Dogs Blog

Drew's Brews News: January 2015





Hello Beer fans! I hope that everyone had a great holiday season full of tasty ales and lagers. I sure enjoyed my “12 Beers of Christmas” box and I know that you all did too. Just like always we have a list of some of the new beers that are out in the market and awaiting your purchase. It is also the time of the year when we brew collaboration beer with the guys at Outlander Brewing. All of the guides have submitted an idea and we want our guests to vote on which beer would be the best!

Which beer should Road Dog Tour's and Outlander Brewing Company collaborate on?
 free polls


Fact of the Month
The modern fermenters the most breweries use these days are called CCV’s (closed conical vessels) or CCT’s Cylindroconical Tanks. Traditionally brewers used open fermentation tanks called “coolships” to cool the wort and inoculate it with yeast.

New Beers On Tap
Bad Jimmy’s Brewing Co. – Hot Toddy Hefe, Revamped IPA
Fremont Brewing Co. – Fremonk’s Belgian Tripel
Georgetown Brewing – Lagerieda, CampGeorge (Dark and Hoppy Hefe - collaBEERation with Base Camp Brewing in Portland, OR)
Hilliard’s Beer – Saison Repsado (Tequila barrel aged Saison!), Boombox IPA
Outlander Brewing – Blackberry Berlinerweisse, Coffee Cake Stout, Coffy Brown
Seapine Brewing – Skipine Bomb Hole

Upcoming Beer Events

January 31st - The Washington Beer Commission hosts the 6th Annual Belgianfest featuring 80+ Belgian inspired beers from over 30 Washington Breweries. This event takes place on the waterfront in Downtown Seattle at the Bell Harbor Conference Center and features crazy Belgians, including sours, saisons, dubbels, and triples.




Beer of the Month - July

Our “Beer of the Month” comes to us via Seapine Brewing company, located in the SoDo District of Seattle. This unique IPA is kegged and bottled fresh right from the tanks and served unfiltered. It remains slightly sweet and very smooth. A slight citrus hop aroma rounds out the profile. This is a West Coast IPA -O.G. 14.5 F.G 2.5 Hops: Nugget, Cascade.

If you have yet to hear of Seapine in your neck of the woods, it’s because operation is currently very small. The owner, and head brewer, is a gentleman named Drew Colpitts. A graduate of the exclusive UC Davis Brewing Masters Program, Drew’s a long-time industry veteran with a passion for local craft beer and is always in search of the next perfect pint.

 The brew system is a 3.5 barrel system and the fermentation tanks are 7 bbl. Just looking around the brewery you can tell that Drew is a master craftsman. From the tables made of locally sourced driftwood and the light fixtures refurbished from old railroad station lights, Drew pays attention to detail, and this is truly seen in his beer. The Seapine IPA is arguably one of the best that Seattle has to offer. It’s piney in essence, with nice citrus aromas.  The body is not overpowering and the ABV comes in at 6.7%.


The beer is on tap, locally, at about 15-20 various bars and restaurants around Seattle, but the best way to enjoy a pint is to hit up the brewery directly.  The taproom is open every Friday from 3pm to 8pm, Saturday from 12pm to 8pm and Sunday from 12pm to 4pm. 


Visit their site 


Brew Buddies

by Jason Shrum

Someone asked me, what my favorite part of the Road Dogs Tour experience is. There are so many great things about it that it is so hard to narrow it down to just one. Meeting new people every single day in a fun environment is certainly a plus to my job. Traveling around the city of Seattle and visiting some of the greatest breweries in the world is also something that cannot be topped. The great people that work at the breweries and elect to spend their time telling our tour guests about their wonderful products, and of course the many, many beer samples (although I do not get to drink) are also things that make my day great. However, if I had to choose just one thing, it would be watching the social dynamic of our patrons slowly evolve throughout our stops.

There is an eerie calmness when I pick my guests up for their adventure with Road Dogs. You can certainly see that people are super excited for what they are about to experience, but itʼs almost like they are wearing a poker face. Nobody really likes to show how excited that they really are. As we head off to our first stop we often discuss the history of Seattleʼs beer scene, and I love to ask some beer trivia in order to get people speaking up and comfortable with the other strangers that they are in the van with. Sometimes it is like pulling teeth. People are mostly quiet, reserved, and certainly want some else to go first. Itʼs a lot like being at a middle school dance. !After the first stop, though, people are certainly more relaxed. A few beer samples will help lend to that. People begin talking to those around them. Asking where they are from, what they do. And they begin asking me lots of questions about beer and itʼs beginning, and real conversation is starting to happen. They start getting excited about the trip and are a little less abashed about showing their excitement. !

The second stop becomes a lot more fun. People begin repeating back to me the things that they have learned along the way, and putting their newly learned beer knowledge into play. Describing their beers as “hoppy” or “malty” and asking more specific questions about the process of each beer that they try. They are now sharing with their new “Booze Buddies” pictures of their children, and pets, and asking them what they are doing later, because maybe they can all hang out. !

By the third stop people are mostly done listening to me. I could easily talk all day about beer and how it is made, but now they are much more engaged with each other. They are talking about flying to that personʼs home state or baby sitting their children for them. Phone numbers and email addresses are swapped and the idea that they will be best friends forever because of this experience is starting become a reality. By the time we have left the third brewery, in the three hours that we have spent together, I am simply the chauffeur. The next stop may not even involve me dropping them off at the designated point, but rather at a bar or restaurant that they can all hang out at.

A lot of times I get invited as well, which is always nice. !So my favorite part is that. The friendships. Whether they remain real or are simply fleeting. High fives, hugs, and smiles are honestly the best part of the Road Dog Tour experience.



Seattle’s Bean Scene


Seattle’s Bean Scene
by Jason Shrum

If you did not know, Seattle is home to the very first Starbucks ever! Starbucks opened its first store in 1971 in the Pike Place Market, that is located in downtown Seattle. The original Starbucks location decided because the Market is a historic district with design guidelines, that the store retain its original look from the 1970's. 

The founding fathers, Jerry Baldwin, Zev Siegl and Gordon Bowker got the idea from Alfred Peet (of Peet's Coffee fame). The store initially sold just coffee beans and coffee making equipment rather than the drinks they have become so famous for. After about 10 years, Howard Schultz was hired as Director of Retail Operations and came to the conclusion that they should be selling drinks, rather than just beans and machines. 

However, there is so much more to Seattle coffee than just Starbucks. People in Seattle consume more coffee than in any other American city. An online study, from CoffeeWorks, stated that there are 35 coffee shops per every 100,000 residents; and that Seattleites spend an average of $36 a month on coffee.

With all that in mind, it’s no wonder that there are so many small coffee roasters surviving throughout the city of Seattle. All the roasters that you will find on a Road Dog’s Coffee Tour, also adhere to Fair Trade. Each cup of coffee that you consume helps farmers escape poverty. Most small-scale family farmers live in remote locations and lack access to credit, so they are vulnerable to middlemen (or brokers) who offer cash for their coffee at a fraction of its value. Fair Trade guarantees farmers a minimum price, and links farmers directly with importers, creating long-term sustainability. Through Fair Trade, farmers earn better incomes, allowing them to hold on to their land and invest in quality.

Coffee is not a trend, and it’s not going away anytime soon.  Currently coffee is the number two commodity in the world behind oil.  Want to learn more about coffee, Seattle coffee history, and just Seattle in general? Hop on a coffee tour and explore with us.  All coffee tours visit 3 local coffee shops/roasters, as well as, local bakeries/pastry shops, and you will receive a Road Dog’s coffee mug and t-shirt. Cheers!