A Guide to Seattle Distilleries

January 27, 2017



There's a lot of focus on Seattle breweries all the time, and for good reason. Seattle and the rest of the PNW makes damn good beer. 

But I like whiskey, so here are a few distilleries (whiskey, gin, vodka and otherwise) in and around Seattle you should check out when you're looking for a swig of the strong stuff.

Westland Distillery
Neighborhood: SoDo

Don’t leave before you try: Garryana, though you probably won’t be able to. It’s difficult to get your hands on a bottle (or even a glass) of this single malt whiskey that is aged in casks of Garry oak from here in the PNW as its first batch was a limited release. The flavor of each batch is going to be evolving as the crew at Westland continues to experiment with the wood. If you can’t get the Garryana, try the Sherry Wood.

Batch 206
Neighborhood: Interbay

Don’t leave before you try: Counter Gin. It was named one of the 11 must-try gins in the U.S. by Wine Enthusiast in 2014 and is pretty damn good by itself, but you can try it with tonic if straight gin isn’t your thing.

Sun Liquor
Neighborhood: Capitol Hill

Don’t leave before you try: Sun Liquor Egg Nog (if it’s in season). The seasonal aged nog sells out within hours, so you likely won’t get a taste unless you wait hours on the sidewalk Christmas Eve and Day.

3 Howls Distillery
Neighborhood: SoDo

Don’t leave before you try: The Hopped Flavored Whiskey. Hops in whiskey? Sounds weird, but stay with me. While unusual, you’ll want to try the unique spirit that’s layered with PNW hops with beer-like notes that goes down smooth.

Fremont Mischief
Neighborhood: Fremont (right on the cut. SO cool)

Don’t leave before you try: You can’t go wrong with Fremont’s vodka, which just won best vodka of 2016 in the Northwest. Now, I’m not a vodka guy, but I’ll vouch for this stuff.

Chambers Bay Distillery
Neighborhood: University Place (Tacoma) This isn’t Seattle, but still good.

Don’t leave before you try: Greenhorn Bourbon. You can find it in Seattle at Polar Bar ( in the Arctic Club) or The Whiskey Bar. The guys from Chambers Bay set out to make good bourbon, then branched out, so the Greenhorn is where it begins (and it’s 100% PNW, as well).

Other places to try great spirits:

  • OOLA Distillery in Cap Hill is a small batch distillery some great gin and bourbon you should probably try.
  • Glass Distillery. Go here if you want vodka. Don't go here if you don't want vodka, because they don't make it.
  • Letterpress Distilling. Great for vodka and italiaItalianred spirits, even better for their Limoncello.
  • Heritage Distilling Co. Unless you want to trek out to Gig Harbor, you'll have to wait until their tasting room in Cap Hill opens up to truly "visit," but thankfully, you can find their stuff in plenty of stores.
  • Copperworks Distilling is in a great spot if you're farting around Pike Place and want to throw a distillery tour into your day, plus their single-malt is delicious. 

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