Happy summer! It’s been a busy start to 2017 at Reuben’s Brews! Over the past several months we’ve been working on increasing production, creating exciting new beers and expanding distribution. To make all of this possible, we created a few new roles and welcomed some new team members to the Reuben’s Brews family.



In April, James McDermet joined us as our new head brewer! He comes to us from down the street at Fremont Brewing. His experience at a fast-growing brewery will be incredibly valuable for us as we continue to grow with a focus on brewing the highest-quality beers.

James leads the production and is responsible for the quality of all our beers at both brewhouses. With him in place, Adam and Mike made a few changes to their own roles:

  • Adam’s main focus is developing new beers and planning the brewery's future. Innovating new beer styles keeps us fresh and relevant as a brewery. Adam is now able to do what he does best and what got us started in the beer industry – create exciting new brews. He’ll also be able to get out and about to spend more time with our customers and distributors.
  • Mike has officially taken on the role of production manager. He manages the brew and shipment schedules and inventories. He also brews once or twice a week and serves in the taproom once a week since he still loves brewing and chatting with regulars in the taproom.

Khris Lloyd recently joined us as a new full-time cellar person. He has worked and volunteered at a couple of local breweries and really has passion for beer and a thirst to learn!



Michael Hilborn joined us in March as our new taproom manager! He returned to the Pacific Northwest after several years at Fall Brewing in San Diego. His experience running other busy taprooms will help us focus on taking excellent care of our customers while offering fun events for the wider community.   

With Michael H. taking over the running of the taproom, Thor Stoddard, our previous taproom manager, has taken on a new role. He’s now focused on helping Adam manage all of our new beers – particularly the development of the sour and brett program. Thor will have a hand in the brewing process, experimenting with infusions and our cask program. He’ll also hold a tight grip on the key to our separate sour-dedicated facility. 

If you’ve been in the taproom lately, you’ve probably noticed a few new faces. We’re excited to welcome Dave Patania, Jess Keller, Matt Ellis and Ashley Hermosillo to the team!

Dave is a long-time Reuben’s Brews regular turned professional beertender! He brings a lot of enthusiasm – for bike riding, video making and beer loving – to the taproom. We love having him on this side of the bar now!

Jess has a lot of experience in the service industry, most recently at the Burgundian. She is an expert and an avid beer lover, creating beer-focused blogs and podcasts. We’re thrilled to have her help build a community for beer lovers in the taproom.

Matt E. came to us with many years of service experience in multiple states. He’s been focused on the beer industry in recent years, most recently at Flatstick Pub and at Uber Tavern. It’s great to have him on the team!

Ashley showed up as a customer on our opening day and she hasn’t left us since then! There’s no doubting the dedication of this woman who has volunteered for us at beer festivals, made sales calls and stepped up to help in various ways over the years. Ashley has expanded her part-time role in the taproom to a full-time position, and we’re incredibly happy to have her officially on our team.

That’s a lot of change in the taproom team! While the majority of people who left the taproom over the years have moved into other positions in our brewery, some have left in search of new adventures. Preston Rock has moved fully into a packaging and cellar role, Matt Chan has moved into an assistant brewer role, and Thor Stoddard has started a new role developing new and sour beers (mentioned above), all at Reuben’s Brews. Thank you to Jane Solvie and Ally Hatley for taking great care of the taproom and those in it, and we wish you all the best in your new positions elsewhere!


Although she’s always had a hand in things behind the scenes, Grace Kim Robbings (aka Reuben’s Mama), officially joined the team this month! She left her teaching position at Bellevue College to focus more on the business side of the brewery. She’ll be managing the taproom and administrative teams, running communications, and building a sustainability program at the brewery. She will continue her work on tax compliance and running our charitable programs, in particular the Thank You Thursday program.


We’ll be writing profiles of all of our new team members in the coming weeks so you can learn more about the team and their work. Thank you again for all of your support and we hope to see you soon!





Earlier this year, we asked you to send us your designs for our first-ever t-shirt design contest and you didn’t disappoint. We were really impressed with everyone’s talent and creativity! The Reuben’s team reviewed and voted on the entries and we’re pleased to announce our winner – Danny Haymond, Jr. of Tacoma!

May the 4th.jpg

Danny’s a graphic designer by trade and a big Star Wars fan. Since we’re releasing the t-shirt today, May 4, incorporating some element of “the Force” only seemed appropriate.

“I know I wanted to do an epic scene that fans would instantly recognize,” says Danny. “I put together a few scenes from my favorite Star Wars movies and did some thumbnail drawings. I've always thought the ‘r’ logo looked like a rope or something, so the tow cable was almost too obvious once I had that idea in my head. I've seen a few other artists online go with the idea of using the tow cable to spell something out so I adapted it for a beer setting. I took all the mechanical greebles from the AT-AT and converted them to being beer specific.”

We printed Danny’s design on charcoal grey t-shirts, which are available exclusively in the taproom while supplies last. We are donating $2 to the charity of Danny's choice, which is the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center.

Congratulations to Danny and a huge thank you to everyone who entered!

2017 Seattle Beer Week

Seattle Beer Week 9 kicks off this week! This is one of our favorite times of year. We get to put on fun events, brew some creative beers, and meet even more beer fans from around the state (and country!).

It’s also a celebration of the industry. Over the last few years, the local beer scene has grown at an incredible rate, adding even more breweries to our amazing community. We’re looking forward to getting out to attend some events around the city and hosting some of our colleagues in our taproom.

Last year was such a fun beer week – we introduced Daily Pale as the official beer of SBW8 and hosted events like our annual Rye Fest and the new Coffee Beer & Donuts. This year, will be even better and we’re bringing some of our friends along for the ride!

Rye Fest and Coffee Beer & Donuts will be back and bigger than ever. We’ll tap the winning beer from our inaugural Hop Idol Homebrew Competition, debut a collaboration of historic proportions, welcome some of the best breweries on the West Coast, a couple of bands will rock the taproom, and much more! And if that’s not enough, we’re throwing in a number of special beer releases.

Here's the list of our taproom events for you to mark your calendars!

We're kicking off SBW with two great releases:

  • Our exclusive Seattle Beer Week t-shirt! We put out the call for you to send us your designs and you did not disappoint! The entire Reuben’s team reviewed and voted on the entries. Limited-edition t-shirts with the winning design will be available from May 4  in the taproom.  $2 per shirt will get donated to the winning designer's charity of choice.  Look for the winning announcement on Thursday!
  • Lock Solid IPA is a collaboration beer created with our friends Stoup, Lucky Envelope and Populuxe, making this a true neighborhood collaboration. Lock Solid IPA features four hops, four malts and four brewers. Each brewery contributed a raw ingredient used in the first beer the breweries produced professionally, making the Lock Solid IPA a true collaborative effort. The beer will be tapped at opening!


Last January, we crowned the winner of our first Hop Idol Homebrew Competition. As part of his prize, homebrewer Jonathan Cooper joined with the Reuben’s team to brew his IPA creation at our brewery. Now you can taste it for yourselves! We’ll officially tap the keg at 5 p.m. It will also be available in a limited 22oz bottle run in the taproom and expect to see it in stores around Washington.

Imperial Mole Stout. But we haven’t forgotten that it’s also Cinco de Mayo. We’re also releasing bottles of Imperial Mole Stout! We took a Russian Imperial Stout and added Peruvian single-origin cocoa nibs, vanilla beans, cinnamon, and a blend of Ancho, Guajillo and Chipotle Morita chilies. This big, rich beer has notes of chocolate spice, roast and a slight sweet heat. It clocks in at 9.8% ABV. We’ll have a limited amount of bottles available for $10 each with a limit of three per person, per day.


Celebrate all things rye with more than 17 rye beers on tap! We also have a few other special rye releases up our sleeve:

Rye Crush: Get ready for the latest in our Crush IPA series. We added some flaked rye into the recipe to provide body and spice complexity to the malt profile. This batch is dry hopped with Kohatu, Citra and Ekuanot hops to give this brew a big tropical fruit profile on top of a soft, pillowy body. This tasty brew comes in at 6% ABV, and 50 IBUs. A limited amount of 12oz cans will available at the brewery.

Sauvignon Blanc Saison: We took our Rustic Saison and aged it in Sauvignon Blanc barrels, giving it light notes of stone fruit, delicate oak, white wine, and floral sweetness. This tasty brew comes in at 6.9% ABV. We’ll have a small batch available in 22oz bottles for $10 each. Limit three per person, per day.

Breakside Collaboration:  On Rye Fest we'll also be releasing our brand new collaboration with our friends at Breakside.  We brewed a rye imperial porter - a 9.3% ABV porter with lots of rye in the malt profile, and added some cinnamon and 4lbs per barrel of plums.  A rich, decadent malt base with subtle Sri Lankan cinnamon and plum notes supporting in the background.


We’re joining our friends at Lucky Envelope Brewing, Populuxe Brewing, and Stoup Brewing to host the Inaugural Ballard Putt Putt & Beer Crawl to benefit Bellwether Housing.

All of the team spots are full, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had! Come grab a pint of Lock Step IPA and watch the foursomes try to navigate the hole we designed. Representatives from Bellwether Housing will be on hand selling raffle tickets for some great prizes! And at 5 p.m., we’ll host the tournament awards ceremony.


Rainier is one of the “founding fathers” of the local beer industry. We couldn’t be more honored that they chose us for the first collaboration in their 138-year history. Our little “r” joined their big “R” to create the r&R Pils, a hop-forward version of the classic German-style beer. And every good party needs a band, so we’re thrilled to announce that Deep Sea Diver will be playing live in our taproom! The fun kicks off with the tapping of a one off randall at 6 p.m., and for the first 100 r&R Pils pints bought after 6pm you will receive a free r&R Pils commemorative glass! (Limit one per person.)


This event is near and dear to Adam’s heart. As a homebrewer, he brewed a batch of American Brown at Anacortes Brewery after winning Best of Show at the 2011 Skagit County Fair. Since then, he does whatever he can to give back to the community that supported him and help other brewers get the same opportunities. Join us for a celebration of pro-am beers from brewers around the state!


We’re super excited to host our first invitational festival! Fifteen of the best breweries on the West Coast will be here and they’re bringing some hard-to- find brews with them. Planet Fly will be here with some soul/funk tunes for your grooving pleasure, and we'll have a food truck on site as we expand the event into the parking lot behind the brewery. Come meet the brewers and/or owners from our participating breweries:

Alvarado Street Brewing
Bale Breaker
Black Raven
Fort George
Firestone Walker
Great Notion
Iron Goat
Three Magnets

The taplist and other details are still being finalized, so stay tuned for more information!


We’re closing out SBW with the breakfast of champions! It’s two great things that go great together - our coffee-infused beers paired with mini Mighty O donuts. This event was so popular last year that we’re opening the parking lot behind the brewery so we can accommodate even more!

And we can’t let SBW go without one last special bottle release:

Air of the Night with bourbon barrel aged coffee. We added Columbian coffee beans to a bourbon barrel and aged them for a number of months. The beans picked up notes of bourbon, light oak and stout from the barrel. When we thought they were ready, our friends at Kuma coffee roasted them for us. We took our Baltic porter base and hot brewed coffee brewed from the aged beans, creating a complex beer with notes of black currant, dark fruits, caramel, brown sugar, bourbon and coffee. It comes in at 9.1% ABV. A limited number of 22oz bottles will be available for $10 each. Limit three per person, per day.

T-Shirt Design Contest Now Accepting Submissions!

Calling All Graphic Designers and Artists!

This year Seattle Beer Week begins on Thursday, May the 4th Be With You! Reuben’s Brews is holding a contest to select the design of our special edition t-shirt for beer week. The theme of this design is intergalactic space travel harkening back to a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, when bounty hunters and rogue smugglers traversed the galaxy and evil empires fell to a sword made of light.

We at Reuben’s would like to give you as an artist an opportunity to have your design printed and sold at your favorite local brewery! We will take design submissions from March 1st-March 31st and will release a small batch of the winner’s t-shirts at the start of beer week, May the 4th. The winner will receive a swag bag from Reuben’s and may also choose a charity for a portion of the proceeds to benefit! 


  • All designs must be submitted in pdf format by March 31st. Email your submission to

  • Designs will only be chosen for further advancement in the contest if they meet our specifications.

Design Specifications:

  • Our cursive “r” logo must be recognizable within the design.

  • The design must exemplify who Reuben’s Brews is as a brewery and  incorporate intergalactic space travel.


  • 3 freshly printed shirts featuring the artist’s design produced at Reuben’s Brews sole expense

  • Swag bag of other fine Reuben’s Brews merchandise  

  • Donation of $2 per shirt sold to a charity of the artist’s choosing


  • Please direct any questions to 


Winning beer to be brewed, distributed in the Northwest and entered in 2017 Great American Beer Festival

SEATTLE, Wash. (Jan. 30, 2017) The judging has taken place and the winner of the inaugural Reuben’s Brews “Hop Idol” Homebrew Contest is Jonathan Cooper! His brew beat out 38 other homebrew submissions to take home the title. Just as rewarding as the bragging rights is the opportunity to brew the beer with the Reuben’s Brews team at their brewery and to have it distributed in Western Washington. 

“The judging panel was really impressed with Jonathan’s beer,” says Adam Robbings, Co-Founder and Head Brewer of Reuben’s Brews. “It has a great tropical nose, nice balance and juicy hop character. I think we’ll have fun brewing this beer on our system with Jonathan.”

The entries were evaluated and scored in a blind tasting on January 21 at the brewery’s warehouse by a team of about 20 judges. The judging panel included Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) certified beer judges, Reuben’s team members, some of Reuben’s wholesale customers and representatives from Reuben’s distributor, Click Wholesale Distributing.

In addition to brewing his American IPA with the Reuben’s team at their brewery in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood, Jonathan’s beer will be distributed throughout the Northwest and will be entered in the Washington Beer Awards Pro-Am competition as well as the Great American Beer Festival. He will also receive a $250 cash prize, t-shirts and other prizes. The distributed brew will available on tap in the Reuben’s taproom and in bottles around Western Washington starting in May.

Second place honors went to Jason Mooth, and Patrick Boyce and Jonathan Cooper took third place.

“I’d like to thank all of the brewers who took the time to brew their beers and send them to us,” says Robbings. “We appreciate the effort you put into it! Going back to how I got started brewing, I’ve wanted to do a contest like this for a long time and I’m really happy with how it turned out. We received 39 entries, including from as far away as Maine and South Dakota! Home-brewers are doing some great work and I can’t wait to do this again next year!