Monday, April 30, 2012

Oregon Garden Brew Fest Recap

We #pdxbeergeeks had a wonderful time at the Oregon Garden Brewfest - what a fun event, with tons of great beers, lots of our friends, and a great opportunity to experience some fun music. The Oregon Garden is one of the most picturesque settings for a Brewfest that we've encountered, and can'twait to go back. 


Congratulations to Mary, Brittany, and Chris for the success of this event. The attendance was outstanding and we geeks heard many wonderful things about the accommodations, the service, and the Garden itself. Thanks for including us! 


                                                                                                                     - emily & michael


Oregon Garden Brewfest 
Oregon Garden Brewfest raises a glass  
to record attendance at 8th annual event

SILVERTON, Ore. - April 30, 2012 - The 8th annual Oregon Garden Brewfest smashed attendance records this past Friday & Saturday, with more than 6,000 people rolling through the gates, nearly double last year's record of 3,200. Attendees came from all over the northwest to sample from more than 90 handcrafted beers and ciders from 45 different breweries.

"We were thrilled that so many people made the drive to Silverton to enjoy our festival," stated event coordinator Mary Ridderbusch. "Our beer selection and our amazing music lineup makes this festival worthy of the visit, no matter where you're from."

The People's Choice, as determined by votes cast at the festival, was a last minute entry by Gigantic Brewing. The City Never Sleeps, a black saison, was the debut of Gigantic Brewing, the collaboration of Van Havig and Ben Love, two rock stars in the Portland brewing scene who will open the doors to their production brewery in SE Portland in a few weeks. Other crowd favorites included Uinta's Duhbe Imperial Black Ale, Seven Brides Brewing's Becky's Black CatPorter and Calapooia's Chili Beer.

The two-day event kicked off Thursday night with an inaugural Brewer's Tasting Dinner, a six-course tasting featured small plates paired with beers from six Northwest breweries. Brewing industry members mingled with craft beer aficionados at the intimate event, which featured a short introduction by each of the brewers about that particular beer prior to it being served.

Another popular activity was a presentation given both days by Women Enjoying Beer, a research based education and marketing company that develops and serves female (and male) beer consumers. Founder Ginger Johnson helped the enthusiastic crowds learn how to better enjoy their beer at the festival by talking about beer's color, aroma and flavor.

The Oregon Garden Brewfest took place under twinkly white lights in the Frank J. Schmidt Pavilion on the grounds of the Oregon Garden, with spillover in an outdoor clear-topped tent. Attendees were welcome to stroll through the lush landscaping of The Oregon Garden in-between drinks. Crowds squeezed together to enjoy the music of a number of local bands, particularly Saturday night's headliner Blitzen Trapper.

Many attendees took advantage of The Oregon Garden Resort on the grounds and booked rooms right up the hill from the festival. The Oregon Garden Resort, a Moonstone Hotel property, offers 103 rooms overlooking The Oregon Garden and offered special brewfest package deals.

"Oregon is known for its craft beers and ciders, but most of the big festivals celebrating them are in Portland, Eugene and Bend," said Ridderbusch. "It's great to offer a festival in the central Willamette Valley for our neighbors, and at the same time introduce beer lovers from out of the area to the beauty of The Oregon Garden."

The Oregon Garden Brewfest always takes place the last weekend in April. The 9th annual event will take place April 26 & 27, 2013. To stay informed, visit www.oregongardenbrewfest.blogspot.com.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

F.H. Steinbart Co. Participates in AHA Big Brew



F.H. Steinbart Co. Participates in AHA Big Brew on May 5, 2012


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Boulder, CO. April 10, 2012 A celebration of National Homebrew Day, known as AHA Big Brew, is now in its 15th year. F.H. Steinbart Co. will host a local site on May 5, 2012.

Organized by the American Homebrewers Association (AHA), AHA Big Brew celebrates National Homebrew Day, honored on the first Saturday of May. AHA Big Brew brings together thousands of homebrewers from around the world, all brewing the same beers simultaneously. More than 5,000 homebrewers from North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, South America and Australia are expected to participate this year.

F.H. Steinbart Co. is happy to invite anyone interested in homebrewing to stop by from 9am to 4pm on Saturday, May 5, 2012 to join the fun!

F.H. Steinbart Co.
234 SE 12th Ave.
Portland, OR 97214
www.fhsteinbart.com
Call 503-232-8793 or email info@fhsteinbart.com for more information.

Homebrewers may register their AHA Big Brew sites online at HomebrewersAssociation.org. On May 5, friends and family gather to brew one or both of the two AHA Big Brew recipes. At noon Central time, homebrewers raise their glasses of homebrewed ales and lagers for a simultaneous toast to homebrewing, a hobby that hundreds of thousands of people around the world enjoy.

“AHA Big Brew highlights what is so special about homebrewers—their friendliness, interest in sharing with others, passion for beer, and of course, their affinity for having fun.” said Gary Glass, AHA Director.

For more information on AHA Big Brew, please visit the Events section of homebrewersAssociation.org or homebrewersassociation.org/pages/events/national-homebrew-day

The American Homebrewers Association has worked on behalf of the homebrewing community since 1978 and celebrates a membership of more than 30,000 homebrewers. The American Homebrewers Association (AHA) organizes events including the National Homebrewers Conference and National Homebrew Competition. The AHA also publishes Zymurgy magazine. The AHA is part of the Brewers Association, whose Brewers Publications division is the largest publisher of contemporary and relevant brewing literature for today’s craft brewers and homebrewers.

Follow the AHA on Twitter, and join us on Facebook.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Meet the Geeks: Corvallis Edition: Dave Marliave

I had the pleasure to meet Dave a few weeks ago on my visit down to Flat Tail. Such a knowledgeable brewer. You can meet Dave this Thursday from 6-8pm at The Guild Public House for the Meet the Brewers event. Stop by and show them some #pdxbeergeeks love! 

Dave Marliave
Name: Dave Marliave

Hometown: Oregon

Favorite Beer: Impossible question to answer.....How about I give you eight?
1. Monchshof Schwarzbier
2. Westy 8
3. Laurelwood Wry Pale
4. Cantillon Lou Pepe
5. Breakside Salted Caramel Stout
6. Reissdorf Kolsch
7. Gouden Carolous Blau
8. Avery Fifteen

Favorite Beer Haunt: Again, too damn many to choose from, but it is certainly hard to beat a Catfish Po'Boy and a pint at Roscoe's. 
 
What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? Wolavers Oatmeal Stout. Blew my mind. My parents used to let me take sips of their drinks at a young age and I always wanted to try new things. The first few samples he gave me were wine, a few of which I apparently spat back into the glass. They thought the same thing would happen with beer, so they mockingly poured me a shot glass of Oatmeal stout. It was basically the greatest thing since candy at that point, and as I grew older I was allowed more freedom to explore craft beer styles. 
 
Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: I used to homebrew 4-6 days a week, even through my employment at Oregon Trail and Fire Mountain. Unfortunately, or really fortunately, at Flat Tail, I get to brew things normally relocated to crazy homebrew batches every week...I even made a fuckin Journey tribute. That said, my favorite homebrews were probably my Seaweed Wheat Stout, Kolsch, and Dunkelweisse.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? I met them

What does being a beer geek mean to you? I'd like to think of myself as more of an "enthusiastic fermentor".....

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? More of it. My ultimate goal is to see a neighborhood pub in every...well, neighborhood. Beer used to be a part of day to day life. i'd like to see beer be a part of a healthy diet and lifestyle, not socially regulated to weekends and lawn mowing sessions. 
 
What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? I love being able to walk into a brewery like Breakside and grabbing something nuts like a beet bier de garde, then jogging over to Saraveza for a pasty and a pale. Its diverse enough that you can have something completely new one day, and hang out at your favorite regular bar the next.

Where can we find you on the web?
www.flattailcorvallis.com
Twitter: @Flat_Tail_Brew
Facebook: Flat Tail Brewing Co.

Monday, April 23, 2012

News From Elysian Brewing Co.

Elysian Brewing Company
Press Release



Elysian and Sub Pop Winning with Loser Six-Packs

Now in its fourth year of celebrating Sub Pop Records' twentieth anniversary with Loser Pale Ale, Seattle's Elysian Brewing announces the release of this year's Loser in twelve ounce bottles. Six-packs of Loser will hit shelves on May 1. Look for it in local stores cool enough to carry it.

Loser is a distinctive pale ale brewed with Sorachi Ace and Crystal hops, weighing in at 7% abv. Its first brewing in 2009 was a collaboration between Elysian and Sub Pop, and was served backstage at the indie label's celebration festival held at Marymoor Park, where such classic Sub Pop acts as Mudhoney, Low and Green River played, along with more modern stalwarts such as Iron and Wine and the Fleet Foxes. Bottled Loser bore the slogan "Corporate Beer Sucks," a reference to the shirt (Corporate Rock Sucks) worn by Kurt Cobain when Nirvana first graced the cover of Rolling Stone. It has come back every year since as a summer seasonal, with later labels reading "Corporate Beer Still Sucks," a nod to the second Nirvana RS cover appearance.

Both the Loser six-pack carrier and mother case box are generic white with stencil-effect lettering like the crates holding touring bands' equipment. There's no end of cleverness when local alternative institutions like Sub Pop and Elysian get together!

-Dick Cantwell

AVAILABILITY
Summer Seasonal - Hits shelves and taps MAY 1, 2012

Friday, April 20, 2012

Getting Mellow In the Pearl

 "Mel O. Mushroom"
After visiting Portland, and falling in love with the city, Jim and Cindy Waters relocated from North Carolina. In October of 2011 a new-to-Portland restaurant opened in the the Pearl District, the first Mellow Mushroom on the west coast. Its origins are firmly embedded in the southern U.S. When I mention Mellow to other people, they get really excited to hear one has finally opened in town. Its fun environment and relaxed atmosphere will do very well in its location. The grand opening is set for May 2012. 

After going here for the first time almost a month ago to check it out, I've been back several time, enjoying each and every visit. It's worth the trip downtown to try it out. In fact feel free to join us with #pdxbeergeeks this Saturday April 21st from 3-6pm for a family friendly event. Mellow Mushroom has graciously offered up $2 pints, free pizza, and a free beer mug to the first fifty people in attendance. Hope to see you all there!
 


14th & Flanders

Hosting an assortment of fifty beers on tap, and several bottled selections. 





Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : Jonathan Carmean

Jonathan and Amber
Name: Jonathan Carmean

Hometown: Toledo, Ohio

Favorite Beer: Avec Les Bons Voeux

Favorite Beer Haunt: Saraveza

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? Bell's Cream Stout on Nitro. I was a Guinness man until that moment.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date:  N/A

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? You, Michael!

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Appreciating the culture surrounding a beverage that provides so many different experiences both on the palate and interpersonally with other folks who dig it too.

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? Pretension. It counteracts the love.

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? The people involved. They're the best folks you could ask to work and play with.

Where can we find you on the web? Facebook

Monday, April 16, 2012

Eastburn and Migration Dinner = Win


Last week my wife and I were fortunate enough to be invited to attend the Eastburn and Migration Brewing Pork Belly Dinner. I had never actually been to a dinner beer pairing before, so this was quite a treat for us. Instead of doing a lengthy write up, let me just share the event with pictures. Enjoy!

The setting

Fire made it good.

Clem's Cream Ale

Preparations

House cured pastrami Gravlox

Pork belly with jicama, pear slaw, and natural jus.


Coffee IPA. Yum

The menu
Special thanks to Eastburn and the crew from Migration. Everything was excellent! I can't wait to attend future dinners.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Hopworks : New Release for Cheers to Belgian Beers


Thanks to Hopworks for this delightful update - something new and delicious to look forward to! 



"Debuting on draught at Portland’s Cheers to Belgian Beers on April 21, this new series of bottle conditioned beers features classic European styles through our own Northwest perspective. The first in this series is an Abbey Ale. The second in the series is a Belgian Pale Ale, launching in July.

Hopworks Organic Belgian-Style Abbey Ale

Made with this year's PCTBB yeast, Abbey is made with five different organic malts and organic dark brown sugar, resulting in a complex multi-layered aroma.  The flavor is equally rich with a caramel malty sweet, fruity flavor finished with effervescent carbonation and a smooth, warming alcohol finish."



ABV: 6.5%           
IBU: 18  
Plato: 20

Bottles available May through June 2012.

Pints Brewing Company Grand Opening April 13th

Special thanks to guest writer Doug Smith for attending this event and representing #pdxbeergeeks. Also on a side note, tonight is the grand opening! Stop in and show Pints some #pdxbeergeeks love! 

The Old Town district of Portland once again has its own brewery. PINTS Brewing Company is the first brewery to open in Old Town since Liberty Brewing Company, which was opened in 1852 by Henry Saxer. It’s been a long time coming, and it’s been worth the wait.

Owner Chad Rennaker has spent a lot of time in Denver, frequenting Great Divide Brewing. He wanted to implement many of Great Divide’s features while designing PINTS, envisioning a small, low-key venue with somewhat limited food options that is primarily about the beer; a true destination for the craft beer geek and causal beer fan alike. It seems his vision has definitely been realized. Coffee shop by morning and “urban taproom” by afternoon and evening, PINTS is an inviting, warm space with low lighting, exposed wood beams, and old brick walls that greet you immediately upon entering. There is currently seating for around twenty-five in the main front area, with additional seating at the bar. There is one flat screen TV in the corner.

Rennaker admits that he is not necessarily a beer expert, so he has enlisted the help of Zach Beckwith to take ownership of the brewing operations. Beckwith, formally a brewer for New Old Lompoc, aims to create beers “that aren’t pretentious, and that you are able to get again and again.” As their story describes, “PINTS is dedicated to old school Northwest and British inspired ales using the best quality base and specialty malts, along with Oregon grown hops.” All beers will be brewed on their 3.5 barrel system, utilizing four 7-barrel fermentation tanks, as well as a cold conditioning room in the basement. The system was created with the assistance of Craig Nicholls of Turnkey Brewery Consulting. Their ten taps will always consist of a selection of core beers, as well as seasonal ales that, according to Beckwith, “actually follow the seasons.”

I had the opportunity to sample four of their core beers, as well as two of their current seasonals. The core beers were PINTS Tavern Ale (a sessionable Northwest ESB), Red Brick Rye (a copper-hued American style rye pale ale), Steel Bridge Stout (a complex American style stout brewed with seven malts), and Seismic IPA (a dry-hopped and unfiltered Northwest IPA). The two seasonals were the as of yet unnamed Northwest red ale (they are holding a contest to determine a name), and the Legalize Wit (a classic wit beer which was a collaboration with Lompoc). All six of their offerings were extremely solid, and there is definitely something for everyone. Beckwith’s favorite style is stout, so look for some great roasty dark beers coming from PINTS in the very near future.

Beckwith plans to experiment with the use of various base malts, which is not all that common in the Portland brewery scene. Rather than using only a couple of base malts in all of his beers, he will use a variety of malts that truly compliment the styles. This should provide a very distinct range of flavors, mouthfeels, and aromas. The yeast strains used will also rotate between various American Ale and English Ale yeasts.

Despite what many people have heard, PINTS will not just be about session beers. While they do intend to create session beers on a regular basis, they will also focus on bigger beers to continue providing a variety to their customers. Their first true session beer will be the upcoming “Thomas Trotter IPA.”

Future plans include expanding the seating area into the brewery so that patrons may enjoy their beers right in the area in which they were created. You can’t get any closer to the source than that! Beckwith also plans to brew a beer for this summer’s North American Organic Brewers Festival, which will be a summer IPA called “Green Line,” named for PINTS’ direct proximity to the green Max line, as well as its status as a “green” (organic) beer. There will be a food menu, however; the kitchen is still under construction.

Beckwith’s goal is to “try to get people to think a little bit more about what’s in their pint glass.” If they can accomplish that, then he feels that they will have succeeded. With a great location right on two MAX lines, a very inviting space, and their excellent beers, that shouldn’t be difficult at all.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Oregon Garden Brewfest Tasting Dinner

I for one am very excited to be invited as media for this years Oregon Garden event and Brewer's Dinner. After reviewing the menu, which beer/food combo would you be excited about? Personally I'm excited for the Gigantic pairing. 

From press release - This year’s Oregon Garden Brewfest will kick off with a Brewer’s Tasting Dinner on April 26 at 7pm, the evening prior to the festival’s opening. A six-course tasting will feature a small plate paired with a beer tasting from one of six area breweries. The event will be attended by participating brewers and industry insiders; there are also a limited number of tickets available to the public for $40 apiece. Tickets are available online at http://oregongardenbrewfest.blogspot.com. The menu for the dinner is as follows:



Now in its 8th year, the Oregon Garden Brewfest has established itself as one of the foremost beer festivals in the Willamette Valley, and a favorite in the Northwest. This year’s event will take place April 27 and April 28 from noon to 11 p.m. each day at The Oregon Garden’s J. Frank Schmidt Jr. Pavilion. The festival will feature nearly 95 handcrafted beers and ciders from 45 different breweries spanning from Silverton’s backyard to across the Atlantic.

For more information, visit http://oregongardenbrewfest.blogspot.com. Cheers!

A Hidden Gem In Corvallis... Flat Tail Brewing


What to do on a warm spring day, with no kids to keep alive? Take a road trip of course! I found myself heading south to Corvallis to check out Flat Tail Brewing. Ever since falling in love with the English IPA from the Seriously Low Budget Series I've been wanting to try more of their offerings.

Nestled along the waterfront in downtown Corvallis


Not for the green and yellow at heart

Not your typical tap list

Tasty

Seven barrel system with room for fermentation



Lots of room for cellaring.
Everything here was a win, certainly worth the trip. Friendly service, and great hospitality. Some real stand outs from the tasting were the Big Fin Baltic porter, and the Wild Blonde. The Wild Blonde is available now in the Low Budget series. Grab a bottle while you can, and enjoy this wonderful sour, a great introduction to the style.

If you would like to learn more, and sample some of their fine offerings, I suggest you save the date. Thursday April 26th from 6-8pm.  The Guild Public House along with #pdxbeergeeks are hosting a "Meet the Brewers" event. Stop in and show Flat Tail some #pdxbeergeeks love. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spring Is In The Air With Lompoc Beer


This week I was fortunate to join other members of the blogosphere to sample some spring offerings coming to Lompoc Brewing over the next few weeks.  Special thanks to Lompoc Brewing for hosting this event, and letting #pdxbeergeeks be part of it.

Jerry reminiscing of the New Old Lompoc location set for demolition this spring. 
Heaven’s Helles
Heaven’s Helles is a golden straw-colored German style pale lager with a floral aroma and a clean, crisp finish. 5.3% ABV

Brewed with an experimental Mexican lager yeast strain. It really come across as light, sweet and crisp. An enjoyable beer. Worth checking out!


1060 EZ Taxation Ale
1060 EZ Taxation Ale is made with pale malt and corn, using Noble hops in the kettle. It's light straw in color, with a malty nose and a mildly sweet mid-mouthfeel provided by the corn. It has a light, dry, crisp finish. 6% ABV

Brewed with 30% corn and lightly hopped. Deceivingly light and crisp, yet filled with flavor. Probably my favorite of the lot. 

Cherry Bomb
Cherry Bomb is our Proletariat Red fermented in Maryhill Winery Port barrels with 40 pounds of sour cherries. It has a big cherry aroma with a fruit forward flavor, finishing dry with a touch of oak. 6.2% ABV

It's a pretty well known fact I'm not a fan of sours. Although this offering isn't overly tart, very well balanced, and goes down easy. Certainly another one to seek out. 

Kick Axe Dry Hopped Pale Ale
Our tribute to the Timber’s Army, Kick Axe is a crisp, easy drinking pale ale that was dry hopped in the fermenter with Cascades, giving off a huge hop aroma. 5.2% ABV

The recipe is different then last year.  More hops were used in the dry hop. Also now to be a year round offering in the Lompoc lineup. I really enjoyed this year compared to last. More of lingering hop finish in the end. 

Valley of Hops IPA
Valley of Hops is a classic NW style IPA with a mild body and tons of hops. Hopped with Centennial, Cascade, Cluster, Meridian, Perle and Crystal hops throughout, it has a huge hop aroma with a spicy finish. This pleasant IPA is deliciously drinkable. 5.8% ABV

Surprisingly enough this wasn't my favorite. Comes across a bit more bitter then I would have expected, with a rough finish.  It was one of the favorites at the table though, so don't let me steer you away from seeking this out. 

Ryeteous Badger Belgian Style Red
Ryeteous Badger is a very spicy, full flavored and intense Belgian style ale. The extreme spiciness comes from the addition of malted rye and a ton of hops. It is full-bodied, yet easy drinking. 5.2% ABV

This one comes across as a lot stronger then it actually is. I would have guessed it to be about 7% ABV. It is sweet and lightly smokey taste, with a lingering after taste I wasn't able to identify. I did enjoy this offering as well. 

Stout Out Loud
Stout Out Loud is a mix between a Dry Irish Stout and an Oatmeal Stout. It is pitch black in color with slight hints of coffee, chocolate and roast flavors, and features a creamy mouthfeel. 4.1% ABV

Yet another table favorite. Rich, creamy, with hints of chocolate and coffee. Very enjoyable! A possible replacement to the regular offering of Sockeye Stout. 


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Interview Series : Meet the Geek : Chris Shifman

Name: Chris Shifman

Hometown: Portland, Oregon for nearly two decades, but originally northern New Jersey (yes, Sopranos country!)

Favorite Beer: There is no simple answer to this is there? By region I guess I would go with Lucifer from Brouwerij Het Anker (Belgium), Hobgoblin from Wychwood Brewing (England) and nearly anything from 7 Stern Brau (Austria). Here at home I am currently loving Ft. George’s stuff (especially the Sunrise Oatmeal Pale Ale) out of Astoria and Elk Head Brewing’s beers. They are a small brewery that does all unfiltered stuff out of Buckley, Washington.

Favorite Beer Haunt: Roscoe’s on SE Stark is a gem. Other favorites include The Green Dragon, The Horse Brass Pub and The Muddy Rudder.

What was the first craft brew you ever tried? What did you think? It was a MacTarnahan’s offered to me by a shrewed and insightful friend at Jake’s Grill in early 1995. He mentioned “citrusy” and I thought he meant a beer with a lemon wedge! One pint and I was hooked. I had never had a hop-forward beer before and within a year I was a full blown beer geek.

Do you homebrew? If yes, favorite homebrew to date: No, though I have had homebrewing friends generous enough with their time and patience let me “sit in” on the process from time to time. I do believe it brings a whole other perspective to the beer drinking experience.

How’d you hear about the pdxbeergeeks? Hmmm. I’m not sure. Either at a beer event or somewhere out in the World Wide Webiverse.

What does being a beer geek mean to you? Loving the beer scene(s), learning as much as I can about all the wonderful brews out there by reading, talking and (especially) tasting and promoting the beers I love and craft beer as a whole while trying to avoid being preachy, proselytizing or pedantic! 

If you could change one thing about beer culture in the US, what would it be? It is, i think, a little too easy to pick on the “big boys” and the macro industry. I would love to see a little less negativity from those supposedly “in the know” towards regional craft beer institutions like Deschutes, Bridgeport and McMenamin’s. I hear folks put these places down as if it somehow bolsters their craft brewing street cred or something. Apart from the fact that brewers like these are the foundation of our regional craft brewing industry and scene, and rather directly responsible for the wealth of amazing beer we have available to us right now, I find myself wondering when, exactly, was the last time many of these “critics” actually tried a beer from one of these brewers and if these same ‘critics” are even aware of the variety of beers brewed by at these places? It is not just Hammerhead and Mirror Pond (and there is nothing wrong with those to boot)!

What do you love about Portland’s Craft Beer scene? Besides the sheer quality and range of the beer it would have to be the number of wonderful beer events we have here in the Rose City. Hardly a week goes by where something interesting is not happening in the beer scene and we are especially privileged to have access to some really unique events.

The Fresh Hop Festivals in early October are something that is unique to a hop growing region such as ours. The rare taste of a truly fresh hopped beer, whether a wet hopped take on an existing brew or an entirely new recipe made just for the hop harvest, is something you really only see here in Cascadia.

An event like the upcoming 6th Annual Portland Cheers to Belgian Beers Festival (April 21st) is an event that, to my knowledge, has no parallel anywhere else. Dozens of brewers all brewing individual and different beers, but all using the same yeast strain! The range of styles, colors and flavors is just stunning. True heaven for a beer geek.

Roscoe’s does a “Summit” on the final Friday of each month and there is always a unifying theme. Sometimes it will be as “simple” as “German beers” or “IPAs” (the summit theme for April, by the way), and even then (Roscoe’s owners) Jeremy (Lewis) and Quyen (Ly) will pull some amazing stuff out of the cellar, but other times it will be truly unusual in theme - something like “All Belgian styles from Oregon brewers” or “Favorite new breweries in the Portland Metro area”. And this happens EVERY month in Portland!

Where can we find you on the web? Facebook, Beer Advocate, City Search.

Monday, April 9, 2012

New Release : Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout from Widmer


WIDMER BROTHERS BREWING RELEASES RASPBERRY RUSSIAN IMPERIAL STOUT ’12
Second Release in Alchemy Project Series of Cellarable Craft Beers

PORTLAND, Ore. – March 28, 2012 – Widmer Brothers Brewing has released Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout ’12, the second offering in the brewery’s recently launched Alchemy Project, a series of three bold, vintage-dated craft beers that can be enjoyed immediately, but are brewed to improve with age. 

Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout was first brewed by Widmer Brothers Brewing in 2008 for the Portland Holiday Ale Festival. In the summer of 2011, Widmer Brothers brewers discovered a barrel of the initial batch, which was known as Babushka’s Secret, in the brewery’s cellar. After tasting the beer and realizing how well the beer aged with time, the brewing team decided to brew the beer again as part of the Alchemy Project.  Beginning this year, Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout will be released once a year as part of the project. 

“This is our unique interpretation of the Russian Imperial Stout style, with the addition of red raspberries during the fermentation process,” said Ben Dobler, brewer at Widmer Brothers Brewing. “The use of Midnight Wheat gives this beer an extra layer of complexity, and the antioxidant-rich red raspberries give this beer storage-ability and age-ability.”

Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout ’12 will be available in 22-oz bottles and 1/6 barrels beginning April 9.

About Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout ’12

Tasting Notes
·         Slight fruit tartness
·         Smooth mouthfeel
·         Chocolate and roasty aromas
·         Hop complexity to balance malt character

Ingredients
·         Malts: Pale, Roast Barley, Caramel 60L, Midnight Wheat, Chocolate Malt
·         Hops: Alchemy for bittering, Willamette and Cascade for aroma
·         Red raspberries

Profile
·         Original Gravity: 21.5 P
·         Apparent Extract: 5 P
·         IBU: 70
·         ABV: 9.3%
·         Color: 90 SRM

About the Alchemy Project
In late 2011, Widmer Brothers Brewing launched the Alchemy Project, a new series of high-end, bold, vintage-dated beers that are brewed for cellaring. Like fine wine, Alchemy Project beers can be enjoyed immediately, but the process of cellaring and aging these beers contributes to enhanced flavor profiles and complexities as the beers evolve with time. This series showcases that evolution. 

The series was launched with the release of Barrel Aged Brrrbon ’11 last year, a follow-up to Barrel Aged Brrrbon ’10, which was initially released as part of the Widmer Brothers Brothers’ Reserve Series. The Alchemy Project will include three specialty limited-release craft beers each year. Each will be released in limited quantities and the same three beers will be released every year. Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout is the second release in this series. The third beer, which will be released this summer, is yet to be announced. 

About Widmer Brothers Brewing
What started as a dream for two ordinary brothers who just loved beer has now become a reality for two ordinary brothers who still just love beer. Kurt and Rob Widmer helped lead the Pacific Northwest craft beer movement in 1984 when, in their 20s, they dreamed of brewing unique interpretations of traditional beer styles. In 1986, Widmer Brothers Brewing introduced the first American-style Hefeweizen; today, the unfiltered cloudy beer is the company’s signature brew and one of the best-selling wheat beers in the country. Based in Portland, Ore., the brewery currently brews a variety of beers including Drifter Pale Ale, Nelson Imperial IPA, Rotator IPA Series, Drop Top Amber Ale and Pitch Black IPA. For more information about Widmer Brothers Brewing, visitwww.widmerbrothers.com.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Race Day at APEX : Sunday April 8th


A note from Jesse at APEX: 

Howdy suds & 2-wheeled fans, If you love world class beer and watching the best riders in the world give it their all, you're in for a treat this coming Sunday.  We've got two events we'll be showing and cheering on at APEX that each represent the pinnacle of their respective disciplines on 2 wheels.


Sunday, April 8th 11AM-1PM.

First off:  The big show, MotoGP, the premier class in the world of motorcycle road racing returns from the off season with a few surprises. This year marks the return of the big engines, 1000cc displacement. That's a liter to you and me, so we'll be celebrating by selling Veltins Pilsener and Bayreuther's Aktien Original Helles Lager in 1 liter (1000cc) mugs for $1.50 off regular price! More power, more excitement and a shake up across the field should make for a hell of a race in Qatar for the only night race of the season. 


and then...

Sunday, April 8th, 4-7PM



Up next:  Known as the "Hell of the North", the Queen of the one day spring classics, we have the legendary Paris-Roubaix. First run in 1896, this punishing race sends the best in professional cycling over 160 miles of French back roads, including 27 separate sectors of brutal cobblestones covering 32 miles throughout the race. Since the course winds along the border with Belgium, we thought it'd be appropriate to bust out a really special keg for the occasion. We'll be tapping an exceedingly rare keg of T' Gaverhopke Koerseklakske to kick off the race.


It's going to be some beautiful weather this Sunday, so go for a ride and then get to APEX to cheer on the pros.  See you there!

** Thanks to Jesse for sending this over! These beers and races look like an exciting combination! 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Oregon Garden Brewfest! Coming Soon!




Oregon Garden Brewfest offers ideal spring getaway, with more than 90 handcrafted beers & ciders, live music and great room deals

From press release - SILVERTON, Ore. - Now in its 8th year, the Oregon Garden Brewfest has established itself as one of the foremost beer festivals in the Willamette Valley, and a favorite in the Northwest. This year's event will take place April 27 and April 28 from noon to 11 p.m. each day at The Oregon Garden's J. Frank Schmidt Jr. Pavilion, 879 W Main St. The festival will feature more than 90 handcrafted beers and ciders from 45 different breweries spanning from Silverton's backyard to across the Atlantic.

Located in the historic town of Silverton, 45 miles south - just over an hour's drive - from the Portland metropolitan area, the Oregon Garden Brewfest will also feature games and activities, live music, food, beer trivia and tasting lessons by Women Enjoying Beer, a Brewer's Tasting Dinner, a Connoisseur Tasting and a homebrew competition presented by Capitol Brewers.

Two stages will offer live music both days from well-known Northwest bands. Friday's lineup includes Tiffany Kuenzi, Brownish Black, Ben Rue, The Ty Curtis Band, Celilo,Symmetry/Symmetry, Violet Isle and Tango Alpha Tango. Saturday's lineup includes Jamalia,WEINLAND Acoustic, Quiet Life, Blitzen Trapper, Matthew Price, Frame by Frame, Battleme, Denver, Old Light and The Dimes.

A one-day advance tasting package cost $15 and includes admission for one day, a tasting mug, 7 tasting tickets, and express entry. A two-day advance tasting package costs $25 and includes admission both days, a tasting mug, 14 tasting tickets, and express entry. Tickets at the door cost the same, but include only 5 tasting tickets for one day, 10 tasting tickets for both days, and no express entry. A full mug of beer costs 4 tickets, a taster costs 1 ticket. Additional tasting tickets may be purchased at $1 apiece. Minors are welcome on Saturday only until 3PM. Tickets are available at www.oregongardenbrewfest.blogspot.com.

The first annual Brewer's Tasting Dinner will take place on the eve of the festival, April 26 at 7 p.m. This six-course tasting will be attended by participating brewers and industry insiders. Each course will be a small plate paired with a beer tasting from one of six area breweries. There are a limited number of tickets available to the public for $40 apiece.

A Connoisseur Tasting will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on April 27 and feature many brewers at their booths engaging with attendees. This tasting is included with Friday admission.

For those from out of the area who wish to make a night of it, The Oregon Garden Resort is offering two room packages: the Brewer's Dinner Package for $199 includes a room on Thursday night, two tickets to the Brewer's Tasting Dinner, breakfast Friday morning, two tasting glasses, 10 tasting tickets and food vouchers for the fest. The Brewfest Package goes for $139/Thur and $169/Friday and includes all of the above except for the Brewer's Dinner tickets. Saturday is sold out. Call 503-874-2500 to make reservations.

For a complete list of participating breweries and beers, a detailed entertainment schedule, or more information about the event, visit www.oregongardenbrewfest.blogspot.com

This is event has been on my radar for the last few years, but I've never made the trip. This year I'm able to attend as a media outlet. In return for dinner, hotel accommodations, and festival pass I have promised to help promote, and review the event. Which I am more then happy to do. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

HerStory: Women in Beer at Mellow Mushroom!




Women Enjoying Beer Event at Mellow Mushroom


What: Great beer, free pizza, served with a slice of women-powered history! This informal event serves as a meet and greet for beer-loving people, and will include a fascinating presentation by Women Enjoying Beer founder Ginger Johnson called HerStory: Women in Beer. 

Who: NOT JUST FOR WOMEN! Men are more than welcome (and heartily encouraged) to attend.

When: Thursday, April 5th from 6 to 8 pm

Where: Mellow Mushroom 1411 NW Flanders St.

How Much: Free pizza and presentation. The first 50 attendees will receive a free beer mug.

I, #pdxbeergeeks co-founder Emily, will be on hand as Event Stormtrooper for Women Enjoying Beer. 
While fully acknowledging that this is not a #pdxbeergeek created event, the invitation to come and have pizza and beer with friends is extended to each and every one of you geeks! I want to see you! 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

ChurchKey Can Co : Portland Release Party & You're Invited!



Portland release party for Churchkey Can Co 
Thursday, April 5 
7p - 10 p
Dig a Pony 
736 SE Grand Ave

Monday, April 2, 2012

Biere de Garde Bottle Release at Cheese Bar


From press release - We're really excited to announce our first seasonal bottle release. Our Biere de Garde was inspired by the farmhouse beers brewed in Northern France and our friend Steve Jones, Proprietor and Cheesemonger at Cheese Bar in Portland, Oregon. When Steve was lamenting about the dearth of food friendly Biere de Gardes in our area we took that as a cue to develop a beer that would fill the gap. Traditionally, Biere de Garde was brewed in Winter and early Spring while the climate was cooler, then garded (lagered) during the cool months, and reserved for consumption during the summer. This beer offers a soft and clean, malt forward flavor with a reserved hop profile.

On Wednesday, April 4th, we'll be at Cheese Bar from 6-9PM to celebrate the release. Biere de Garde will be available on draft and Cheese Bar will have bottles at a discount on the night of the release. We'll also have bottles available for sale at our Tasting Room beginning this weekend. Hours are Friday 5-9PM and Saturday 4-9PM.

Also on Wednesday at Cheese Bar, beginning 7PM, our brewer, Sean Burke, will be spinning some of his favorite old country western records as part of Cheese Bar's Brewer DJ Night.