Hello, Nation! Artsy Guy here reporting from the great Pacific Northwest... aka the corner of the country that brought you the Artsy Guy. I grew up in Oregon and get back as often as possible to my fine homestate as well as the one just to the north to see family and breathe in the air and the vibe.
While in Seattle, I decided to seek out what was new and crafty in the city, and after seeing local brew Georgetown Brewing's Manny's Pale Ale absolutely everywhere around town (and seeing that the brewery was voted Seattle Magazine's 2011 Readers' Choice Best Local Microbrew) I headed to where the beer is born.
Georgetown Brewing has quite a lineup, as proudly offered to me by Harlow and team. Of course, there's Manny's Pale, the flagship brew, which is very nice. But there's so much more to Georgetown. Being the hophead I am, I was especially drawn to the fantastic Lucille's IPA and especially a couple of red ales: Chopper's Red has a sweet malt backbone but brings on the hops due to a lot of Centennial added late; and SuperChopp, brewed just part of the year, is an imperial version, getting it's great hop profile from some improvisation with locally grown hops a couple years back during the hop shortage. And there's more. I'd suggest hitting this place. They are a tap-only facility. You can find their brews all over Seattle or you can acquire kegs and growlers for incredibly reasonable prices at the brewery. Well done, Georgetown!
After grabbing the spicy meatloaf and Marionberry salad nearby at Jules Maes Saloon (one of the oldest bars in Seattle) and pairing it with Georgetown's Lucille's IPA, I moseyed a few doors down to Full Throttle Bottles. There, I got recommendations from the staff for some great local bottles for the road. I'll post my finds and thoughts once I've had the chance to taste.
As a final thought, I think back to Georgetown's tasting room and a fellow I chatted with there. Greg had just returned from a trip to NY, and after telling me of some of the beer he had tasted there, he proclaimed that his Georgetown brews were definitely better. Of course my first thought was to represent for my own current home (NY, for those new to this blog), but then I thought twice of trying to argue. One of the beautiful things about the ever-evolving craft beer scene is that nothing can truly compare to that taste of home and the community you find there. Craft brewers are popping up everywhere. I have my favorite brews in the Pacific Northwest and in Southern California and the Midwest and New York. Each is connected to friends and family and time spent telling stories and catching up and sharing laughs.
So while I'd always recommend experiencing the variety of the crafty world and seeking out what's brewed wherever you roam, take pride in and support the good stuff made by your friends and neighbors. It's good for them and the economy. And it's good for you. That's what's HOPpenin', y'all!