Here is the news in Oregon beer for the week starting Monday, April 14, general news at the top, and day-specific items organized below accordingly. As usual, I’ll be periodically updating this post throughout the week so keep checking in for new information. And if you have news to share, please contact me and I can get that posted as well.
The 2014 World Beer Cup took place last week during the Craft Brewers Conference in Denver, and naturally there were a number of Oregon winners, with the big one being the Pelican Pub & Brewery in Pacific City for the “Champion Brewery and Brewmaster” award in the “Small Brewing Company” category—congrats to Darron Welch and Steve Panos! The complete winners list is here, with Oregon represented well by Hop Valley, Widmer, 10 Barrel, Bend Brewing, The Commons, Gigantic, Old Town Brewing, Logsdon, Laurelwood, Two Kilts Brewing, Barley Brown’s, Beer Valley Brewing, and the new Chetco Brewing!
The Bier Stein (Eugene) is celebrating one year at their Willamette Street location all this week, starting Monday and lasting until Friday: “Because we love to celebrate, we’ll be tapping some special beers throughout the week, as recognition that “we made it!” It’s been a great year, and we couldn’t have done it without the show of support from you, our customers. We have a small but delicious vintage beer collection, and we’ll be tapping some of these along with some brand new and fresh beer from our local brewing friends. Our beer buyer Dave and Beer Ambassador Aaron went and brewed a hoppy pale ale – Hoppy Nano Beer – with Trevor at Claim 52; that will be tapped on the 15th, our official anniversary. The following day, we will tap a handful of Agrarian Ales beer, utilizing their common suffix “-ity” for our -Ity Bitty Flight. That event will include Spontaneity, their first ever spontaneously fermented beer! Keep an eye on our taplist for other new and rare beers.”
Harvester Brewing (Portland) has some under-the-radar news they posted on Facebook today (Thursday), ostensibly as a beer release: “Harvester Brewing co-founder and co-owner John Dugan is leaving us as a full-time employee on April 25th to spend 300 sunny days (and 65 cold, wet days) a year in Bend, Oregon. Several years ago, before we started Harvester, John and I brewed a pale ale together with hibiscus flowers and it was awesome. With his last day fast approaching I’ve brewed another one to share in the taproom that he built. 300 Sunny Days Ale is based on the Pale Ale that was Harvester’s first beer and first GABF medal winner. After initial fermentation it was aged for a few extra weeks with hibiscus and Meyer lemons.” One of my first thoughts of course was, is he coming to Bend to start/get involved in a new brewery?
Tuesday, 4/15 (Tax Day!)
Cascade Brewing (Portland): Tonight’s Tap It Tuesday at the Barrel House at 6pm is featuring “Live” Lemondrop. “This NW style strong blond quad was barrel aged for 18 months in Heaven Hill Bourbon and pinot barrels and additionally aged with lemon peel. Aromas of sweet Bourbon and citrus are noticed up front. Soft, sweet lemon peel and Bourbon notes dance on the palate and give way to a crisp, lemon tart finish with a lingering lemon vanillin note. 10.6% | $8 Glass | $3 Taster”
McMenamins Cedar Hills (Beaverton) has a limited-edition beer tasting starting at 6pm (with the brewer on hand to chat about the beer the first hour) featuring Imperial Riser: “The Imperial Riser may remind you of our recent seasonal brew, Red Riser. This great recipe has been taken up a couple notches. An extra 50 pounds of grain and 25 pounds of pure dextrose have lifted the gravity from a 1.069 to a 1.076. Also, 6 pounds of Falconers flight 7 c’s pellets were added straight to the fermenter. This is a big, flavorful, malty, hoppy brew. Enjoy!” This imperial version of Red Riser is 7.9% abv.
Belmont Station (Portland) is hosting another installment in the Samuel Smith’s Salute from 5 to 8pm, and is giving away some glassware too: “America’s original craft brewers cut their teeth on Samuel Smith’s, one of the original imported beers that inspired fans to make better beer here, “across the pond.” It was also one of the first breweries to actually offer a “line” of styles of beer — something that’s just common practice today. That’s why we are participating in this year’s Samuel Smith’s Salute, a weeklong celebration across the country to pay homage to these inspirational beers. In the Biercafe, buy a flight of four Samuel Smith’s bottled beers (your choice!) and get a Sam Smith’s glass to take home (while supplies last).”
McMenamins Kennedy School (Portland) has a limited edition tasting starting at 5pm, featuring Baltic Avenue Porter (which now I have “Electric Avenue” stuck in my head). “Loaded with malt flavor, this Baltic Porter will satisfy dark beer lovers! It’s full bodied, packed with chocolate and coffee aroma and made with oatmeal to give it a velvety smoothness. Enjoy!”
The Bier Stein in Eugene has a special release and beer tapping with Portland’s Breakside Brewery, featuring Breakside’s IGA, from 5 to 8pm: “Another installment in our 1 Week On Willamette! Last year, Ninkasi and Breakside collaborated on an India Golden Ale– Breakside brewed it again, so we’re tapping that along with several others: Woodlawn Pale Ale, Old World IPA (brewed with Styrian Golding & Aurora hops), and Savory Stout (brewed with seaweed, shiitake mushrooms, and shiro miso).”
The Green Dragon (Portland) has a meet the brewer and tasting tonight with Washington’s Orlison Brewing starting at 5pm. “Meet the Brewer of Orlison Brewing Company, an all lager brewery from Airway Heights, Washington. Join us and taste a few beers that have never been in the Portland area before.”
Pelican Pub & Brewery is releasing Haystack Belgian Pale, a beer brewed for the Cheers to Belgian Beers Fest: “A sessionable Belgian-style beer intended to be enjoyed in your favorite place. For our brewers, that place is on the pub patio in Pacific City looking out over Cape Kiwanda and the monolith known as Haystack Rock. This beer showcases the Mandarina Bavaria hop from Germany, producing some fruity & tangerine notes.”
Crux Fermentation Project (Bend): Saturday from 10am to 1pm they are holding the release party for their latest in the “Banished” series, Better Off Red. “Join us at Crux to celebrate the release of the long awaited [Banished] Better Off Red, a Flanders Red Ale. We also have some [Banished] Tough Love Imperial Stout, [Banished] Doublecross and [Banished] Freakcake we’re releasing from our library. Doors open at 10 AM for bottle purchase, plus breakfast beer-itos, live music, coffee and good times.”
16 Tons (Eugene) is hosting their second annual Cider Fest from 5 to 10pm! This might be one of the largest collections of cider for tasting in one place that I’ve seen. “We’ll have around 45 Ciders from more than 20 Cider Producers from the Northwest, France, Spain, and beyond. We will feature a wide range of Ciders: Barrel Aged, Single Varietal, Botanical, Apple Brandy, Basque and more.” Entry is free and it’s cash only.
Boneyard Beer (Bend) and Widmer Brothers (Portland) will be in Bend Saturday night at the Summit Saloon downtown for the latest in their rollout of release parties for Blacklight IPA, their collaboration session beer. The event starts at 7pm. “Come join Boneyard Beer and Widmer Brothers Brewing at Summit Saloon for the official Bend launch of Blacklight IPA, a bold, hop-forward session style black ale. Blacklight IPA is a collaborative effort between the two breweries, and the first of six Widmer Brothers limited release collaboration beers with Oregon breweries to celebrate their 30th anniversary. The collaboration series celebrates the brewery’s 30 years of brewing in the state as well as the overall Oregon brewing scene. Brewers from both Widmer Brothers and Boneyard will be in attendance to answer questions, chat about the beer, and throw out free swag. Blacklight IPA will be poured alongside other killer Widmer Brothers and Boneyard beers.”
The BeerMongers (Portland) is holding their “4/20 – Smoky & Dank Beer Fest” all day long, featuring beers of smoked character and “dank” character (excessively hopped to the characteristic reminiscent of cannabis in accordance with the day). In addition to having eight appropriately-themed beers on tap, they have bottles of Stone Brewing’s Enjoy By 4-20-14 available as well.