From the HBD Archive
From: polstra!norm@hplabs.HP.COM (Norm Hardy)
Subject: Seattle Brewpub Update
Date: 1990-01-24 04:58:32 GMT

Some things have happened up here in the land of the micro-beer lately:

Noggins Brewpub (Westlake Center) has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy to clear
away $300,000 of debts so that new investors can bring in $3 million or so
do get the operation back on its feet. Brewer Larry Rock is cautiously
optimistic about the chances. The beers are very good now, although that
hasn't always been the case. They are using a Spaten Munich lager yeast in
some of their beers and with good effect.

Noggins Brewpub (University District) laid off brewer Craig Skelton on Jan 17
along with several staff. Pub hours have been cut back greatly. 4 pm is
the opening time and it is closed Sundays. Speculation says that this
brewpub will cease operation within two months. Cost overruns in getting
the pub open really put a damper in the accounting log. Many of the beers
were fair or down-right bad. Some, though, were excellent. Live bands were
brought in (along with a cover charge) a few months ago to try to bring in
more business. It didn't seem to help.

The Big Time Brewery (University District) had a good year in 1989. Brewer
Ed Tringali claims to have sold 935 barrels last year. He compares that to
the 1300 or so sold at the longer established partner in San Francisco.
Just 2 minutes by foot from Noggins, this place is very popular: it is less
yuppyish than Noggins and always has good clean beers. The specialty beers
are always great. Their barley-wine "Old Wooley" was exceptional.

Red Hook Brewery (Fremont), although not a brew-pub, sold an estimated 15,000
barrels in 1989. Capacity at the new brewery is 40,000 barrels, and some
speculation says that they are a little disappointed at not doing better.
Their Winterhook was a very popular beer during the holiday season.

Pacific Brewing (Pioneer Square) continues to sell the best looking beer in
town. Owner Richard Wrigley is very high on presentability in marketing his
beers. The interior of the pub/restaurant is spectacular. The beer is not.
At $2.75 for 10-14 oz of ale, the consumer is getting shortchanged. Add
$9.50 for fish and chips and you begin to understand why the place is not
jumping. The rumors here give Pacific Brewing 6 months to improve or close.

Norm Hardy in Seattle


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