Thursday, January 17, 2019

When in Seattle, Drink Beer

Seattle is a great place to visit and also a great place to drink beer with a plethora of excellent breweries. This article, by Jeannie McWilliams, published in Northwest Brewing News (December/January 2018-2019) is an excellent guide:

48 Hours in Seattle

I've been to many of these breweries when we visited the breweries of Ballard and Fremont neighborhoods. We've also sampled in the SoDo and Central districts. According to a May 5, 2017, article in the Washington Beer Blog, Seattle (the metropolitan statistical area) has 174 breweries - 60 within the city limits. 48 hours is hardly enough time to sample them all.

But that doesn't mean you can't try.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Cosmic Tripster!

The quest to become a Cosmic Tripster starts with a McMenamins passport which looks very much like a US passport. There are pages within for various and unique stamps from all the McMenamins locations. The number of stamps needed to complete the passport depends on how many McMenamins locations there are which increases year to year. 2018 saw the opening of their Kalama location and 2019 will see the opening of their Tacoma location.

Right now, McMenamins lists 65 locations, including Tacoma. Twelve of those locations are hotels with multiple bars making the total number of stamps required to complete the passport at over 120. (The count could be over 130 when the Tacoma location opens.) Along the way, those on the quest receive prizes including food, merchendise, and gift certificates.

Once completed, a passport holder becomes a Cosmic Tripster which earns an invitation to a private Tripster-only party, overnight accommodations at one of their locations, concert tickets, and all-day happy hour prices on their beers Monday-Thursday for a full year.

Correct pronunciation of "McMenamins" is not required. I've heard it pronounced mc-MIN-i-mums, or mc-MIN-i-mins. It's mc-MEN-a-mins.

Their historic hotels are unique and interesting. Each property is a renovation of an historic building located on beautiful grounds in Oregon and Washington. They alone are worth exploring. (Hint: several feature secret rooms.) Bars range from busy and large to small and intimate. Some feature whiskey; others feature cigars. Some feature both. Many have wood fires inside as well as on outdoor patios. It can take full day to take in a property.

We completed the quest last weekend at Old St. Francis School in Bend. We are now Cosmic Tripsters! While no purchase is necessary (other than the passport itself at $30), we made at least one purchase at each location while enjoying the journey. And, now we're off to do it all over again!

Our livers are aquiver like flivvers!

Wednesday, January 2, 2019


Please note this addition to the Beer Happenings calendar: History on Tap at Kiggins Theatre, sponsored by the Clark County Historical Museum.

The evening will kick off with a gameshow-style segment. Two local “celebrities” and one member from the audience will be quizzed on Clark County history. Next, local historian and author Pat Jollota will provide the answer to a question about local history, previously submitted from social media, email, or through the museum. In addition, a selection of locals brews will be available for purchase throughout the presentation.

The final segment will be a talk given by Steve Bader of Bader Beer and Wine Supply: “From Lucky to Loowit: The Fall of Lucky Lager and the Rise of the Craft Brewing Industry.” Lucky Lager Brewing Company came to Vancouver in 1950, closed in 1985, and was demolished in 1995. All that remains is the warehouse which is located on Columbia Street in downtown Vancouver with the red logo - a cursive L - painted on the building’s exterior. The warehouse is listed on the Clark County Heritage Register.

This is bound to be a entertaining and informative presentation. Tickets are $18 at the door ($15 in advance). Doors open at 6pm and the bar will be open upstairs offering beer and wine. History on Tap begins at 7pm.