Dining Guide 2014: Our Favorite BREWERIES 

BREWERIES

Epic Ales

Brewmaster Cody Morris doesn’t shy away from the bizarre with his concoctions; mushrooms, beets, and rooibos tea have been known to make it into his brews. Morris has mastered mainstream beers like IPA and oatmeal stout, but pushes the envelope with an ever-changing collection of sour beers. The tiny SoDo brewery is connected to Gastropod, an also-tiny restaurant and tasting room, where Morris’ beers are paired with ingenious dishes by chef Travis Kukull. 3201 First Ave. S., Suite 104, 351-3637, epicales.com MEGAN HILL

Fremont Brewing Company

Bursting onto the scene in 2009 with an extraordinary flagship pale ale and an IPA—the first signs this place was destined to become a powerhouse—Fremont Brewing has grown up, now crafting an impressive lineup of seasonal beers in addition to those two delightful originals. The company also experiments frequently with a Randall, a thingamajig that imparts flavors into beer by filtering them through an ingredient like lemon or lavender. Add points for its focus on sustainability, lowering its impact with its brewing technology and packaging. 1050 N. 34th St., 420-2407, fremontbrewing.com MEGAN HILL

Hilliard’s

A cornerstone of Ballard’s microbrewery scene. Hilliard’s beer is extremely drinkable; the brewer specializes in standards like amber, blonde, saison, pils, and insanely popular 12th Can pale. Those reliable brews come in tallboy cans year-round; in fact, Hilliard’s was one of the first Washington breweries to opt for aluminum, which is perfect for a day at the beach or a long hike in the mountains. At the brewery you’ll find drafts like the pre-Prohibition-style Chrome Satan; an Irish dry stout called Murdered Out; and several creative seasonal brews. 1550 N.W. 49th St., 257-4486, hilliardsbeer.com MEGAN HILL

Rooftop Brewing

Sweet little Rooftop Brewing, in a converted garage in a north Queen Anne alley, is run by a group of former home brewers who decided to take their passion pro. These guys know what’s up. A rotating cast of delicious small-batch brews is accompanied by standards like the Makeda Coffee Porter, strangely one of the few such beers in Seattle—rich, roasty, and delightfully caffeinated with coffee from Seattle’s Seven Roasters. And this past November, Rooftop’s IPA snagged first place in the 26th Annual PNA Winter Beer Taste. 6 Dravus St., 276-4091, rooftopbrewco.com MEGAN HILL

Standard Brewing

Justin Gerardy opened a brewery in a veritable beer desert on Jackson Street, so it’s no surprise he’s become a neighborhood superstar. Gerardy brews great beer, experimenting with different types of hops and yeasts as only a true beer nerd would. His lineup rotates, but the complex, hoppy depths of the Cascadian Dark Ale or the bright, refreshing Bee’s Wine Ginger Beer—not a beer at all, really—are go-to picks. 2504 S. Jackson St., 535-1584, standardbrew.com MEGAN HILL

 
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