All the beer news fit to print this week, and many of the items are being reported for the first time here. Without enough info to become full blown stories, these are nevertheless very newsworthy developments. From brewers leaving current positions to nationwide brewery expansions and exciting new beers, there is plenty to pour over here.
Pints Brewing Plans for Nationwide Domination
Coffee shop by day, brewpub by night, Old Town's Pints Brewing has been a low-key destination in downtown Portland, making news more for its rotating cast of brewers than its beer. However, with experienced new brewer and Widmer alum Alan Taylor in charge owner Chad Rennaker plans to take the brewpub model national, starting with a location (not using the Pints name) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with new Head Brewer Matt Kollaja, previously of Portland U-Brew. Alan Taylor will oversee brewing operations as "Corporate Brewmaster," and other locations are possibly in the works for Hawaii and Phoenix, located in properties owned by Mr. Rennaker, who is also a real estate developer.
Irena Bierzynski Leaves Lompoc Brewing
Beloved Lompoc brewer Irena Bierzynski is known for her brewing skills as well as her apt last name. "Bierz"ynski will be leaving Lompoc Brewing soon to continue to grow her brewing career with outside experience. She will be missed, but I have a feeling we will see her again soon ,after a little vacation to Detroit and then Hawaii (two locations that could not be any more disparate). Congrats to her successful 2 years at Lompoc and to a bright career in brewing.
Roscoe's Opening Brewpub
Very reputable sources say that one of Portland's best tap houses--Roscoe's in the Montavilla neighborhood--has purchased the former "A-1 Foam Rubber" space across the street from the pub to launch a new brewery. The space is large enough to house two businesses, and for now is hosting martial arts classes in the front while the back of the building--the south-facing side--will become a brewpub with a large outdoor patio and parking lot facing SE Washington. No word on any projected opening date, but no brewhouse or brewer is on board yet, so don't look forward to this eastside addition for at least another year.
Roscoe's 8105 SE Stark St, Portland, OR 97215
Santiam Brewing Opening 2nd Location
The popular and successful Santiam Brewing brewpub in mostly craft beer-bereft Salem is opening another location in the Reed's Opera House building. The new pub will be called the Santiam Brewing "Downtown Annex" and is opening its doors at the end of the month on November 29th. Featuring six taps of Santiam beer plus wine, cider, and an occasional cask ale, the new location is at 189 Liberty Street NE, Suite 107, across the street from excellent beer bar Venti's Cafe. The Downtown Annex will have a warm atmosphere with brick interior, windows looking out to Court Street, photos of Salem's brewing history decorating the walls, and oak barrels serving as converted tables. The pub will serve a limited food menu from Venti's that will be shuttled across the street.
Santiam Brewing Downtown Annex
Hours of operation:M-Th Noon-10 PM FRI-Sat Noon-11 PMSunday 11 AM - 7 PM
10 Barrel Raspberry Crush
All-Star Brewer Tonya Cornett, head of 10 Barrel Brewing's R & D program, has crafted some of the best and most award-winning sour beers in the Northwest and is releasing a new version in her "Crush" series of Berliner-Weisse. GABF medal-winning "German Sparkle Party" is the base sour Berliner weisse for a series of 10 Barrel beers, including "Swill" and the original Raspberry Crush, followed by Apricot Crush and most recently Cucumber Crush, which was made for last year's Portland Fruit Beer Festival.
A new version, "Cherry Crush," is coming soon, with only two kegs coming to the Portland area--one to Tin Bucket and the other to Growl Movement in Keizer. Only 10 barrels of this beer are in existence, so the other kegs may not make it outside of 10 Barrel's brewpub in Bend.
New Belgium Doubles Down On Barrel-Aging
New Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins, Colorado, is already home to perhaps the most impressive oak barrel-aging program in the United States, but the brewery is not done yet. NB is about to double its wood beer capacity with the addition of 32 new French Oak foeders (large wooden casks for conditioning sour beer) that will bring its total foeder count to 64.
“With this expansion, we'll get so close to that feeling I had the first time I walked through the forest of foeders at Rodenbach,” said New Belgium’s Wood Cellar Manager/Blender, Lauren Salazar. “Just knowing they're all full of souring beer - ALL of them – is exciting. It's a destination. Something you have to experience first hand.”
The most exciting bonus of this expansion?
The brewery will use this expansion to bring Lips of Faith offerings like Tart Lychee and Eric’s Ale into year round production by 2015.
Awesome Ales Beers now Available
As reported by The New School, a new contract brewing production operation, Awesome Ales, has started up in Oregon, based out of Portland and brewing out of 7 Brides in Silverton, Oregon. Awesome Ales first beers, "4:19 Wait A Minute IPA" and "Strong Ale- SpikeDriver," have been delivered and tapped at N. Portland spots The Hop & Vine and Plew's Brews and in Southeast at the Beer Cart on 52nd and Foster.