If there is one thing Alaskans love and do extremely well, it’s beer. Delicious, amazing craft beer to be precise. So after our Winner Creek hike, we headed to Girdwood Brewing for their Grand Opening weekend.
A packed taproom, the brewery had a cozy and friendly feel. With everyone in their winter bests, it was easy to see those who had come in from a day on the slopes, and those who had ventured down just to drink.
The tap selection was small, but everything I tried tasted delicious – I went with a pint of the IP-AK, while others in our party ordered differently. Between us all, the entire tap menu was tasted with approval.
The best part of Alaska, in my opinion, is the great sense of community and small town feel with free-range vibes. The taproom featured long community tables where you could sit down and talk to your neighbors. We ran into people we knew without having planned to see them, despite the brewery being 45 minutes from Anchorage. So many young families were there, with small children running around and playing as parents relaxed and enjoyed themselves. The overall sense of happiness at being afforded the opportunities to go from playing in several feet of snow to warming up with a cold beer was palpable. It all made me incredibly home-sick for Alaska and I am constantly dreaming of moving back so we can raise Little Bear in a place where extreme adventure is the common weekend activity. Girdwood Brewing has and will establish itself as a great hang-out for this ski community, and I have no doubts of their future successes.
We toasted the brewery on a successful opening, and all bought new pom pom hats featuring the brewery’s logo. The craft beer scene in this state is phenomenal and underrated, with Lower48-er’s missing out.