Tuesday, April 25th, 2023

Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Pale Ales Sweet 16 April 25

Peaks and Pints bartenders Amber Hamilton and Brandon Crespin call today’s Tournament of Beer Northwest Pale Ales Sweet 16 action.

Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Pale Ales Sweet 16 April 25

AMBER HAMILTON: For the last two weeks Peaks & Pints presented you with a compelling question: What is the best pale ale brewed in Washington and Oregon? And you have responded in droves. Sick days have been used. Friendships have fallen apart. Distributor Sales Executives and Line Cleaners have hooked up — mass hysteria!

BRANDSON CRESPIN: The competition has been whittled down to the Sweet 16. Yes, 16 Northwest brewed pale ales are poised to make the final push to the Final Four, which will be held Friday.

HAMILTON: First, we need recap yesterday’s Second Round games and the final four pales to move into the Sweet 16.

Monday, April 24, Second Round Northwest Pale Ales Games Results

Game 1, Northern Washington

Seapine Mosaic Pale (#11 seed) vs. Fremont Sky Kraken (#3 seed)

CRESPIN: Fremont Brewing’s Sky Kraken had a big lead most of the day. With four hours to go, Seapine Brewing Coach Drew Colpitts started giving his bench players Rainbow Suspenders Double IPA and Positron IPA some time. It worked. The gap became closer. And still, Fremont Sky Kraken held on for the win with 54 percent of the vote and a spot in the Sweet Wort 16. Seapine Mosaic Pale looked like a stunned kid getting off his first roller-coaster ride. Even great pales can have a bad day. It didn’t help Seapine that the Seattle Kraken won their playoff game in overtime last night.

Game 2, Southern Washington

Silver City Sonic Reign (#5 seed) vs. Everybody’s Mountain Mama (#4 seed)

HAMILTON: In the closest game of the day, Everybody’s Brewing‘s Mountain Mama Pale Ale won with 51 percent of the vote. Mountain Mama held the lead until 8:30 p.m. when it became tied. Silver City Brewery will second guess not unleashing their trademark marketing on the game. Everybody’s Brewing worked the social, and the Sonic Reign. In celebration of her namesake pale winning a spot in the Sweet 16, Everybody’s co-founder Christine Ellenberger went on a midnight hike to Spirit Falls because that what’s she does.

Game 3, Northern Oregon

Ecliptic Cloud Core Hazy Pale (#10 seed) vs. pFriem Mosaic Pale (#2 seed)

CRESPIN: The pFriem Family Brewers kept a lead all day with ferocious play from their Mosaic Pale. This strong pale teased Ecliptic Brewing’s Cloud Core Hazy Pale with wafts of mango and citrus in the wee hours before pounding hard with mango and pine. It was as if Cloud Core was in the clouds all day until around 6 p.m. when the votes started pouring in, but it wasn’t enough. Some say pFriem’s pale taunting Cloud Core with a slight tinge of blueberry was unnecessary.  pFriem will tell you it’s just part of the pale’s play. Mosaic Pale grabbed 64 percent of the vote and moves into the Sweet 16 to battle Level Beer’s Pixelated Pale.

Game 4, Southern Oregon

Boneyard Bone-A-Fide (#1 seed) vs. Sunriver Rippin NW Pale (#9 seed)

HAMILTON: Cheers to Boneyard Beer Coach Tony Lawrence for keeping his Bone-A-Fide’s foamy head in this game, instead of looking ahead to Block 15 Brewing’s Joy Pale waiting in the Sweet 16. Sunriver Brewing’s Rippin NW Pale kept rippin it all day keeping a win within reach. Some say Lawrence’s decision to play Alice in Chain’s “Them Bones” kept Bone-A-Fide pumped. Others say the Cascade, Centennial, and Chinook hops did all the work. The other Oregon pales need to sharpen their hops because Bone-A-Fide with its number one seed is the real deal. With 57 percent of the vote, the Bend brewery and its beloved Bone-A-Fide pale move closer to the title.

CRESPIN: Let’s weed through the hops. The following are advancing to the Sweet 16:

Fremont Sky Kraken

Everybody’s Mountain Mama

pFriem Mosaic Pale

Boneyard Bone-A-Fide

CRESPIN: Alright Amber, it’s time to launch the Peaks and Pints Tournament of Beer: Northwest Pale Ales Sweet 16 with four games today and four more tomorrow. 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.

Tuesday, April 25, Sweet 16 Northwest Pale Ale Games

Game 1, Northern Washington

Georgetown Johnny Utah (#1 seed) vs. Hellbent Seattle Sunshine (#12 seed)

HAMILTON: When it comes to Tournament of Beer, even the most casual fan gets into the act. People who haven’t had a pale ale will suddenly become experts, and bracketology braggarts. You know, the people who sit, with a couple of friends at most, sunken into a sofa drinking as many of the Tournament participating pale ales as possible. This group of fans makes certain to save at least 5-6 sick days specifically for use in April. It’s safe to say that these fans didn’t have 12th seed Hellbent Brewing Seattle Sunshine Hazy Pale in the Sweet Wort 16. The citrus, tropical, and stone fruit hop flavored hazy pale brewed for the Seattle Sounders fan club Emerald City Supporters beat Aslan Dawn Patrol (#5 seed) and Stoup Mosaic Pale (#4 seed). Georgetown Brewing is aware of the situation. The Seattle brewery isn’t taking their number one seed for granted. Georgetown has toughed-up their pale ale by taking it through a rigorous extreme sports training program. Will this Chris McDougall training scenario pay off? The votes will tell.

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

Game 2, Southern Washington

Odd Otter Ottzel Quatzel (#14 seed) vs. Bale Breaker Field 41 (#2 seed)

CRESPIN: This year, the Tournament of Beer puts a spotlight on pale ales brewed in Washington and Oregon. Fans don’t need to know the details of the sulfate-to-chloride ratio in water or an upward step mash program to appreciate the intensity of theater this is 64 pale ales fighting for survival in a one-and-done tournament. When an underdog goes on a run, the Cinderella story becomes the talk of the region in April. Meet No. 14 seed Ottzel Quatzel brewed by Odd Otter Brewing in downtown Tacoma. Of course, an inexact science is applied to the title “Cinderella” that includes the brewery’s seed, the hops, and brewers involved and the lasting impact of the run on the hearts and minds of pale voting fans. So quickly, before midnight, let’s see if the slipper fits. Bale Breaker Brewing’s number two seeded Field 41 is brewed with what Tournament of Beer statisticians call a “light bodied, crisp peppery hop balanced bitterness with notes of bread, pine and a touch of sweetness.” Let the story play out.

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

Game 3, Northern Oregon

Fort George City of Dreams (#1 seed) vs. Buoy Pacific Pale (#5 seed)

HAMILTON: For decades, Astoria was known as a coastal fishing village at the mouth of the Columbia River. For people of a certain age, it’s also where The Goonies, Kindergarten Cop, and other movies were filmed. These days, you can add “Sudsy Seatown” to the city’s notable attractions. Six breweries, and growing, in a city of 10,000 people is eyebrow-raising. Astoria may be the best beer town in Oregon per capita, which would rank it among the best small towns for beer in the United States. The Tournament’s Sweet 16 Game 3 pits Astoria’s top two producing breweries: Fort George Brewery and Buoy Beer Co. Fort George gets its name from King George III, who named the town Fort George during the War of 1812. Buoy Beer left the garage homebrew system to open in a 1939 fish processing plant brewing its first beer, a Helles Lager, on the pilot 3-barrel system in December 2013. Fort George City of Dreams Pale (#1 seed) versus Buoy Pacific Pale (#5 seed). Here we go. …

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

Game 4, Southern Oregon

Pelican Paddleback Pale (#6 seed) vs. GoodLife Sippy Cup Hazy Pale (#7 seed)

CRESPIN: “Yea … but it’s Darron.” That’s straight from the mouths of many Oregon brewers. Tournament of Beer First Round: “Yea, Three Creeks Cone Lick’r is a GABF Gold Medal winner … but it’s Darron.” Pelican’s Paddleback Pale won. Second Round: “Yea, Worthy’s Secret Spot is a 2020 Best of Craft Silver Medalist and damn easy to drink … but it’s Darron.” Pelican’s Paddleback Pale won. “Yea, GoodLife Brewing Sippy Cup Hazy Pale utilizes a yeast strain from Imperial Organic Yeast, aptly named “Juice,” with fruit forward hops Galaxy, Mosaic, and El Dorado … but it’s Darron.” It is indeed Darron, Darron Welch, the head brewer and co-owner of Pelican Brewing — a man who joined Pelican at age 26 and now 27 years later still combines a refined and disciplined brewing pedigree of Germany with the creativity of American craft. Yea … but it’s Sippy Cup. This Sweet 16 Oregon pale showdown has a Championship Game feel. Twitter will have its 23rd meltdown this year.

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

Wednesday, April 26 Tournament of Northwest Pale Ales Sweet 16

Game 1: Fremont Sky Kraken (#3 seed) vs. Holy Mountain Kiln & Cone (#2 seed)

Game 2: E9 Brewing Don of Time (#1 seed) vs. Everybody’s Mountain Mama (#4 seed)

Game 3: Level Pixelated Pale (#6 seed) vs. pFriem Mosaic Pale (#2 seed)

Game 4: Boneyard Bone-A-Fide (#1 seed) vs. Block 15 Joy (#4 seed)

LINK: Tournament of Beers: Northwest Pale Ales explained

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LINK: Tournament of Beer archives