Moon Tavern & Grill ~ NW Portland OR
East 19th Street Cafe ~ Eugene OR
Grand Lodge ~ Forest Grove OR
High Street Brewery & Cafe ~ Eugene OR
Hillsdale Brewery & Public House ~ SW Portland OR
Kennedy School ~ NE Portland OR
McMenamins Cedar Hills ~ Beaverton OR
McMenamins Corvallis ~ Corvallis OR
McMenamins Greenway Pub ~ Tigard OR
Murray & Allen ~ Beaverton OR
Northbank ~ Eugene OR
Oak Hills ~ NW Portland OR
Ringlers Annex ~ SW Portland OR
Ringlers Pub ~ SW Portland OR
Riverside Pub ~ Beaverton OR
The Old St. Francis Pub ~ Bend OR
Bend Brewing Co. ~ Bend OR
Deschutes Brewery & Public House ~ Bend OR
Silver Moon Brewing ~ Bend OR
Eugene City Brewery ~ Eugene OR
Ninkasi Brewing Co. ~ Eugene OR
Oakshire Brewing ~ Eugene OR
Steelhead Brewing Co. ~ Eugene OR
Mt. Hood Brewing ~ Government Camp OR
Big Horse Brew Pub ~ Hood River OR
Double Mountain Brewery & Taproom ~ Hood River OR
Full Sail Brewing Co. ~ Hood River OR
Alameda Brewhouse ~ NE Portland OR
Amnesia Brewing ~ NE Portland OR
BridgePort Brewpub & Bakery ~ NW Portland OR
Cascade Brewing Co. ~ Raccoon Lodge, SW Portland OR
Deschutes Brewery & Public House ~ NW Portland OR
Hopworks Urban Brewery ~ SE Portland OR
Laurelwood ~ NW Public House, NW Portland OR
Lucky Lab Beer Hall ~ NW Portland OR
Lucky Labrador Brewing ~ SE Portland OR
The Mash Tun Brewpub ~ NE Portland OR
MacTarnahan's Brewing Co. ~ NW Portland OR
New Old Lompoc ~ NW Portland OR
Lompoc Brewing ~ Hedge House, SE Portland OR
Lompoc Brewing ~ 5th Quadrant, N Portland OR
Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery ~ SW Portland OR
Rogue Public House ~ NW Portland OR
Roots Brewing Co. ~ SE Portland OR
Tugboat Brewing Co. ~ SW Portland OR
Widmer Brothers Brewing Co. ~ N Portland OR
Cascade Lakes Brewing Co. ~ 7th st. Brewhouse, Redmond OR

Napa Valley Brewing ~ Calistoga CA
Pizza Port Brewing Co. ~ San Clemente CA
Firehouse Grill & Brewery ~ East Palo Alto CA
Stone Brewing Co. ~ Escondido CA
Half Moon Bay Brewing Co. ~ Half Moon Bay CA
Huntington Beach Beer Co. ~ Huntington Beach CA
Ocean Avenue Brewing ~ Laguna Beach CA
Los Gatos Brewing Co. ~ Los Gatos CA
English Ales Brewery ~ Marina CA
Redondo Beach Brewing Co. ~ Redondo Beach CA
San Diego Brewing Co. ~ San Diego CA
21st Amendment Brewery ~ San Fran CA
Magnolia Gastropub & Brewery ~ San Fran CA
Thirsty Bear Brewing Co. ~ San Fran CA
Creekside Brewing Co. ~ San Luis Obispo CA
Downtown Brewing Co. ~ San Luis Obispo CA
Santa Barbara Brewing Co. ~ Santa Barbara CA
Santa Cruz Ale Works ~ Santa Cruz CA
Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing ~ Santa Cruz CA
Seabright Brewery ~ Santa Cruz CA


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