Portland Beer Week starts this Thursday, June 9, and I’m pretty sure this year has more events than ever—possibly more than any other of the state’s beer weeks (though Medford gives it a run for its money). As with many of these “weeks” it actually runs longer, 11 days, and ends on June 19.
Portland Beer Week is eleven days of fun, educational, eye and palate opening eating and drinking events in the greatest beer city on earth. More than just a beer festival, Portland Beer Week is a celebration of craft beer culture and all of its tangents from food pairings to beer ice cream, artwork and design, film and science. Though our namesake is for the city of Portland, Oregon, we are not exclusive to only local brands and companies, we wish to bring the best of the beer world to Portland.
This year Portland Brewing and Double Mountain Brewery teamed up to brew the official collaboration beer for PDX Beer Week—Subcontinental IPA. “Inspired by the intriguing spice blends used in Indian cuisines, we carefully added our own blend of spices to help draw out the tropical notes from the El Dorado, Calypso, Centennial and Challenger hops,” said Portland Brewing head brewer Ryan Pappe in the press release.
Bookmark the events calendar—there are too many events to list here, but I did want to highlight some of the featured ones.
The Rooftop Kickoff Party takes place Thursday the 9th from 6 to 10pm: “Party with us on the rooftop of the Ecotrust Building in downtown Portland. There will be sweet vendors, cool beer and hot food! Plus there is no cover, we are all-ages and all proceeds will go to benefit charity New Avenues for Youth.”
The 6th annual Portland Fruit Beer Festival returns on Friday the 10th to run through the weekend: “Due to overwhelming support and overcapacity crowds, organizers are excited to announce a new and larger venue for 2016’s festivities at the North Park Blocks in downtown Portland. If you arrive early between the hours of 11am-2pm on Friday we will give you 4 extra drink tickets!” As usual they have a stellar lineup of fruit-infused beers, many brewed specially for this fest.
The Rye Beer Fest returns, also taking place on Friday the 10th from 4pm until the wee hours, at EastBurn. You guessed, it’s all rye beers and there’s even some rye whiskey to sample. “To celebrate the 5th year of the fest we are raffling off a $1500 travel voucher. Tickets are $20 each and all funds raised from the raffle go to the Children’s Cancer Association.”
On Monday the 13th the New School presents the New Oregon Breweries Showcase at Bailey’s Taproom starting at 5pm: “11 new breweries from Oregon, all opened in less than a year from the date will be present pouring two beers each. Meet-the-brewers and owners from the new school of breweries from across the state from 5-8pm, the beers run all night. NO COVER.”
Also that Monday, Belmont Station is hosting uber-popular Midwest Bell’s Brewery for Bell’s Beach Party starting at 5pm: “Belmont Station turns into Bell’s-mont Station as we herald in summer with Bell’s founder Larry Bell and the most popular summer beer across the Midwest: Bell’s Oberon Ale! With its cheery, sunshine-y label, this refreshing ale combines a spicy hop character with mildly fruity aromas — the perfect complement to any beach party. Larry himself joins us to welcome Oberon back into Oregon after a hiatus of many years. But that’s not all! We’re blowing out this beach party with a baker’s dozen Bell’s beers pouring in the taproom.”
Ecliptic Brewing is hosting a Barrel-Aged Beer Seminar on Wednesday the 15th, which looks pretty fantastic: “Oregon State University presents the Barrel-Aged Beer Seminar: Learn from the masters of non-sour barrel-aged beer on techniques, flavors, variations and different spirit aged barrels and oak. Our panel of brewing experts will each share their knowledge and 2-3 of their own rare barrel-aged beers for tasting.”
McMenamins Mission Theater is hosting the Women of Oregon Beer Gathering for the five-year anniversary of the movie “The Love of Beer.” In addition to a showing of the film at 7pm, there’s a meet and greet at 5pm and a Q&A afterward. “The night features special guests Tonya Cornett (10 Barrel’s R & D Brewmaster), Teri Fahrendorf (Pink Boots Society founder and R & D Brewmaster at Great Western Malting), Lisa Morrison (aka the Beer Goddess), Sarah Pederson (owner/founder of Saraveza), Lisa Allen (Head Brewer at Heater Allen Brewing), Natalie Baldwin (Brewer at Burnside Brewing), Sonia Marie-Leikam (co-owner of Leikam Brewing), Jen Kent (McMenamins Brewer), Lee Hedgmon (Assistant Brewer at Pints) and Alison Grayson (Director of “The Love of Beer” documentary).”
Finally, the final day of the Beer Week, June 19, sees SNACKDOWN! presented in collaboration with Gigantic Brewing. “SNACKDOWN! is a fun and entertaining food and beer pairing event where 10 of Portland’s best Chefs and 10 Oregon Brewers are paired into 10 Brewer/Chef teams to make their greatest snack and beer pairing. Guests will choose their favorite pairing and the winners will be awarded the SNACKDOWN Belt!” That one will be a lot of fun.
Oh, it’s going to be a good week to be in Portland. Pity those of us who aren’t!