Does the Northwest really need another beer blog?!

Do we need yet another movie reviewer? Do we need any more foodie blogs? These are just a few questions that I would put in the same category as the title of this article. And the simple answer is yes, we do need more foodies, beer bloggers, and movie reviewers! I feel there are some key reasons and this article is here to point out these reasons and explain why the answer is yes. One, opinions on this blog about different beers may not align with yours but at least you will learn about each beer from a new perspective.  Two, articles on here will help me and my contributors grow their writing skill and style and become better in the long term. Finally, this site functions fundamentally different than most beer blogs out there and that difference will help us stand out from the crowd. So let’s go a bit deeper into each of these reasons.

Have you heard the term “Echo Chamber” before? Do you know what it means? Oxford dictionary defines it as: “An environment in which a person encounters only beliefs or opinions that coincide with their own, so that their existing views are reinforced and alternative ideas are not considered.”Echo Chamber

Having different blogs with unique authors and contributors even if there are similar subjects, in this case beer, you will still find yourself coming out of your own echo chamber and learning more about how others like or dislike the things that interest you. It’s this main concept that propels people like myself to start blogs and websites similar to this one. It’s the hope that we can help open your mind up about new and interesting beers that maybe you had no interest in before.

Now, how does this affect myself and other contributors to this site? This isn’t an endeavor to make money, me and those who write on this site are buying their drinks with money out of their own pocket. The main immediate benefit to myself and those contributing is the practice writing that we get. Each article has to accomplish one thing, help the reader understand our experience with whatever brew we’re talking about. No two articles end up the same because of this and we’re pushing ourselves with each new article. The goal is the continued improvement both in our writing skills and in our beer appreciation. To grow overall as people and in turn helping those reading along.

This site wasn’t built to be a carbon copy of any other beer blog. The core was to be different. A beer blog that didn’t focus on the beer community as many often do, but rather a blog focusing on the beer and the breweries themselves and how they taste and make us feel. With this focus in mind, the site had to be easy to maneuver and put the beer up front. This lead to the decision of easy to navigate buttons at the top of the site. Interested in beer? Click the “Brews” button and select the style that interests you the most. We have goals of the evolution of this idea and how the site can become better over time, this includes more location based searching as well as searching by style. At the time of this article the site is still in its infancy and features only a handful of brews, but with a road map to the future, we will continue to write and post to meet our goals.

I hope I’ve answered this burning question sufficiently. Hop Central welcomes both new and old visitors and we encourage you to get out there, try new beers and broaden your horizons. Don’t forget to follow us via our Instagram and Facebook pages to see when new articles go live, or if you prefer an email notification you can click the follow button on the bottom of the site. Onward we will grow and we thank you for being part of this journey with us!

 

Black Label Brewing Co.

 

Hold your hats, tighten your suspenders, wax your mustaches, and prepare your taste buds because Black Label Brewing Company, located in the Saranac Commons in delightful downtown Spokane, might just be a hipster paradise. I don’t mean this in a derogatory manner, the style is just very refined and definitely fits within this category. Upon walking into the Saranac Commons and making your way to the back where you find Black Label you pass by a deli, local craft artist store, and an artisan bakery all while surrounded by exposed wood beams, a recycled glass bottle chandelier art piece, and unique lighting all of which come together to fit with the hipster motif. 

Sitting at the bar looking back at the rest of the commons.

Now let’s talk beer, BLB has quite the selection of brews for you to choose from with some regulars that you can almost guarantee will be on tap – Like their Indaba Espresso Stout. But no matter if you’re getting one of their Stouts, Extra Special Bitters, Bocks, or Reds, you’ll find yourself enjoying it. BLB also provides wine if you’re just there with a group and beer isn’t your thing, but I’ll be honest I can’t attest to the quality of the wine because I’m just not a wine person, I have heard good things about it though.

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Going along with the hipster theme around their tap listings!

 

The folks at BLB definitely work hard to create an atmosphere that makes you want to continue joining them. Their staff is extremely nice, professional, and very knowledgeable about all the different brews. My last favorite thing about Black Label is their mug club. Possibly one of the most unique mug clubs offered in the area, using real wood steins that the team at BLB put together and lacquer themselves. One year will run you $100 but with exclusive access to mug club events, an item of apparel (this varies year by year) and after commitment to the mug club for multiple years you get to keep your mug and customize it!

The most unique mug club in Spokane.

To conclude, BLB is one of my top 3 favorite breweries in Spokane, Washington and is definitely a must-see place if you happen to be passing through or visiting. Check them out on Facebook and Instagram to see when events happen, such as Foosball  and corn hole tournaments