Have I mentioned I want Washington Brewers Fest every weekend? Seriously, I had the opportunity to meet so many amazing brewers, try their beer & hear about places I might not normally run across. Up next for another ‘small-town’ brewery is Sound To Summit in Snohomish Washington.
I feel pretty lucky to go around and talk to brewery owners and the ones making the tasty brews; so last week I drove up to Snoho to check out S2S and talk with their head brewmaster, Grady Warnock. I was immediately impressed at the brewers fest with the selection of beers they had thrown down, so I think it’s safe to say I fell in love with a lot, if not all, of their beers in the taproom.
Grady originally graduated from the University of Washington in biology, but after graduation found it a bit tough to find a career in the field and decided to try his hand at brewing. What is it with all these engineers and science-y people making the greatest nectar of the gods?? Coming up with his own recipes, sharing his beers with others and reaching out to John Sype, owner of Sound To Summit, Grady was offered a full time gig with S2S. Grady comes up with all his own recipes and that might just be thanks to his time spent at Siebel Institute of Technology in Chicago, the oldest brewing school in America. While I only had the chance to speak with Grady, you can tell just how passionate these guys are. John had been brewing for years, and originally thought of opening a small microbrewery setup out of a garage (along those lines); from plans of opening up in Mukiltio then settling on Snohomish, this brewery was three years in the making but became reality in December 2014.
This taproom is pretty great and offers a ton of seating, an awesome atmosphere AND a full kitchen. Unfortunately I made it to S2S on a Monday, which means they weren’t open… but from what I hear this place is always busy and is really getting noticed!
I get really surprised when I find a style of beer that I usually dislike and end up wanting to drink an entire vat of it; that beer just happens to be their Kiteboard Kölsch (Ahem– this won a gold medal at the Washington Beer Awards). This 5% ABV beer is perfect for this Seattle sun we’re getting, and might be way too drinkable! A very light body but still quite crisp, I loved how fruity this beer was and not too bitter.
Okay but on a real note, I found an EVEN better Kölsch from these dudes- their SUP Imperial Kölsch… we’re talking an 8.1% hoppy edition. This beer was somewhat of an experiment for Grady and the crew, but turned out to be something completely tasty. I think one of the reasons I usually don’t dig a regular Kolsch is the level of malt combined with the bitterness. Plus, where are the hops?! This SUP brew adds in those characteristics I generally miss in the lighter beers, but still gives that nice, crisp finish that’s starting to grow on me.
While this brewery is tucked back in Snohomish, I’m pretty sure their impressive tap list and killer food menu is reason enough to make a trip out to see them. From their lighter beers, to IPAs and even a CDA and Oatmeal Stout, you literally can get all the things your taste buds yearn for.