Nanobrew? What the hell is that? Well I am using it. I like the term and I think it applies to several of Seattle’s once-garaged-up breweries.
There are several breweries in the Seattle area that produce beer on a very small scale. These breweries typically serve beer at tasting rooms in the area and rely upon retail sales at their tasting rooms, as much as they rely upon their limited keg sales to local bars.
Its tough to be small and make it, so these breweries are the hardest working out there. They distribute directly – on their own; they sell growlers to make sure their beer gets taken home; they print swag to make sure their name is on the breast of the public.
Visiting a Nanobrewery is one of our favorite things to do. You really get face time with the brewers (who are often the only employees) and the aura of brewing (as you are typically corralled amongst the brewing equipment).
Here are some favorites in the area, who have tasting rooms that you need to visit:
Big Al is located down in South Park and they are generally known for their Irish Red, Smoked Porter and interesting seasonals (check out Brown Brother’s Scotch Ale)
These guys have a beer garden of sorts that is great in summer. But you can visit them year round:
big al brewing, inc.
Address – 9832 14th ave sw, seattle, wa 98106 - map
Phone – (206) 453-4487
Their tasting room is open 3:00-9:00 PM Monday through Thursday,
3:00-10:00 PM Friday, 1:00-10:00 PM Saturday, and 2:00-7:00 PM Sundays.
Since we work down in SODO – we like their location. They are on the cusp of SODO and Georgetown and have a tasting room that is open two days a week. Stop in for beer and pretzels to fill you growlers.
Address – 4700 Ohio Avenue South Unit A, Seattle WA 98134.
Phone – (206) 491-1439
The Tasting Room is open 3:00-7:00 p.m. Thursday and Friday.
From the site:
Come down for peanuts, pretzels, $3 pints, and HD TV on our 46′ LCD TV. Interested in renting the tasting room for a private party email us for rates and availability.
Where are these guys!? Luckily we just asked the same question. Hopefully we will get a response soon, but for now a little back story. Schooner Exact makes some damn tasty IPAs. Their use of the Randall (a fresh hop infuser) over the past year has made them one of my personal favorites.
They used to be located over in West Seattle, but have recently released information about their move to……..you guessed it – SODO! The only information that we have seen is that they will be located on 1st Avenue S, close to the West Seattle bridge (so are we – YES!).
So for now, we will stay tuned……
Aw schucks! They closed down their South Park commercial garage a few months back. But this was good news, as they have now moved into their new spot in Greenwood, Pillagers Pub. Though this place no longer has the tasting room feel – you can still get plenty of great beer. TRY THE RAUCHBIER!
Address – 8551 Greenwood Ave N Ste 5, Seattle, WA 98103
Phone – (206) 706-2779
The Pub is open from 3:00pm – 12:00am Monday – Thursday and 12:00pm – 1:00am Friday – Sunday.
These guys really stepped it up quickly! Former attorney Matt Lincecum turned an old warehouse in Fremont into a beer mecca. He has hired Matt Lincoln, formerly of Goose Island Belgians fame, as head brewer, and Aaron Golston, from Thirsty Bear in San Fran (we’ve been there!), as an assistant.
Because of the wealth of brewing experience between these three (Matt is also an avid home brewer) they have been able to turn out a plethora of beers in just a short time. Though only Universale Pale and a few versions of their IPA have made the taps, they have a wealth of small production beers you can get at the tasting room or for instance at Brouwers’ Big Wood Festival and their previous Hopfest (their IPA was in my top 15 for its unique quality).
Plans are underway to open a second floor beer garden, but this place is very cool as it stands right now. Take an afternoon and check it out:
Address – 3409 Woodland Park Avenue North, Seattle, 98103
Phone – (206) 420-2407
The tasting room is open Thursday, Friday & Saturday from 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM
This was a major part of our life. We have some great connections with Gilligans and the people who work there. But, due to changes in ActivSpace policies, they were forced to move out of their amazing place on the Burke-Gilman Trail in Fremont. But, do not fret, we spoke with owner Seth Gilligan over the weekend and plans are underway for the re-emergence of GBC in early 2010.
GBC will be using a brewpub format and serving up delicious food and grog. Stay tuned for more details….
Again – we aint geniuses and we are certainly missing some true tasting rooms. If you know of some – please continue the dialogue below with some comments!