Happy Friday! Here’s the Oregon beer news for the week of January 15. As usual, I’ll be periodically updating this post throughout the day with the latest news, so check back often. And if you have news to share, please let me know and I can get that updated as well.
Deschutes Brewery (Bend) is releasing their special and super-limited alternative versions of The Abyss today—one 100% barrel aged in Rye barrels, another 100% in Cognac barrels. Bottles of each will be on sale for $25 at both the Bend and Portland pubs, and in Bend they will be serving up Brewer’s Flights of all three 2015 Abysses (regular plus the variants), with food pairings, and a special tasting bar from 4:30 to 9pm. Definitely something you don’t want to miss out on!
McMenamins Old St. Francis School (Bend) is holding their third annual High Gravity Extravaganza tomorrow, Saturday the 16th, a terrific event that invites 20+ breweries (a mix of McMenamins breweries and Central Oregon brewers) to bring a seasonally-appropriate strong beer to pour for this fest. It takes place from 1 to 10pm, with a special “meet the brewers” portion the first three hours, and there will be (free) live music later on in the day. Cost is $15 for the full punchcard and glass—10 tasters worth at $1.50 each, and you can buy more as you go. This is a favorite January event of mine, and if you can make it to Bend (or are already here) you won’t regret attending!
Migration Brewing (Portland): They are releasing a new IPA today (Friday the 15th): Straight Outta Portland IPA. “January has turned out to be a grey month thus far, so we have decided to bring a little light into 2016 with the relese of our BRAND NEW Straight Outa Portland IPA. This 7.2% centennial driven IPA will give you something to smile about as we all await the sun and warm weathers return.”
Portland’s Burnside Brewing will be in Bend tonight (Friday) at Broken Top Bottle Shop for a beer tasting from 5:30 to 8pm. It will be something of a tap takeover I’m told, with “5 beers on tap (3 pub only one-offs)” and also a can release for Burnside.
The Green Dragon (Portland) is hosting a special sour beer event Friday from 5 to 8pm: Know Your ABCs. “Three of Portland’s best craft brewers come together Friday night at the Green Dragon to show their appreciation for the support of their friends, their customers and the bonds among brewing brothers. Each is bringing a one-of-a kind sour beer crafted exclusively for this collaboration event.” The three breweries are Alameda, Base Camp, and Coalition.
The Bier Stein (Eugene): Saturday the 16th they are hosting Lagunitas Brewing for a “Pinewood Derbeer Derby” beginning at 3pm (with the race taking place at, er, 4:20). “Build a pinewood derby car and race for a good cause… and win prizes! Purchase a pinewood derby kit from us with a $10 donation to BRING Recycling. Take the kit home and build your racer to the proper specs. 21+ only, so channel your inner Scout– and girls are definitely allowed! You’ll use your tools and paint plus the items in the kit to produce a sweet looking car that moves down the track as fast as possible.” The Stein’s events page has a link to the rules.
Ecliptic Brewing (Portland): Saturday the 16th Ecliptic is releasing their very first batch of Barrel-Aged Oort Imperial Stout. “We are excited to announce that Barrel-Aged Oort Imperial Stout will be released for the first time on January 16th. Oort Imperial Stout and Barrel-Aged Oort Imperial Stout will be tapped at 12:00pm. **There will be a limited amount of bottles available for purchase.*** This beer has been slumbering for fifteen months in 12-year-old bourbon barrels, imparting flavors of bitter chocolate, oak, and vanilla. It drinks especially chocolatey, with some heat from the barrel.”
Roscoe’s (Portland) has Firestone Walker Brewing in the house Saturday evening from 4 to 7pm, with a special “Milk and Cookies” event: “Roscoe’s is synonymous with craft beer. For the evening of January 16th, they will be known for Milkstout and Brown butter cookies. Come join the Roscoe’s crew and Keenan, of Firestone Walker Brewing, for the release of the Nitro Merlin Milk Stout. This silky new release will be paired with Brown Butter Cookie Co’s sinfully delicious cookies. Set your resolutions aside and indulge.”
Portland’s The Commons Brewery teamed up with San Diego’s Modern Times Brewery to brew a collaboration beer, and on Saturday the 16th beginning at noon they are celebrating the release of the beer, dubbed Good Problems: “Good Problems is the first collaboration for Modern Times Beer and one of the first beers brewed at our new brewery in Portland. Made during the April 2015 Craft Brewers Conference this rustic saison was fermented with a mixed culture featuring Brettanomyces from both breweries and aged on Nebbiolo wine grapes from Mosier, Oregon. The result is a bottle conditioned beer-wine hybrid that is dry with complex fruit flavors and aromas from both the grapes and Brettanomyces. We’re also thrilled that Modern Times Founder Jacob McKean and Head Brewer Matt Walsh will be at our tasting room from 1-3pm on the release. Good Problems will be available in 750ml capped bottles for $15 per bottle with no bottle limit. Draft will be available at the Tasting Room only.” The Commons is red-hot right now, and I have no doubt this is a tasty, complex beer!
Today (Friday) is the release for McMenamins seasonal Sleepy Hollow Nut Brown Ale, available now at all McMenamins locations through the end of February. “Sleepy Hollow Nut Brown’s chestnut color and medium body will cast an otherworldly spell over you. The complex malt character, well balanced with Chinook and US Golding hops, will have you walking in a continual reverie. Legend has it that Ichabod Crane downed a few Nut Brown Ales listening to local ghost tales and scary legends at the Van Tassel merry-making party before his fateful trip home. Be watchful and clear-headed on your way home lest you begin to grow fanciful, see shapes and shadows in the night and hear things in the howling wind. It may just be your imagination running away with you or it very well may be the Headless Horseman on his fire-breathing black stallion following you!”
McMenamins Bagdad Theater (Portland) has a featured beer tasting today (Friday) from 5 to 8pm, featuring the Edgefield’s Cone of Cold India Pale Lager: “If you don’t have your Dungeon Master’s Guide handy, you might not know what level wizard spell this beer’s name is referring to, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less delicious. Cone of Cold India Pale Lager is very similar to an IPA except that it was brewed with a cold-fermenting lager yeast strain. This crisp beer’s pleasing hop flavor profile and huge citrus and pine aromatics were achieved using nothing but whole cone hop flowers.”
Old Town Brewing (Portland): Friday night at the Civic Taproom, Old Town is celebrating the bottle release of their Warp Speed Coffee Pale Ale from 6 to 9pm: “Warp Speed Coffee Pale Ale gets its flavor from being aged on whole coffee beans for a slow, cold extraction keeping the delicate nuances of a cold pressed coffee, instead of the typical method of blending beer with a concentrated coffee, which tends to leave a suppressed coffee aroma and flavor. Warp Speed’s rich coffee character mixed with the malt and hops make it an aggressive and surprisingly refined draft.” (From the Oregon Brewers Guild)
Three Mugs Brewing (Hillsboro): Today (Friday) they have a beer release starting at 5pm, featuring Siberien Express Belgian-Style Dark Strong Ale: “Join us as we release our newest brew, thanks to Chuck Macaluso, winner of the Portland Cheers to Belgian Beers Homebrew Competition. Chuck will be here to discuss his brew. Chuck provided us with his recipe and came and brewed his award-winning brew with us. It’s a delicious malty brew that looks to come in at about 9%.”
Upright Brewing (Portland): Saturday the 16th, the annual release of their Fantasia is taking place starting at 1pm. The New School says: “Upright Brewing’s highly anticipated release of Fantasia, a barrel-fermented Lambic-style beer with Peaches is hitting this Saturday with bottles featuring a new label. This is an amazing lightly sour fruit forward wild ale that cellars well but tastes fresh amazing. 750ml bottles will be on sale for $20 each with a 3 bottle per person limit.”