Friday, January 7, 2011

The Iron Horse

   Ellensburg sits at the eastern entrance to Snoqualmie Pass, where the westbound trains often add another locomotive to help with the long uphill pull.  Hence the railroad theme at the Iron Horse Brewery where three of their brews are called Iron Horse IPA, Light Rail Ale, and Loco Imperial Red.  Without a doubt, though, Quilters Irish Death is the signature brew here. The notes at their website say any effort to classify this ale "just ends up sending beer geeks into a style guidelines diatribe," so they don't call it any one style. A 7.8 % ABV means a pint needs slow sipping.  Here's another skull and crossbones logo to compete with Skagit's Scullers and Three Skull's everything for the zombie market.
   The physical plant consists of a cute little pub on the main street through downtown, and a brewery on the outskirts.  The downtown pub looks like it could have been a barber shop in the past?  They put a map to the brewery on the door here, which is useful.
The brewing is done in a business park out on the edge of town.   Its next door neighbor is a distillery, which should be good for the cask-conditioned ales by and by.
  Inside is a pleasant bar, decorated with painted skateboards perhaps donated by students at Central Wash. Univ. in town.  After a wee taste of the Irish Death, I tried a pint of Malt Bomb, a muscular brown ale.  This was a last stop en route to Yakima for the Hopfest last fall.
(Visited 10/02/10)

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