Local Must

Local MustCloudburst Brewing's Founder Steve Luke reflects on what he loves most about making beer, what he's learned from launching his brewery and where he loves to eat, drink and hike in Seattle, Washginton as part of the Dirt Road Travels city travel guide for Seattle.

Seattle, Washington

Cloudburst Brewing

"Seattle's best IPAs."

Pike Place Market
Holy Mountain Brewing
Fremont Brewing Company
Hike to Oyster Dome
Salare Restaurant
The Walrus and The Carpenter
Stoup Brewing

Cloudburst Brewing

"Seattle's best IPAs."

Recommended by:
Recommended in:
Seattle, Washington
Cloudburst's Founder Steve Luke sits in his brewery.

My Story

"I'm a brewer. I love making beer.

In this line of work, you're never in it for the money, because you're basically making minimum wage, working long hours. You start at the bottom, and it's really no fun spending 4, 10 hour days in a row staring at a keg washer. So you're not doing it for the money, you're doing it for the beer and for the people around you and your community.

I left Elysian Brewing Company when I was fairly young, around 30. I have no kids, and my wife has a super stable job, so this was kind of the time to sacrifice my life to start up. I didn't have any bills and didn't have to worry about providing for anyone else. It was the time to do it.

I'm responsible enough to try it, but irresponsible enough that if shit hits the fan, nobody else is taking the fall with me.
The inside of Cloudburst Brewing in Seattle.
Customers wait in line to buy a beer at Cloudburst Brewing.

Brewing is such a humble business that it takes a lot for me to even pick my head up and think, 'Oh, shit! Your dream is actually happening right now." 

I don't allow myself to do that because you don't want that to affect the beer. We've got to continue to get better."

The brewing equipment at Cloudburst Brewing.

My Cloudburst Order

"We're a couple blocks from Pike Place Market, so we really get to see what fruits and vegetables and spices are in season and what farm they come from. It makes you feel so much more connected to the source. We do a Saison with market sourced fruits and spices that are just at the whim of what we see when we're walking through. We try not to think about it beforehand, so we can just say, 'This looks awesome right now. Let's use it in a beer.'"

A Cloudburst IPA sits on a table in the brewery in Seattle.

Best Advice I've Received

"I've always been told to just give things a try. To give it your best shot first, see how that goes and react accordingly. 

Don't be scared, because if things don't work out, you can just learn how you can get better. 

If you're not learning from everything you do, you've stopped growing." 

A one year anniversary sign at Cloudburst in Seattle.

My Advice for Others

"Work in the industry you want to be in and start at the bottom so you can learn how to do everything the right way. It's easy to be given advice, but actually watching it through the actions of others is a real difference." 

A Ken Griffey Jr. baseball card on the wall at Cloudburst in Seattle.

What I Love Most about Seattle

"There's nothing not to love about Seattle. The scenery is gorgeous; you're sandwiched between mountain ranges with the sound and lakes thrown about. 

The atmosphere is liberal and inclusive and innovative, and people put a lot of emphasis on locally sourced goods and independent small businesses too. Throwing all of that together works out to be a pretty desirable place to live." 

A sign that reads, 'fuck off we're closed,' at Cloudburst Brewing in Seattle.
A deer head with antlers on the wall at Cloudburst.
A door with spraypain at Cloudburst in Seattle.

My Seattle Musts

"A brewery crawl! Start at Cloudburst, then go to Holy MountainStoup Brewing, and Fremont Brewing to get the real craft beer feel. My favorite hike is Oyster Dome and my favorite restaurant is SalareIt's by this chef Eduardo Jordan who’s just been busting his ass in the industry. There, or The Walrus and The Carpenter if you want 10-12 different varieties of oysters at any moment." 

A set of kegs on pallets at Cloudburst in Seattle.
A 'Sorry Kids, No Babies' sign on the wall at Cloudburst in Seattle.
If you Like Beer Don't Miss Holy Mountain Holy Mountain is So Good We're Going to Include a Second Link to it Here Fremont Brewing is Also Super Rad
The sign outside of Cloudburst Brewing in Seattle.

My Recommended Content

"A lot of our beer names and inspiration come from short fiction stories, like George Saunders or Adam Johnson or David Foster Wallace. Things that get your mind outside the box and thinking a different way, that we can then bring that back to beer. We just named one of our beers after George Saunders 'Escape from Spiderhead' from his recent collection called the Tenth of December." 

A clever sign at Cloudburst Brewing in Seattle.
Medals hang on the wall at Cloudburst in Seattle.
Art on the walls at Cloudburst in Seattle.

Cloudburst Brewing


Cloudburst Brewing
Steve Luke
Cloudburst Brewing
Pike Place Market
"The baby daddy of farmers markets everywhere."
Holy Mountain Brewing
"I could drink, like, 10 of their Wit beers."
Fremont Brewing Company
"Everything a brewery should be."
Hike to Oyster Dome
"A 6 mile hike to oysters and beer."
Salare Restaurant
"A homestyle take on high scale Italian."
The Walrus and The Carpenter
"A line out the door before open at 4 on a Wednesday."
Stoup Brewing
"Beer and a meat from a vending machine. What more do you need?"
Cloudburst Brewing
"Seattle's best IPAs."

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