Oregon Beer News, 05/20/2016

Oregon BeerTGIF! Lots of stuff kicking off this weekend in the Oregon beer scene, make your plans accordingly! Here’s the news for Friday, May 20. 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.

Central Oregon Beer Week begins today! The ten days of celebration will run through Sunday, May 29 (with a bonus at Broken Top Bottle Shop on the 30th) and kicks off this evening with the official kick-off party at downtown Bend’s Crow’s Feet Commons from 6 to 9pm. They’ll have live music, food trucks, and great beer of course! Including the official beer of COBW brewed by Sunriver Brewing, “COBW IWA” (India Wheat Ale) which will be at the party plus at locations throughout the area all week long.

For more COBW events going on all weekend, see the full list below the fold.

Rogue Ales (Newport) is celebrating their 10th annual Brewer’s Memorial Ale Festival this weekend, starting at 4pm on Friday the 20th and continuing at noon on Saturday. “Brewers Memorial Ale Festival is an annual event created in memory of Rogue Brewmaster John Maier’s faithful companion Brewer, who passed away on May 20, 2006. Brewer grew up in the brewery and eventually rose to the rank of CEO of Rogue Ales. This dog-friendly brew festival is held inside the Rogue Ales Brewer’s on the Bay in Newport, Oregon.” Admission is $5, with $1 tasters, and you can buy tickets here.

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Oregon Beer News, 05/19/2016

Oregon BeerHere is the news in beer from around Oregon for Thursday, May 19. As usual, I’ll be periodically updating this post throughout the day, so check back often. If you have news to share, please contact me and I can get that posted as well.

Baker City’s Barley Brown’s Beer will be in Portland tonight for a massive tap takeover at The Green Dragon—featuring 25 beers! “Brewer Tyler Brown and the gang from Barley Brown’s Beer in Baker City roll into the Green Dragon this week for one of our biggest tap takeovers yet. We are dedicating 25 our our taps to Barley’s finest brews. This is one tap takeover you won’t want to miss!” Now that is how you do a tap takeover! Beers are tapped at 5pm, and Tyler Brown will speak at 6.

Belmont Station (Portland) is hosting Bend’s Deschutes Brewery tonight for a release party for the brewery’s Reserve Series Pinot Suave: “Aged 18 months in French and American oak barrels that previously held Pinot Noir, this is a unique Belgian-style ale with notes of Pinot grape, berries and dried fruit along with light malt and caramel flavors. We will be pouring this new offering from Deschutes along with Descendant, a younger sibling of The Dissident that is their first beer fermented entirely with brettanomyces, racked it into oak casks with fresh Oregon blackberries.” It takes place from 5 to 7pm.

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Oregon Beer News, 05/18/2016

Oregon BeerHere is the news in Oregon beer for this sunny Wednesday, May 18. As usual, I’ll be periodically updating this post throughout the day with the latest news, so check back often for updates. And if you have news to share, please contact me and I can get that updated as well.

McMenamins Kennedy School (Portland) is hosting the Oregon Brewshed® Brewfest today from 5:30 to 9:30pm: “See the forest for the beer… The Oregon Brewshed® Brewfest is a celebration of fantastic Oregon craft beer and the wild watersheds that make it possible, featuring the breweries and other businesses committed to watershed protection through their partnership in the Oregon Brewshed Alliance. Hosted by Brewshed® Partner McMenamins Pubs, Breweries & Historic Hotels at the Kennedy School, up to 20 local Oregon breweries will be pouring a special beer of their choosing for craft beer lovers to try. Your ticket gets you 10 tastes, a special tasting glass, a Brewshed® Brewfest Passport, one raffle ticket and entry. Additional tastes and raffle tickets will be available for $1 each. McMenamins pub fare will be available for purchase. $25 per ticket online ($20 in advance with special promo code THINKWILD16). Tickets will be sold for $30 at the door by cash or card.” It’s for a good cause and it’s always great to see McMenamins hosting other breweries for these types of events.

Over in the Columbia River Gorge and the town of Cascade Locks, Thunder Island Brewing is helping to co-host a “Green Drinks season” event starting at 6pm: “Join us in Cascade Locks to kick off the 2016 Green Drinks season! Friends of the Columbia Gorge, Thunder Island Brewing Company, and Port of Cascade Locks are teaming up with Gorge Owned and Gorge Current to help you plan your summer’s hiking and biking adventures. Learn about the Trails to Ales outings, Gorge Towns to Trails, public transportation options to trailheads and network with other outdoor enthusiasts while you sample local beer and cuisine.”

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Tuesday Tastings: Cousin Eddie’s RV, Stumptown Tart, Salted Caramel Brownie

This week I’ve got a few holiday season or limited-release throwback reviews for Tuesday Tastings—and interestingly enough, two of these three are brown ales, which you don’t find too often these days. Let’s get to it.

Fish Brewing Cousin Eddie’s RV Imperial Brown

Fish Brewing Cousin Eddie's RVOlympia, Washington’s Fish Brewing has been dabbling in licensed-movie themed beers of late; you may remember they had a line of “The Hobbit” beers, and this particular one, Cousin Eddie’s RV, is from their National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation series. It was 7.5% alcohol by volume and fortunately RateBeer has the description:

A warming Imperial Brown Ale loaded with complex malt flavors and balanced to style with subtle hop additions rounding out the brew. Sure to convince Cousin Eddie that this is better than Ellen’s eggnog.

Appearance: Clear brown color with amber highlights. Ample tan head that’s finely bubbled.

Smell: Nutty malts with a hint of roast. A bit of bread and some sweetness that’s maltose/grainy rather than caramel or sugar.

Taste: Pretty classic brown ale, malty and rich, little to no hops, and maybe a touch of alcohol heat. Gets a bit roastier as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Medium- to medium-full bodied, with a somewhat dry finish.

Overall: Nice brown, not particularly “Imperial” but competently brewed.

Untappd, BeerAdvocate, RateBeer

BridgePort Brewing Stumptown Tart with Marionberries

BridgePort Stumptown Tart with MarionberriesThis was BridgePort’s second Stumptown Tart release for 2015, in their annual tart Belgian-styled ale with fruit series that’s been released every year for some time now. This version was brewed with Oregon marionberries and was 7.7% alcohol by volume. Untappd has the description for this version:

This limited edition Belgian Style Ale is brewed with juicy Marionberries from Marion County, Oregon, where they were first grown, and stands up to its name with a tart, earthy flavor and a trace of sweetness.

Appearance: Reddish color, light berry juice; very minimal head that disappeared quickly.

Smell: Tart berry, sweet with a lactic acid note (crushed aspirin). Hint of bubblegum. Does remind me of fresh tart blackberries.

Taste: Earthy profile reminding me of a strong Belgian golden, with stone fruit, grainy sweetness but really not tart to me. Sticks with that Belgian strong profile as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, with a bit of an earthy finish.

Overall: Drinks fine, but I would like to taste more fruit.

Untappd, BeerAdvocate, RateBeer (they don’t have the Marionberry version)

New Belgium Brewing Salted Caramel Brownie Brown Ale

New Belgium Salted Caramel BrownieNew Belgium teamed up with Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream to produce this collaboration beer late in 2015, and they came up with a brown ale for the base of this concept beer—a good idea, because a good brown could complement this idea of ice cream well. It was 6.25% abv and they say:

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream beer. Our newest collaboration with Ben & Jerry’s brings together two different types of pint-makers for one common goal: To help Protect Our Winters combat climate change. When two foodie B Corps join forces for good, delicious ideas are created. Our Salted Caramel Brownie Brown Ale scoops the lip-smacking fun of dessert from a bowl right into your pint glass. Brewed with specialty ingredients and a healthy sweet tooth, this beer’s rich chocolaty, salted-caramel, vanilla goodness is worth savoring to the last drop. Reward yourself, and dig in!

Appearance: Deep brown color with ruby highlights. Creamy, fine light tan-colored head with nice legs.

Smell: Chocolate malts, coffee roastiness, a touch of brown sugar and molasses. Bittersweet dark chocolate. Pretty straightforward, brown ale profile.

Taste: Really quite nice brown ale, and while I get hints of cocoa, it’s not the “salted caramel brownie” experience you would expect. Malty, a touch of umami, a touch of roast, coffee sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, well attenuated, finishes with a hint a roasty sweetness.

Overall: A good brown which is rare, but not ice cream-y.

Untappd, BeerAdvocate, RateBeer