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Open House

March 2, 2011

When breweries open their doors to the general public, one of two things may happen.  You may get dynamite tour, up close and personal with the brewing equipment, or you may get a lackluster event full of “free” beer and stories, but not much of a tour.  Up until this past weekend, I thought this was the case.  The Washington brewing community offered us something new: the Washington Beer Open House.

Grab your craft beer buddies and make an afternoon of touring around to sample some of your favorite local WA breweries.

Participating breweries are opening their doors so their adoring fans can catch a peek behind the scenes of what makes them great. And wait, that’s not all… They’re also cooking up some fun and unique treats for visitors.

Sweet.  And with my parents in town for the weekend, I knew exactly what we were going to do.  So, we packed up the kids and all headed out to two local breweries:  Scuttlebutt Brewing and Diamond Knot Brewing.  Both breweries held their open house festivities at their primary brew house as opposed to one of their pubs.  And aside from both offering tastes of some good beer, they offered very different but still enjoyable experiences.

Scuttlebutt’s main attraction was a tour of the brewing facility.  The owner and proprietor was on hand to guide us around the facility and describe the brewing process.  My parents, especially, enjoyed this aspect of the tour.  They’ve heard stories of my homebrewing experiences and sampled some of my own creations.  I’ve even had my father present at a brew day before.  I’ve tried to explain it before, but having the explanation in a relatively short time frame with the equipment and ingredients right before you is probably the best way to explain the process.  That, and I tend to get wrapped into too many details when I explain things!  In a certain sense, my parents were able to better understand one the things that makes me tick: beer!

The setup over at Diamond Knot’s B2 brewery was less formal.  The tasting room was open pouring samples and selling pints.  One of the owners was on site as were the head brewer and at least one assistant brewer.  Upon entering, we were greeted by the head brewer and immediately grabbed a sample of beer.  The brewery was open for walking around and perusing the equipment.  (This was when things got really fun!)  The kids really were in awe of the fermenters in their shiny stainless steel glory.  So as I’m talking to them about what these things are and what they are for, the head brewer and his assistant come over and start chatting it up with us.  They immediately picked up on the fact that I am a beer lover and homebrewer.  They offered some basic explanations to us, but I also had the chance to really “geek out” with them regarding process, ingredients and more.  My mother commented to me later that she couldn’t understand what we were saying in beer talk, and that she needed a translator!

Chatting with Diamond Knot brewers.

Chatting with Diamond Knot brewers.

Joseph

Joseph and the fermenter.

Tiny Bubbles

Blow-off Tube for one of the fermenters.

Bridget and Katie

Bridget and Katie having some water.

Emily

Emily kicking back.

The Tasting Room

Drinking beer with other Diamond Knot fans.

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