Welcome to Thirsty in Seattle’s Beer Hall of Fame! This is a continually-updated list of what I think are top examples of various styles at this moment in time. It’s based on my palate and experiences; you may not agree with all the selections. However, I don’t think you can go wrong with any of the beers below.
As always, your feedback is welcome. Do you have any favorites that are missing and belong in the Hall of Fame?
English and American Styles
*American Amber / Red Ale
Hopworks Urban Brewery Abominable Winter Ale
Maritime Pacific Red Ale
Oskar Blues G’Knight
*American Barley Wine
Hair of the Dog Doggie Claws
Firestone Abacus 2011
Anderson Valley Horn of the Beer 2009
Avery Samael’s 2008
HUB Noggin Floggin 2010
Deschutes Mirror Mirror 08
Hair of the Dog Fred
*American Brown Ale
Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale
Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar
Brau Brothers The Ringneck Brown Ale
Pelican India Pelican Ale
New Belgium Ranger IPA
Bell’s Two Hearted Ale
Black Raven Trickster
Minneapolis Town Hall Masala Mama
Stone Ruination IPA
Georgetown Lucille IPA
Laurelwood Workhorse IPA
Snoqualmie Falls Plant 1 Powerhouse IPA
Deschutes Black Butte Porter
Deschutes Obsidian Stout
Elliott Bay Organic Alder Smoked Coffee Stout
Rogue Chocolate Stout
*American Strong Ale
Stone Double Bastard Ale
Firestone Walker 13th Anniversary Ale
Firestone Walker 14th Anniversary Ale
Black Raven Splinters
Fremont Kentucky Dark Star Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Oatmeal Stout (cask)
Fremont Totonac Bbomb Bourbon Barrel-Aged Dark Ale (cask
Alaskan Baltic Porter
Cascadian Dark Ale
Hopworks Secession Cascadian Dark Ale
Big Al Hop Villain Black IPA (cask)
Hale’s Cream Stout
Samuel Smith Taddy Porter
Samuel Smith Strawberry Ale
*Herbed / Spiced Beer
Midnight Sun Treat
Hair of the Dog Blue Dot
Russian River Pliny the Elder
Dogfish Head 90-Minute IPA
Weyerbacher Double Simcoe IPA
Black Raven Wisdom Seeker
Odell Myrcenary Double IPA (cask)
Deschutes Hop Henge Experimental IPA
HUB Ace of Spades
Firestone Walker Double Jack
Diamond Knot Industrial IPA
Founders Breakfast Stout
Deschutes The Abyss
Iron Horse Quilter’s Irish Death
Oskar Blues Ten Fidy
Midnight Sun Berserker
Great Divide Bourbon Barrel-Aged Yeti
Great Divide Espresso Oak Aged Yeti
Snoqualmie Black Frog Nitro
21st Amendment Bitter American
Caldera Pale Ale
Mt. Hood Cascadian Pale Ale
Oskar Blues Dale’s Pale Ale
Deschutes Red Chair NWPA
Georgetown Manny’s Pale Ale
*Strong Scotch Ale
Oskar Blues Old Chub
Silver City Fat Woody Bourbon Oak Aged Scotch Ale (cask)
Black Raven Second Sight Strong Scotch Ale
Boundary Bay Scotch Ale
Sierra Nevada Ovila Dubbel
St. Bernardus Prior 8
St. Bernardus Pater 6
Goose Island Pere Jacques
St. Bernardus Abt 12
Boulevard The Sixth Glass
Brasserie Dupont Saison Dupont
Pelican Saison Du Pelican
Black Raven Saison (cask)
Lift Bridge Farm Girl Saison
*Belgian Strong Dark Ale
Chimay Grande Reserve
Russian River Salvation
Gouden Carolus Cuvee Van De Keizer Blauw
Trappistes Rochefort 6
Pelican Grand Cru De Pelican
Unibroue Trois Pistoles
Birra Tenute Collesi Imper Ale Rossa
Scuttlebutt Belgian Winter Ale-Belgian Strong Ale (cask)
*Belgian Strong Golden Ale
Scaldis Bush Ambree
Goose Island Matilda
Lagunitas Little Sumpin’ Wild
Unibroue La Fin du Monde
De Garre Tripel
Issaquah Brewhouse Menage A Frog
St. Bernardus Witbier
The Bruery Bottleworks XII
Issaquah Brewhouse White Frog Ale
*Flanders Oud Bruin
Petrus Aged Ale
*Flanders Red Ale
Duchesse de Bourgogne
Monk’s Café Flemish Sour Ale
Samuel Adams Double Bock
Northern Lights Chocolate Dunkel
Victory Prima Pils
Schneider Hopfen Weiss
Sierra Nevada Kellerweis Hefeweizen
*Munich Dunkel Lager
Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel
I love beer. Seriously. There is no better beverage on the planet (although coffee is a close second). I order beer anywhere I go – even in wine bars, martini bars, 5-star restaurants – you name it.
I began drinking beer in high school (quick learner) and continued that trend throughout college, drinking as much Busch Light as possible for $3 until the keg fried. I then graduated and moved on up to Newcastle (hey, I was pulling in 30K). There was a brief cider period in there somewhere, but let’s not talk about that.
Probably the biggest influence on my love of beer was studying-abroad and taking several trips to Europe, including the world-class beer countries of Belgium, Germany, England, Ireland and the Czech Republic.
While I still drink a ton of European classics, what is most exciting to me now is the growing number of stellar craft breweries throughout the U.S. I’ve gotten even more into the craft beer scene living the last 5 years in Seattle, with frequent trips to nearby Portland (aka Beervana).
I created this beer section to justify the ever-increasing amount of money that I spend on great beer (over 700 beers in the last 2 years). And that is where you, dear reader, come in. I hope I can provide you with some valuable beer insights, and I hope you do the same through your comments.
So crack open a beer (don’t forget the proper glassware) and enjoy the Beer!
My Beer FAQ’s
I’ve never actually received a question. But in the event some guy has a question, and then a bunch of other people simultaneously have more questions, I thought I should be prepared for this onslaught of inquiries.
Where’s the best place to go for a beer in Seattle?
I haven’t been to every place in town, so this list is incomplete, but you can’t go wrong with any of these highly-regarded establishments:
Brouwer’s Café – Out of towners: Get thyself to Brouwer’s
Beveridge Place Pub – 25 taps, sports, game room, no table service, dog-friendly
The Pine Box – Tap list will impress beer geeks, conveniently located at base of Capitol Hill
Uber Tavern – Tiny tavern with an incredible tap and bottle list
Stumbling Monk – Unpretentious hole in the wall, amazingly cheap prices
Noble Fir – New beer mecca in Ballard, Diverse rotating tap list
Brave Horse Tavern – Enjoy 20 oz. beers and hot pretzels at Tom Douglas spot in South Lake Union
Collins Pub – Amazing beer, great Hawks/Sounders/Mariners pre/post-game spot
Naked City Brewery & Taphouse – 24 incredible taps from all over including Naked City beers
Quinn’s – Gastropub with ridiculous food, La Trappe ales and others on tap
What’s the best Seattle area brewery?
See my Seattle Brewery Guide
Are you qualified to write a beer blog?
Does the World need yet another beer article?
No, but thanks for asking you unappreciative bastard.
Do you have the latest beer news?
No, I leave that to the professionals such as Kendall at the Washington Beer Blog and Geoff over at Seattle Beer News. I have a job and 2 kids, and am already pushing my luck with the Mrs. with this beer blog thing.
What’s your favorite beer style?
It varies with the changing seasons, but here are some of my favorites:
- Belgian Quadruple
- Belgian Strong Dark Ale
- Belgian Tripel
- American Strong Ale
- Imperial IPA
- American Pale Ale
- Russian Imperial Stout
- Barley Wine
- Belgian Strong Golden Ale
- Belgian Saison
- Cascadian Dark Ale
- Brown Ale
Ok, I pretty much love all beer and have a lot of favorites.
What is a beer douche?
The beer douche, while possessing similar knowledge as the beer geek, is elitist and believes he has a superior palate. The beer douche has tasted the best and rarest beers in the world and, if you disagree, you are clearly wrong and shall be ridiculed. The beer douche scares off craft beer newcomers, rather than welcoming them. Please, don’t be a douche.
Why are your beer reviews short?
Because I am unable to taste 45 flavors in a single beer and describe them using whimsical poetry, but apparently some people can. See beer douche.