Toronado Seattle

1205 NE 65th St., 206-525-0654,

Toronado co-owner Matt Bonney's experience includes managing the mighty beast that is Brouwer's. He got the blessing of San Francisco legend Dave "Big Daddy" Keene to open Seattle's Toronado, version 3.0. There's not just an excellent draft lineup; the kitchen turns out first-rate pub food, and the bar offers liquor.

Holy Mountain

1421 Elliott Ave. W,

Holy Mountain is the buzziest Seattle brewery of the past several years and continues to attract a coterie of fans, many of whom consider it to be the current pinnacle of Seattle beer. Bottle sales announcements are closely followed, and the clean, white, nearly spartan taproom always has an excellent selection on tap. Consider this one mandatory.


2116 Western Ave., 206-602-6061,

Steve Luke left Elysian after it was sold to open Cloudburst, which has already attracted massive buzz. Luke's ability to express hop flavor in a good IPA surely has something to do with it.


1158 Broadway, 206-651-5429,

This new brewery and taproom was two years in the making, dripping with ambition and optimism, as only a shiny new 20-barrel brewery with space for 400 drinkers can be. The beer selection eschews conventional terms like "IPA" and "pale ale" for simpler descriptors, as well as helpful names like "gold" and "black." There's a courtyard for food trucks; patrons can also order in from nearby eateries or bring their own. Bring plastic; this one's cashless.

Queen Anne Beerhall

203 W Thomas St., 206-659-4043,

Imagine WW's 2015 Bar of the Year, Stammtisch (page 50), enlarged from corner Kneipe into a Czech-Germanic beer hall. Queen Anne's heavy entry doors bear old-fashioned signs in Czech. Inside, it's cavernous, with a great long bar, a walk-up sausage counter, hearty platters of above-average beer-hall chow, and a long list of European beers on tap, including a special tap dedicated to pouring Pilsner Urquell old-country style.


803 Dexter Ave. N., 206-403-1228,

Mollusk, successor to the tiny Gastropod/Epic Ales combo, is a deluxe reboot. Imagination rules here, on both food and beer sides. Pan-Asian influences are profuse; Gastropod's okonomiyaki has morphed into a waffle-iron version, still savory as hell and delicious with one of the house beers. Try it with a glass of Solar Trans-Amplifier, described on the menu as a "rice botanical farmhouse ale."