Oregon Beer News, 05/06/2016

Oregon BeerHappy Friday! I hope your Cinco de Mayo went well. Here’s the news in Oregon beer for the weekend of May 6. 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): Today (Friday) is the release for their latest Reserve Series beer, Pinot Suave. It’s a strong Belgian style ale aged in French Pinot Noir wine barrels with Pinot grape must, which definitely sounds interesting! Deschutes is celebrating with release parties at the Bend pub and the Portland pub, with culinary specials, tastings, and bottles for sale of course. In Bend it’s also First Friday so there will be art and live music as well. Be there!

Cascade Brewing (Portland): This first Friday Cascade is releasing the first of a series of Vertical Boxed Sets, and this is something you’ll want to check out: “Each release will feature 100 4-packs that will contain bottles of a single brand from each of the past four years’ releases: 2012, 21013, 2014 and 2015. The first release will be Kriek and will take place at opening on Friday, May 6th. Kriek is a blend of sour red ales aged in oak wine barrels for up to 17 months with Bing and sour pie cherries. One of our flagship products, Kriek features complex flavors of cherries, roast malts, oak and spice. Look for future releases on the first Friday of each month.” The release begins at noon Friday.

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Oregon Beer News, 05/05/2016

Oregon BeerIt’s Cinco de Mayo! Do you have plans yet? If not you might want to check out the first item below, but then all of today’s beer news will give you options. Here it is for Thursday, May 5. 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.

Salem’s fifth annual Cinco de Micro Brewfest kicks off today at the Salem Convention Center, and will run through Saturday the 7th. For $15 to enter you get your mug and two tasting tokens (presumably $1 per additional token) and they have a nice lineup of breweries and entertainment to take you into the weekend.

Boneyard Beer (Bend) is celebrating their anniversary today! “It may be Cinco De Mayo but it’s also our BIRTHDAY!!! To celebrate 6 awesome years of beer making, we’re offering $6 growler fills of RPM and Bone-A-Fide today!” Congrats on 6 years of some of the state’s most popular beers!

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Received: Redhook Summerhook

I haven’t seen much from Redhook Brewery these days, but a package arrived today out of the blue from them:

Received: Redhook Brewery Summerhook

It’s new this year and styled as a “Golden Rye Ale,” with 4.7% abv and 35 IBUs. The insert in the box also notes that this new beer is also part of an overall packaging refresh Redhook is rolling out.

I’ll report more as I drink them.

Oregon Beer News, 05/04/2016

Oregon BeerHappy Star Wars Day—May the Fourth be with you! Here’s the news in Oregon beer for this Wednesday; 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.

The Green Dragon (Portland) has teamed up with Portland’s unique Unipiper to present today’s Brew Crew release of Pickled Piper: “You’ve seen him on television, social media, and of course the streets of Portland. Now, the Unipiper and the Green Dragon Brew Crew have joined forces to create a brew unlike any other. Pickled Piper is kettle-soured cucumber Gose that was dry-hopped with Sorachi Ace hops and infused with a healthy dose of pickling spices and fresh cucumber. It’s a beer almost as weird as the Unipiper himself. Join us Thursday, May 4th at the Green Dragon (May the Fourth be with you) for the exclusive release of this brew and to meet the creative minds behind it.” That definitely sounds like a unique beer! Be there at 5pm for the tapping.

Cascade Brewing (Portland) has a new special beer tapping today: Tequila Sunrise. “Today we tap Tequila Sunrise, a Northwest sour blond ale aged in a tequila barrel for 24 months with fresh orange peel. We then add a splash of cherry juice into the glass to create the look and taste of a classic Tequila sunrise!”

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Preview of Deschutes Brewery’s Burger Month

Once again this year, Bend-based Deschutes Brewery is celebrating National Burger Month all through the month of May by offering a special burger menu featuring a new and unique hamburger special each day. Here’s their event details:

Join us for beers & burgers through the month of May! We will feature one unique burger on our daily specials menu every day throughout the month. Stop by & enjoy a juicy burger made with Borlen Beef & locally sourced carefully prepared ingredients. Below are a few highlights of what we have planned. Cheers to yummy cheese burgers & beers!


Daily UNIQUE burger special everyday in May!

Featured FAN Burger on Locals Night

5/2 Meet & Greet Matt Borlen from Borlen Beef Company 5-7pm

5/28 National Burger Day! We’re going big on this day so stay tuned.

Get Your Burger Punch Card!
Get a stamp for every Special Burger.
5 Stamps = Free Prize & Entrance For Grand Prizes!

Weekly Burger Updates @

Have a favorite burger recipe? Enter on our Facebook page and get your burger featured!

Last night (Monday, May 2nd) we were invited to a  media event for dinner to preview the upcoming burger menu as well as meet Matt Borlen and Chef Brian Kerr. On the menu (as with each Monday this month) was the “fan” burger, in this case one dubbed The Ludwicki:

All natural Borlen Beef patty, Face Rock Creamery aged cheddar, apple wood bacon, mayonnaise, & stoned ground mustard on a house baked brioche bun.

It was suggested by James Ludwicki, who used to work for Deschutes and who is now the head chef at 10 Barrel Brewing’s pub. Most of us at the table ordered it, and everyone thoroughly enjoyed it.

Deschutes Brewery fan burger

Deschutes Brewery Burger Month - The Ludwicki

Deschutes Brewery Burger Month: The Lucwicki

All of the ground beef at the Bend Pub is supplied by Borlen Beef, a cattle ranch located in Alfalfa (about 15 miles east of Bend). Borlen has been supplying the beef to Deschutes since 1995, and in turn the spent grain generated from the downtown Pub brewing system is provided to Borlen for cattle feed. Borlen in fact has a similar partnership in place with Silver Moon Brewing, Bend Brewing Company, McMenamins, Boneyard Beer, and Cascade Lakes Brewing all here in Central Oregon. They in fact take in about 70,000 to 80,000 pounds of spent grain per week.

And in fact, Matt Borlen’s father originally got involved with the Brewery under a different business, Agri-Cycle, which treats and manages waste water for soil preparation and fertilizer, back in 1993. Breweries of course produce a prodigious amount of waste water, and Agri-Cycle helps manage the excess output, turning into fertilizer for their own ranch pastures which in turn feeds the cattle. So there are multiple avenues to sustainability at play here.

Chatting with Matt Borlen at Deschutes Brewery

Matt Borlen of Borlen Beef

Back to the food and Burger Month. Mondays will feature the “fan burger” to allow fans on social media to participate in selecting the burger special, but for the rest of the month, the menu is locked in. Chef Brian Kerr developed the menu by going through last year’s menu to determine what had already been done, and what was the most popular, to be able to recreate some of the popular recipes and come up with all new ones. This year in particular they have a bigger selection of vegan and vegetarian burger options, which will include a Curry and Lentil Burger, Falafel Burger, and Portobello Burger.

Deschutes is in fact getting ready to roll out an all-new menu for the Pub, Kerr told us, which will also include an expanded vegetarian focus. And in fact to highlight some of their options besides the burgers, we were provided with two appetizers, a calamari platter and a sausage board, and a vegetarian pizza (the crust recipe in particular has been tweaked).

Deschutes Brewery calamari

Deschutes Brewery sausage board

Deschutes Brewery vegetarian pizza

All were really good-to-excellent, and I was impressed by the calamari and the pizza in particular. I would highly recommend both to anyone who’s mouth is watering from these pictures. And the burgers, of course, which will be the highlight of the entire month. Here is the calendar:

Deschutes Brewery Burger Month calendar

Myself, I’m most intrigued by the Benedict Burger, the Poutine Burger, the Biscuits and Gravy Burger, the Bahn Mi Burger, and the Parisian Burger (mostly because I don’t know if they are going French with it or the one made popular at Linda’s in Mountain View, California back in the day).

Finally, because this is a beer blog, here’s a gratuitous picture of the first of my beers, Hop Slice Session IPA that was on cask:

Deschutes Brewery Hop Slice, from the cask