Today I met one half of the brain trust behind Seattle Beer Week for pints and to check in and see how the event is>"/>
Today I met one half of the brain trust behind Seattle Beer Week for pints and to check in and see how the event is taking shape. If you haven't heard, May 7th-17th marks the inaugural installment of what will hopefully become one of the largest community beer events in the country.
"We had been kicking around the idea for a while, then one day I run in to Ian Roberts (GM of Brouwer's Cafe), and he's bought the URL and off we went," said Matt Younts, craft beer manager for Click Wholesale (2008 Craft DIstributor of the Year, GABF). Younts and Roberts, along with Nat Pellman (bar manager of Brouwer's) and Mike Baker (former co-owner of Baron, now of Pacific Imports), formed the Seattle Beer Cooperative to promote and celebrate our city and state's amazing craft brewing scene specifically through Seattle Beer Week. In less than half the time taken to set up most events this size, they incorporated, started making phone calls and roped in some of the biggest names in the brewing biz.
At first, Washington brewers were reticent while out of state powerhouses such as Adam Avery (Avery Brewing) and Vinnie Cilurzo (Russian River Brewing) signed on immediately. Now, as events have gone on the calendar, local beer people and restaurants are coming out of the wood work to get on board. Brouwer's will hold several events, including a night of sour beer tasting, and Elysian will have a huge blow out featuring nearly every single beer they brew. Breweries like Voctory, Allagash and Left Hand will headline events around town, and seminars and classes are being developed as we speak.
"We want to get the neighborhoods involved, too, and have nights where people can enjoy hopping from event to event, maybe on Old Ballard Avenue or in the U-District. This year is about banding together. We even eventually want to work out some cross promotion with our sister city Philadelphia," said Baker. (Philly Beer Week has become a big deal in the industry after only a few years.)
Seattle: This is a big foaming deal. Bless you and you passive aggressive, go-with-the-flow ways, but we make a ton of fantastic beer here, and for the life of me I can't see why everyone's so goddamn coy about it. Seeing as how we're often overlooked by many in the national beer press, it's time to come together, share with the class and brag about it our damn selves. The constant updating calendar of Seattle Beer Week events available HERE. Of course, they are on Twitter and Facebook, too.