My relationship with Alex of Airways brewing out of Kent goes back to around Halloween of 2010. I was doing cellar work for Two Beers in SoDo (South of Downtown - Seattle). Alex needed more capacity at the time and use to essentially rent our brewhouse and contributed a tank into our production space. He would carry out cellar work so we didn't really have to do anything with his production beers. He often produced the beers for draft and did packaging at his facility.
Production was ramping up a little year over year when I joined Two Beers. I had started brewing around this point but didn't always have dedicated brewing shifts. I liked talking to Alex. He seemed to be respectful of me even though I was new and ambitious. He would let me hang out during his brewdays which he often started at 4pm after doing a shift at his day job.
He seemed immensely connected to his brand and the hard work by his wife Dione and Alex was obvious. Instead of blowing up into a production brewery they produced beer but opened an additional space with a Bistro attached.
The first collaboration I did with Alex was buddy pass.I was opening Chainline Brewing in Kirkland and wanted him to come in and take a shot at our cool brewing equipment. The beer was subtle and beautiful. Similar to what we did with Remora. I would say this was very early in the Hazy IPA craze that exists now. Brewing techniques and ideas however evolve over time. So we have new things to always plot and try with our collaborations.
Alex has hosted me and vice versa over ten times. We tried to count and got lost. We called each other after momentus wins at the Great American Beer festival. We also have won awards for Collaborations together. We won back to back years in a competition for a coconut IPA.
When you see collaborations in the market you should explore them. It's like that cartoon superheros that get together to do something great. Sometimes these days it just looks like two hyped breweries trying to sky rocket their brand. We make beer together enjoy the process and talk about innovation we are trying. They don't feel like a photo shoot and the beers always have a lot of thought behind them.
Consider trying Remora and what we did with Alex and the other beers he does well. I have ordered his Jumbo Juice IPA that has evolved into being his constant hazy IPA. Also take a peek at this awesome beer Space Church that is a more in frequent once a year endeavour around the Airways brewing anniversary.