Thursday, September 29

Beer Review: Uinta Brewing Punk'n

Found this 6-pack at my local Whole Foods for $7.99. Not a bad price. I love this brewer, and hope to see a lot more Uinta stuff around. It's a very light 4% ABV beer which isn't a bad thing.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Dark Autumn colored amber. Rather clear and filtered beer. Little off-white head... maybe a finger that quickly bubbled down to a thin pillowy layer. Overall pretty simple and basic.

Smell: (4.0)
- Nice light pumpkin pie smell, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, spices and all the works. Bready sweet caramel malt... light vanilla. Smells very good for a light beer.

Taste: (4.0)
- Great light sweet grains, vanilla, nutmeg... roasty bready pumpkin. Very good and solid. Great grassy and earthy hop touch as well. Certainly some great spices at play with this one.

Mouth Feel: (3.5)
- Light bodied, and rather bubbly. Little drying and chewy and sets the palate alive in the finish with the spice.

Overall: (4.0)
- A very nice full flavored spicy pumpkin ale, and light enough on alcohol to drink more than a couple if needed. Nice seeing it in a 6-pack, and it holds up to many of the other lighter pumpkin brews out there. Worth the buy for sure.

B+ / 3.93

( Rating Scale)

Wednesday, September 28

Beer Review: Elysian Brewing The Great Pumpkin

From the website:

Imperial Pumpkin Ale


Pours deep copper with ghostly white head. Intense pumpkin, sugar and spice on the nose with a nice bready and malty backdrop to tame all those autumn spices into a remarkably smooth, balanced and delectable fall treat.

Pale, Munich, Cara-Hell, Cara-Vienne, Cara-Munich and Crisp 45° L Crystal malts

Bittered with Magnum

Roasted pumpkin seeds in the mash, and extra pumpkin added in the mash, kettle and fermenter. Spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and allspice.

ABV: 8.1% (Actually the bottle is 7.7% ABV.)

IBU: 20

Fall Seasonal — 22 oz bottles"

Elysian has usually had Night Owl Pumpkin Ale around, but this year they went all out and released 3 other pumpkin brews in bottles. I grabbed this beer, and the pumpkin stout to try and review. They also were involved in a collaboration beer with New Belgium Brewing, and created "Kick", a sour pumpkin brew which I haven't seen or tried yet. I hope to get some. I paid $9 for this bottle which I think is fare, and the same for the stout which I think is too much. It is however more of a rare beer.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Nice dark semi-cloudy squashy looking brew. Rich caramel color, and very minimal off-white head. Not more than a finger from a heavy pour, and a small ring and an island of light foam that looks like Australia.

Smell: (4.5)
- A hearty rich, and festive smelling brew for sure. Lovely sweet malts, bready caramel, and big roasty squash, and seeds. Lovely clove and cinnamon flare to it as well. Smells very good and balanced. Spicy.

Taste: (4.0)
- Nice sweet pumpkin brew here. Crisp clean water, nice pumpkin pie flare, and great nutmeg, clove, and cinnamon spices. Perhaps a little herbal and earthy quality from the allspice. Great balance, perfect strength, and not a noticeable amount of alcohol at all. This is what I think the Night Owl should be, and then maybe imperialize this further.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Nice medium body, well carbonated, and slightly creamy smooth. Little puckering and chewy from the spices and malt. Certainly very good.

Overall: (4.0)
- Solid pumpkin brew, and is more complex than some of the other big favorite pumpkin beers out there. Price is a bit steep, but that doesn't affect my judging of the fluid inside. Very solid, but a bit light for what I think an imperial should be. Nice complex, and balanced beer.

A- / 4.08

( Rating Scale)

Tuesday, September 27

Beer Review: Pelican Brewing Elemental Fresh Hop Ale

$6.50 for this at Bridgetown Beerhouse. Had to try it. Fresh hop beers are my most favorite, and one with this much Sterling hops? Had to try it..

Catch all the beers info HERE

Appearance: (4.0)
- Nice light clear copper orange/amber. Fluffy quickly dissipating head, leaves lacing all about the glass, and a thin pillow above the bubbling brew. Not bad.

Smell: (4.0)
- Very grassy, and light citrus hops. Zesty, and somewhat spicy. A bit biscuity, and lightly sweet. Certainly some interesting character here, and I can't quite pinpoint what else it is i am getting in the smell. Perhaps just an earthy robust wet hop.

Taste: (4.0)
- Certainly another winning fresh hop ale. Great zesty and grassy sterling hops. Light light lemon-like zing, rather bready malt base, and just more grassy hops. Certainly not an overly sweet beer by any means. You can tell the focus is on the hops. Lovely beer.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Quite the bitter beer which leaves a cloying and dry feel in the mouth. It's a bubbly well-carbed brew which is rather light to medium bodied. Certainly full flavored. Supper nice bitter touch and finish.

Overall: (4.5)
- This is another one of those fresh hop beers to put at the top of the list. Very unique, tasty, and easy to drink. Certainly sitting up there with or next to number one so far this year for fresh hop beers.

A- / 4.1

( Rating Scale)

Monday, September 26

New 'Session' Release From Full Sail Brewing

Could this be like a mini Wreck The Halls? I learned of this new brew some months ago, and here it is.

"Hood River, Or – Full Sail Brewing is excited to announce a new addition to the Session family of beers – Session Fest. It’s a holiday beer that comes in a stubby little bottle, makes a great stocking stuffer, and is the perfect beer to leave by the fireplace for Santa or to share with friends and family who may appreciate an approachable, yet flavorful holiday beer.

“When we decided to brew a special Session for the holidays, we knew right away what color it had to be: Red (and full-bodied). Next, we considered what kind of head it should have. Bright white was the obvious answer. And as for the label? Gotta be green, right? So there you have it. A new Session all decked out for holidays, ready to spread joy and cheer. Happy Holidays to one and all! And have a good Session,” said Irene Firmat, Full Sail’s Founder and CEO.

According to Full Sail Executive Brewmaster, Jamie Emmerson, “Session Fest is a Czech-style strong lager (gotta love the Czechs!) called polotmav√© or literally “light dark or semi-dark.” Brewed with 2 Row Pale malt, Munich malt, Caramel malt and Wheat malt, and hopped with a blend of Glaciers and Cascades, Session Fest has a medium-to-full body balancing candy caramel and full malt flavors that are underscored by a spicy hoppiness that provides a nice perfume with citrus and pine overtones and a long clean finish.” 6.2% ABV 26 IBU"

Beer Review: Deschutes Brewing Fresh Hop Mirror Pond

I was pretty stoked to see that this was bottled as part of their 'Bond Series' this year. I remember the first 'Hop Trip' release and loved it, but felt that it fell short each release after the first. Fresh Hop Mirror Pond is certainly better, and I am glad to have it.

"This noble, fresh hop version of our classic American pale ale arose from a single plot of heirloom Cascade hops. Revived by our brewers from the original rootstock developed at Oregon State University, grown by Goshie Farms in Oregon, this very limited release is just for you."

Alc. 5% | IBUs 40

Best by: 12/11/11 printed on the 22oz bottle release. I purchased it at Bridgetown Beerhouse for $5.45 ea.

Appearance: (4.5)
- Big fluffy fingers of white foamy head. Settled slowly and left thick creamy lacing all over the glass. Light shiny new copper penny color, clear, and lightly bubbling.

Smell: (4.0)
- Wonderful NW hop aromas. Very pine-like, grassy, and floral. All my favorite hop characteristics. Light spice, and perhaps even a little subtle fruit in the background. Light caramel malt, and bready quality. This beer just smells super solid, and good.

Taste: (4.5)
- My my.. what a crisp fantastically fresh and hoppy beer. Wonderfully light and very balanced flavors. Grassy herbal and pine hops with a light spice and floral character. Bready biscuity light caramel malt, and just simple. What a crisp and delightful eye opening beer. Beyond solid, and sets the standard for a pale ale.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Light bodied pale ale, slightly drying from the 40 IBU's, and certainly perfectly carbonated. Very easy to drink, and just the right light cloying touch.

Overall: (4.5)
- Overall almost the perfect beer. Though I can see that this could potentially turn out different each year depending on the hops, and which were used. I must say though that this years is certainly up there at the top, and is something I hope to find many more of soon. A super good NW pale ale with just the right hoppy flare.

A / 4.35

( Rating Scale)

Funny, I had reviewed the beer last year when I had it on tap, and this current review (without seeing or remembering my last) only nudged the appearance up half a point. The beer hasn't lost its touch.

Sunday, September 25

Beer Review: Block 15 Brewing Ferme De La' Ville Provision

I paid about $15 for this at Bridgetown Beerhouse, and I bought it because I thought it was so kick ass to see a Block 15 brew bottled, and in such a cool large bottle of sour goodness. Way to find the right spots! Love the websites reading..

"You would be hard pressed to get me to read a fictional book, but throw down some good old beer history pages and I become mesmerized. I love to crack open an inspirational brew and pull out the old brewing books, talk with beer enthusiasts or spend time deep searching the internet.

Farmhouse ales were brewed on the farms of the French speaking Wallonia region of Belgium. It is said that the farm hands were allotted up to five liters of beer per day! The beer was brewed with malted barley and other various grains lying around the farm. Hops from the region were used as was the local yeast. It was common for farms to share yeast and brewing equipment. Traditionally the beer was lower in alcohol, hoppy, spicy from the yeast, and refreshing. As the farms were frugal, left over beer from the previous season was blended with the young beer of the current season. During this storage time undoubtedly wild yeast and bacteria from the area found their way into the barrels. Over time notes of the wild yeast and bacteria transformed the ale, sometimes to the point of being referenced to a gueze.

Our nod to this style began in the spring of 2009 when we stored a barrel of our farmhouse ale and introduced wild yeast isolated from Belgium. Over the next twelve months the yeast slowly transformed the hoppy farmhouse ale to a wonderful tropical, funky, dry, and tart beer.

This past spring we brewed a young batch and blended with the old barrel. The young farmhouse ale was brewed with malted barley and other grains left around our brewery; malted rye, wheat, golden naked oats and local honey. Farmhouse yeast fermented the beer and the addition of noble hops provided a nice crisp refreshing finish. The blend at first was nice crisp ale, hoppy, with just a hint of wild yeast character. Now, three months later, the ale has transformed to a whole new experience. I can detect notes of tropical fruit, honey, and light barnyard in the nose. Lightly tart, the ale is very refreshing and dry yet complex and vinous with subtle hop presence."

Ale Brewed with Honey and 30% Matured in Oak Barrels.

Conditioned for over 2 months in the bottle.

After having their most killer sour flight at Belmont Station during Puckerfest, I had officially become their biggest fanboy. I love the stuff, and the guys were pretty cool too. I love their vision.

Appearance: (4.5)
- Wonderful cloudy straw yellow and zesty orange brew with a huge fluffy 4 fingers of bright white head... won't settle to much but a pinky of thick foam, and layers around the glass. A really pretty farmhouse brew.

Smell: (4.0)
- Huge zesty and bready yeast notes, lovely sour and tart tang to the bready and creamy malt aromas.. sweet subtle honey notes, and bitter tinge. Not bad. Can't wait to taste.

Taste: (4.5)
- Sweet bready malts, big farmhouse yeasty bready notes.. esters, light clove and grain.. tart woody character, and a lovely citrus zest.. certainly a great beer. I was expecting a bit more sour, but didn't get it from the bottle. That is ok, because it is super good as it sits.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- Light to medium bodied, and very well carbonated as the style should be. Lovely chewy notes, and the zesty balance really sets the palate alive. Watering goodness. Dry as well in the finish. This beer seems to hit all the best qualities.

Overall: (4.5)
- This beer seems to be one of the most carefully crafted and finessed farmhouse ales I have had. Lovely oak barrel sour touch, and aging. The blend seems to be what a brewmaster would want to have on tap in his or her own home at all times. A very good farmhouse ale, and made even better with the slight souring process and barrel aging. The bottle seems like the cage on the cork was hand screwed and was kinda gnarley.. but the overall experience of this beer is nothing short of fantastic.

A / 4.4

( Rating Scale)

Friday, September 23

Beer Review: Laurelwood Stingy Jack Pumpkin Ale

Was happy to learn of this beers bottling when I saw it along with my Gearhead IPA purchase at the Bridgetown Beerhouse. I had the beer last year when it was first released, and thought is was a so-so pumpkin ale. I have a feeling it may be a bit tweaked this year, and it does seem to be a little stronger in alcohol content from what I remember last years being. I am a much bigger fan of milder pumpkin ales compared to imperials. If I want pumpkin pie, I will buy a pie. The bomber was about $5 and I will be revising my review from last year on BeerAdvocate.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Nice dark semi-cloudy amber brew. Fluffy fingers of head which slowly settled to a spotty thin blanket of creamy delight. Looks like a lot will stick to the glass the whole way down. A very festive and Fall color.

Smell: (4.0)
- Light spicy flare with a lot of English-like malts, caramel, nutmeg, cinnamon, and clove. Pumpkin is present without overpowering the brew. Certainly seems to be a nice amount of grassy hops in there as well. This beer just smells like Fall.

Taste: (3.5)
- Certainly some big spice going on. Seems like a peppery clove and grassy hop combination here with some roasty pumpkin. The spices certainly are more forward. Nice caramel and bready malt does with some nice bright bitter hops. Has a nice tart squashy flare to round it out. Very nicely balanced.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Overall a full bodied, almost creamy brew. Nicely chewy and drying, and not too chalky really. The dryness certainly makes me want to keep drinking it. Overall very good feel.

Overall: (3.5)
- This is a very solid pumpkin brew though a little bit more spice forward. It's certainly bittered with some healthy hops, and creates a rather dry brew in the finish. Not bad, and worth the purchase. Certainly a peppery flare to it.

B / 3.68

( Rating Scale)

Occidental Brewing Co. Oktoberfest & Grand Opening

"October 1: Oktoberfest! Come celebrate Oktoberfest with Occidental Brewing Co. We'll debut our 2011 Festbier and you can enjoy our other beers as well as German cuisine by Cathedral Park Kitchen. Music by Chervona (at 7 pm) as well as other musical guest through out the day. Noon -10 pm."

I had the opportunity to meet Dan Engler, and sample many of their beers so far brewed at The BeerMongers during a tasting. The German-inspired brews are very good, and set them apart from many others.

Check out their website HERE.
6635 N. Baltimore Ave., Portland, OR 97203

Laurelwoods New Fresh Hop Beers & Others

"In addition to the fresh hop Cavalry IPA we have two other fresh hop beers joining the seasonal list. The Laurelfest Bier was released last weekend and is great! This fresh hop lager was given a lot of love. Not only does this lager have fresh hops giving it a wonderful aroma, it was filtered and is super clear. Laurelfest Bier is on tap now. The other fresh hop beer is a fresh hop Free Range Red. Can't wait to try this Laurelwood favorite with addition of fresh hops! Ask your server about availability."

Also a brand new release called 'Lil' Smokey Ale' which is much like their famous Mother Lode Golden Ale, but with some smoked malt. Sounds really good to me.

Laurelwood Public House & Brewery
5115 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR

Thursday, September 22

Beer Review: Laurelwood Gearhead IPA

Many may know that I am a huge fan of Laurelwood. I started going there on a regular basis when they just started at the long lost pizza joint which is now the very good Columbia River Brewing Co. It was a treat to get in there for a Piston Pale Ale, or a Boss IPA from the now Brewmaster of Hopworks Brewing. Then Chad stepped in at a time of great growth and great hops. I am sad to see Workhorse turn into a thing of the past. But with Chad leaving, we have a great deal to look forward to with Vasilios Gletsos. Chad is in Bend currently firing up Worthy Brewing which I am sure will not disappoint. I picked up a bomber of Gearhead at Bridgetown Beerhouse because I saw it there along with the Stingy Jack Pumpkin Ale which I was surprised to see bottled. I paid $4.95 for the bomber of Gearhead. I won't compare the beer to Workhorse.. as I don't think any IPA could really compare to it as it is probably my favorite IPA. But... I thought Workhorse bottled was a bad idea. It wasn't the same from the bottle, and many places that carried it didn't pay attention to the date in which they received it. I have purchased a few bad bottles of Workhorse.. and unfortunately they are not bottle-dated. I like the name Gearhead, being a certified mechanic, and Mopar enthusiast. Let's see if it is worthy.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Darker caramel copper color.. mostly clear, and a couple fingers of frothy white foam.. settles to a large foamy ring, and some scattered pockets creating a thin blanket. Not quite the west coast look I was looking for. Little dark like an Amber.

Smell: (4.0)
- I can see they were really aiming for the citrus aromas here. First off I get a huge lemon-like zest punch right to the face. Lots of pine, citrus, and herbal aromas. Nice caramel malt backing.. bready, and slightly sweet. Piney hops really show up front.

Taste: (4.0)
- Very balanced. Certainly plentiful with northwest hops. Lots of pine, citrus, and grassy zest. Rides nicely with a subtle and not-too-sweet caramel malt backing. Easily stands out as a unique IPA. Almost a tea-like quality to it. Not bad.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Overall it is a well carbonated medium bodied brew. It's dry. I like dry. The finish really leaves the tongue feeling dry but yet the watering continues for more because of the zesty fresh tasting hops. Resinous (as stated on the bottle) is true. Slightly sticky. Chewy a little.

Overall: (3.5)
- Overall this is a very solid and well balanced IPA. Does it stand out from many? Yes of course. But it doesn't rise above like I would expect it to. Though very solid, and certainly holds up to many of the other local offerings around. It isn't the west coast style light colored biscuity IPA I was looking for, but it certainly has some unique and zesty aromas. Certainly does display some talent in brewing.

B+ / 3.88

( Rating Scale)

Beer Review: Oakshire Harvest Ale

“Harvest Ale is brewed in the German Fest Bier tradition with a PNW twist, fermented with our house ale yeast at cooler temperatures (60 deg F). Our Harvest ale is rust colored and begins with a spicy and bready aroma. The hearty, medium bodied malt character balances with the mild bitterness and the German noble hop flavor and aroma (German Hallertau). Hearty, yet crisp on the finish, this beer is certain to sustain as the days get shorter and summer wanes to Fall. Prost!”

ABV: 6.5% / IBU: 55 / O.G.:15.3 deg. Plato

"Autumn – season of color and of transition from light to dark. Rust colored with a noble hop presence, the Harvest Ale is brewed in the Oakshire Tradition – thoughtfully crafted, original and delicious. This beer is a Northwest style fest bier meant to be enjoyed with friends while celebrating a fall garden harvest."

Using the title 'Harvest' would make you think this is a fresh hop ale. Nowhere have I read or found this to be the case. Please correct me if I am wrong. In past releases I read that it could be a wet-hopped beer. But the bottle, nor the official website states that. I grabbed this bomber at Bridgetown Beerhouse for $4.95.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Perfect clear copper penny color. Finger of quickly fizzing white foam leaves a small ring and thin layer on top. Not overly pretty, but proper.

Smell: (3.5)
- Caramel malts, biscuity and bready... rich grainy flare. Vegetable hops.. very grassy and earthy. Makes me think perhaps it is wet hopped. Spicy and very autumn-like.

Taste: (3.0)
- Certainly somewhat sweet and spicy.. with caramel, and gritty grain barley husks. Grassy and super bitter quality as well. Earthy, dirty, and bready. Certainly a grain-rich environment in my mouth right now. Overall the hops seem too vegetable-like.

Mouth Feel: (3.5)
- Chalky dry medium bodied brew. Well carbonated, and super bitteringly dry. Nice chewy touch to it. Spiciness makes the palate water a bit.

Overall: (3.5)
- The beer is certainly bitter. Perhaps a bit too bitter. That's about the only place hops play a huge role in this one is bitterness. Overall the spicy touch to the malt is nice, but the vegetative hops kind of kill this one for me.

B- / 3.28

( Rating Scale)

Not trying to slam the beer, but its bitterness just took away the nicer malt and spice backing for me! Cheers!

Wednesday, September 21

Cascade Brewings Barrel House Celebrates First Year

What a good year it has been for Cascade Brewing. First, a genius idea to capitalize off of their fantastic sour beers by opening the Barrel House. They found a great spot, and brew some mean sours. Sours I feel blow the rest away. Cascade Brewing truly creates my favorite sour ales.

The Racoon Lodge has always been a cool spot in Beaverton. Many don't realize that that is the original, and still brew site of their standard beers. Beers in which I always felt were shy of the others coming about in Portland etc. Ron Gansberg and his crazy sour magic kind of saved the company I think. Just a guess maybe. Art Lawrence (Main man behind the Oregon Brewers Festival) is the owner and founder. Interesting story, and display of craft beer, and business over many years.

"The Cascade Brewing Barrel House - also known as "The House of Sour" - is throwing a party this weekend in honor of its first anniversary. Join us on Friday and Saturday from 2 to 10 pm each day for a celebration focusing on the barrels, the cellaring and the magic.

On draft on the production side, we'll be serving the original blends of Bourbonic Plague ('09), Vlad the Imp Aler ('09), Beckberry ('10) & Noyeaux ('10). On the pub side, there will be a few select vintage live barrels on a special tap handle.

Here's the part our sour fans have been waiting for: beginning at 6 pm Friday, we'll be selling 10 cases each of the original Vlad the Imp Aler and Bourbonic Plague from the Blenders' Cellar (this is about as rare as it gets, as only 20 cases of each beer remain in existence). Bottles of Vlad cost $27, while Bourbonic costs $30 per bottle. There is a limit of two bottles per person (this means only 60 people). If there are any bottles left on Saturday, they'll go on sale at 2 pm.

Please note, many people start lining up early for these bottle sales. While we don't encourage that, we acknowledge it will happen, so we will begin issuing tickets to those in line beginning at 5 pm on Friday. When the bottle sales starts at 6 pm, those with tickets will receive bottles first.

You'll be wanting a little food to soak up that beer, and we've got you covered. In addition to our delicious regular menu, our chef has come up with anniversary party specials including Buffalo Pastrami Sliders with Cambozola Cheese & Grilled Onion ($7) and Lamb Sausage Stuffed Grilled Endive ($7)."

If you haven't tried a sour ale yet, Cascade's Barrel House is the place to go to try. You will be hooked on them like I am. I can't get enough, and have always said that when I die, I want my casket to be filled with Cascade Brewing's Sang Noir.

Friday, September 23 · 2:00pm - 10:00pm

Cascade Brewing Barrel House
939 SE Belmont St
Portland, Oregon

Monday, September 19

Beer Review: New Belgium Clutch (Lips of Faith Series)

"It started as chance, a sandwich shop encounter between a band and a fan. It ended as the Clutch Collaboration. This pleasing, two-part potion was brewed with chocolate and black malts for a rich and roasty overtone, then fused with a dry, substratum of sour for a bold and audacious flavor. Black as night, this beer is blended at 80% stout, 20% dark sour wood beer for a collaboration that begins with a sour edge and finishes with a big, dark malt character, lingering, sweet on your palate.

The two flavors come as raucous and riotous as the Maryland band and their Fort Collins fans, getting loud and making beer, together."

I'm really loving the QFC on 192nd just off Hwy. 14 in East Vancouver. I found this 22oz. bottle for $7.49, along with some Full Sail Hop Pursuit for $3.99, 6-pack of Sierra Nevada Bigfoot for $11.19.. among others. Never heard of Clutch, or the release of it. Though I do know the band, and have never really listened to them either. Perhaps I have heard them and just never really thought anything of them.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Looks like a dark cola or root beer while pouring. In the glass it is pretty rich and dark, and I can't see through it. Nice light mocha tan head.. a couple fingers settle leaving lace all over the glass, and a thin blanket of foam above the goods.

Smell: (3.5)
- Rich grainy notes, husky barley, light sour tinge paired with fig, prune, and other various esters. Light molasses-like sweetness.. earthy woody touch, and old sweet raisin. Like a raisin mush.

Taste: (3.5)
- Not a super sour ale really. Light tartness is present with a very chocolaty sweet rich brew. Esters, fig, raisin, and oakey vanilla. Certainly a porter or strong ale of sorts with a very subtle sour quality. Wondering if this one would sour up some more over time. I will by another to let sit.

Mouth Feel: (3.0)
- Pretty thick and heavy bodied.. though not like a syrupy creamy mess. A touch chalky and chewy. Leaves the palate a bit dry, and is somewhat hard to drink. Pretty interesting.

Overall: (3.5)
- Can't say I am too impressed with this one. I am hoping some more sourness will come of this beer over time. For me it's a bit hard to drink, though it does possess some pretty good flavors. Not too bad, but not one I would buy a lot of. Perhaps it will be a nice treat some years down the road.

B- / 3.48

( Rating Scale)

Friday, September 16

Salmon Creek Brewery & Pub Oktoberfest Release & Celebration

Saturday, September 17th, from 3:00pm til closing, at Salmon Creek Pub & Brewery

"Celebrate Oktoberfest 2011 with Salmon Creek Pub & The Lions Club! It is an annual event for our friends and family. Mark your calenders…

The celebration will begin at 3:00pm and run until Dark!!!

On hand will be our usual seasonal Oktoberfest, our normal brews, and a Wet-Hop IPA brewed just for the season! So come on down and join in the festivities. The Lion’s Club of Vancouver will again be collecting monies for their fund raising activities. See you there!"

I'm popping over there after work around 7:30PM. If you have had Larry's Oktoberfest beer, you know that it can't be missed. Also if his fresh hop beer is anything like last years, it can't be missed either. I can't wait to get over there. See you there!

Thursday, September 15

Laurelwood Brewing's 10th Annual Laurelfest

Laurelwood Public House & Brewery is having it's 10th annual Laurelfest celebration this Saturday, September 17, 2011 from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. We will have a special seasonal beer release of Laurelfest Bier; a Vienna lager style fresh hop beer, a wonderful food menu consisting of dishes from a fresh Albacore tuna salad to house made double smoked pork & cheddar sausages, and a fantastic live music line up. In addition to the great food, beer, and music, we will have fun kids activities all day.

The music schedule is as follows:

3:30 p.m. Popular Demand

5:30 p.m. Rubella Graves

7:30 p.m. Keegan Smith

There will also be a Laurelfest celebration at our Battle Ground, WA location from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. on the same day. Special BBQ menu will be $12.95 for adults and $5 for kids. Live music will be provided by Matt Brown starting at 3:30 p.m. Join the Battle Ground crew for fun, food, and great beer.


Also on Sept. 20th, check out this great cause!:

Tuesday, September 13

Beer Review: Widmer Brothers Falconer's IPA (Rotator Series #2)

"Glen Falconer was passionate about friends, familly, and great IPAs. So in tribute, we've created an IPA worth of this master brewer. Made with Falconer's Flight hops from Hopunion, LLC, a blend named for Glen himself. The result is a bright, moderately bitter IPA with stonefruit aromas and a strong malt backbone. We think Glen would have approved. Proceeds from the sale of Falconer's Flight hops go to the Glen Hay Falconer Foundation, providing scholarships to professional and aspiring brewers. In addition, Widmer Brothers Brewing is making a donation to grant two additional scholarships. Learn more at Prost! To true hop heads"

Available Sep.-Oct.
IBU 65
ABV 7%
OG 15 Plato
Malts 2-Row Pale, Caramel 40L, Honey Malt
Hops Bittering - Alchemy, Aroma - Falconer's Flight

Grabbed a 12-pack at a local Fred Meyer for about $13.99 on sale. I love when I see a brand new release on sale.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Pours a clean and clear copper color. Thick slightly off-white head.. very creamy and settled slowly to a thin blanket that seems to be sticking around. Large ring of suds sticking around the glass. A bit dark, but overall a good looking beer.

Smell: (4.0)
- This beer smells quite good. Lovely crisp NW hop aromas. Quite pine-like, and zesty bitter. Smells like a slightly sweet and bready malt backbone. Light caramel, and light honey. The smell of fresh grassy hops certainly shine through.

Taste: (4.5)
- Very light malt flavors received from what I was expecting via the color and smell of the brew. Bready light caramel, slightly sweet, but not overly sweet. The bitter pine and grassy hops shine and balance this IPA out very well. The hops also seem to have a creeper effect via the palate. Great zesty and spicy hops with a zing of fruity character which isn't found in the smell so much. Overall super balanced, and has some very great flavors hidden within.

Mouth Feel: (3.5)
- Light to medium bodied, and slightly watery up front, but the finish hits late with a drying and slightly cloying hop punch. Very interesting character and feel to this beer. It is bubbly, sparkling almost.. well carbonated. Just a touch thin.

Overall: (4.0)
- It's too difficult to compare this IPA to the previous X-114 in the series. It is a completely different IPA. I must say that I love the hops in this beer. I think I am a new fan of this Falconer's hop. The classic fresh quality is quite striking for me, and the beer is superbly balanced. Go grab it! I think I dig it more than the X-114. Will be interesting to compare my score and see it be less than the X-114 review of mine.

A- / 4.15

( Rating Scale)

Monday, September 12

Migration Brewing 2nd Annual Fall Fest

"How exciting, Migration is now able to start labeling their events annual, and believe me we will be taking last years excitement up a notch."

"September 17th Migration will be hosting our second annual Fall Fest. This year’s Fall Fest will be Portland’s chance to taste 2 amazing new beers, and a ¼ barrel of a crowd favorite barrel aged imperial stout, hear extraordinary local music, and close the night with some soul enhancing beats from DJ Mach 1 closing out the night.

-Our crowd pleasing 1 year anniversary beer, the “Yearling Stout” was aged for 3 months in a whiskey barrel, sits at 8.6% ABV and has 72 IBU’s.

-Our ALT “Red Bier” sits at 5.7% ABV with 45 IBU’s has cherry and cola notes with a beautiful Munich malt backbone.

-And of course the much anticipated “69 Pound Perle” Fresh Hop sitting at 4% ABV with a simple clean malt profile that lends to the orange color of this NW classic Fresh Hop beer made with 69 pounds of Oregon grown Perle hops.

September 18th will be the Sunday in September to go out and party. First join an amazing group of climbers, pro and amateur alike for the one night viewing of “The Scene” at the Hollywood Theatre. Directly following the film will be an after party at none other than Migration Brewing where climber art will be sold, climber autographs can be obtained, Happy Hour pricing will be given and great memories will be made. There will also be a pull up competition along with a plethora of giveaways with proceeds being donated to HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation."

Migration Brewing
2828 NE Glisan St, Portland, OR

Wednesday, September 7

Beer Review: Fire Mountain Bogart Northwest IPA

Grabbed this 22oz. bomber for under $6 as well from By The Bottle to try... there was also another IPA from them there that I will maybe try next time. This one stood out more so to me. 6.9% Alc. by Vol.

Appearance: (3.5)
- Pours a rather clear new copper penny color. Quick settling finger of white foam settles to a rather large sticking ring of foam, and a thin blanket on top. Looks a tad dark for an IPA like many I have tried recently.

Smell: (3.5)
- Smell is very smooth and balanced. Citrus, pine, and zesty herbal hops playing well with a muted caramel, and slightly sweet malt backing. Smells like a smooth number. Though a bit masked, and held back.

Taste: (3.5)
- Smooth, fruity, slight citrus, and zesty hops. Almost too much like a waldorph salad though. Slightly earthy, bready, piney.. cream-like. Perhaps it is my lack of taste in marris-otter malts.. slightly sweet. Overall it is solid, has a nice bitterness to it. Hops are great.. just not a fan of the malt.

Moth Feel: (4.0)
- Certainly a chewy IPA. Drying and a touch cloying.. not at all syrupy. Very well made medium bodied, well carbonated brew.

Overall: (4.0)
- It's certainly a solid Northwest style IPA. I just haven't found Marris Otter malts to be a favorite of mine, and would rather not see them in local IPA's. Maybe an English ESB or daily ale.. but not this. I like lighter colored, more biscuit-like IPA's. But it is solid, and I am sure many would really dig this beer. Certainly worth checking out.

B / 3.65

( Rating Scale)

Beer Review: Caldera Brewing Hopportunity Knocks

"Hopportunity Knocks Ale: 6.8% abv IPA brewed with mostly Centennial hops. Big round mouthfeel, very perfumey. Different from our canned IPA. Gotta love the Pacific NW!"

Grabbed this bottle up just now at By The Bottle. Just under $6. No freshness date on the bottle.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Pours a dark clear copper. Looks much like an amber ale. Couple fingers of fluffy white foam.. settles to a large fluffy ring of lace, and thin pillow on top.

Smell: (3.5)
- Big grassy spicy earthy hops. Caramel malt background. Smells very herbal and bready. Lightly sweet. Lots of caramel malts here. Slight citrus touch to the hops.

Taste: (3.5)
- Big piney and grassy hops. Quite a bitter brew with sweet caramel and a bready/biscuit backing. Overall spicy, earthy, and grassy. Not really a lot of either floral, or citrus hops here. Roasty brown sugars.

Mouth Feel: (3.0)
- Surprisingly lighter bodied than I had expected. Just sitting under medium bodied, and has plenty of carbonation. Very dry and cloying, but not at all chewy. A tad thin.

Overall: (3.5)
- This is more a bitter bomb of an amber ale. Light caramel backing, and huge bitter grassy hops. That's about it. I feel like it is missing quite a bit, and is a little one-dimensional. Worth the try if you like really dry bitter beers. Otherwise there are better on the shelf for the money.

B- / 3.48

( Rating Scale)

Monday, September 5

The BeerMongers 2nd Anniversary Brewfest!

Just when I though it was settled, they gained control over their shared parking lot for a fest! Perhaps this is a strive for a regular annual event?

"On September 10 & 11, we’re taking over our parking lot and filling it with beer, food and friends. We’ll be celebrating our 2nd Anniversary with a good ole’ fashioned beer festival. We’ll have 20 beers on tap throughout the weekend showcasing rare beers from our favorite breweries."

Saturday, September 10, 12-9PM
Sunday, September 11, 12-8PM

$15 Admission = Souvenir Festival Glass + 7 tasting tickets
Additional Tickets $1 each


Taplist (as of 8/26/11):


1125 SE Division St # 101, Portland, OR 97202

Saturday, September 3

The BeerMongers 2nd Anniversary Party!

One of my favorite bottle shops, run and employed by some of the coolest people ever.. are throwing their 2nd Anniversary party Monday! September 5 · 11:00am - 11:00pm

Special guests Orval!

"Orval is our favorite beer in the world so it is fitting that we would celebrate two years of BeerMongering with a party and BBQ featuring this wonderful Trappist Ale. We have been storing several cases of vintage Orval (from the last three years) in the Mongers Cellar and on September 5th we will open them and drink them. We will also have a special deal purchase a bottle of the perfect beer and matching perfect glass for $10. We will have a short history lesson on unique nature of Orval. We will also have some Orval clones to try and BBQ! Come help us celebrate our first two years and drink some amazing beer. Cheers!"

I work til 5pm that day, but will be sure to check it out after! Don't forget that APEX Bar is across the street too!

1125 SE Division ST