What's a WABL?

Originally published in October 2008.

WABL has really taken off the past few years because of the perks at the beer festivals. You usually get a bigger and better tasting glass, extra tokens, a special WABL beer, and early entrance. Seems like every beer fest now, there are more and more WABL glasses and t-shirts everywhere. So if you aren’t clued in, you may be wondering, what’s this WABL thing is all about?

WABL stands for WAshington Beer Lovers, a group founded by the Washington State Brewers Guild.  When you join you get a passport that’s your ID to get into special events, and a t-shirt. The yearly cost is just $25.

There are also special events for WABL members throughout the year, usually special tastings at breweries. For example, we went down to the new Laughing Buddha WABL event earlier this year, and found plenty of WABLs enjoying the brews, BBQ snacks and even dragon dancers.

Coming up in November is the annual WABL anniversary party. In the past this has been a smaller event held at a brewery. Last year it was at Elliott Bay Brewhouse in  Burien, but we pushed their service and kitchen to their limits because so many people showed up. So this year, the WABL party is going to be a mini-brewfest, just for WABL members. There will be a dozen or so breweries with beers that you can’t usually get your hands on, food, giveaways and other entertainment.

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This is a WABL-only event, just one of many throughout the year that make the $25 membership a no-brainer. For more information and to sign up to become a WABL, visit www.washingtonbeer.com.