Wednesday is our last full day in Seattle proper, so we decided to plan a few less things for the day to rest up before heading to the coast on Thursday. I decided to get in a short run to celebrate National Running Day, and so I headed back down to the waterfront for a short 3 mile run. I ran up the stairs on Union street and met my wife for breakfast at a nice little bakery near our hotel.
I then decided to take my camera out for a jaunt by myself while Lisa rested her legs for the upcoming marathon she’s doing. I headed over to St. James Cathedral, which is the seat of the Diocese of Seattle. It has a beautiful interior and it was a lot of fun to wander around and take pictures of such a beautiful structure. I’ll post more of the album later when I get back and can properly edit the files.
I also headed to the new Amazon Biosphere on 6th Ave, which is currently under construction. It’s apparently going to be their new urban headquarters in downtown. If nothing else it will be of of the more unique headquarters around.
After heading back to the hotel, it was time to head out for lunch. Since we’ve done a bunch of Asian food lately we opted for a Mexican lunch counter today. It was tasty and filling, and was a nice way to have a casual lunch without running around like crazy all over the place.
The main task for the afternoon was to hop on public transit and go to the Ballard neighborhood to experience their version of the craft beer taprooms explosion like we’ve had in NE Minneapolis. We arrived around 3pm and had a list of 4-5 places I wanted to try. Thankfully, all of the places we hit did small flight samples, so I was able to get a lot of different beers.
The first place was called Stoup. Got a sample of three of their beers; their ESB was really well done, and I could certainly see myself drinking a full pint of that. The taproom itself was really pleasant, and felt homey with a great patio. All around a great first stop.
Our next stop was intended to be Lucky Envelope, but they didn’t open till 4, so we headed instead to Ruben’s first. At Rubens I got a flight of four beers, including a couple of sour beers. In particular their tart cherry sour was very well done, but overall, every one of the four worked for me. They have a massive tap list, with 24 beers on tap. Many of their beers are also award winners at places such as GABF, and they’re not shy about showing off their medals. Because there was a food truck there, we waited till they opened, got some food, and headed back to Lucky Envelope.
Both of the bartenders at Stoup and Ruben’s said we had to make Lucky Envelope a part of our trip, so we were excited to see what they had to offer. I got a flight of four beers, including one called “Our First Sour!” I took one taste and gave it five stars on Untappd. It was the perfect example of a standard sour beer, with a perfect balance of tartness and sweetness. Truly a great beer, and I would have loved to stick around and have another full pint of it.
The beertender at Lucky Envelope suggested our final stop should be at Hilliards, so we headed over to see what they really liked about it. However, when we arrived there was a large gender-equality gathering going on, and so the place was completely packed. We opted instead to head across the street to Peddler Brewing, a taproom that has a bicycling theme. At this point in the evening I knew I was done. If I tried to down too many more beers I’d end up beyond a pleasant buzz, and into inebriation. Since I’m in a different city, and needed to get a bus back to the hotel, I opted for just two small samples from Peddler. They were both adequate, but nothing astounding. If I lived in the area I’d be more than happy to visit them on occasion (their space is very cool), but I wouldn’t go out of my way to get their beer.
Overall, the beer scene in Seattle is great, and it was a ton of fun to experience how another city is growing it’s craft beer culture. It also made me realize how much of a good thing we have going on back in Minnesota. The breweries in Minnesota could compete any day of the week with these guys in Seattle. We might be newer, and slightly smaller, but our beer scene is world class.
Once I downed my final samples of the night we caught the bus back to downtown and settled in for a little room service dessert. Now it’s time to relax because tomorrow we pack up and head to the coast for a couple days. It’s hard to believe that we still have half our vacation left before we have to head back to reality.