Thursday, December 29, 2011

Meet the Geeks: Eugene Edition: Em Sauter of Pints and Panels

I'm quite the fan of Pints and Panels and just had to ask Em to do our Meet the Geeks series. Fortunately she said yes! If you haven't checked out her site, I highly recommend it. It's one of the freshest and most innovative beer review sites I follow.  Thanks Em for taking the time to do this. 

Em Sauter

Name: Em Sauter

Hometown: Darien, CT but I now live in Eugene, OR having just graduated from Comic Book Graduate School (yes, it exists) in Vermont.

Favorite Beer: Sixpoint Bengali Tiger IPA from Brooklyn, NY. Just got to share a can of it with a few fellow Eugene beer geeks and it went over really well. A crisp, balanced East Coast IPA (which is a novelty here on the West Coast)

Favorite Beer Haunt: On the East Coast, it'll have to be the Threepenny Taproom in Montpelier, VT but on the West Coast, the taphouse I currently work in, 16 Tons, has the best, most low-key rad vibe ever.

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? I never drank "macro" stuff...we were strictly Yuengling in college...but the first beer I remember that blew my socks off was, and sadly they don't make it anymore, was Sam Adams White Ale. I was at a sports bar in Keene, NH with my friend Jer during the Super Bowl in 2006 when the Seahawks were playing and they had 25 oz pints for 4.50 each...which was like some kind of dream come true. I must have drank like three of them that night. Sam Adams seasonals are a great introduction to craft beer. Their Oktoberfest continues to be one of my staples.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: I've only homebrewed once and I made a ginger porter with an old boyfriend. We did something wrong because it ended up being like 3%. His mom thought it was excellent and she drank most of it.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? I heard about PDX Beer Geeks pretty recently but any site that does the work they do talking about beer is solid =)

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Being a beer geek to me is that nothing in my life has ever stuck. Except beer. I've never enjoyed anything more in my life than beer and sharing the knowledge and love of beer with others makes my day.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? If I could change one thing -- I dislike that the beer rules change state by state. I just had a regular of mine move to Oklahoma and they are really strict about size and ABV so he was pretty depressed. It's just not fair that some places like Oregon can do growler fills and some places like Utah can't even get beer that's higher than 3.2% most places.

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? I love the Portland and Oregon beer scene because beer is omnipresent. I went to a bakery last week and even they had beer on tap. It's so cool you can get delicious beers anywhere you go.

Where can we find you on the web? is the site but you can also see old PNPs on and I do a webcomic for Ladies of Craft Beer ( about a girl that wants to be a brewer.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Fort George... Simply Fantastic.

Fort George Brewery and Public House. One of my favorite places in Oregon.

Consistently fantastic service, our recent forays there were filled with delicious food, delicious beer, and (thanks to John in the tap room) some of the best, most personal, kid friendly and gracious service I've ever had, anywhere. We were a large group, with three kids in tow. John took our orders, educated my guests on the beers, poured samples and discussed them, and literally ran to get us food and beer.

We met Brian, and on my next trip in later in the week, Jack the brewer was there and stopped to chat for a few moments. I was sad to miss the Seafood and Belgian Ales Brewer's Dinner - the menu by Chef Dana looked delicious.

People of Fort George, you are some of the nicest and best representation of craft beer in Oregon. Thanks for being awesome.

Sunday, December 25, 2011



It's been a great year, and we couldn't have done it without you. We've got some great things in store for 2012. So just keep watching. 

Emily & Michael 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Big Changes at Bridgetown Beerhouse

After being open for just over three years our friends at Bridgetown Beerhouse have made some pretty big changes. They have recently remodeled the bottleshop, added a new bartop, several tables, five rotating taps, and extended hours.  It's a nice addition to the existing space. An official grand opening isn't planned until after the new year. Beers are pouring now though. 

Current tap list
Also planned is an upcoming release party for the Ninkasi & Stone Brewing collaboration, The Alchemist More Brown Than Black IPA.  The story behind The Alchemist is available on Stone Brewing's blog. This release event is set tentatively for January 19th. 

Stop by and enjoy some great beers while picking up some holiday refreshments. Just tell them the "mayor" sent you. 

Craft beer is sexy!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Meet the Geeks: Illinois Edition: Sarah Stegeman of Hoppy Beer Girl

Name: Sarah Stegeman 

Hometown: Volo, IL

Favorite Beer: Ommegang Biere De Mars

Favorite Beer Haunt: US Beer Company

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? Spotted Cow, I thought that it was one of the best beers I had ever tasted and why didn’t they serve it at bars by me… I was visiting my cousin in college.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: Not yet… But I love to try other people’s homebrews.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? Twitter suggested you to me.

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Talking about beer, sharing my love/obsession with the world and trying new beers whenever possible.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? I want to show people that beer is a integral part of our history, society, and culture and is not something that is only for hairy men an shouldn’t be provided only by mass distributors. Beer is as American, if not more, than Apple Pie (actually German in origin) and baseball (derived from cricket which is English)

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? I am jealous of Portland’s Craft beer scene! I want to go and enjoy the entire thing, absorb the enthusiasm and love of beer that I hear about… alas we don’t have a huge Craft Beer culture in Illinois, but I am hoping to help that with my blog.

Where can we find you on the web? 

You can check out my blog at, find me on Twitter, or find me on Facebook

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Guild Public House Grand Re-Opening

Portland, OR Dec 14, 2011 – The Guild Public House is having a Grand Re-Opening on Friday December 16th at 4:00 p.m.

Recently the trio of Kenny Hill (Trebol Restaurant), Justin Akins (Vintage Cocktail Lounge) and Daniel Roy purchased The Guild Public House from Jesse Cornett and Molly Aleshire.
Kenny Hill and Justin Akins
While trying to remain true to the original concept of local beer, good food and a comfortable atmosphere, we have made a few changes. Most notably being a new menu and a whisky-centric approach to our liquor.

Rotating Tap List
We also have our “Two fingers and a back” program in which we pair each of our draft beers with a shot that we feel will compliment the beer.

New Menu
The rest of the changes you will have to come down and see for yourself.

I hope to see some of you at this opening. Feel free to stop in for an honest pint. Just tell them the #pdxbeergeeks sent you. 

The Guild Public House
1101 E. Burnside
Portland, OR 97214

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : Mike Wright

I caught up with Mike the other night at The Commons opening, and he was nice enough to do our interview series. Please meet Mike owner/brewer of The Commons.

Name: Mike Wright

Hometown: St. Helena, CA. I grew up around wine.

Favorite Beer: Oh, crap, I struggle with this one. On school nights I often find my way to a simple, clean American pale ale. Orval is definitely at the top of my list though.

Favorite Beer Haunt: This really depends on what part of town I'm in, but since I spend most of my time in close-in SE I guess I would say Beermongers. It's low-key which suits my personality.

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you
I'm certain it must have been Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, though there was a fair amount of Pete's Wicked around too. I'd mostly been consuming wine and crappy beer at that point so SNPA was super flavorful. I think it may have taken a few before I was hooked.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: I have home brewed for a number of years, but that has waned since starting the brewery. The nano system still gets a lot of use though, and that's basically home brewing. Favorite home brew? I brewed a Belgian blond ale with cherries a few years back. That beer was awesome. Dry, highly carbonated and slightly tart.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? I first heard about pdxbeergeeks via twitter. There was a fair amount of chatter going on around PDX Beer Week.

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Despite the fact I've done a fair amount of home brewing, was inspired by beer enough to open a brewery, and can talk at length about beer, I don't self identify as a beer geek. I think of myself more of a joe-schmo. I like lower alcohol, easy drinking, approachable beers. I think I may have just blown my cover.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US,
what would it be?
That the rest of the nation would be more like Portland where craft beer is the norm. That good quality, flavorful beers was abundant and local pubs, and bottle shops dotted every corner. At that point it's more about community. I think we've lost that in our strip-mall-ridden landscape.

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? Well, there's lots to love. It's an island in many respects, which is killer, but a bit disappointing at the same time. I guess it really comes down to the people. The people are interesting and fun to be around.

Where can we find you on the web? 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Holiday Beers! Stuff your stockings with 22s!

Oh, the let-down... What glorious special releases at the Holiday Ale Fest! Now, the dirth of holiday ales can leave a beer geek feeling sad and blue, after all the excitement and mirth of last weekend... While over 50 beers were available for our tasting pleasure at the Holiday Ale Fest, they're rarely available or portable for overall holiday enjoyment past the weekend of the festival... But just as you're ready to lock yourself in the bathroom and cry your way through a box of Kleenex, hope appears on the horizon! Step away from the PBR Tall Boy. There's help for you.

Luckily enough, seasonally inspired brews are one of the best things about our region; brewers come together to present some special editions and barrel aged brews that geeks in other parts of the beer drinking world would not find. So never fear! The elves have been hard at work, and we're lucky to encounter a few that are easily accessible and readily available. These aren't so far off the beaten path of most palates, making them perfectly sharable (and quaffable for even the greenest of beer fans).

Whether you're a seasoned #pdxbeergeek (cheers!) or just dipping your toes into the wide world of craft beer (welcome!), here's a list of my top ten craft beers for every man and woman (sorry, children) this holiday season. Share these with those you love and show you care; pick up a growler or carry a couple of bombers to parties, warming your bellies and the hostesses' hearts. Here, the brewery descriptions of five great holiday beers, and my own asides to further stretch your burgeoning brew experiences:

Hopworks Kentucky Christmas - "Kentucky Christmas is an organic AbominabAle Winter Ale aged on freshly emptied Kentucky Bourbon barrels. It features a floral, spicy and citrus hop aroma backed by a complex, yet subtle, fruity hop flavor and just the right amount of malt sweetness. This beer will have you whistling "Dueling Banjos" in no time!"  

(if you can't find Kentucky Christmas, AbominabAle Winter Ale is delicious - hoppy, resiny, a great foil to many traditional foods. AbominabAle is available at bottles shops around town.)

Ninkasi Imperiale - "Strong, dark and brooding, Imperial Stouts were originally crafted by the British to survive the long journey to Russia through rain, sleet, and snow. Full bodied and surprisingly smooth, Imperiale Stout has a big roast hit up front, and rich, dark malt flavors balanced by ample hop bitterness."  

(Imperiale comes in a seasonal 4 pack of 22 ounce bottles with Total Domination, Believer Double Red and Sleigh'r Dark Double Alt, a perfect party pack or hostess gift. While Imperiale is my top pick this season out of the box, Sleigh'r is always a great go to beer.)    

Oakshire Ill Tempered Gnome - "Take a little gnome home this winter! However, don’t put him in the front yard. The neighbors might steal him & he’ll definitely lose his cool! He’s a malty, hoppy brown ale of pure winter deliciousness. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!"  

(Oakshire's Overcast Espresso Stout is another delicious and very holiday worthy brew. I've shared this with many friends, beer-experienced and newbie alike, and all complement the chocolatey, roasty flavors of Overcast.)  

Lompoc C-Sons Greetings - "Brewed and dry-hopped with all seven “C” hops. A deep copper color with a piney, citrusy, floral and resinous aroma. Full hop flavor with a rich caramel malt finish and an endless developing hop presence."  

(Be sure to stop in to a Lompoc location to try out Blitzen, their spiced golden ale. Refreshing and delicious! While not typically a fan of spiced ales, Blitzen was one of my top faves at the Lompoc holiday ale event. Sparkling and bright.)    

Deschutes Jubel Ale - "A dark, malty celebration ale with layered flavors and beautifully balanced hopping. Jubelale pours deep garnet in color, medium bodied, with notes of chicory, earth, spice and fruit. To beer lovers, it’s like Yule fire and family. The collaborative art of Central Oregon artists Cara Thayer and Louie Van Patten adorns this year's label."  

(For a special gift, pick up a bottle of Deschutes' The Abyss - a gloriously aged and deliciously complex stout. This one is fantastic to tuck away for a year and save for a special occasion! I was fortunate enough to have a dear beer friend bring a bottle of aged Abyss to Thanksgiving dinner. Exquisitely molasses, rich, and velvety!)

No matter what you choose, craft beer is a great choice for the holiday table. With so many choices, you're sure to find one to suit any palate, so enjoy experimenting and finding your favorite holiday combinations!


This post originally posted in Milwaukie Rules! on December 8, 2011

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : Vasili Gletsos

I had the pleasure to meet Vasili the other night at The Commons opening, and he was kind enough to do an interview for our blog. Please give a warm #pdxbeergeeks welcome to Laurelwood's head brewer.

Name: Vasilios (Vasili) Gletsos

Hometown: West Chester, PA, not that I have any relatives there

Favorite Beer: Stock answer is anything made well, but beyond that, I feel like every beer has a perfect time. The beers I talk about as favorites are mostly bound to a period in my life or place or something else that has no bearing on the beer other then it was well made and met me where I was at. That being said Gale’s Prize Old Ale, while the Horndean brewery was still open.

Favorite Beer Haunt: I really like a couple places that have opened up in my hood. Hop and Vine has great food and a relaxed atmosphere. Saraveza is a great place to meet up for a beer with a friend. I’m a big fan of both.

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? The first American craftbeer I had was probably while I was living in Portland, Maine. It was probably some Shipyard, like Old Thumper, or Chamberlin’s Pale or Gritty’s Black Fly Stout, or Geary’s Hampshire Ale.

What did you think? My early recollections were that it was a fine and flavorful thing to have, like a nice cheese or bread or olives. I liked it but didn’t become obsessed until much later on when I was touring around. I tried some imported beers that really expanded my concept of what beer was. Then when I found out I could make it, I was thoroughly engaged.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: It has been a while, but I do still homebrew a few times a year. My favorite was probably an abbey single I would drink the hell out of. There are some others I have made that are a close second but I love it when you pull a glass, take a sip and are so delighted that you start topping it off right away.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? I am not very familiar with the organization, but I met Michael recently and he told me about them. Before that, I had seen some stickers, etc.

What does being a beer geek mean to you? I think beer is historically and culturally knit into the fabric of society. I also think we specifically are at a significant time and place for making and drinking beer. I approach each beer with the possibility of being delighted, inspired, unimpressed, puzzled, disgusted or any other reaction on the spectrum. I think approaching beer and brewing in this way makes me kind of geeky.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? Attitudes and taboos around drinking, everything from the legal drinking age to stupid narratives that are used to sell beer and generally dumb things down.

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? This is an easy one: the people! Brewers, Beer enthusiasts, connoisseurs, home brewers, bloggers, industry folks; they are all so great to know and have interesting perspectives and are an important part of what makes brewing in Portland so rich and rewarding.

Where can we find you on the web? We have a website for where you can check out what we are up to as well as sign up for weekly news updates, friend us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter (@laurelwood1), or check out our past and present Brew News on Youtube.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Uptown Market Homebrew Supply: Grand Opening Saturday!

Special thanks to Ted for sending this our way, and to John Foyston for giving us the good word! See John's article in The Oregonian - "Uptown Market Homebrew Supply Grand Opening Saturday, Uptown Market, 6620 SW Scholls Ferry Road, Beaverton

Uptown Market carries nearly 500 bottles of beer – NW regional beers, but also many hard to find national and global brews. In addition, Uptown will offer an extensive home brew supply section, brewing classes, kegerator sales/rentals/installation and six taps for sampling and growlers. Grand opening festivities this Saturday include six local breweries onsite, with kegs on tap, including Natian, Coalition, Cascade Lakes Brewery, The Commons Brewery, Portland U-Brew and Amnesia. In addition to sending brewers to talk about the beer, each will be providing tastings and pouring growlersplus they'll have two wine distributors onsite for tastings. Instead of cutting the ribbon, at 10:30 a.m. Beaverton Mayor Dennis Doyle will opening the store with an extra-large bottle opener... "

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : @Brewpbulic

Angelo at Sodbuster Hop Farms

Next up in our Meet the Geek series is Angelo aka @Brewpublic. Angelo is a valuable resource for beer happenings in the City of Roses.

Name: Angelo M. De Ieso II

Hometown: Dover-Foxcroft, Maine

Favorite Beer: Impossible to decide, though I do have a strong affinity toward Berlin-style sour ales.

Favorite Beer Haunt: Saraveza

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? Probably Boston Beer Co.’s Samuel Adams Boston Lager

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: Yes. I am fond of my Rooibos Red Ale, a unique amber ale brewed with African redbush tea.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? I am an avid craft beer enthusiast and advocate and I can’t help but run into my friends at various palatable hot spots.

Would you eat hops?
What does being a beer geek mean to you? Championing imagination and creativity as well as celebrating the endless cast of characters who make it a reality.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? I would love to see craft beer continue to win over the hearts of drinkers of fizzy yellow swill.

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? What’s not to love? I love the people, the beer, and the infinite nuances that it offers.

Where can we find you on the web?


Angelo and Sarah of Saraveza fame

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Lompoc/Shmaltz Team Up for Holiday Beers!

Lompoc Brewing Logo       

Lompoc Brewing and Shmaltz Brewing team up
for two events featuring Chanukah and Christmas beers

PORTLAND, Ore. - Dec. 7, 2011 - Two breweries from two different sides of the country have come together to deliver the public an amazing array of holiday beers. Portland's own Lompoc Brewing has joined forces with Shmaltz Brewing Co. of New York to present "8 Malty Nights: The Ultimate Chanukah Beer Release" on Dec. 14 at 6 pm at Lompoc Sidebar, 3901 N Williams Ave; and "Chanukah vs. Christmas: The Battle Royale of Beers" on Dec. 17 at 5 pm at the Green Dragon, 928 SE 9th Ave.

BBA 8 Malty NightsKnown for its impressive number of holiday beers (10 this year!), Lompoc Brewing is hosting a release party on Dec. 14 for 8 Malty Nights, Portland's only Chanukah beer. Lightly hopped with English style hops, this dark brown chocolate rye features a roasted chocolate flavor and a sweet finish. The party will also celebrate the release of Shmaltz's annual Jewbelation anniversary ale. Named in honor of Shmaltz's 15th anniversary, Jewbelation 15 is brewed with 15 robust malts, 15 unique hops, and weighs in at 15% ABV. Lompoc will also serve its Port Barrel Aged Brewdolph, Cherry Christmas, Bierz Brown and C-Note on tap. As with all of Lompoc's release parties, there will be complimentary appetizers to accompany the beer.

Jewbelation 15Three nights later on Dec. 17, "Chanukah vs. Christmas: The Battle Royale of Beers" comes to the Green Dragon. Shmaltz Brewing will be serving Jewbelation 15; Genesis 15:15, a 13.4% barley wine brewed with pomegranates, figs, dates and grapes and aged for 9 months in Sazerac Rye barrels; Hop Manna Test Batch #2, Shmaltz's new unreleased IPA; Vertical Jewbelation, a barrel-aged blend of all seven Jewbelation recipes; and Geektoberfest, a blend of seven beers from Shmaltz, Ithaca and Captain Lawrence that served as the official beer for New York Craft Beer Week.

Lompoc Brewing will be serving 8 Malty Nights; 2010 Franc'ly Brewdolph, a Belgian red aged for one year in Cabernet Franc barrels; Cherry Christmas, a blend of four different unique beers; Old Tavern Rat, a dark, amber colored barley wine aged for nearly a year prior to its release; and Bourbon Barrel Aged C-sons Greetings, a deep copper colored beer with caramel and resinous hop notes that was aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels.

If that's not enough, prepare to compete for the master of the Spinagogue, as the event hosts an official Major League Dreidel tournament - the longest spin wins!

Representatives from both breweries will be on hand at both events to talk with the public and answer questions about the beers. For more information, visit or L'chaim!

* thanks to Chris Crabb, Media Relations Specialist for Lompoc, for keeping us in the loop and sending the above information!! Cheers! 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Bryan Keilty: StarChefs Rising Star

Lompoc Brewing Logo       

Lompoc Brewing's Bryan Keilty takes top honors
at StarChefs Rising Stars Artisan Awards

PORTLAND, Ore. - Dec. 7, 2011 - Bryan Keilty, production manager and brewer at Lompoc Brewing, has received the "Rising Stars Artisan Award for Brewers" from, an online magazine for culinary insiders. Keilty received the honor at the 2011 Portland Rising Stars Tasting Gala and Awards Ceremony Dec. 5 at The Nines Hotel.

The Rising Stars awards traditionally recognize up-and-coming chefs, pastry chefs, sommeliers, and mixologists from around the country that represent future leaders of the national culinary scene. Portland's pioneering spirit motivated the magazine to include another four categories: baker, brewer, distiller and coffee roaster.

"The artisan spirit of Portland inspired us to add four exciting new awards to our existing group of culinary and restaurateur awards," explained StarChefs CEO/editor-in-chief Antoinette Bruno. "The last three highlight the outsize national influence, DIY spirit, and serious ambition of the Portland craft beverage community."

Keilty won out of a list of influential brewers in the Portland craft brewing scene that included Alex Ganum of Upright Brewing, Alan Sprints of Hair of the Dog, Ben Love of Hopworks Urban Brewery, and Ron Gansberg of Cascade Brewery.

"I'm humbled to be accepting this award," states Keilty. "I was honored just to be included as a finalist among this talented group of people, and I'm so proud to be a part of this amazing brewing community in Portland."

Keilty is a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. He spent several years cooking at various restaurants throughout the country. It was while cooking in San Diego that he developed a series of successful wine and beer dinners and began homebrewing. He caught the beer bug and decided to start brewing professionally. He moved to Portland, eventually landing at Lompoc Brewing, where he initiated the brewery's barrel-aging program. He ages Lompoc beers in Bourbon and wine barrels, creating inventive and complex beers and opening up a whole new slew of possible flavor profiles.

This was the first time included Portland in its annual awards. The city joins the ranks of rising stars in New York, Chicago, Houston and Washington DC.

Rising Stars are up-and-coming chefs and culinary professionals who represent the vanguard of the contemporary American dining scene. They have strong, compelling culinary philosophies, are able to see beyond the four walls of their restaurant, and are committed to fostering a culinary community by sharing their knowledge with fellow professionals. Ultimately, creativity, ambition, exquisite presentation and, most important, delicious food wins a chef the designation of StarChefs Rising Star. They are the future of American cuisine.

For a complete list of winners, visit

* thanks to Chris Crabb, Media Relations Specialist for Lompoc Brewing, for keeping us in the loop with the above information! Cheers! 

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : Sean Burke

A brewer in their natural enviroment
I was fortunate to meet Sean the other night at The Commons Brewery (formerly Beetje) opening. For those who don't know, Sean is the brewer for The Commons.  It's a great location and addition to the Portland beer scene. I know several of us are excited to see what The Commons has in store for the future...

Name: Sean Burke

Hometown: Portland, Or.

Favorite Beer: Orval

Favorite Beer Haunt: Too many great choices/depends on what part of town I’m in.

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? Black Butte Porter, I was blown away that it had so much flavor.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: Yes, a German Pils.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? Through friends

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Seeking out and enjoying quality and craftsmanship

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be?  Mass consumption

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? Educated consumers demanding consistent quality

Where can we find you on the web?

My work:

My blog:


Sunday, December 4, 2011

Holiday Ale Fest 2011

There's little time left to enjoy one of the Pacific Northwest's favorite seasonal ale fests - Holiday Ale Fest's last day is winding down as we speak. What a great time - we slid in with no line at 11:45a on Saturday, and remarking on the well lit and warm tents, proceeded to cruise around with no problem; enjoying several very delicious beers.

Below, my very informal notes - I really enjoyed seeing several fellow #pdxbeergeeks wandering around, and the consensus was that although the evenings tended to bring a different (dare we say, fratty) crowd to the event, most serious beer folks I talked to were raving about the organization of the event, the layout, the early attendance (going early = little to no crowds!) and best of all, THE BEER!

Firestone: Bourbon Barrel Aged Velvet Merkin - smooth, but not remarkable. well balanced w bourbon but lost stouty characteristcs... i would have liked a bit more substance.

Oakshire: The Nutcracker - slightly smoky, deep good mouthfeel

Seven Brides: Drunkle 2011 - dunkel, fruity, bright

Laht Neppur: Laughing Boy Stout - pretty good, chocolatey and chompy

Lagunitas: Old Gnarley Wine - deep raisin fruit flavors

Bison Brew: Marmalade - orange top notes belgian, needs more body; while I really like this, I wish that it drank more like a tripel, more velvety

Black Diamond: Bourbon/Brandy Imperial Porter - needs more mouthfeel

Hopworks: Kentucky Christmas - love! resiny & hoppy

Deschutes: Super Jubel - hoppy, roasty

Burnside:  Barrel Aged Permafrost - smooth, slightly tart, delicious strong ale

Stone: Ruination IPA DDH w Appolo Hops and American Oak Chips - mushroomy & loamy, the oak stomps on the hops

Note to #pdxbeergeeks: I was so sad that when I got to the festival that they had run out of programs. I'd neglected to really study the program online ahead of time - and because of the combination of my own unpreparedness and the popularity of the festival programs, I missed a few beers that I really wish I'd tried. Never underestimate the power of doing your homework! (but of course, I don't have to tell YOU guys that...)

The Commons: Little Brother Strong Ale
Ninkasi: The Little One
Laurelwood: Corsican Christmas Ale
Elysian: Bye Bye Frost
Bear Republic: Winter Chocolate Wheat

Well? Did you all get there? What did you think? Which were your favorites, and were there any you regret missing?