Thursday, April 18th, 2024

Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Ambers April 18

Peaks & Pints barkeeps Bilbo Brandon and Mathrandir recap yesterday’s Tournament of Beer: Northwest Ambers Second Round.

Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Ambers April 18

BILBO BRANDON: Beginning April 23, we’ll have cut the field of 64 Middle-Northwest ambers and reds to the Saccharification 16. April 25, it’ll drop to the Ethanol 8. April 27, we’ll announce the winner of the Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Ambers — picked by you, of course — at our little lodge in Tacoma’s Proctor District. On that Saturday, we’ll cut the online voting at 5 p.m. and take the vote live in house at 6 p.m., handing out ballots while you enjoy the final two ambers and reds on draft.

MATHRANDIR: That’s all fine and dandy, but it’s Thursday and you don’t have time for idle chitchat. You have reports to file and kids to pick-up. OK, OK, here’s a recap of yesterday’s battles, and a look at today’s Tournament of Beer: Northwest Ambers games. Thanks for voting on Peaks & Pints Instagram Stories!

Wednesday, April 18, Second Round Northwest Ambers Games results

Peaks & Pints barkeeps Bilbo Brandon and Mathrandir how Triceratops Collin James closed the voting gap thought the day.


Stemma Brewing First Amber (#16 seed) vs Hellbent Brewing Red Patina (#8 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: Stemma Brewing and Hellbent Brewing. Few incomplete sentences in Tournament of Beer history come with more buzz. A half-hour after number 16 seed First Amber beat number eight seed Red Patina, Stemma co-founder Jason Harper stepped into his brewhouse cuddling a kitten (of course). Brewers were texting family members, conducting interviews, and watching themselves on YouTube when the familiar voice of Harper cut through the joyous din. “We were hellbent on brewing a delicious amber, and we certainly achieved our goal,” Harper probably said, pausing for a moment. “You just beat one of the best. You should be proud.” First Amber has landed a spot in the Saccharification 16 with 66 percent of the vote.


Triceratops Brewing Collin James Irish Red (#10 seed) vs Silver City Brewery Ridgetop Red (#2 seed)

MATHRANDIR: There are a few things you just don’t ask Triceratops Brewing co-founder and head brewer Rob Horn. You don’t ask, “What do you do all day? Sit on your tricerabottom?” You also definitely don’t ask, “What do you call a Triceratops brewer who hates losing? A saur loser.” And you certainly don’t ask, “Why should you never get into a fight with Rob Horn? You’ll get jurass-kicked.” We’re not sure what the Silver City Brewery sales team said during the competition yesterday, but if they did make dinosaur jokes, it didn’t worked. Even though this game was tied multiple times throughout the day, including in the last few hours of the Tournament, Rob Horn laughed off the jokes and kept Try-try-try-ceratops his way to victory.

BILBO BRANDON: I didn’t get a chance to check my Thesaurus, so I’ll just say Collin James Irish Red “squeakedasaurus” a win with 51 percent of the vote and moves into the Saccharification 16.


Ancestry Brewing Irish Style Red (#12 seed) vs Pelican Brewing Sea’N Red (#4 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: These two reds had easy wins in the First Round. But, yesterday, Ancestry Brewing received its first taste of Tournament royalty taking on Pelican Brewing, which has been a player in all eight Peaks & Pints Tournaments, including winning the Tournament of West Coast Flagships. Losing by only 20 percent to a brewery with multiple taphousea and a past Tournament winner can still be cherished by Ancestry’s ancestors for years to come. Pelican is now Sea’N Second Round with 56 percent of the vote.


Crux Fermentation Project Mountain Traffic Red (#10 seed) vs Block 15 Brewing Ridgeback Red (#2 seed)

MATHRANDIR: Crux Fermentation Project has been busy brewing new beers using new hops, opening new locations such as its pub in Portland and perhaps another new spot in Bend, and experimenting with fermented beverages. Block 15 Brewing has also been busy having successfully released its 16th 1version of its Super Nebula bourbon barrel-aged beer series in Corvallis’ Bourbon Month celebration, hired Orcas Distributing for its Washington accounts, and added a bunch of new beers this winter and spring. Somehow they managed to both take the court and play a great game. It was a fairly close game the entire day with Ridgeback Red weaving in and out of Traffic on it way to 55 percent of the vote and a spot in the Saccharification 16 .

BILBO BRANDON: Let’s weed through the malts. The following are advancing to the Saccharification 16:

Stemma Brewing First Amber (#16 seed)

Triceratops Collin James Irish Red (#10 seed)

Pelican Brewing Sea’N Red (#4 seed)

Block 15 Brewing Ridgeback Red (#2 seed)

MATHRANDIR: All right! Let’s dive into more Second Round games. Please vote for one beer per game on Peaks & Pints’ Instagram Stories. Voting for today’s battles ends at midnight. We’ll announce the winners tomorrow morning around 10 a.m., but today’s games are live on Peaks & Pints’ Instagram Stories. Take a deep whiff and get to voting. …

Thursday, April 18, Second Round Northwest Ambers Games


Bainbridge Brewing Arrow Point Amber (#5 seed) vs Kulshan Brewing Local Amber (#13 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: Bellingham has 10.9 percent less rainy days than Bainbridge Island. Bellingham has 4.7 percent more sunny days than Bainbridge Island. Bellingham is 2.9 percent less expensive than Bainbridge Island. Bainbridge Island has 7 percent more Hobbits than Bellingham. The average commute for residents of Bellingham is 20.8 percent shorter than it is for residents of Bainbridge Island.

MATHRANDIR: The Tournament of Beer Council says Bainbridge Island and Bellingham are 100 percent better off having Bainbridge Brewing and Kulshan Brewing, respectively. There’s a good chance you’ll vote for one or the other.

VOTE ON PEAKS & PINTS’ INSTAGRAM STORIES >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Barrel Mountain Brewing’s Pizza & Pints joint in Vancouver is legit.


Barrel Mountain Brewing Ash Cloud Amber (#11 seed) vs Wet Coast Hi Jack! Red (#3 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: Technically speaking, amber ale is a medium-bodied beer, traditionally malty with an alcohol by volume range of 4.5 to 6.2 percent and a bitterness range of 20 to 40 International Bittering Units. Red ales originated in Europe and unsurprisingly, are named for their reddish color. They have rich, robust flavors that provide a sweeter, butterscotch, or caramelized taste. The main difference between them is that red ales use specialty roasted malts and American amber ale use caramelized malts for their pigment and flavors. Barrel Mountain Brewing Ash Cloud amber is brewed with seven different malts to create a well-balanced smooth profile with just enough sweetness and a touch of chocolate. Wet Coast Brewing Hi Jack! Red ale is brewed with Crystal and Black malts for a deep red hue and extremely smooth body while a dosing of Centennial hops provides floral and citrus notes with a small amount of bitterness to balance the beer.

MATHRANDIR: One hundred thirty-eight miles separate these two breweries. Less than 38 votes difference will probably be the winning number.

VOTE ON PEAKS & PINTS’ INSTAGRAM STORIES >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Zoiglhaus Ramona Red


Living Haus Kenny Hoppy Red Ale (#16 seed) vs Zoiglhaus Ramona Red (#8 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: Living Haus Beer‘s Kenny Hoppy Red Ale took down the mighty, number one seeded Full Sail Amber in First Round action. This can’t be overlooked, people. Living Haus hops their Kenny like a IPA with an even balance of Nelson Sauvin and Citra hops and just a smidge of Chinook added in for good measure. Aromas and flavors of grapefruit, chocolate covered oranges, blueberry, and classic pine are present here. Zoiglhaus Brewing mostly brews German beer styles, regularly occupying eight of their 10 taps, with the remaining two dedicated to American styles — an IPA and the Ramona Red ale, which means Zoiglhaus might push their classic, Northwest-style red that’s full of malt flavor and bright citrus notes extra hard. I suspect this red-on-red battle will be a rager.

MATHRANDIR: Just remember what Sammy Hagar sang:

Red is my lover, got it covered
Red is my number, sure is a comer
Red is my drummer, and I hear red thunder
Move over brother, Red’s a mother

BILBO BRANDON: Now I’m seeing red.

Barley Brown’s hardware


Game 4: Barley Brown’s Point Blank Red (#6 seed) vs Ninkasi Brewing Dawn of the Red (#3 seed)

BILBO BRANDON: Here’s another worthy battle of red ales. If you remember, Ninkasi Brewing’s Dawn of the Red actually ate some of Falling Sky Storm Walker Red’s votes in the First Round. Ninkasi’s zombie red ale might have a tougher time repeating that strategy. Baker City, home of Barley Brown’s Beer, first rose from the Oregon desert in 1865, buoyed by the discovery of gold, then adding timber and railroad industries. Baker City will not back down from zombies — either will Eastern Oregon’s biggest brewery, Barley Brown’s. The brewery will point their Point Blank Red right at Dawn of the Red and, no doubt, will be dead serious about taking them out. Originally released as a Rare & Delicious (R&D) Series beer, an experimental small-batch series, Dawn of the Red, now considered a flagship of Ninkasi, is ready for the battle.

VOTE ON PEAKS & PINTS’ INSTAGRAM STORIES >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Friday April 19 Tournament of Northwest Ambers Second Round action …

Game 1: Rainy Daze Brewing Test Drive Amber (#10 seed) vs Triplehorn Folkvang Red (#15 seed)

Game 2: E9 Brewing Rowdy & Dick Amber (#1 seed) vs Top Rung Brewing Box Alarm Amber (#8 seed)

Game 3: Gigantic Brewing Mecha Red (#11 seed) vs Double Mountain Brewery I.R.A.(#13 seed)

Game 4: Three Creeks Brewing Firestorm Red (#12 seed) vs Kobold Brewing Brimstone Red (#3 seed)

LINK: Tournament of Beers: Northwest Ambers explained

LINK: Tournament of Beer Headquarters

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