We’re currently in Baker City (Oregon) for the weekend, and today paid a (preliminary) visit to the town’s only brewpub: Barley Brown’s. I hope to get a more thorough review (including pictures), but for now I have a quick report on their beers.
Let me just say right off, this was the cheapest sampler tray I’ve ever encountered: $4.25 for those eight beers(!). Seriously! I expect to pay $8.95 or so for this—so half that is an amazing deal.
Here’s the beers from the sampler, in order that I drank them:
- Coyote Peak Wheat: Crisp, yeasty, refreshing, tasty. A light American wheat style of beer, think Widmer’s Hefeweizen.
- Jubilee Golden Ale: A standard light golden ale with a nice little kick to it.
- Tumble Off Pale Ale: A nicely hoppy American style pale ale, a 2006 GABF gold medal winner. Very fresh and easy drinking, and almost hoppy enough to be an IPA.
- Hot Blonde: The sampler sheet actually said “Shredder Wheat”, so I was awfully surprised to find out this was in fact their “golden ale brewed with fresh jalapeno peppers.” Truthfully, I didn’t really care for it—if it was truly a wheat I’d say it was infected. Otherwise, it tastes strongly of dirt (“earth”) with a spicy kick at the end.
- WFO IPA: Big and hoppy, full of resins and sticky hops, very nice and right where you’d expect for a Northwest IPA.
- Brown Ale: Smooth and drinkable, but no real surprises here.
- Whiskey Malt Ale: This is the gem of the bunch: very light in body with a distinctive smoke character–I first thought “bacon” and I love the smoke beers. Unique, delicious, full of subtle notes and character. Fantastic, I will probably buy a growler of this to bring home.
- Espresso Stout: Brewed with espresso bean that are locally roasted. Not overly strong, somewhat subdued even, but very competently brewed and not overwhelming with coffee.
Hopefully I’ll have more to write about this weekend, but so far I can heartily recommend Barley Brown’s as a destination if you happen to find yourself in Eastern Oregon anywhere near Baker City.