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Washington Beer Commission Open House This Saturday!!

February 25, 2011 1 comment

Washington Beer Commission's logo- a staple in the beer community.

This Saturday, February 26, 2011 (TOMORROW)  for approximately 4 hours, you should go on a tour of the local craft brewing industry.

The Washington Beer Commission organized an Open House of sorts where local breweries open their doors to beer lovers providing them with the good stuff to make this an epic Saturday afternoon. From 12PM-4PM you can plan your route or pick an area of Washington to tour:

 

CENTRAL and EASTERN WA

 

C.I. Shenanigans Brewery, Spokane
Iron Horse Brewery, Ellensburg
Palouse Falls Brewing, Pullman
Yakima Craft Brewing, Yakima

 

NORTH and EAST of SEATTLE

 

American Brewing, Edmonds
Anacortes Brewing, Anacortes
Black Raven Brewing, Redmond
Boundary Bay Brewing, Bellingham
Chuckanut Brewing, Bellingham
Diamond Knot Brewing, Mukilteo
Foggy Noggin Brewing, Bothell
Gallagher’s Where U Brew, Edmonds
Lazy Boy Brewing, Everett
Redhook Brewery, Woodinville
Scuttlebutt Brewing, Everett
Snoqualmie Falls Brewing, Snoqualmie

 

NORTH SEATTLE

 

Big Time Brewery, U District
Fremont Brewing, Fremont
Maritime Pacific Brewing, Ballard
Naked City Brewing, Greenwood

 

DOWNTOWN SEATTLE

 

Pike Brewing

 

SOUTH and WEST of DOWNTOWN SEATTLE

 

Big Al Brewing, White Center
Elliott Bay Brewing, W. Seattle
Epic Ales, SODO
Georgetown Brewing, Georgetown
Schooner Exact Brewing, SODO
Three Skulls Brewing, South Park
Two Beers Brewing, SODO

 

SOUTH SOUND

 

M.T. Head Brewing, Graham
Trade Route Brewing, Pacific
The Ram Brewery, Puyallup
The Ram Brewery, Tacoma

 

WEST of PUGET SOUND

 

7 Seas Brewing, Gig Harbor
Der Blokken Brewing, Bremerton

This event will showcase a number of special beers, beer pairings and surprises at many locations. You will just have to go and find out what is in store. Don’t forget this Saturday is the Grand Opening of American Brewing Co.

This event is free but beer prices at each location will apply. Drive safely or don’t drive at all and ENJOY!

 

The Best of Washington: Silver City Brewery Takes Home Title

November 2, 2010 1 comment

And the winner is...

Every year, local TV station, KING 5 takes a tally from the Washington State population on their favorite bars, restaurants, friendliest athlete, bike shops and so much more. This year and for the third year in a row, Silver City Brewing Co. located on the Kitsap Peninsula won best brewpub! Trust me, it is well deserved.

There were 402,855 votes in the 2010 Best of Western Washington contest. Other nominees for best Washington state brew pub include, 7 Seas Brewing (Gig Harbor, WA), Big Al Brewing (Seattle, WA), Black Raven Brewing Co. (Redmond, WA), Port Townsend Brewing Co. (Port Townsend, WA) and many more. Nominees spanned the state and many are at the top of my list.

Silver City gives us Seattleites a reason to hop on a ferry to Silverdale, WA. A large facility, Silver City brews amazing beers, showcases only the finest bar food and is very welcoming to its patrons.

Runners up include: 5th Place-Diamond Knot Brewing Co. (Mukilteo, WA), 4th Place- Redhook Brewing Co. (Woodenville, WA), 3rd Place-Boundary Bay Bar and Bistro and rolling in at 2nd Place-Fishbowl Brewpub (home of Fish Brewing Co. in Olympia, WA)

So, congrats to Silver City who brews amazing beers such as their Woop PAss Double IPA, Fat Scotch Ale (so good), Indianola Pale Ale IPA and several others including some amazing seasonals. I am looking forward to their Winter Bock, Nutcracker Special Belgium Brown Ale and their Christmas Ale, Old Scrooge. Tis the season.

Beers in the Hood: Ballard, Seattle

October 26, 2010 4 comments

An ariel view of Ballard's ship yard.

Over the past three years, I have done my share of research on beer spots in Seattle. Every neighborhood has a beer bar, a bar with a decent tap list or a bottle shop to offer those that search the land for all that is fermented yeast. One of the things I love most about Seattle is the variety of neighborhoods (reminiscent of Manhattan) where you step out of one and into the next…almost immediately it becomes obvious that you’re in a whole new world.

Tonight: Ballard.

I’ll start with a nice wiki excerpt:

Historically Ballard is the traditional center of Seattle’s ethnically Scandinavian seafaring community, who were drawn to the area because of the salmon fishing opportunities. In recent years the decline of the fishing industry, and the addition of numerous condo buildings, has decreased the proportion of Scandinavian residents but the neighborhood is still proud of its heritage.

Ballard is situated by so many unique landmarks: the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (a facility that move boats from the water level of the lakes to the water level of Puget Sound, and vice versa and is the location of a salmon ladder); the Ballard Farmer’s Market; the Ballard Bridge and historic Ballard. This neighborhood was Redhook Brewing Co.’s first home, has colorful public art works as well as restaurants with the freshest ingredients. With all of this going on, spending a day in Ballard will keep you entertained. Stopping at these places will satisfy your beer needs.

Old Peculiar

An Irish pub, Old Peculiar has a large wooden bar with a mirrored bar back lined with whiskeys.  Cozy nooks and an outdoor patio make this a versitle space while killer tater tots and at least 10 microbrews on tap nurture a bar patron’s desires. A place where the young and the old co-exist, I’ve seen Ninaski, Dogfish head and local brews such as Hales on tap.

During happy hour, food items such as Irish nachos, tater tots, chicken strips and chips are $4 with microbrews clocking in at just $3. When does this amazing deal occur? So glad you asked– during the hours of 4-6 pm and 10 pm-midnight ANY DAY of the week.

Its been awhile since I have visited Old Peculiar. Located on the main drag, Market St. NW, you step in and immediately your past journeys melt away. The space is a good size- not so big that you have trouble navigating and not so small that you are sitting on a stranger’s lap (unless that is your thing, then don’t let us stop you). There are plenty of regulars and some wildly entertaining people watching.

The Jolly Roger Taproom

This taproom is home to Maritime Pacific Brewery and is a new space. Before this newer, much bigger space, the Jolly Roger Taproom was located right across the Ballard Bridge in a small warehouse. The old warehouse was used for brewing with the taproom there for us to enjoy the fruits of Maritime’s labor. That’s what beer drinking is all about, right? It was a quirky space that felt as though you were on a shipwreck which fits with the whole Ballard, fisherman, Maritime, pirate theme.


Maritime's taproom is shiny and new.

Then one day, we were riding past the space and it was empty with a FOR LEASE sign. Oh no! Soon after, we found out that they were just moving to a larger space, but we would have to wait, as the space was being remodeled.

I honestly can’t remember how many months past before the new space opened, but when it did, we were the 4th and 5th people in line to experience Maritime’s new dwellings. The new space still alludes to the fisherman, pirate, sea captain theme except the boat is way nicer with bright, finished wood, plenty of natural light and amazing food and beers. I’ll start with some food recommendations: the fried pickles are delicious, as is the dipping sauce they come with, the onion rings are massive and tasty and the mahi sliders are killer– add some of the homemade hot sauce that is on the table.

BEERS: Maritime is more or less the staple local microbrew. Even bars that don’t focus any energy on beer will have a Maritime beer on tap and is usually my saving grace. Their dark amber ale, Nightwatch is a personal favorite- it is bitter, smooth and hoppy with that roasted flavor. Maritime has a good line up of beers that will appeal to any beer drinker, so check it out.

Old Town Alehouse

If your looking for something a little more sophisticated, a little more upscale, but still want some damn good beer then stop by the Old Town Alehouse. Their food and beer prices are not outrageous by any means, but the motif lends itself to the low key evening. Every time we walk by here, we pop in to see what they have on tap and generally there is at least one intriguing option.

Their beer selection says they are trying to keep a diverse tap list, but aren’t willing to do the research to get the rarer, more innovative beers on tap.

Great looking menu, a wide selection of beers - a place I need to visit.

For example, currently they have three Belgium beers on tap: Hoegarden Wit, Chimay White Label and Lindemans Framboise. All good beers but commonplace compared to several other Belgium breweries. In looking at their current tap list, it appears that the Old Town Alehouse tries to keep one of every style pouring. Port Townsend Brewing Co.’s Straight Stout, Georgetown Brewing Co.’s Georgetown Porter and Boundary Bay IPA is enough to make me stop in and wet the whistle.

I am very intrigued by their menu and its making me hungry. Your average appetizers such as fries, onion rings and hummus are followed by many affordable and delicious sounding options: gumbo, the spicy fried chicken sandwich (smothered in hot wing sauce- SOLD), the Ballard Beef Dip Sandwich (lets see if it rivals Chicago) and fish and chips. All sandwiches are $10.75 and most of the appetizers are under $9. So those of you that have experienced this joint, please leave a comment and let the world know!

So that’s Ballard’s beer scene in a nutshell. If you have a place that you love in this neighborhood (I can’t cover them all), leave a comment or email me at jess@beerblotter.com.

Next up: Belltown.

Brouwers Cafe Publishes Washington Beer Festival Lineup

 

North Sound Brewing pouring two new IPAs at WBF

 

Last week we published an article about Washington Beer Festival, which begins tomorrow at Brouwers Cafe. Brouwers will be clearing every single tap in the house for Washington brewers and matching the exquisite beer offerings with some locally sourced food options.

If you want to check up on the event as it develops, check out Brouwers’ website. But, the bar released its initial version of the tap list. We are speechless.

Here it is. We have underlined a few that you should probably give a try!

 

Anacortes  Tenth Anniversary, Anacortes
Big Al Alt Bier, Seattle
Big Time Big Dance, Seattle
Birdsview Cardiac Arrest Strong Brown Ale, Concrete
Black Raven All Washington Fresh Hop, Redmond
Boundary Bay Imperial Oatmeal Stout, Bellingham
Chuckanut Pilsner, Bellingham
Der Blokken Sacred Hop IPA, Bremerton (fairly sure this is their first visit across the Sound)
Diamond Knot Whip Ale, Mukilteo
Dick’s Bottleworks RyePA, Centralia
Elliot Bay Mashing Pumpkin, Seattle / Burien
Elysian The Great Pumpkin, Seattle
Emerald City Dotties, Seattle
Flyers Proptoberfest, Oak Harbor
Fremont Harvest Saison, Seattle
Georgetown Choppers, Seattle
Hales Super goose, Seattle
Harmon ESB, Tacoma
Hood Canal Dosewallip, Kingston
Iron Horse Fresh Hop, Ellensburg
Laht Neppur Piper Canyon Scotts Ale, Waitsburg
Lazyboy Big Double Trouble, Everett
Maritime Bosuns Black Porter, Seattle
Naked City Fresh Hop Saison, Seattle (have yet to try; got to love the creativity)
New Belgium Trip VI,  Seattle / Fort Collins
North Sound Brewing Hop Chops IPA, Mount Vernon (loved the first few things i had from them)
North Sound Brewing X-batch Single Hop IPA, Mount Vernon
Northern Lights IPA, Spokane
Odin Smokey Bacon, Seattle (people have loved this!)
Palouse Falls Crimson Pride Amber, Pullman
Paradise Creek Dirty Blonde, Pullman
Paradise Creek Over the Hop, Pullman (ummm? who?!)
Peaks Trainwreck, Port Angeles
Pike Double IPA, Seattle
Port Townsend Green Tea Golden,  Port Townsend
Ram Northgate Locavore Fresh Hop, Seattle
Red Hook Eisbock, Woodinville
River Port BullseyePA,Clarkston (again, who?!)
Rogue Issaquah CASK Belgian Pale, Issaquah
Rogue Issaquah Wet Frog , Issaquah
Schooner Exact  CASK Cascade Dry-Hopped 3 Grid, Seattle
Schooner Exact Fresh Hop, Seattle
Seven Seas Ballz Deep, Gig Harbor
Silver City Blonde, Silverdale
Silver City Fat Bastard, Silverdale
Skaggit Black Jack Lager, Mount Vernon
Skaggit Gospel IPA, Mount Vernon
Skookum Mule Strong Ale, Arlington (loved the few things ive had from them; strong = interesting)
Snipes Two Fresh, Sunnyside
Snoqualmie Belgian Wit, Snoqualmie
Three Skulls Coconut Porter, Seattle (every coconut porter i’ve had has killed)
Two Beers Pumpkin Spice, Seattle
Two Beers Summer Hop, Seattle
Yakima Brewing Ipa 1, Yakima

 

Beer Blotter’s Guide to Brouwer’s HopFest 2010

September 7, 2010 13 comments

Photo by Dor & Bob

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Brouwer’s is the best beer bar that I have ever been to in America, and believe me, I’ve been to quite a few good ones.  There is a lot of reasons for my confidence in that stance, but one of the larger ones is the fests that they host.  Yes, there is a decent number of bars in the country that host barleywine fests, and probably even more that organize IPA fests.  It seems pretty doubtful that there would be many that put on sour beer festivals or stout festivals, but I’m sure there are a hand full out there.  But, the question is, how many bars in America do all of those, and do them so well that beer nerds like myself take off of work to attend them?  I’d say that the answer is probably very, very few.  I love pretty much everything about Brouwer’s and HopFest is surely no exception.

So you know that I love Brouwer’s, you know that I love HopFest, you know that I will be there at the moment the doors open, and you know that I will imbibe many an IBU packed brew, but one more question need be answered: what will I be drinking?  That’s where the guide comes in.

First, check out the full list that we posted on the 1st.  After much consideration, I have developed a game plan.  Granted, there is going to be a few additions and most likely, a few exciting surprises come Friday.  If these surprises include Russian River Pliny the Younger or Firestone Walker Double Jack, you are going to want to forget the entire remainder of this article and just drink those until the kegs kick.

Top 10 beers to try:

10.) Russian River Blind Pig – I hear more and more people say “Pliny isn’t even their best IPA” in reference to Blind Pig.  I personally don’t agree, but everything that Russian River makes is good…damn good.  Blind Pig shows up in Seattle from time to time but I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a decent contingent of folks out there that haven’t gotten a hold of it yet.  Here is your chance.

9.) Black Raven Dry Hopped Trickster – My boss at Lazy Boy always gives me shit for my blog claiming that Black Raven is the best brewery in WA.  I’m sure he will also give me shit for not putting our Imperial IPA on this list (sorry boss, I feel a little weird self promoting.  It is a damn good beer though.)  Well, we stand by our claim about BRB.  The people spoke over at The Bev when they voted it in as the house IPA.  This brew is super solid in it’s regular form, I can only guess that the dry hopped version will be even better.  If you have cheated and looked down at number 1 already, you have seen another reason why we are confident in our claim.

8.) Elysian Idiot Sauvin – I honestly don’t know what this beer is.  That is precisely why I want to try it.  Elysian and experimentation go hand in hand, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this one had some peculiar adjuncts added.  No matter what, Elysian makes great beer and this will likely be worth your money.

7.) Midnight Sun XXX Black Double – When Cascadian Dark Ales, or CDAs took over the craft beer world a little while back, we all knew that it was just a matter of time before the Imperial black IPAs would show up.  Well here it is, and I must say, I’m intrigued.  I’m even more intrigued knowing that Midnight Sun is behind it.

6.) Boundary Bay Imperial – There are two Imperial IPAs produced in WA that are head and shoulders above all the rest.  This is one of them.  This is a beer that, if it were distributed with greater reach, would bring some much needed respect to Washington state in the beer war for state supremacy.  This is one of the very few beers that, if I hear that it is on tap somewhere close by, I will do all in my power to make it there immediately to get a pint.

5.)Hub Ace of Spades – I have only had this beer once before and it was at last year’s HopFest.  I can’t believe that that was a year ago, I remember it so well.  It was probably my favorite “new” beer (new to me) of the event.  As it turns out, it was voted the second best beer of the fest behind Pliny the Younger.  Now that Hub is distributing bottles in WA it may be easier to acquire this one, but I will still be ordering one and bathing in it’s brilliance.

4.) Mikkeller Single Hop – This is actually three beers in one (Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook),  sorry to cheat.  You probably don’t have to try all three, but it sure would make a fun experiment.  I absolutely love the concept of single hop beers and I love Mikkeller for making this series happen.  As a fledgling brewer I feel that spending time with these brews will help me gain a better understanding and appreciation for various hop varietals and their impact on scent and flavor. You can sometimes find these brews in 12oz bottles around town , but they are often over $6 a piece.  I don’t think I have ever seen them on draft – this is pretty special and definitely a good opportunity to taste them for, potential, a little bit less dough.

3.) Moylans Wet Hopsickle – Hopsickle is a triple IPA and it’s huge.  When you add the word “wet” before it, it means that fresh hops were used.  I’m getting emotional just thinking about the potential that this beer has to be mind-blowing.  God damn, I can’t believe it’s fresh hop season already!  Yet another reason why living in the Northwest is spectacular.

2.) Green Flash Palate Wrecker – Green Flash is masterful when it comes to hops.  Their West Coast IPA and Imperial IPA are both among the best made in America.  Like the Elysian above, I don’t really know what this beer is, but I know I need to have it.

1.) Black Raven Wisdom Seeker – This beer walks around town with a hype attached to it that is so massive and heavy that I’m amazed it can even stand on it’s own two feet, but boy does it ever.  When this beer hits a handle in the Seattle area, there is an instant buzz, and 20 minutes later (or less) she is out the door…gone…kicked.  Black Raven has clearly taken cues from other perennial buzz junkies (like Pliny the Younger) in seemingly stunting production and causing such a skewed supply and demand curve that on the rare occasion that is it available, people freak out to get a taste.  It would be silly of me to suggest that anything different will happen at HopFest.  This should go very fast so get there early and order 2 at once.

Beers in the Hood: Phinney Ridge

August 24, 2010 2 comments

Phinney Ridge, a Seattle Neighborhood- check it.

Over the past three years, I have done my share of research on beer spots in Seattle. Every neighborhood has a beer bar, a bar with a decent tap list or a bottle shop to offer those that search the land for all that is fermented yeast. One of the things I love most about Seattle is the variety of neighborhoods (reminiscent of Manhattan) where you step out of one and into the next…almost immediately it becomes obvious that you’re in a whole new world.

Each hood offers distinct characteristics and charm. So in order to give each neighborhood their 15 minutes of fame, I will focus on one at a time.

Tonight: Phinney Ridge.

I’ll start with a nice wiki excerpt:

Phinney Ridge is a neighborhood in north central Seattle, Washington, USA. It is named after the ridge which runs north and south, separating Ballard from Green Lake, from approximately N. 45th to N. 85th Street.

I know for those of you who are not from Seattle or do not live in Seattle, the above quote means little to nothing. Phinney is a quaint neighborhood, very residential with your random spurts of bars, restaurants, coffee shops and boutiques. Ballard’s subtly hip vibe seeps into Phinney, yet Phinney remains the more reserved, less frequented of the two. Here you will find beer.

The Dray

If you read Beer Blotter, then you have heard of The Dray, located on NW 65th right off of 8th and across the street from a massive Goodwill. This bar has so much to offer on any given day. First off, their “brand” is a squirrel, so expect to see some taxidermy on the shelves next to epic and rare Hair of the Dog and Dogfish head bottles.

Photo creds to phinneywood.com. Nice pic!

This tiny space is decked out in wood with slabs of polished tree trunks acting as your bar and table tops. On a cold winter’s night, you couldn’t be cozier. On a warm, sunny summer’s day you are guaranteed a breeze through the open garage doors/windows. The Dray molds to the weather outside; its like some kind of vortex.

Food options include some paninis, landjagers and pretzels with amazing stone ground mustard. I still haven’t figured out if you get charged for the pretzels, but I really doubt it.

But we also go here for beer- 12 taps at any given time. Yes, there are times I have stopped by here and been slightly disenchanted by their beer list, but 9 times out of 10, they will have something unique, something seasonal and something that your heart desires.

Off hand, Ommegang Zuur, New Belgium Love, Dogfish head Immortal Ale and Cascade Apricot come to mind as beers I enjoyed in the past. For that one time out of ten, The Dray has an impressive (and reasonably priced) bottle list, so be sure to check it out!

A gem of a bar, a comfort zone and a beer lovers day well spent.

Sully’s Snowgoose Saloon

Every time I  walk up to Sully‘s it reminds me of a lodge at a mountain resort in the Alps. With a pitched roof and a Bavarian facade, it couldn’t be more welcoming. Inside, it is a dimly lit, eclectic place with quirky decorations, as well as your quintessential Irish pub signs regarding how drunk, humorous, silly and stupid people get. This is another venue where I can spend an entire afternoon shooting the shit over a few pints of beer.

Props to seattleweekly.com for visual insight into Sully's

Like The Dray, Sully’s offers limited menu options. The items they do have include grilled cheese sandwiches, random snacks and some damn good chili. Other than that, throw a buck in the box and grab a bowl of peanuts.

You can always count on Boundary Bay IPA to be served on cask here, as well as several Deschutes taps and a decent IPA selection. I wouldn’t go here if your looking for a unique or rare beer, but quality brews such as Victory Hop Devil and New Belgium Ranger IPA have graced the stage here at Sully’s.

I remember sitting at Sully’s, drinking Boundary Bay IPA with the other 2/3 of Beer Blotter – we were sitting in a booth by the window and it started to hail, hail the size of golf balls. Just a sign from the gods that it was time to order another pint.

The Park Pub

Directly across the street from Sully’s, The Park Pub took much longer to get on our beer radar then the previously mentioned joints. This bar serves as a place to listen to live bands, play pool and grab some dinner.

Overall the ambiance is less comfortable and intimate but one glance at the tap list and all is well in the world. Arranged in a half circle, the taps glisten behind the bar.

Two times to phinneywood.com for having the neighborhood covered and taking great pics!

Note worthy beers currently on tap here: Boundary Bay IPA, Avery ‘Maharaja’ Imperial IPA, Stone Smoked Porter, Lagunitas ‘Lil Sumpin Sumpin’, Laurelwood ‘Hop Monkey’ IPA, Deschutes Organic Amber, Double Mountain Kolsch, Big Time Black IPA
and Rodenbach Grand Cru.

I would recommend this place for a Friday or Saturday night hang out session with a group. Good beers, music, activities and once in awhile, the neighborhood magician will amaze you and stick a card to the ceiling. Take a look next time you are there.

So that’s Phinney Ridge’s beer scene in a nutshell. I have many fond memories and have drank damn good beer at all three of these places. If you have a place that you love in this neighborhood, leave a comment or email us at beerblotter@gmail.com.

Next up: Ballard.

52 Places: The Pub at Third Place, Seattle, WA

The entrance.

Week 25 of 52

The Pub at Third Place

6504 20th Ave NE

Seattle, WA 98115

Rank: 4.5/5

Type of Establishment: Pub

Visit: A lazy, summertime, Sunday evening called for a cold beer at a new bar.  We found the perfect one for ultimate relaxation.

 

BEERS ON TAP —>

North Coast Old Rasputin
Hale’s Cream Ale
Guiness
Mac & Jack’s Amber
Rogue Dead Guy
Three Skulls Blood Orange Wit
Odin Ruby
Maritime Pacific Hefe
Stella Artois
Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar
Georgetown Manny’s Pale Ale
Diamond Knot IPA
Boundary Bay IPA
Hacker Pschorr Munich
Diamond Knot Possession Porter
Chuckanut Pilsner
Ninkasi Tricerahops

The choices.

 

BOTTLED/CANNED BEER:

None

 

FOOD OPTIONS:

It’s all explained, in detail, below.  Read on.

 

BAR OPINION:

Just over five and a half miles north of the Beer Blotter home base, in the beautiful neighborhood of Ravenna, lies a wood-clad fantasy land that we have never before visited. On this day, we changed that.

So here’s the deal – the building is owned by a guy.  The guy owns Third Place Books.  The bar beneath Third Place Books is called The Pub at Third Place.  The Pub at Third Place is owned by a different guy.  The restaurant attached to Third Place Books is called Vios Cafe.  Vios Cafe is owned by the same guy as The Pub at Third Place.  Vios is a Greek restaurant.  You can order food from Vios while at Vios.  You can order food from Vios while at The Pub at Third Place.  There is a small “library” in The Pub at Third Place that has books.  Third Place Books has books.  Third Place Books has really nice wood shelves.  Vios has really nice wood furniture.  The Pub at Third Place has really nice wood EVERYTHING!  Do you follow?

This place is amazing!  This place is beautiful and majestic!  This place defines comfort!  This place epitomizes the Northwest!  This place may have once existed in The Shire!

Can you tell I liked it?  With this inaugural visit, I immediately placed it in my top 10 bars in Seattle.  I can’t believe I didn’t visit this place ages ago!

The moment I approached the door (the freaking door!) I knew I loved it.  Look at the picture above and tell me that’s not inviting.  It looks like it should be the entrance to a grand tree house mansion of some kind.  Once I opened the door and stepped in…it was all over.  My mouth dropped and all of my senses tingled.  I felt like a visitor in a Hobbit Hole.  So much elegant wood, from floor to ceiling, back to front, top to bottom.

I headed straight for the bar and pulled up a very comfortable, leather-clad stool with a back.  I was immediately greeted by the bartender and I ordered myself a Boundary Bay IPA.  Honestly, I was surprised that the beer wasn’t delivered in a wooden mug.  I soon came to realize that the bartender was the only one working the entire establishment, which wasn’t dead by any means.  He was on top of his game, yet incredibly relaxed…tis the way of The P@TP.

Just behind me, a large bookshelf full of classics, reference books, atlases, board games; all sorts of goodies to keep the lonely drinkers occupied.  Obviously, this element plays allusion to the bookstore just above.  On the top of the bookshelf sits the one and only item in the bar that doesn’t belong: a big screen T.V. showing a baseball game.  Luckily the sound was off, and since my back was facing it, I was able to keep its intrusion in the very back of my mind.  In place of the play-by-play – the soothing tunes of Blonde Redhead – pretty much perfect for the mood of the place.

Yeah, it's real.

Most of the gorgeous wooden tables that fill the “dining” area between the bar and the front door are designed for anywhere between 2 to 6 people, with the exception of 2 epic banquet tables.  One in the very front as you enter (slightly fenced off from the rest of the room) and one in the back, behind the bar toward the bathrooms (also a bit removed from the main area).  These tables are long and thin and seem to be a single piece of wood cut from one massive, gnarled tree.  The one in the front seems to seat 8 and the one in the back, 12.  My goal is to one day visit P@TP with a large group and eat at one of these tables.  Quite possibly I’d nibble on some Lembas bread.

Speaking of food, I didn’t partake in the Mediterranean delights offered via Vios, but the menu looked good enough to lure me back in the near future.  Babaganoush anyone?

Ultimately, words can’t describe the serenity of this place.  To be wrapped up in wood like that, well, it’s something you have to experience for yourself.  Head to Ravenna, buy a book upstairs, take it down to the bar, grab a local cold one and sip while you read in a wood cabin forged from the mighty forests of the Pacific Northwest.

 

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