Tuesday, April 18th, 2017

Tournament of Washington IPAs: Final Round One Games

Ron Swarner

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Tournament of Washington IPAs: Final Round One Games: Round Low and behold, today marks the closing of the Tournament of Beer: Washington State IPAs’ First Round. After today’s battles the bracket will officially be down to 32 Washington state IPAs, and participants start hiring cheerleaders. Honestly, if it gets any more exciting we’ll start to understand why Dick Vitale use to say, “It’s awesome, baby, with a capital IPA!” Plus, our palates are serious blown out already.

Without wasting anyone’s time with craft beer related basketball innuendo, on to a recap of yesterday’s games and today’s Tournament of Beer action.

Monday, April 17, First Round Washington IPA Games results

GAME 1, SOUTHWEST WASHINGTON REGION

5. Heathen Brewing Transcend IPA vs. 12. Wet Coast Brewing Moving Day IPA

Have you ever met Wet Coast Brewing co-owner/brewer Aaron Johnson? He’s one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. He’s all business, brewing and selling Wet Coast craft beer, when he’s not fighting fires with the Pierce County Fire District. But, when it’s time to promote Wet Coast, something deep inside Johnson clicks on. Suddenly, he takes on the personality of a cross between a circus ringmaster, game show host Bob Barker and former drummer Keith Moon. Dude goes nuts. No doubt Johnson was in his master of ceremonies mode all day yesterday as his Moving Day IPA held a commanding lead over Heathen’s Transcend IPA securing 65 percent of the votes and a position in the Second Round.

GAME 2, SOUTHWEST WASHINGTON REGION

4. 7 Seas Brewing Rude Parrot vs. 13. Wingman Brewers Ace IPA

When first discussing the Tournament of Beer in planning meetings that seem like they were many moons ago, 7 Seas Brewing was mentioned almost immediately. The Gig Harbor and Tacoma craft beer company has a following, and everyone knows it. Sure enough, two of its delicious craft beers were nominated for the tournament — number one seeded Ballz Deep, which fell in the first round, and fourth seeded Rude Parrot IPA. But, 7 Seas isn’t scrappy. That’s the mojo of other beloved Tacoma brewery, Wingman Brewers. Wingman Brewers would wear a funny wig, if needed. Wingman Brewers would wear a Speedo, if needed. Wingman Brewers would dump an entire cake into the mash tun to create a birthday IPA for their anniversary, which they did in preparation for their sixth anniversary party Saturday. Peaks and Pints hasn’t heard what kooky thing Wingman did yesterday to score a decision victory over 7 Seas, other than brew a delicious, hoppy, slightly fruity Ace IPA. When the buzzer sounded, Wingman had 67 percent of the votes and a spot in the Second Round.

GAME 3, KING COUNTY REGION

7. Black Raven Trickster IPA vs. 10. Sumerian Brewing Hopruption Double IPA

Only one game yesterday was close, a back-and-forth battle from the opening buzzer to the final pint, changing leads several times. Separated by five miles of Woodinville real estate, there was a steady stream of Uber rides between the two breweries, which probably befuddled Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery located between the excitement. It’s our guess Sumerian Brewing owners and the most charming people you’ll ever meet, Mark and Holly Ihrig, must have paraded through Eastern King Country offering hugs and showing off their new packaging — beautiful 12-ounce cans. This extra push could have been the deciding factor, edging out Black Raven Brewing and its popular Trickster IPA by 18 votes.

GAME 4, KING COUNTY REGION

2. Two Beers Brewing Wonderland Trail IPA vs. 15. Lucky Envelope Brewing ENIAC Mosaic IPA

Two Beers Brewing’s owner Joel VandenBrink survived a life-altering, death-defying adventure on the 93-mile trail circumnavigating Mount Rainier, which inspired him to brew the wonderland Trail IPA. Every drop of this philanthropic brew benefits Washington’s National Parks. None of that would matter if the beer wasn’t delicious, managing to blend assertive, tropical hop flavors with soft, malty sweetness. We’re certain no one suffered bug bites or a torn meniscus yesterday during the Wonderland Trail’s circumnavigation around Lucky Envelope Brewing’s ENIAC Mosaic IPA. When the Two Beers craft beer returned to the trailhead it has 72 percent of the votes and a new adventure coming in the Second Round.

Let’s check the hot water temperature in the lauter vessel. The following are advancing to the Second Round:

Wet Coast Moving Day IPA
Wingman Brewers Ace IPA
Sumerian Brewing Hopruption Double IPA
Two Beers Wonderland Trail IPA

OK, pour a pint and dive into today’s First Round IPA battles. Vote for one IPA per game. Voting for today’s IPA battles ends at 11:45 p.m. today.

Tuesday, April 18, First Round Washington IPA Games

GAME 1, NORTHWEST WASHINGTON REGION

Silver-City-Brewery-Whoop-Pass-Double-IPAPlayer: Whoop Pass Double IPA (#6 seed)

Team: Silver City Brewery

Player Stats: Have you ever traveled through Whoop Pass? It passes through Cascade and Columbus. It has many steep malts and sharp bitterness without guardrails. It’s a heart stopper on its own, but what’s even scarier: drinkers don’t need to pass a Silver City Brewery taproom test, meaning you could possibly be sharing that taproom with texting-addicted amateurs. And did we mention it has a touch of sweetness? Not only is it one of the steepest IBUs in the tournament, but also it’s become one of the state’s top tourist attractions to be visited … by mouth.

ABV: 8.5% IBU: 85 Hops: Cascade, Columbus

Boundary-Bay-Brewery-Cedar-Dust-IPAPlayer: Cedar Dust IPA (#11 seed)

Team: Boundary Bay Brewery

Player Stats: Boundary Bay’s Cedar Dust IPA has been swept up by a bunch of awards, including Bellingham Tap Trail’s Best Beer in Bellingham. Brewed with four varieties of hops, all bred and grown in Washington, Cedar Dust IPA has a distinctive herbal pine and citrus aroma. The addition of Mosaic hops provide subtle undertones followed by a spicy, earthy mouthfeel. It’s malt bill includes a secret dark malt, and if you know anything about the Tournament of Beer, the word “secret” automatically grabs 36 votes alone. Fun fact: Inspiration for Cedar Dust IPA hails from Bellingham’s iconic mountain bike trail on Galbraith Mountain, which Boundary Bay will replicate April 23 when it hosts a mountain bike skills course in its back alley.

ABV: 6.5% IBU: 66 Hops: Mosaic and other hops

SCROLL DOWN TO VOTE……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….………………

GAME 2, NORTHWEST WASHINGTON REGION

Kulshan-Brewing-Sunnyland-India-Pale-AlePlayer: Sunnyland India Pale Ale (#3 seed)

Team: Kulshan Brewing Co.

Player Stats: “Kulshan” is a Lummi word indicating that the summit of the peak has been damaged, or blown off by an explosion. This word is used of other things damaged or supposed to be damaged in a similar manner. We imagine Kulshan Brewing will chant “Kulshan!” all day during its battle with Rainy Daze Goat Boater IPA. That’s scary, until you realize Kulshan’s competing IPA is named “Sunnyland,” which isn’t scary. This golden straw-colored beauty is crisp, refreshing and hoppy, with citrus and light herbal notes. Not scary … but certainly delicious.

ABV: 5.5% IBU: 55 Hops: Apollo, Chinook, Citra, Hallertau Perle

Rainy-Daze-Brewing-Goat-Boater-IPAPlayer: Goat Boater IPA (#14 seed)

Team: Rainy Daze Brewing

Player Stats: Rainy Daze Brewing’s Pourhouse IPA advanced to the Second Round with a solid win over the Diamond Knot IPA. The Poulsbo brewery has a second IPA in this tournament, Goat Boated IPA. That’s right; Goat Boater isn’t an Adam Sandler movie but rather a sensational. Head brewer Mike Montoney has done it again, this time triple dry hopping with Amarillo, Mosaic, Centennial, Cascade and on and on. It’s a tropical fruit and dank IPA that has seen Peaks and Pints’ Western red cedar tap log many a time.

ABV: 7% IBU: 57 Hops: Amarillo, Mosaic, Centennial, Cascade and others

SCROLL DOWN TO VOTE………………………………………………………………………………………………………….……………………………………

GAME 3, EASTERN WASHINGTON REGION

Bale-Breaker-Brewing-Company-Topcutter-IPAPlayer: Topcutter IPA (#1 seed)

Team: Bale Breaker Brewing Company

Player Stats: Topcutter IPA had the highest number of nominations during the Tournament of Beer seeding process. Bale Breaker’s flagship IPA has changed lives. In fact it’s rumored that Birchfield, the unincorporated community in Yakima County where Bale Breaker harvests hops and brews beer, is considering changing its name to Topcutter, Washington, to draw tourists from nearby Yakima. And why wouldn’t Birchfield’s council? Topcutter is a well-balanced yet aggressive West Coast IPA that showcases Yakima Valley hops, including late additions of Simcoe, Citra, Loral and Mosaic for a complex citrus, fruity and floral aroma and flavor.

ABV: 6.9% IBU: 70 Hops: Chinook, Magnum, Simcoe, Amarillo, Cascade

Blewett-Brewing-Company-Crikside-Citra-IPAPlayer: Crikside Citra IPA (#16 seed)

Team: Blewett Brewing Company

Player Stats: Peaks and Pints’ grandfathers use to say “crikside” when they would send us down to the creek to rinse off our camping utensils. They also use to say “horse feathers”, “confound it” and “dagnabit”, so you know how we rated in the utensil rinsing off chore. We’re not saying Blewett’s Crikside Citra IPA is old fashion or hot tempered. Darnation, that would be ludicrous since Crikside knows its way around a grapefruit. This delicious, big body IPA also has a touch of sweetness, just like grandma.

ABV: 7% IBU: 65 Hops: Citra, Mosaic

SCROLL DOWN TO VOTE……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….………………………………

GAME 4, EASTERN WASHINGTON REGION

Everybodys-Brewing-Country-Boy-IPAPlayer: Country Boy IPA (#8 seed)

Team: Everybody’s Brewing

Player Stats: Don’t even begin to tell us you don’t think of the John Denver song every time you order an Everybody’s Country Boy IPA. “Well I got me a fine wife I got me an ole fiddle / When the sun’s comin’ up I got cakes on the griddle / Life ain’t nothin’ but a funny funny riddle / Thank God I’m a country boy.” Everybody’s Country Boy would probably live the same life as John Denver’s song subject, if it weren’t a craft beer. Country Boy IPA is a classic styled IPA. The body is pretty dry, with just enough sweetness to make it very drinkable. The Chinook and Centennial hops give a nice bitter flavor, and clean citrus character.

ABV: 6.2% IBU: 80 Hops: Columbus, Chinook, Cascade

Backwoods-Brewing-Company-Double-Cutt-IIPAPlayer: Double Cutt IIPA (#9 seed)

Team: Backwoods Brewing Company

Player Stats: Just an hour east of the Portland-Vancouver area, Backwoods Brewing Company was established in 2012 by the Waters family as a single barrel brewpub. It has grown since, moving to a 7-barrel, and now a 20-barrel system that it currently brews on in their new Stevenson facility. Double Cutt IIPA is a draft-only option that is double dry-hopped, giving it a huge floral nose and a tasty hop-forward character. It’s citrusy as Country Boy IPA but not as malty with added pine notes. How will that recipe pan out in today’s matchup? The votes will tell.

ABV: 8.5% IBU: 65, Hops: Yakima hops, Australian hops

VOTE BELOW……………….……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..…………………………………

Be sure to click the blue DONE button after selecting your favorite IPAs!

Wednesday, April 19’s Tournament of Washington IPAs Second Round action …

Game 1: Inside Passage IPA, Boundary Bay Brewery (1107 Railroad Ave., Bellingham) vs. Tropic Haze IPA, Silver City Brewery (206 Katy Penman, Bremerton)

Game 2: Shift Trade IPA, Top Rung Brewing Co. (8343 Hogum Bay Lane NE, Lacey) vs. Electron India Pale Ale, Puyallup River Brewing Co. (Puyallup, Washington)

Game 3: Citra IPA, Stoup Brewing (1108 NW 52nd St., Seattle) vs. Alternative Facts IPA, Cloudburst Brewing (2116 Western Ave., Seattle)

Game 4: Homo Erectus Imperial IPA, Walking Man Brewing Co. (240 First St., Stevenson) vs. Bootjack IPA, Icicle Brewing Company (935 Front St., Leavenworth)

LINK: Tournament of Beers: Washington State IPAs explanation

LINK: Hot Damn! Yes, I want to follow Peaks and Pints on Twitter

LINK: Explore Washington state breweries

Tournament-of-Beer-IPAs-bracket-April-18

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