Soon every little town and city in Oregon will have its own local brewery–as it should–Grants Pass is working on numbers two and three in Griess Family Brews and Climate City Brewing.
Built in a restored historical brick building that was home to multiple pre-Prohibition breweries dating back to 1886, Climate City Brewing will be a full production brewery and restaurant with upscale pub food. Owners Steve Baksay, his wife, Jodi Paquin, and Mark Simchuk and his wife Christine Meis are friends and co-owners of the new venture. Jodi Paquin is a social worker, Steve Baksay a physical therapist, and Mark and Christine are podiatrists. Their story is similar to other brewery owners–while attending a brew fest last November, they decided they should open a brewery, and it built from there. The historical building Climate City will be based in was their first choice of location.
For those wondering why it’s called Climate City Brewing Co.,there is a simple explanation locals like Steve Baksay know: “When you drive down 6th St into the historical district, there is a sign very similar to the on in Reno. Ours states, “It’s the Climate”–the sign has been up since I think 1910 and references our city having a great climate.”
For many years Grants Pass has had Wild River Brewing–a brewery whose beers are rarely seen out of the area–and more recently Griess Family Brews opened, but is not yet serving its own beer. Make way for Climate City, a full brewpub with a 10 BBL system purchased used from O’Neills Brewing in Conneticut, complete with six jacketed brite tanks, three fermenters, and a 20bbl hot liquor tank. The owners have hired Jeff Horn from Weston Brewing Co., who will be relocating from Weston, Missouri. Knowing our beer culture, Jeff is developing plenty of hoppy recipes and also plans to experiment with quite a bit of barrel-aging. Not modest in brewing ambitions, Climate City will begin with just draft but hopes to begin bottling and/or canning within a few months of operation.
Top image shows Rogue River Brewing in 1886 and the bottom photo is the building before renovation today
Climate City Brewing is not messing around with the brewpub angle of the business by restoring this historical building that was a brewery back in 1886. Details are being restored based on historical accounts and old photos of the operation. There are plans to have the brewing operations on display and include small but cool details like a dumbwaiter that moves beer and hops. Once restored, the brewpub will also have a light-strung beer garden with a gas fire pit and an old world industrial feel.
The o,wners have hired Eric McElroy, who headed up 10 Barrel Brewing’s Bend brewpub, as the General Manager and Chef, so those looking for a new destination beer and food spot don’t have to drive to Ashland to find it. Owner Steve Baksay writes, “We hope to be brewing by mid-October and open to public by the first of November… hopefully.”