Sunday, August 26, 2018

Don't worry, I haven't given up beer.

I've just been busy with life - work, mostly, but also working on my own personal estate planning. While I hope these documents won't be needed for a very long time, it's necessary to plan for what happens once I'm gone.

Speaking of which, what happens when you're gone? Succession planning in the beer industry is a big topic. Many breweries start in garages with friends or family and sometimes grow into larger businesses with formal business arrangements, often with those same friends or family members as business partners.

What happens when one partner wants out? What happens when relationships sour? What happens to the business when a solo brewer wants to retire?

Having formal arrangements for one's demise (whether personal or professional) is an integral part of life. No one likes to think about it, much less talk about it. It always seems like something that can be put off until later.

It's not fun but do it anyway. Get started and put it on paper. Get help, if you need it. If you don't know where to start, contact me. I'm no expert but I know a few people who can point you in the right direction. Believe me, not having a plan can ruin relationships as well as businesses. It's just one of those things required of mature adults as well as mature businesses.

Remember, mature people get to drink beer so don't just plan to get a beer. Get a beer and start planning!


There was a great article in the Summer 2018 edition of Sip Northwest called Grain to Glass by Catie Joyce Bulay but since I can't find a link for it online, you'll just have to subscribe (here) or pick up a copy somewhere. (They can sometimes be found at breweries.) You can also receive a subscription when you join Washington Beer Lovers.

The article was about Pacific Northwest malts, their varieties, malting techniques, and their uses. In a region known mostly for its hops, it's interesting to know about regionally sourced malts and the flavors they impart in our brewed (and distilled) beverages.

Check it out if you get a chance.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

15 to go!

[Originally published October 25, 2017 at Chocolate Chip Mint]

According to my brewery app, there are 17 breweries in the state of Hawaii:  two on Kauai, two on Maui, four on the Big Island, and nine on the island of Oahu.

  • Koholā Brewery - located in Maui Brewing's previous (non air-conditioned) brew facility, they received the Bronze Medal for their Lokahi Pilsner at the 2016 Great American Beer Festival. "Maui's best kept secret." 
  • Maui Brewing Company - the brewery and tasting room is located in Kihei with happy hour daily, and an awesome outdoor patio. They also have a brewpub located in Kahana (and Waikiki, Ohau). The brewpub has a food menu while a rotating array of food trucks currently serve the brewery although the brewery plans to add a restaurant.
Big Island:
  • Big Island Brewhaus - beer, locally sourced food, and live music. Hawaii’s highest brewpub at 2,764 feet above the sea.
  • Hawaii Nui Brewing - one of Hawaii's largest independent breweries, they brew all-natural beers.
  • Kona Brewing Company - with distribution to all 50 United States and 26 countries, Kona Brewing is the top selling of Hawaii's breweries. With two brewpub locations (Big Island and Oahu), brewery facilities are located in Portland OR Woodinville WA, Memphis TN, and Portsmouth NH in addition to its main brewery facility in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.
  • Mehana Brewing Company - owned by Hawaii Nui Brewing, their Tsunami IPA won a Gold Medal in the 2012 World Beer Championship held in Chicago. Their Hapa Brown, Volcano Red, and Southern Cross all won Silver Medals.
  • Gordon Biersch Brewery - claiming to be Honolulu's first brewpub, they are located in the Aloha Tower Marketplace on the Honolulu Harbor. Gordon Biersch operates 35 restaurants all over the United States as well as four restaurants in Taiwan. Offering food and beer daily.
  • Home of the Brave Brewing Company - aims to remember, honor, and salute the US Military with commemorative beers such as Remember Pearl Harbor Mighty American Ale, D-Day India Pale Ale, and Zamperini Extra Special Bitter. They are host to the largest collection of WWII memorabilia in the Pacific in their museum, Home of the Brave Tour Company, and a Brewseum -"Kaka'ako's best kept secret."
  • Honolulu BeerWorks - located in the heart of Kaka'ako, they produce 1500 barrels per year. Offering lunch and dinner menus, they are open Monday through Saturday.
  • Lanikai Brewing Company - open Thursday through Sunday, they are located in Kailua. "Paradise in a bomber bottle, best shared with friends." Follow them on Facebook for more information about the brewery.
  • Square Barrels - craft burgers and beers in downtown Honolulu, they also feature a happy hour menu. Closed Sundays.
  • Stewbum & Stonewall brewing Company - currently closed for expansion, they are due to reopen in 2018. Beers to look forward to include Low Elf Esteem  Spiced Winter Ale, and The Days of Our Wives Bitter Ale.

I have been to the three Maui locations but it looks like I have some work to do. Most of the bars on Maui feature both Maui breweries on tap as well as beers from Kona Brewing but the only time I've seen other Hawaiian beers is at a liquor store with a good beer selection which speaks to the high cost of distribution between islands.

Well, if the beers won't come to me, I'll just have to go to them. Beer tourism, anyone? If I plan the trip, will you come with me? It's time to do some inter-island beer hunting!

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Not Too Shabby

On our most recent road trip to Seattle to watch the Blue Angels over Lake Washington for Seafair Weekend, we managed to squeeze in visits to nine breweries:

We tasted a lot of good beer. My favorite new discovery on this trip, though, was Flying Lion Beer. It's in Columbia City, a funky, historic, up-and-coming Seattle neighborhood. Getting out of our Uber, we wondered what we were getting ourselves into but upon entering the small brewery, we were instantly at ease. The cozy taphouse is dog friendly, has (indoor and) outdoor seating, a very nice bathroom (always a plus!), and features a bicycle-powered grain mill!

Though understated on their website, their beers are award winning. The medals hanging on the brewery wall represent Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards at various events for their Rye Stout, Call It A Day Pale, and a third one that I believe was not on tap, a Hefeweizen. (Sorry if I got that wrong!)

Speaking of "at ease," Forward Operating Base (FOB) Brewing was also a good discovery. It's large space in Dupont was friendly and inviting, also had outdoor space, as well as a tattoo artist and a barber! Also, good beer! They frequently host private events so check their Current Operations page before visiting, especially if you're making a long drive.

We're making another road trip this weekend and, no doubt, a beer adventure is on tap. We'll let you know where we've been but I can tell you we don't always know where we're going!


Friday, August 3, 2018

Beer Happenings

In honor of International Beer Day, I'm launching the Beer Happenings calendar on Beer Here. Previously, beer-related events were posted on What's Up Vancouver? on my other blog, Chocolate Chip Mint (a snarky blog mostly about me). It's been on my To Do List to move the beer events to Beer Here and keep What's Up Vancouver? (WUV) for other local events such as the Cold Brew Fest at Esther Short Park on Saturday. And, now, it's finally done!

If you're confused:
  • The Cold Brew Fest is the world's largest festival featuring coffee. I'm actually going to miss this event, having scheduled a road trip for the same time. But coffee? Yes, please!
If there's an event you'd like to see listed on Beer Happenings, please let me know. Leave a comment here, or contact me directly at at g mail dot com or on Twitter @Lynn_C_Dot.

It's Friday! It's International Beer Day! Now, go find yourself a beer!