Our beer options are exploding, and what it means

Two years ago, back when Bellingham had half the number of breweries that it does today, I outlined many reasons why I thought this city could sustain many more breweries. Even though Bellingham now has 10 breweries (with more in the works), plus a continuously expanding selection of beers from other [...]


Brewers Association releases list of 50 largest breweries of 2016

The Brewers Association (BA) – the not-for-profit trade group representing small and independent craft brewers – just released its annual lists of the top 50 craft and overall brewing companies in the U.S., based on beer sales volume. Of the top 50 overall brewing companies, 40 were craft brewing companies. The [...]


Can Bellingham Breweries Collaborate and Challenge Each Other?

  Bellingham Beer / Credit: Heather Hulbert Bellingham's craft beer scene will always be one of collaboration and teamwork. We're seeing more beer collaborations between our breweries. I often see brewers drinking at other breweries and talking each other up. It's a beautiful thing. Bellingham's brewing community is a wonderful place for community [...]


The Portland Dilemma: Why an Excess in Breweries Does Not Equal a Craft Beer Community

The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect that of Tap Trail. In the world of craft beer, a question that always seems to pop up is, “How big is too big?” Whether we’re talking about a brewery’s production level or the number of breweries per city, there seems to be an [...]


U.S. brewery count reaches all-time high of 4,144, plus other beer news

Dec. 2, the Brewers Association announced that as of the end of November the U.S. had reached an all-time high of 4,144 breweries, topping the historic high of 4,131 breweries in 1873. “This is a remarkable achievement, and it’s just the beginning,” said Bart Watson, chief economist for the Brewers Association. [...]


Portland man visits 77 breweries in one day

On Saturday, Aug. 15 (2015), John Lovegrove of Portland, Oregon, along with beer writer Brian Yaeger and a film crew, completed the “Spirit of 77 Breweries Challenge” by visiting 77 Portland-area breweries within a 24-hour period. This broke Lovegrove’s 2012 record of visiting 50 breweries in one day, and it more [...]


Matt Lincecum of Fremont Brewing On Employee Pay and Benefits

A while back we interviewed Matt Lincecum, owner of Fremont Brewing. He discussed world domination and their attempt to buy AB InBev. It's a great interview, so check it out. He recently gave another interview to Market Watch on their employee pay and benefits. He says their higher wage and benefits [...]


27 Beer Myths

There are so many opinions about what makes craft beer good and why. Craft beer is hot and it creates some strong opinions (just take a look at the discussions on our new online forum!) There some facts and objectives truths and a bunch of subjective tastes. It's always important to anchor yourself in [...]


World’s Smartest Computer says Florida Has Best Breweries

IBM's Watson computer is, arguably, one of the two smartest computers in the world. The computer is a super smart computer capable of answering most any question asked in plain language. It has access to 4 terabytes of information from all over the world's databases. It beat everybody at Jeopardy has [...]


Craft Beer’s Silent Crisis – Who Controls What you Drink?

Craft beer diversity exists because of the symbiotic work of three major players: Brewers, distributors and tap houses. All three provide the variety that has given rise to our current craft beer renaissance. It is also a system highly susceptible to abuse. There are signs of wear in craft beer's lustrous and shiny coat [...]


How The Local Movement is Changing the Face of Craft Beer

The craft beer landscape is ever changing. Breweries evolve to meet the advancing tastes of their fans and they are always shifting with market forces. Local beers are what sell. There are over 3,500 breweries in the US and 2,000 in planning. Most of these sell below 15,000 barrels a year and [...]


Key Statistics from 2015 Craft Beer Conference

The 32nd Annual Craft Beer Conference and BrewExpo wrapped up last week in Portland. The basic takeaways are that the craft beer industry is booming. Over 3,200 breweries, but the following statistics from Craft Brewing Business take an even deeper and more telling look at the current craft beer boom. One of [...]


Elysian Brewing’s Dick Cantwell Resigns From InBev

Anheuser Busch bought Elysian Brewing in a high profile acquisition a few months back. Many were upset. You could see the discontent start to swell up with Dick Cantwell after the Super Bowl commercial. Cantwell was one of the founding members of Elysian Brewing. Last night he sent this email out: [...]


How Bellingham Inspired a World Class Career in Craft Beer

The good folks at Chuckanut Brewery had a great idea: Team up with Jason Oliver, BrewMaster of Devils Backbone Brewing Company of Virginia, for a collaboration brew of epic goodness. The owner of Chuckanut, Mari Kemper, invited me down to Chuckanut for brew day and I got to know Jason. Turns out it [...]


Brewers Association Releases 2015 Style Guidelines

Every year Brewers Association releases amendments and changes to their ever evolving Style Guidelines. Some styles are altered, some are added and some are removed altogether. These guidelines help BJCP judges and experts discern and categorize styles. This year there were 600 changes made. The most notable changes were: Category Additions: Added [...]


Chief Economist of Brewers Association Sees More Growth

Thanks to deregulation back in the late 1970s craft beer has become an economic force in many world economies.  There are so many fads in the world economy, but craft beer doesn't seem to be one of those. Just how much growth can we expect? Bart Watson, the Chief Economist for the [...]


Bellingham Tap Trail Interviewed by Downtown Bellingham Partnership

We recently were interviewed by the Downtown Bellingham Partnership. Get to know the BTT Team a bit more, what are plans are where we're headed! If you’ve been out and about in Bellingham, you’ve seen the Bellingham Tap Trail map. It’s everywhere, from breweries to bars, and is fast becoming a [...]


7 of the Most Sustainable Breweries in America

These breweries brew awesome beer, but do it very sustainably. I'll get to the list, but I find it interesting that Fremont Brewing was not included. Don't get me wrong this list is great, but Fremont is REALLY sustainable. Learn more about them by reading our interview with the owner of Fremont Brewing! [...]


Chuckanut Brewery in Running for Best Craft Brewery in America

Chuckanut Brewery has done it again. They are in the running for "Best Craft Brewery in America." Thrillist.com has a Sweet 16 type bracket and Chuckanut was nominated for "Best of the West." Head on over and show your Tap Trail love for them! They are up against the Russian River [...]


Chuckanut Brewery Signs Climate Declaration

The folks at Chuckanut Brewery were among 24 breweries around the nation to sign the Brewery Climate Declaration. What exactly is that? When climate change disrupts the beer industry, it not only threatens our economy and jobs, it also threatens the future of great beer. By signing the Climate Declaration, these breweries [...]


Creating Better Beer Through Science

Last week Finnish researchers reported they had developed a better way to develop yeast that would give us more diverse tastes, save money and time. From their abstract. The interspecific hybrid Saccharomyces pastorianus is the most commonly used yeast in brewery fermentations worldwide. Here, we generated de novo lager yeast hybrids [...]


Craft Beer’s Interactive Beer Styles Guide

Craft Beer.com just launched a new website and they included a brand new Interactive Styles Guide. The website is run by the Brewer's Association. These are the folks who advocate for craft beer through legislation such as promoting the Small BREW Act, intended to lower taxes for small brewers. The styles [...]


If Pliny the Younger is Overrated, Here are 5 Alternatives

I have a friend who flies and drives to Russian River Brewing every year to wait in line and get the year's batch of Pliny. Every. Year. That is commitment I do not have. Fortunately, my friend is kind and counteracts my slothliness with generosity by inviting me over to drink it. No [...]

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