Kendall Jones is a local authority on beer. He’s just humble about it. “Many people know a lot more about beer than I do,” he wrote on his site, Washington Beer Blog. “But there are many who know less.”
To warm us up for tonight’s meetup and beer trivia at Seapine Brewing Company — which Kendall just anointed Seattle’s Brewery of the Year — we picked his brewy brain for the stuff every local should know.
In one sentence, why are YOU a beer writer?
I’ve been a beer enthusiast all of my adult life and a professional writer for most of my career, so when the software industry cast me aside in 2009 I decided to start focusing my writing on something about which I actually give a damn.
What’s your favorite local brew for a sunny day?
Probably Pre-Flight Pilsner from Airways Brewing in Kent, but there are so many great Washington-brewed pilsners these days that it’s difficult to decide. Definitely a pilsner.
How about a rainy day?
Global Mutt Baltic Porter from Wander Brewing in Bellingham. It’s dark, rich and just boozy enough to warm you up from the inside out.
What’s the biggest challenge for local brews and brewing these days?
The market is getting quite crowded with so many breweries. It’s getting harder and harder to find space on a grocery store’s shelves or on a pub’s draft lists. These days, having a popular and profitable taproom at your brewery is more important than ever.
And what’s one reason to be oh so proud of it?
History. Craft beer is a recent phenomenon in most of America, but it is nothing new here. The rest of the nation is just waking up to something we’ve known for over 30 years. Although our younger, newer breweries get a lot of attention, and deservedly so, there’s no denying that breweries like Big Time Brewing, Hale’s Ale Brewery, Maritime Pacific Brewing, and Pike Brewing introduced Seattle to great beer decades ago.
Ready to dig in to your city’s brew scene? Follow Kendall’s work in Seattle magazine and on Washington Beer Blog, which has news about beer and breweries, plus an events calendar and maps of all the breweries in our state. Want to cheers beers with Kendall tonight, 6/26? Join us and Seattle magazine for beer trivia in SoDo.