So where’s all the Love for Alaska Craft? Fairbanks craft that is.

Discussion in 'Northwest' started by dcgunman, Aug 12, 2019.

  1. dcgunman

    dcgunman Champion (811) Jul 1, 2009 California

    I couldn’t find any previous threads on Alaska. Especially on Fairbanks. I’ll probably be berated over this post. Oh well. Just got back from a very short trip to Fairbanks. Been to Anchorage and it’s surrounds before I got into this craft thing. Last visit was probably early 90’s. Never been to Fairbanks until now. Main reason for going was to check out the vast surrounds of Denali and the almost unlimited sunlight this time of year. I’ll be back in the dead of winter for some light show in the skies above. So before going I did my homework. HooDoo was very nice. A good mix of atmosphere and offerings. I didn’t realize Alaska has a 2 pint law? That’s what I read at HooDoo. They can only serve you 2 pints a day? Anyways I enjoyed my visit at HooDoo I went back the next day before heading over to Pikes Landing to have dinner before our midnight flight back to SFO. I would of brought back a crowler or 2 if they had some. I did pick up a couple of crowlers from Silver Gulch Brewing for the room and our day in Denali. I liked their IPA’s a little more than HooDoo. But the rye, regular and NE style looked and almost all tasted the same. Both were fun coming from SoCal. Thanks Fairbanks. Yes we also checked out LaVelles Taphouse in downtown. A little pricey. But it’s Alaska.
    Cheers y’all.
    beertunes likes this.
  2. John_M

    John_M Poo-Bah (6,372) Oct 25, 2003 Oregon
    Moderator Society Trader

    I haven't been back up in a while, but the 2 pint law you're referencing is news to me. I'm fairly certain I've had more than a couple pints at several locations in Anchorage (in fact, I know I've ordered multiple pints at a sitting at Humpy's).

    Can't really see what the point would be, having a law like that. It would be pretty easy to circumvent; leave one establishment and walk down the street to another (at least in Anchorage, that would be very easy to do).
    jakecattleco, kemoarps and dcgunman like this.
  3. blackcloud

    blackcloud Aspirant (298) Apr 28, 2012 Alaska

    It's a condition of the brewery license. The brewery license restricts to serving a maximum of 36oz of beer per person, per day for onsite consumption, and 5 gallons for offsite consumption. It doesn't apply to bars.

    interesting to hear someone who likes silver gulch over hoodoo. a rare beast, indeed.
    beertunes and dcgunman like this.
  4. dcgunman

    dcgunman Champion (811) Jul 1, 2009 California

    I liked SGB selections. Plus a pale ale was available. And all the other selections. I only tried the IPA’s. DooDoo’s IPA was good. I did try the UK IPA. What was it suppose to be? A hazy ipa? British IPA?or NE IPA? I wish I would of tried their Stout. Next time. But for a brewery that’s been open for 8+ years I would of expected more selections on tap or more offering from the 8 years in service. I like HooDoo enough to go back on Sunday instead of stopping at Silver Gulch. Plus you can’t beat the price. $5 for a full 16oz pour. It was good enough. If it was One I dislike period then I would not of went back. Even at $5 a pour. Their atmosphere was much better. But the 3 hazy IPA’s I had at SGB tasted a little better. IMO of course. I regret not stopping at one of Fairbanks bottle shops. I’m planning a return to check the Lights out this winter.
  5. dcgunman

    dcgunman Champion (811) Jul 1, 2009 California

    I would also like to add 8pm closing on weekends at HooDoos and Silver Gulch? Is that another state law? Damn that’s early.
  6. eire

    eire Disciple (383) Jan 31, 2016 Alaska
    Society Trader

    Yessir. 8 is closing time around these parts when drinking at a brewery. Here’s a brief synopsis of rules when tasting at a brewery in AK:

    Along with the other aforementioned things, you can’t have stools at the counter! These rules don’t apply to businesses with full liquor licenses, only places with just a brewery license.

    I was also surprised about the Silver Gulch love. I use to stop at their Anchorage hub at the airport, but I haven’t been there in years. Too many subpar beers from them to keep trying. Might have to give them another try! In Anchorage we see a few HooDoo beers every one in a while. I saw the kolsch, IPA, and Tusk barleywine floating around recently.
    kemoarps and weaverr like this.
  7. blackcloud

    blackcloud Aspirant (298) Apr 28, 2012 Alaska

    being from CA, you would be less than impressed with the offerings, except I suppose that you'd see some of the packaged selections that don't make it to out of state distro
    dcgunman and eire like this.
  8. Fixer234

    Fixer234 Initiate (45) Apr 3, 2014 Oregon

    That's wild. If I'm reading that right a brewery serving beer on premise cannot have live entertainment, televisions, pool tables, dart games or dancing? Along with the 2 pints per day rule it seems like they are really trying to make it difficult on the breweries if it doesn't apply to bars, only breweries, or maybe just encouraging them to get full liquor licenses.
    kemoarps likes this.
  9. eire

    eire Disciple (383) Jan 31, 2016 Alaska
    Society Trader

    Correct! No entertainment is allowed with your 2 pints of beer at the brewery!

    From what I understand, allowing breweries to serve their products on premises was meant to be a very limited thing. I suppose all the rules are to dissuade people from posting up and drinking deep, instead of merely sampling a few tasters. Over the years and for a variety of reasons, people have started gravitating to breweries instead of other traditional watering holes, and this has caused some tension both politically and economically. I truly think that bar owners think that the patrons grabbing a pint at the brewery would be grabbing a drink at their bar if the tasting room wasn't there. I don't believe that to be the case.

    This is an interesting read (and a small quote) that can probably give considerably more insight into the topic than I could.

    From this article: How an effort by bar owners to limit sales by craft breweries and distilleries sank a widely supported overhaul of Alaska’s alcohol laws

    "Bar owners — who in Juneau can pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for their liquor licenses — say that the tasting rooms are upsetting Alaska's longstanding three-tier system that's supposed to keep clear lines between manufacturers, distributors and retail sellers of alcohol. The bar owners say it's not fair that they have to compete against brewers and distillers, who in many large communities can buy a liquor license directly from the state for $1,000. That's because Alaska sets strict limits on the number of each type of liquor license that can be sold in a given area. Most places have no bar licenses still available from the state, meaning that they must be purchased at a steep price from an existing operator. But there are still brewery and distillery licenses available from the state for $1,000 before the same cap is reached, especially in larger places like Anchorage or Juneau. "They paid 1 percent of what most bar owners paid for their license," Forst said. "They made a choice to enter into a manufacturing business, not a retail business.""
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  10. dcgunman

    dcgunman Champion (811) Jul 1, 2009 California

    We do get Midnight Sun in bottles. Not sure if they distro all to OC/LA area. They were one of the first to make it to SoCal in the early days. I thought they always good. So when we stopped at Pikes Landing for dinner they had Midnight Sun Smash Galaxy. I thought it was great. I like to check out bottle shops and breweries on my trips. This trip I didn’t bring anything back with me. I always do.
  11. unclekeith

    unclekeith Crusader (768) Sep 4, 2012 Alaska

    Midnite Mine and Black Spruce are breweries in Fairbanks that have both opened in the last year. Hearing good things about both.
    kemoarps and eire like this.