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Different cities… different bars… different beers. Since Janet and I went to Seattle last weekend, we had an opportunity to go to a number of new bars and drink some beers that we haven’t ever had before. Here’s our bar-by-bar breakdown.

Saturday, 9/26/98. Elysian @ Gameworks

As Janet wrote in her Smirk, when we were in Seattle, we spent a heckuva lot of time at Gameworks. Gameworks is one of Sega’s new mega-arcades, fully equipped with Virtual Reality games, old arcade games like Pac Man and Asteroids, a pool-room and a branch of the Elysian Brewery. Dave Keene, the owner of the Toronado recommended that we stop in at Elysian… so when we found out that there was a branch of Elysian upstairs, we knew that after a strenuous hour of video games that a beer would be perfect.

The Elysian satellite bar had 6 of Elysian’s beers on tap, including an excellent IPA and a very chocolatey Porter. Janet had the Pilsner, which she found a little bitter, but drinkable. The idea of putting a bar in an arcade makes so much sense to me, as what goes better with a video game or twelve than a beer?

Saturday, 9/26/98. Pike Brewing Company

When Janet and I were walking around after playing video games, we stumbled upon the Pike Place Public Market. You know.. the place with the fish throwers that’s shown on any TV show or movie that is set is Seattle. Though the fish-flingers seemed intriguing, the idea of going to the legendary Liberty Malt Supply is what was keeping me going. Liberty Malt Supply is Mecca for homebrewers and beer lovers. Unfortunately, it was closed for renovations. So, I decided to console myself at the Pike Brewing Company. Pike, one of the first Seattle micro-breweries looks like a sports bar, with flat hair-styled neo-jocks and their little blonde girl friends looking at the list of beers and asking for a Budweiser. It doesn’t have any of the charm that I expected. The beer was unbalanced. The Pike Kiltlifter Scotch Ale was a poor shadow of Moylan’s Kiltlifter… which I consider the benchmark of Scotch Ales. The Golden Ale, which Janet got was over-hopped, unbalanced, and in the end, it was undrinkable. Janet and I together could barely finish it.

Sunday, 9/27/98. Elysian

Since we had such good luck at the Elysian in Gameworks, we decided to head over to Capitol Hill, where the brewery/brew pub for Elysian is. The bar was a little bright and airy for my taste, but the beer selection was outstanding. They offered 10 or so beers, including an amazingly sour Berliner Weisse and a great Donnerfest Lager. The highlight of the night was the Golden Fleece Ale that Janet ordered. The Golden Fleece was mildly hopped, with a strong caramel nose… the perfect Golden Ale.

Sunday, 9/27/98. Elysian @ Gameworks

Video games? Good. Beer after video games. Very good. Elysian beer after video games? Perfection. Janet had a Golden Fleece and I had another one of those fantastic IPAs.


I don’t know if the bar scene is Seattle is very strong… I certainly didn’t find a bar to fall in love with. But… the beer was good (aside from that Pike Kiltlifter), so there is some potential. Maybe next time I’ll have better luck finding a dark beer hall that makes me want to stay until last call.

Posted in The Barfly Chronicles.

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