Kamarie is one of many friendly faces behind the bar at Kulshan Brewing, but also wears many other hats, including mother, professor, board member, and artist.
“Mostly I’m just a huge fan of living and being an active member of the community in Bellingham,” Kamarie said.
She entered the beer industry about three and a half years ago, you might recognize her from one of the many other places she has bartended around town for the last twenty years, like The Up & Up, The Horseshoe, The Cabin Tavern, and the list goes on.
The last few years she has found a pretty perfect home at Kulshan, a truly community-oriented brewery.
“Kulshan Brewing is great. The folks I work with are actually my friends, many of us share similar interests outside of beer, and the product is pretty fantastic,” Kamarie said. “All that aside, the best part about working for Kulshan is really our super fabulous customers. We are very much a local brewery supported by a whole bunch of really wonderful local folk that make working there super wonderful.”
It helps that she gets to sell a large variety of high quality beers, too. If you’re an IPA-lover in Bellingham, you’ve probably at least dabbled in the Bastard Kat IPA, which is one of the most popular beers Kamarie pours.
“It’s such a great example of a classic, Pacific Northwest style IPA; nice and hoppy and weighing in at a cool 6.66% ABV it’s always a crowd pleaser,” Kamarie said.
But Kulshan does a lot of different styles, and does them well, including a seasonal favorite that you’ll catch Kamarie drinking once the weather gets colder.
“This is the season that I really dig into the barrel aged porters and other silky, dark ales. How can you not? But locally, The Royal Tannenbaum Ale from Kulshan is delightful. I’m a big fan of botanical liquors (gin), so this piney and well balanced ale is one I wait for with anticipation all year. Once it’s tapped, I will most likely default to it for the rest of the season.”
Kulshan is an integral part of the Bellingham beer community, which has progressed and changed over the years as far as the beer and the relationships between breweries, and Kamarie has gotten to witness those changes.
“The Bellingham Beer industry is so supportive. I don’t think it was always that way, but that is how it has grown. Frequenting other breweries and knowing what’s great there is a personal passion of mine. And it seems to be a similar passion for many brewery folk here in town, so we all get to know each other outside of our establishments. In my world beer equals community,” Kamarie said.
You can often find her at Menace drinking one of her favorites, Chili Bravo and visiting her friend and our other contender for the Bellingham’s Best Beertender Award, Katie Johnson.