Opening Day at North American Organic Brewers Festival '13


For the first time in its 9 year history, the North American Organic Brewers Festival opened on Thursday. And what a day it was! Beautiful weather, great music, and wide open spaces. Oh, I should also mention the organic beer and NO LINES!  

If you missed opening day, don't worry. You have all weekend to attend. Visit the NAOBF website or my previous post for the beer list, timings, and other details.

I won't list the many beers I sampled, but here are my three favorites: 

  • Oak Aged Seizoen Bretta, Logsdon Farmhouse Ales:  At NAOBF '11, I tasted Logsdon's Seizoen Bretta for this first time. This year, I tasted the Oak Aged version. Amazing!  This beer is usually distributed in 750 ml bottles, so don't miss the chance to taste it for a single token! I couldn't leave until I had a second taste. 
  • G++ Ale, Ambacht Brewing Co.: This Belgian Strong was aged in Heaven Hill whiskey barrels that previously contained Hair of the Dog's Cherry Adam. The fruit and whiskey meld beautifully with mild funk. My favorite of the festival! You'll pay double tokens, but it's worth it. I also had a second taste of G++. 
  • Totally Radler, Hopworks Urban Brewery: Part lager, part lemonade, totally delicious!  Radlers (aka Shandies) are rapidly growing in popularity. Totally Radler has the benefit of not being overly sweet. This was a late entrant to the festival and isn't even listed in the event program.
Once again, a great time was had by the entire family. The only problemat 9pm, we all had to go home!  Already looking forward to next year...

What were your favorites?

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Review: Superfuzz Blood Orange Pale, Elysian

Superfuzz Blood Orange Pale
Elysian Brewing Co. — Eugene, OR

  • Style: Pale Ale
  • Bitterness: 45 IBU
  • ABV: 5.4%
  • Malts: Pale and Munich
  • Hops: German Northern Brewer and Cascade
  • Special Ingredient: Blood Orange
  • Sampled: 12 oz. bottle

Description: Call it Orangesploitation.— Elysian Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  Back in February, Elysian announced the release of Superfuzz. The folks at Elysian are masters of brewing with unusual ingredients. This beer isn't the first time they've used Blood Orange. They also used it in one of the releases in their 12 Beers of the Apocolpyse series.  I'm drinking Superfuzz as part of my series on summer seasonal beers.

The tasting: Golden orange in color, hazy, with a white head that dissipates fairly slowly. Aroma of sweet orange and light caramel.  Taste starts with bitter grapefruit hops. In the middle, bready and caramel malt are prominent. While I can smell sweet juicy orange in aroma, I don't taste it. Overall hop bitterness is fairly high. Alcohol is not noticeable in aroma, but comes through in taste. Superfuzz is medium bodied and finishes with lingering grapefruit and a touch of alcohol.

Rating:  3 star. Good. I would drink this again if someone gives it to me.  Overall, Superfuzz is a nice beer. However, I wish the blood orange was more prominent in taste. Its cause isn't helped by the strong grapefruit hop bitterness, as I expect it masks the delicate blood orange flavors. 

Have you tasted Superfuzz?  How did you like it?

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Review: Sterling, Ninkasi Brewing

Ninkasi Brewing Co. — Eugene, OR

  • Style: German-style Pilsner
  • Bitterness: 30 IBU
  • ABV: 5.1%
  • Malts: Pilsner
  • Hops: Sterling
  • Sampled: 12 oz. bottle

Description: Sterling Pils is a German-style Pilsner brewed with North American ingredients — including Sterling hops from Washington, Premium Pilsner malt from Montana and Idaho, and some of the best brewing water in the world from the Pacific Northwest. — Ninkasi Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  Sterling is part of Ninkasi's Prismatic Series and I'm tasting it as part of my series on Summer Lagers.

The tasting:  Bright yellow golden in color, clear, with a white head that dissipates slowly. Aroma of grain, corn, and hay. Taste is similar to aroma with addition grassy and spicy hops as well as a touch of lemon. Alcohol is not noticeable in aroma or flavor and hop bitterness is moderate. Sterling is light bodied, has an effervescent mouth feel, and finishes with grainy malt and spicy hops.

Rating: 3 star. Good. I would drink this again if someone gives it to me.  Sterling is light, crisp and refreshingperfect for summer! It's nice to see more Oregon breweries adding lagers to their lineups. I need to try Lady Avalon and Helles Belles, two of Ninkasi's other Prismatic releases. 

Have you tasted Ninkasi's Sterling or any of the other Prismatic lager? How did you like them? 

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Review: Sweet As Pacific Ale, GoodLife Brewing

Sweet As Pacific Ale
GoodLife Brewing Co. — Bend, OR

  • Style: Pale Ale
  • Bitterness: 18 IBU
  • ABV: 6%
  • Malts: NW 2-Row, White Wheat, Vienna
  • Hops: Pacifica, Galaxy
  • Sampled: 12 oz. can

Description:  Why name a beer "Sweet As"? This beer is 100% brewed with hops from the Pacific. In New Zealand, "Sweet As " can be used to describe a fishing hole, a ski run, a sunset glowing behind a mountain or a set of legs that happen to be walking in front of you. Sweet As means "Really Good." Now, let your imagination go wild and think how often you could say Sweet As to describe your GoodLife. We make this beer to say, "Cheers to all the Sweet As experiences in life."Try this beer and good luck not having another...... it's Sweet As! — GoodLife Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  In March, GoodLife announced the release of two beers in 12 oz. cans.  I tasted and wrote about  GoodLife's Descender IPA and today I'm tasting Sweet As Pacific Ale.

The tasting: Medium gold in color, slightly hazy, with a white head that dissipates fairly slowly. Aroma of sweet tropical fruit—pineapple and mango. Flavor of grapefruit and bread along with light caramel that provides a bit of malt sweetness in the middle. Alcohol is not noticeable in aroma, but a touch is present in taste. It has a moderate level of bitterness—more than what's implied by its 18 IBU rating. Sweet As Pacific Ale is medium bodied, has a sticky resinous mouth feel, and finishes with lingering grapefruit hop bitterness.

Rating: 3 star. Good. I would drink this again if someone give is to me.  As a homebrewer, I'm amazed by the sheer number of new hop varieties that are released each year. Kudos to GoodLife for showcasing some of the unique hops of Australia and New Zealand.

Have you tasted GoodLife's Sweet As Pacific Ale?

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Review: Descender IPA, GoodLife Brewing

Descender IPA
GoodLife Brewing Co. — Bend, OR

  • Style: IPA
  • Bitterness: 70 IBU
  • ABV: 7%
  • Malts: NW Pale, Briess Bonlander Munich, Weyermann Melanoidin, Crystal 60, Weyermann Carafoam
  • Hops: Centennial, Chinook, Cascade, Galaxy, Warrior
  • Sampled: 12 oz. can

Description: The descent from the top of the mountain to the bottom should be exhilarating. Whether it's a gradual descent or a screaming race that gets you to the bottom, this beer is created to help you enjoy the experience. Life is loaded with peaks and valleys, where we associate the valleys with the reward post ascending the peak. Like the flow of the stream slows in the valley, put the cell phone away, sit back and relax with this IPA, and enjoy the journey. This beer is a hop lover’s dream that has balance you will appreciate. We created it for you so you can take time out from the rigors of life and descend to a valley full of hops – sounds good, no, great! — GoodLife Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  Back in March, GoodLife announced they would release Descender IPA and Sweet As Pacific Ale in 12 oz. cans. I've heard good things about Descender and finally get to taste it!

The tasting: Amber in color, hazy, with a white head that dissipates slowly. It's full of bright hoppy pine and grapefruit aromas. The taste begins with an onslaught of hop flavors (which mirror aroma) and caramel malt. Alcohol is not present in aroma, but is noticeable in taste. Hop bitterness is high, but it's not overdone as the solid caramel malt backbone balances the bitterness. Descender is medium bodied, has a slightly effervescent mouth feel, and finishes with caramel and grapefruit.

Rating: 4 star. Really Good! I want this again!  This is a delicious beer that stands toe to toe with Oregon's finest IPAs. That fact that it's available in 12 oz. cans, makes it even better! Next up is Sweet As Pacific Ale... 

Have you tasted GoodLife's Descender IPA? 

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Vertigo Tap Room — Hillsboro, OR

Vertigo Brewing is on a roll. They have expanded brewing capacity, started distributing several beers in 22 oz bottles, and recently inked a deal which will bring their new Closer Pale Ale to Hillsboro Hops home games. Best yet, they opened a taproom adjacent to their brewery!

In operation for about a year, the Vertigo Tap Room has attracted quite a following. I recently visited on a Friday afternoon, and the place was hopping! Sorry, had to do it...

Vertigo Tap Room
21420 NW Nicholas Ct.
Hillsboro, OR 97124
Website and Facebook

The Beer:
  • Taps:  12 drafts, featuring Vertigo beer plus a guest tap for cider. 
  • Standard Pour:  16 oz. for $4.
  • Taster Tray:  Yes! You can select four or six 5 oz. beers.
  • Bottles:   Some of Vertigo's bombers are available.
  • Growlers: Yes.

Vibe:  Casual taproom (21+ only) tucked away within an industrial park. Bright airy indoor space with lots of tables and a few picnic tables outside. You're likely to find people engrossed in board games while enjoying their beer.

Food:   No food is served, but you're welcome to bring your own. Food trucks are often on-site on Friday nights.

Specials:  $1 off all draft beers on Thirsty Thursdays (3rd Thursday of each month).  $1 off of Closer Pale Ale drafts on days the tap room is open during Hillsboro Hops home games (until 7 pm).

Miscellaneous MirthMovie nights and monthly cribbage festivals. Check their Facebook page for details. The taproom is available for private parties during non open hours.

Vertigo was one of the original players in the now rapidly growing Hillsboro beer scene. When I first visited Vertigo in November 2010, Mike Haines (Brewer and co-owner) was brewing 1 barrel batches! Since then, they upgraded to a 7 barrel brewhouse. But with the rapid growth, Mike told me the 7 barrel system is starting to seem small! 

During my visit, I tasted their new Closer Pale Ale. I was surprised to learn this is Vertigo's first-ever pale ale. It features bright hoppy flavor and it's not too bitter. Perfect for a lazy afternoon at the ballpark--or Tap Room!

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Closer Pale Ale

9th Annual North American Organic Brewers Festival!

I love this time of year. Portland's summer beer festival season is in full swing! The Portland Fruit Beer Festival was held last weekend. Up next is the North American Organic Brewers Festival, which will be held June 27 - June 30 in Overlook Park.

In its 9th year, this festival keeps getting better! For the first time, a fourth day of organic beer quaffing goodness has been added! Details for the festival are listed at the end of this post. To view the full taplist, you can see the NAOBF website or download the full Program Guide which contains detailed descriptions for each of the beers.

While there are MANY beer festivals in Portland, in my opinion, there are only two that are EXTREMELY family friendly. NAOBF is one of them. The wide open spaces at Overlook Park and the mellow vibe at this event set it apart from the others. When you add the free Crater Lake Root Beer Garden (for minors), and the Kids' craft tables, it's a no brainer! My entire family looks forward to visiting NAOBF each year.

To get an idea of what you can expect, here are my recaps from NAOBF '12 and NAOBF '11. So remember... Drink Organic, Save the Planet, One beer at at time. Works for me!

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9th annual North American Organic Brewers Festival Celebrates Organic Beer and Sustainable Living
Most earth-friendly beer festival on the planet will serve up more than 60 organic beers and ciders

PORTLAND, ORE – March 18, 2013 – An eclectic mix of more than 15,000 beer lovers, music fans and supporters of sustainable living annually come together the last weekend of June to “Drink Organic, Save the Planet, One Beer at a Time” at the North American Organic Brewers Festival. This year, they'll have an extra day to celebrate, as the 9th annual event will take place June 27th through 30th at Overlook Park in North Portland, marking a first-time expansion to four days. Event hours are Noon to 9pm Thursday through Saturday and Noon to 5pm Sunday.

Admission into the event is free. The purchase of a $6 reusable, compostable cornstarch cup is required for tasting beer, as are tokens, which sell for $1 apiece. A full cup of beer or cider costs four tokens and a four-ounce taste costs one token; select beers cost double tokens. Patrons receive a $1 discount toward the tasting glass with a validated Tri-Met ticket, a ticket from the Hopworks Bike Corral or three cans of food for the Oregon Food Bank (limit one discount per person). The NAOBF benefits the Overlook Neighborhood and the Oregon Food Bank.

Designed to raise awareness about organic beer and sustainable living, the NAOBF typically serves up more than 50 organic beers and ciders from 40 different breweries. The breweries do not have to be certified organic, or even produce organic beers for their pub; many of the breweries represented at the festival choose to brew a one-off just for the event. Styles run the gamut from Belgian Whites to Cascadian Darks, offering something for every palate. There's also live local music, organic food, sustainability-oriented vendors and non-profits, a soda garden with complimentary Crater Lake Root Beer for minors and designated drivers, and a children's area with face painting and activities. The NAOBF is a family friendly event, and minors are welcome with parents.

The NAOBF is known as the most earth-friendly beer festival on the planet. Festival attendees sample beer from reusable and compostable cornstarch cups made from domestically grown corn by a zero-waste, solar-powered company. Electricity needs are met with a combination of biodiesel and solar generators. Volunteers receive organic cotton t-shirts (returning volunteers can wear past T shirts and get extra tokens instead). Food vendors are required to use compostable cutlery and plates and employ sustainable practices, and onsite composting and recycling stations are provided for festival waste and are supervised by recycling czars. The event typically keeps at least 90% of the more than 2,000 pounds of waste generated from going into the landfill.

Why an organic beer festival? Studies show that the world's population currently consumes 30% more natural resources than the Earth's ecosystems can replenish. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, commercial agriculture is accountable for 70% of the pollution in our country's rivers and streams. Genetically modified ingredients can be found in nearly every grocery store. The NAOBF believes that education and exposure lead to awareness, and awareness can translate to passion. If everyone becomes passionate about sustainability, as a whole we can make the planet a cleaner and healthier place for all of us to inhabit. For more information visit

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Review: Stumptown Tart '13, BridgePort Brewing

Stumptown Tart '13
BridgePort Brewing Co. — Portland, OR

  • Style: Belgian Ale w/ fruit
  • Bitterness: 21 IBU
  • ABV: 7.8%
  • Malts: Pilsner and wheat
  • Hops: Not specified
  • Sampled: 22 oz. bottle (provided by brewery)

Description: Each year, BridgePort Brewing Company chooses a different fruit to include in its limited edition beer, Stumptown Tart. With Oregon’s variety of incredible produce it can be a difficult decision. This year, the brewery turned to an Oregon favorite – blueberries. These indigo berries were blended with Oregon grown raspberries and blackberries, creating a brew that is rich in color and in taste. — Bridgeport Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  I look forward to the annual release of Stumptown Tart. It's different each year. This edition features a trio of berries. For more details on previous releases, see Stumptown Tart '12 and Stumptown Tart '10.  

The tasting:  Pinkish-orange in color, hazy, with a white head that dissipates fairly slowly, leaving plenty of lacing on the glass. Aroma of wheat and raspberry. Taste starts with wheat and tangy berry. Raspberry was most prominent, but I also noticed notes of blueberry. In the middle, Belgian spice flavors come through, but they're mild and not overwhelming. As a result, they complement and do not compete with the fruit. Some light herbal hop bitterness also emerges in the middle. Alcohol is well masked. Stumptown Tart is light bodied and has a lively effervescent mouth feel. It finishes with raspberry and notes of spice from the Belgian yeast.

Rating: 4 star. Really Good! I want this again!   Stumptown Tart '13 has great berry flavor, but avoids being overly sweet. In addition, its 7.8% ABV is stealthy. Finally, it nicely balances fruit and Belgian spice flavors. These factors combine to make an easy drinking  and delicious beer that's perfect for summer!

Have you tasted Stumptown Tart '13? 

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Review: New Albion Ale, Samuel Adams Brewing

New Albion Ale
Samuel Adams — Boston, MA

  • Style: Pale Ale
  • Bitterness: 30 IBU
  • ABV: 8.0%
  • Malts: 2-row Pale blend
  • Hops: Cascade
  • Sampled: 12 oz. bottle

Description: Jack McAuliffe’s pioneering spirit paved the way for the American craft beer revolution. We’re re-releasing his original Pale Ale, with its distinct American hop character for the first time in 30 years in honor of Jack and his contributions to craft brewing. Cheers!  — Samuel Adams Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  This is a special bottle of beer. It contains a bit of history and provides us a taste of one of the first "craft" beers. Samuel Adams, in partnership with McAuliffe, resurrected New Albion Ale. Here are some links where you can learn more about the history of New Albion Brewing Co. and the re-release of this beer. It seems almost sacrilegious to review it, but what the heck...

The tasting: Golden straw in color, slightly hazy, with a white head that dissipates fairly slowly. Aroma of grain, cereal, and light grapefruit hops. Taste starts with bready malt. In the middle, grassy and herbal hops provide a moderate level of bitterness. Alcohol is not present in aroma, but touch is noticeable in the middle. Hop bitterness is moderate. New Albion ale is light bodied, has a creamy mouth feel, and finishes with bread, yeast, and grassy notes. 

Rating: 3 star.  Good. I would drink this again if someone gives it to me.  New Albion Ale provides a unique glimpse, and more importantly—a taste of the very beginnings of craft beer in America. This special limited release was distributed in January 2013, so it might be hard to find. If you're a fan of good beer and / or beer history, don't miss the opportunity to taste this beer if you can find it!

Cheers to Jack McAuliffe, beer pioneer!

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Beer Run: Summer Lagers

Before moving to Portland over a decade ago, my beer experience was limited to industrial macro pilsner lagers. To say I didn't like them would be an understatement. I despised them. So strong was my distaste, that I didn't even go near any lagers when I started this blog nearly three years ago.  Since then, I've come full circle. I've learned lagers expand well beyond pilsners. More importantly, I now know that a well made lager can taste amazing!

Lager is a broad category with many styles. I pulled together a group which should make for some good summer quaffing!

Have you tasted any of these? What's your favorite lager? 

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Review: 541 Lager, Hop Valley Brewing

541 Lager
Hop Valley Brewing Co. — Springfield, OR

  • Style: Pre-Prohibition lager
  • Bitterness: 13 IBU
  • ABV: 4.8%
  • Malts: Two-row, pilsner, and flaked corn
  • Hops: Liberty
  • Sampled: 12 oz. can

Description:  A crisp and refreshing American Lager — Hop Valley Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  This is the first beer I tasted from Hop Valley Brewing, located in Springfield, OR (home of The Simpsons). In case you're wondering, 541 is the Springfield area code. I'm drinking this as part of my series on lagers.

The tasting: Light golden in color and slightly hazy. It has a white head that dissipates fairly slowly, leaving lacing on the glass. Aroma of bread and corn, along with light spicy and herbal notes. Taste is very similar to aroma. It has a light malt sweetness in the front, which is quite nice. Alcohol is not noticeable in aroma or taste. Overall hop bitterness is low and most of the hop flavors come through in aroma. 541 is light bodied. It's crisp and refreshing and finishes with bready malt and spicy hops.

Rating: 4 star. Really Good! I want this again!  Thumbs up for my first Hop Valley Beer! If you want a lager with plenty of hop flavor, but not the bitterness, give 541 a try. I think I'll need to look for some of Hop Valley's other beers.

Have you tasted 541 or any other Hop Valley beers? 

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Review: Session Lager, Full Sail Brewing

Session Lager
Full Sail Brewing Co. — Hood River, OR

  • Style: Pre-Prohibition style lager
  • Bitterness: 18 IBU
  • ABV: 5.1%
  • Malts: Not specified
  • Hops: Not specified
  • Sampled: 11 oz. bottle

Description: Original Session, with the bright red label, is a classic all-malt pre-Prohibition style lager that reminds us of what American lagers used to taste like. It's flavorful, refreshing, and has a touch of that import-style taste. (Which, once upon a time, you didn't have to buy an "import" to get.) Oh, and it comes in a stubby, 11-oz bottle like your grandpa used to buy. So after your next session (surf, jam, gab, whatever), crack open a Session and drink to the good old new days. Named World's Best Premium Lager at the World Beer Awards and winner of a slew of other shiny trophies, Session has truly earned itself a place at the bar. Not to mention the barbeque.  — Full Sail Brewing Co.

Random thoughts:  Perfectly timed with summer, Full Sail recently started distribution of Session Lager in 6-packs. I'm drinking this as part of my series on lagers. In addition to the Session line (which includes Session Black and Session Fest), Full Sail also releases a line of rotating lagers as part of the LTD Series.  I recently wrote about thier LTD 05: Vienna-Style Lager.

The tasting:  Bottle stamped with an enjoy by September 22, 2013 date. Gold in color, crystal clear, with a white head that dissipates very quickly. Aroma of grain, bread and hay. Taste is very similar to the aroma. Alcohol is not noticeable in flavor or aroma and overall hop bitterness is very low. Session is light bodied, has a crisp mouth feel, and finishes with toasted grain and light hop bitterness.

Rating: 3 star. Good. I would drink this again if someone gives this to me.  While big hoppy beers are a lot of fun, it's nice to get back to basics and enjoy a simple, but refreshing beer. Now that summer is here, this is one to consider as your new "lawnmower" beer.

Have you tasted Full Sail's Session Lager?

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3rd Annual Portland Fruit Beer Festival Preview

Have a hankering for a cucumber beer? Perhaps you're craving a rhubarb cider. Or maybe a strawberry pie beer (complete with pie crust thrown into the brew kettle) would hit spot. If so, you must visit the 3rd Annual Portland Fruit Beer Fest this weekend at Burnside Brewing. Information about the festival as well as the complete taplist is included at the end of this post.

Freakish oddities aside, beers with fruit often get a bad wrap. At times, it's understandable. I've had my share of cloying industrial swill sweetened with fruit goo. It's unfortunate because, in the hands of a talented brewer, fruit can elevate an already great beer to a higher plain.

Last Friday, I attended a festival media preview where I sampled 8 of of the taplist offerings. As we tasted, the brewers who created the beers, gave us the back stories about each. Here's a bit about the 7 beers (and 1 cider) we sampled:

  • Ivill Krushu, Burnside Brewing:  Brewed with a California Common yeast strain and aged in Pacific Rum Barrels (from Bull Run Distillery), the mission figs and dates are wonderful complements to the roasted malt flavors.
  • Tiger Tonic, Hopworks Urban Brewery:  This IPA is oozing with tropical fruit aroma! Passionfruit, mango, and pineapple puree provide much of the flavor. However, a Belgian yeast strain and the hops also contribute to the fruit melee.

Christian Ettinger, Hopworks Owner & Brewmaster, talks Tiger Tonic

  • Alamosa, Alameda Brewing:  Light bodied with a bright orange aroma. Perfect for summer--or breakfast!
  • Pure Wit, Upright Brewing:  Brewed with the finicky French Saison yeast, this barrel aged beer was brewed with Blood orange, grapefruit, and Seville orange. It has a nice dry finish.
  • Rhubarbian Cider, 2 Towns Cidery:  2.5 tons of rhubarb were used to make 100 barrels of this cider! The rhubarb flavor is unmistakable and provides a wonderful tartness to this hard cider.
  • Cherry Wheat, Lompoc Brewing:  Cherry and port wine flavors play together nicely!
  • Berliner Weiss with Pomegranate, Widmer Brothers Brewing:  This 3.5% ABV beer was soured with lactobacillus in the mash
  • Bier Royale, Commons Brewery:  Inspired by a Kir Royale (a cocktail that combines champagne and Chambord), this beer was also soured with lactobacillus. Instead of using a lacto brewing strain, Sean Burke opened his fridge and used a dollop of Nancy's Yogurt to culture the lactobacillus used in this beer! Sporting a bright pink color from the black currant puree, this is one tart and tasty beer! If you like sour beers, don't miss this. Don't worry, no yogurt floaties were seen!  

Yogurt makes the Commons Brewery crew happy--very happy.

Most of the beers were brewed especially for the festival or are rare releases. As an added plus, many are low in alcohol and perfect for festival sampling. Don't miss this opportunity to try these unique beers! Feel free to bring your own cucumber for garnish.

For a glimpse of what to expect, here's my summary of the 1st Annual Portland Fruit Beer Festival.

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Portland Fruit Beer Festival
Saturday June 8th 11am - 9pm
Sunday June 9th 11am-9pm
General Admission package: $20, VIP tickets: $28
7th & E. Burnside, Portland, OR 97214

Portland Fruit Beer Festival organizers are proud to announce the taplist for the 3rd annual festival taking place June 8th and 9th at 7th and East Burnside. This years beer list may be the most diverse yet which reflects the fests attempts to diversify beer styles and varieties of fruit, brewers willingness to experiment with fruit and the public's embracing the comeback of the style.

The Main Stage Taplist
(These beers should be available on tap for the majority of the 2-day festival)


Alameda Brewing: Alamosa
The Alamosa is a pilsner with orange juice added. Just think about the early morning Mimosa. At 4.8% this will be the perfect beer to drink on a hot summer day, with the added bonus of some Vitamin C

Beer Valley Brewing: Oregonberry Wheat
A light, refreshing, tart fruitbeer brewed with 2-row barley, organic wheat malt, cherries, blueberries, and plums.  4% ABV.  4 IBU.

Block 15 Brewing: Psidium
Rustic farmhouse ale matured with guava fruit.  Blended with 33% barrel matured  wheat & farmhouse ales from our wild cellar. Brewed with Belgian Pilsner, French Pale & Wheat malts; Saaz & Citra hops; French farmhouse yeast. 6.2%alc/vol, 17BU

Breakside Brewery: Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
A berliner-weisse style beer brewed with whole baked strawberry rhubarb pies. Watch the video!

Burnside Brewing Co.
A Baltic Porter aged in Pacific Rum barrels with blueberries, golden figs, mission figs and dates.

Bushwhacker Cidery/Upright Brewing: Collaboration Blend
A blend starting off with Upright Brewing's Six a dark farmhouse rye beer that was then aged in wine barrels with Brett (wild yeast) and currants. It was then mixed 50/50 with Bushwhacker Cidery's Hazelnut Rum barrel Rose Hip cider. The blend was then added to a Big Bottom whiskey barrel, where it will only sit for about a week before kegging.

The Commons Brewery: Bier Royale
Sour spelt beer with black currents. ~6% abv. The name is derived from Kir Royale (cocktail)

Deschutes Brewery: Currant Event
Sour Baltic Porter. First we kettle soured a small batch of our Imperial Porter with our house lactic culture. Then we added Black Currants and blended it with a Baltic Porter conditioned with pureed raspberries  The result is a dark, fruited, tart glass of something eventful! ABV:  7.7%  IBU’s: 21

Falling Sky Brewing: Strobilus Berry Wheat Bitter                        
Looking for a summer pink drink? Overlapping berry character from a blend of raspberries and boysenberries provides a refreshing tartness and brilliant color balanced by a touch of malt and wheat sweetness.  ABV: 4.5%  IBU's: 18

Fort George Brewing: Forbidden Wonder Fruit Ale
For this year’s Fruit Ale Festival, Fort George decided to make a kiwi caramel beer.  Kiwis are known around the world by many names, but our favorite is the Chinese translation - ""Wonder Fruit.""  We made this caramel ale with Wyeast’s ""Forbidden Fruit"" yeast, infusing a sublte raspberry flavor. The Forbidden Wonder Fruit Ale has a lighter body that won’t distract the pallet from the layers of flavor that glide over the tongue.  Even with all of these great ingredients and flavors mixing together, the Forbidden Wonder Fruit Ale is not overly sweet, making it a beer that everyone can enjoy on a hot summer day.  6.7% ABV

Gigantic Brewing: Hey there Fruitcake!
Style: Fruitcake Beer. Fruit: Cherry, Apricot, Orange Peel (maybe cranberry too). Description:  Cherry, Apricot, Orange Peel and Ginger combine with this malty, caramelly beer to make Fruitcake in liquid form (not your aunts rock of a cake..).

Hopworks Urban Brewery: Tiger Tonic
Hopworks collaborated with Automatic Brewing Company of San Diego to create this stylistic hybrid of a Belgian IPA, Wit and fruitbeer. It’s a tropical cocktail of Passionfruit, Mango, and Pineapple and hopped with Nelson Sauvin, Galaxy and Citra hops.

Laurelwood Brewing: Fruition Wheat
A Berliner-Weisse brewed with Pear and Blackberries.

Lompoc Brewing: Cherry Wheat
A wheat ale brewed in August 2011 with 200 pounds of sour cherries and then aged in Maryhill Winery Port barrels for 2 months.  It has a slight oak aroma with a crisp cherry flavor, finishing slightly tart. 5.0% ABV

Lucky Lab Brewing: Blue Raspberry Lager
Inspired by the popular candy flavor. Brewed with Raspberries and Blackberries. 4.2%"

Oakshire Brewing: Elderberry Gose
A traditional gose style beer with coriander and salt, with the addition of elderberry. 4% abv.

Stone Brewing Co.: Ruination IPA - Tropical Heat Edition
A special version of Stone's Double IPA brewed with Mangos and Habaneros brewed just for the FruitBeer Fest and PortlandBeer Week.

10 Barrel Brewing: Cucumber Crush
Once again 10 Barrel gets fresh! Tonya took her award winning Berliner Weisse and added loads of cucumbers. The aroma is undeniably cucumber. The flavor is like biting into a crisp baby cucumber fresh from the garden. Just when you have had enough the tartness acts as a pallet cleanser leaving you ready for the next sip. Eat Beer! 4% ABV 17 IBU

2 Towns Ciderhouse: Made Marion
The sunrise of summer, the Made Marion is a blend of Oregon grown Marionberries and hard apple cider. Ripe berry flavors and a crisp apple bite combine with a rich ruby color to make this delicious cider. 6.9% abv.

Upright Brewing: Barrel-Aged Citrus Wit
Pure Wit aged with blood orange, seville orange, and grapefruit peels, 4.5%

Rare & Rotating Taplist
(only 2-4 of these beers on tap at once. Tastes 2-4 tickets each)

Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project: Wild Wild Brett Violet
100% Brettanomyces fermented with Passionfruit and Experimental Hops

Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project: St. Bretta
100% Brettanomyces (Whitebier) Brewed with Citrus

Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project: Surette Provision
Barrel-aged Provision Saison with Raspberries

De Garde Brewing: Gin barrel Berliner with oregon coast cranberries

De Garde Brewing: Barrel fermented wild Saison with Abacella estate vineyard Tempranillo grapes

De Garde Brewing: Gin barrel double India wild ale with Horse Heaven Hills Chenin Blanc grapes

Double Mountain: Bloody Beer

Flat Tail Brewing: Cucumber Cuvée
A year old cucumber Berliner with Brett f/c

Flat Tail Brewing: Persicus
A year+ old hibiscus blonde soured in Pinot barrels and refermented with peach purée and saison yeast.

Flat Tail Brewing: Seanberry Saison
A Blueberry-strawberry saison with biscuit malt ( strawberry shortcake kinda thing goin on)

Hopworks Urban Brewery: Valentine Stout
Brouwers 6th Anniversary Imperial Stout aged on Heaven Hills bourbon barrels with Organic Raspberries.

Logsdon Farmhouse Ales: Cerasus
Oak Aged Flanders Red with tart Cherry.

Lompoc Brewing: Scarlet Red
Our Proletariat Red has turned a rich shade of scarlet after fermenting in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels with 45 pounds of sour cherries.  This beer puts a new twist on our classic, balanced NW Red ale.  Now a slightly tart, oaky red, it is complimented nicely by the aroma of a quality Kentucky Bourbon.  6.2% ABV  

Lompoc Brewing: Peach Wheat
Brewed in September 2012 and fermented in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels with 200 pounds of peaches for a strong peach aroma and hints of oak that finishes slightly tart. 5.8% ABV

New Belgium Brewing: Love with Cherry and Nectarines

New Belgium Brewing: Pluot
Hook up a plum with an apricot and they’ll make you a pluot. This sweet hybrid fruit is as refreshing as it is strange, and it’s the perfect starting point for our new Lips of Faith beer. Pluot Ale pours a bright, light golden. The aroma is full of fruit tones and distinct esters from blending the funky brettanomyces and our house Belgian ale yeast. The flavor carries the same weight, adding a spicy, vinous subtlety to stand up against the malt backbone. To build a beer around this worldly fruit is purely Belgian in imagination. Pour some Pluot and enjoy!

New Belgium Brewing: Heavenly Feijoa Tripel
Heavenly Feijoa Tripel combines Dieu du Ciel!’s love of hibiscus flowers with New Belgium’s passion for strange and worldly fruit. Feijoa, also known as pineapple guava, has a sweet, aromatic flavor, which makes the aroma of Heavenly Feijoa Tripel luscious and tropical. The beer has Belgian yeast and Nelson Sauvin hops, combining to make a sweet fruit taste, mild spicy tones and a sharp bite. Hibiscus adds a cranberry tartness and an ambrosial quality to the color.

Oakshire Brewing: TBD
Blonde ale with Muller Thurgau grapes aged on Brett in Pinot Noir barrels

Old Market Pub and Brewery: Sour Wheat Plum Lambic
Three year old sour mashed Gueuze refermented with hand picked plums. Pours purplish-opaque with the aroma of plum and a nice dry tart finish.

Solera Brewery: Apricot

Solera Brewery: Peche

Solera Brewery: Lapin Lover Kriek

Schooner Exact Brewing: Apricot Sour

Schooner Exact Brewing: Cherry Sour

10 Barrel: Raspberry Crush
Award winning Berliner-Weisse with Raspberries.

10 Barrel: Apricot Crush
Award winning Berliner-Weisse with Apricots

2 Towns Ciderhouse: Rhubarbarian
Like a barbarian horde, the crew at 2 Towns Ciderhouse raided a local rhubarb patch to create this fearsome hard cider. Tangy, wild, and not for the faint of heart, the Rhubarbarian will bring out the barbarian in you. Give your taste buds +5 sour ability!

Crux Fermentation Bottle Release, June 7

Nearly a year ago, Crux Fermentation Project opened its doors in Bend. Here's a bit more about Crux from their website:

"Crux brewmaster Larry Sidor is always in pursuit of the next great beer—beer that defies taste profiles with its complexity and creativity. We’ve designed our brewery to allow for non-traditional brewing methods like decoction mashing, open fermentation, oak barrel aging, wild yeast strains and experimental hops."

Larry Sidor, one of Crux's co-founders, was the former Brewmaster at Deschutes Brewing. But unlike Deschutes, Crux plans to stay small (a relative term) for a while as it allows more freedom for exploration and experimentation. After almost a year, Crux is ready to release its beers in Portland!  A traveling beer release party is planned across town on Friday, June 7.  They'll be making the following stops:

  • Belmont Station, 1-2 PM
  • John Market, 4-5 PM
  • Saraveza, 5:30 - 6:30 PM
  • Beer Mongers, 7 - 8 PM
  • Apex, 8 PM - close

Here's a closer look at the beers! 

A vibrant reddish-black hue, substantial body and pleasant headiness give this dark Belgian-style ale an alluring first impression. The intense flavors of dark candi sugar conspire to deceive with flavors that remind us of preserved fruits and holiday spicing, but the true agent is the Trappist yeast—and a suspicious drinkability.

IMPASSE | SAISON ALE | 500 ML | 6.6% ABV, 25 IBU
When we set out to brew a saison, we were at an impasse: an open fermentation process would give us more interesting, complex flavors, but a closed fermentation process would give us more control and, let’s be honest, more beer. We decided to honor the history of the French saison, and give that farmhouse yeast a little room to breathe. Our open fermentation process coaxes out peppery, herbal and slightly tart attributes, and releases slightly smokey, earthy esters, while a kiss of acidulated malt and wheat lends the perfect complement.

Debuted at an event that crowned our hometown, “Dog Town USA,” this light-hearted ale bounds with regional Citra, Centennial and Crystal hops for those citrusy notes beloved by Northwest hop hounds. We’ve nudged the malt bill in the other direction, for a sessionable ale that’s easy to love.

Tough Love is bold but nuanced, an homage of sorts to the traditional Russian Imperial Stouts and the ruling style of Catherine the Great. We construct it with dark roasted malts, malted rye, and oak-smoked wheat, and then banish it for nine months in Kentucky bourbon barrels. The ageing process smoothes out the edges on an otherwise bold statement, and bitterness succumbs to tender strokes of vanilla beans, hints of dried cherries, and new layers revealing themselves with each sip. (This beer is a great candidate for cellaring.)

These all sound amazing and I can't wait to try and write about them! Have you tasted any of Crux's beers at their brewpub.  What do you think?

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