Peaks Brewpub

As soon as I walked into Peaks Brewpub I felt like I’d found a real Port Angeles bar. Fairly dark, lots of goofy sayings and vintage starlet pictures decorating the walls, a no-frills menu, wooden chairs from the 70s or 80s.  I would say it had a blue-collar feel, but the ten house-made microbrews on tap is not the sort of thing I’d expect to find in a blue-collar joint.  A few locals were around, but as I made my way through two sampler flights and a plate of nachos, there was a fairly constant stream of first-timers — folks just passing through Port Angeles, to or from Victoria or along Highway 101.  I guess Peaks is in the guidebooks.  “For an authentic taste of Port Angeles, be sure to drop by Peaks Brewpub and sample one of the delicious local beers!  The owner, Ed, is a real character!”  Or some such.  Ed recently opened Twin Peaks Brewery to increase production but still seems to be working out some kinks and getting used to the bigger size.  Hopefully he’ll get that under control soon.

Peaks Brewpub

Hard-working samplers at Peaks Brewpub — Port Angeles

    Rob’s Picks

  • Elwah Silt Extra Pale – Nice little pale ale. Pretty mellow — nice balance of malt and hoppiness. Not so silty.
  • Dungeness Spit Pale – Bigger than the Elwah Silt. Caramel flavor, with underlying bitterness. Very subtle floral hoppiness.
  • Ed’s Big Ass Red – 10.5% – Good caramel/alcohol/malt flavor balance. Pretty smooth, too.
  • Peaks LSB – Lincoln Street Bitter. Little sweeter than the Dungeness Spit Pale. Nice bubbliness, with a good zing on the tongue. Prominent caramel flavor, with a bit of nuttiness, too. Very drinkable.
  • Mt. Pleasant Porter (nitro) – Smooth chocolate/coffee/bitter mix. Nice and mellow.
    The Rest

  • Port Angeles 150th Anniversary – Raspberry Fog Ale – Bit of raspberry aroma, but pretty strong raspberry flavor. Slightly tart with a bit of maltiness.
  • Train Wrecked IPA – A mild IPA but drinkable. A bit sweet but interesting. Maybe more of an east coast IPA…
  • Mother-Pucker – After talking with a local homebrewer sitting next to me, it seemed like I’m the only person who has thought the Mother-Pucker was pretty good, but I’m a sucker for a sour, although this one was not as sour as I would’ve liked. Pretty mellow with a light malty tartness. I think the only other malty sour beer I’ve had is the Big E Ales Sour Dark Ale, which was way better than the Mother-Pucker, so it’s rounding out The Rest rather than being a Pick.

Took me a while to get through all eight samples, but fortunately that meant the streets were pretty empty as I pedaled my way back to the hostel.  All I would then have to do would be wake up early enough to make the 8:15am ferry to Victoria…

Barhop Brewing

The first brewery visit of Bike Tour 2012. The ride into Port Angeles from Sequim on the Olympic Discovery Trail was pretty awesome, although the strong headwind got old quickly. All the folks biking east were smiling, however. The last stretch that takes you into town is right along the water — a much more scenic entry to Port Angeles than on Highway 101. Really very pretty — almost made up for the headwind. My original plan was to follow the Waterfront Trail all the way to the end of Ediz Hook, but by the time I reached the downtown area, I was too hungry and thirsty for that kind of completist stubbornness. Instead I snarfed down some happy hour fish tacos and a pint at the Next Door Gastropub (no Fathom & League on tap, unfortunately), then walked around the corner to the Barhop Brewing taproom.

Barhop Brewing

Sampler flight at Barhop Brewing — Port Angeles, WA

    Rob’s Picks

  • Redneck Logger Pale Ale – 5.4% – Somewhat sweet, pretty crisp, slight lemon/breadiness.  Drinkable and refreshing.
  • PA 7 Pale Ale – 7% – Interesting — kind of lager-y. Slight alcohol flavor, bit of honey sweetness. Subtle hoppy bite. Slightly spicy on the tongue.
  • FnA IPA – 6.2% – Citrus aroma. Good strong citrus hoppiness, but not a flavor blast — it builds up. Bit of an alcohol edge. Pretty light on the tongue. Almost creamy, but also almost watery — unfiltered aspect balances it out, though.
    The Rest

  • Loser Dog Summer Brown Ale – 6.1% – Definitely a brown, with some coffee notes. Really light on the tongue, interestingly enough. Sweet roasty maltiness with some honey flavor. I’d prefer the Redneck Logger as my summer beer, though.

Friendly folks in the taproom, and they have a decent little bottle selection of other Washington beers, as well as a tap for their friends at Dungeness Brewing. The production brewery, which is currently located just outside of town, will be combining with the taproom and moving to a brand new location a couple blocks away. The woman working there said it’d happen in September, but these things always seem to take longer than expected — I’ll keep my fingers crossed for them. Next time I’m in Port Angeles I’ll definitely check in and see what’s new.

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