Monday, November 28

Lompoc Holiday Beer Extravaganza At The Sidebar


"It's just another manic Monday. Hope you stuffed yourself silly on Thanksgiving, fought the crowds on Black Friday, and bought locally on Small Business Saturday. Let's skip CyberMonday and focus on what's really important this week - it's time for the Lompoc Holiday Beer Extravaganza!

We've created 10 different holiday beers, and we're serving nine of them tomorrow from 4 to 10 pm at Sidebar, 3901 N Williams Ave. (Our Chanukah beer will be released on December 14.) As with all of our parties, there will be complimentary appetizers to soak up the alcohol. So without further adieu, here are our holiday gifts to you:

Blitzen: This spiced golden ale is infused with cinnamon, clove, lemon zest and fresh ginger. It is bright gold in color with a strong cinnamon aroma. The flavor mixes bready wheat malt character with underlying ginger notes and a hint of citrus. 4.6% ABV

Brewdolph: This Belgian style red ale features a malty and creamy body. Brewed with the Belgian Ardennes yeast strain, Brewdolph boasts a mild fruitiness and a spicy clove character. 7.7% ABV

Cherry Christmas: Cherry Christmas is a blend of four different beers, including Golden Ale fermented in stainless steel with sour cherries; Golden Ale fermented in Port barrels with sour cherries; Brown Ale inoculated with a lambic blend yeast ale aged in Merlot barrels for four years; and a two-year-old Gueze. This was brewed specifically for this year's Holiday Ale Festival. 5.6% ABV

C-sons Greetings:
This is a higher alcohol version of our popular C-Note Imperial Pale Ale, brewed and dry-hopped with even more of the seven "C" hops - Crystal, Cluster, Cascade, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus and Challenger. It features a deep copper color with a piney, citrusy, floral and resinous aroma. A rich caramel malt finish balances the full hop flavor and endless developing hop presence. 8% ABV

Bourbon Barrel Aged C-sons Greetings: Brewed in February 2011, this was aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for seven months and cellared for an additional month. It has a deep copper color and strong oak aroma with caramel and resinous hop notes. 8% ABV

Holiday Cheer: This robust vanilla porter combines big chocolate flavor and a full body with mellow vanilla notes compliments of whole vanilla beans in the conditioning tank. 6.8% ABV

Jolly Bock: This lager was brewed with a generous amount of Munich malt to develop the deep amber color and rich malt flavor. The malty profile is balanced with a spicy hop bitterness. 7.3% ABV

Old Tavern Rat: This dark, amber colored barley wine was aged for almost a year prior to its release. It has a strong bitterness that is balanced with the sweetness of caramel and toffee flavors. 9.4% ABV

Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat: Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat Barley Wine was originally brewed in December 2009, then aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for 10 months and cellared for another 13. The dark amber-colored barley wine features a soft oak character with notes of raisins and figs. 9.7% ABV

All of these beers will be pouring tomorrow at Sidebar. Some, but not all, will be pouring at the other four Lompoc pubs. Zach at New Old Lompoc also has a cask conditioned version of C-sons Greetings on the beer engine. Call ahead to your favorite pub to see what's on tap.

Pick up some BBA Old Tavern Rat in 22 oz bottles for a great stocking stuffer. We've also got a Lompoc gift pack with a beanie, pint glass and key chain for $10 - only available at the Fifth Quadrant."




See my previous post on Lompoc below for some good reviews on almost each one of these beers.

Friday, November 25

Beer Review: Odin Brewing Odin's Gift


"Odin's Gift formerly known as "Ruby Ale," is a filtered, ruby-colored ale brewed in small hand-crafted batches. Just the right amount of hops topped with juniper berries results in a bold yet well-balanced flavor and a wonderfully fresh aroma. This versatile ale pairs well with a wide variety of food.

Aroma- Fresh, malty, medium hoppy floral

Top Note- Caramel, malty

Middle Note- Juniper arrives with a slightly nutty tone

Finishing Note- Hops offer medium bitterness, clean juniper finish

Color- Deep clear red

Alcohol By Volume- 5.4% (final gravity 1.012)

25 IBU

Recommended Pairings-Lean meats, including game, pasta, fish and poultry"


Appearance: (4.0)
- Nice rich dark copper color. Amber or red ale style characteristics. Ever so slightly cloudy. Nice bright off-white foamy head settled to a spotty chunky foam.. lace about the glass. Good looking beer.

Smell: (3.5)
- Very bready and roasty caramel malt. Sweet biscuit and grain. Husky. Light fruit, esters, yeasty character. Not so much in the hops department.. maybe an earthy touch.

Taste: (4.5)
- Wonderful grain, perfect sweetness, light juniper touch, esters, earthy grassy touch. Biscuit and bread, roasty caramel. Very well balanced and tasty. Taste outperforms the smell.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- This beer has almost the perfect feel to it. Perfect carbonation, light to medium body, and just the right cloying chewiness and drying qualities.

Overall: (4.0)
- A very solid, balanced, and well brewed beer. Not overly fruity by any means, and the great taste caught me a bit off guard. Very good beer and well worth the purchase.

A- / 4.18

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Tuesday, November 22

Beer Review: Terminal Gravity Festivale


Terminal Gravity seems to be the forgotten local brew though they have been around for ages it seems. At least since I started really getting into local craft brews. Spotted this winter seasonal at a brand new New Seasons Market in Vancouver, WA here which I must say has a decent beer selection. I suspect they will bring in some more newer releases eventually. I am not a big fan of the winter-ale style, but what the hell. Let's give this one a shot. I think it's even been years since I have had a Terminal Gravity beer. This 6-pack of 8.4% ABV beer was about $10.49.

Appearance: (4.0)
- A nice mostly clear dark ruby brown brew. Big fingers of fluffy off-white head which slowly settled to a very spotty thin blanket with lace up and down the sides. Not bad.

Smell: (3.5)
- Certainly a healthy dose of caramel malts here. Perhaps other sweet grainy and bready malts like Munich or Marris Otter perhaps. A sweet English aroma to the malt. Little brown sugar, perhaps a touch of spice, fig, clove, and cinnamon. Surprisingly little hop presence. Maybe some floral and earthy hops in the finish.

Taste: (4.0)
- Certainly a flavorful beer. Sweet brown sugar, light molasses, caramel malts, bready grain, and some bitter pine hops in the flavor. The aroma of the beer hid a bit of what the flavor is packing. Light spice which I can dig. Heavily spiced winter beers make me want to vomit. Not this one. Very well rounded.

Mouth Feel: (3.5)
- Overall a medium bodied brew, plenty carbonated, and certainly chewy and drying. Overall it's balance keeps the mouth watering though. Still just seems a touch thin for what it boasts.

Overall: (4.0)
- Not a bad winter beer at all, and not too spicy. Overall it is a heavy hitter, warms you up, and drinks well. Certainly worth having a few of these kicking around in the fridge this year.

B+ / 3.85

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Black Friday At The Green Dragon


"Tired of standing in line and fighting for parking spots at the mall? We have good news. The Green Dragon will be celebrating Black Friday with Cascadian Dark Ales and the pub promises there won’t be a line to get in. Doors open at 11AM. The Dragon says “Let everyone else shop it while you hop it.”

All day on tap we’ll be pouring a dozen Black IPAs CDA’s and they will have hourly raffles with great prizes and fun games. On tap will be:

  • Boneyard Armored Fist Imperial CDA
  • Bend Eclipse CDA
  • Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous
  • Natian “Falconer’s Flight” CDA
  • Terminal Gravity CDA
  • Uinta Duhbe Imperial Black IPA
  • Portland U-Brew CDA
  • Laurelwood CDA
  • Green Dragon Black Hop Sun CDA
  • 21st Amendment Back in Black
  • Victory Yakima Glory Imperial CDA
  • Lucky Lab Black Sheep Black IPA

and more!

And to honor Black Friday, Rogue is also holding a Garage Sale where you can find discounts on tee shirts, hats, sweatshirts, glasses and cased goods. Get all your holiday shopping done while enjoying a Black IPA.

Event takes place November 25th starting at 11AM."


The Green Dragon is located at 928 SE 9th Avenue in Portland, Oregon.

Sunday, November 20

Winter Beer Festival At Plew's Brews


"The North Portland Fermentation Association and Plew's Brews proudly present the first annual Winter Beer Festival! From Friday December 16th to Sunday December 18th expect to dig deep into the bounty of Oregon's finest breweries! Hours are 5 p.m. Friday to Midnight, Noon Saturday until Midnight, and Noon to 6p.m. on Sunday. Glass (real glass!) glasses are $6 and tickets for the beers are $1.

We are very pleased to include a brand-new brewery, Humble Brewing, which will have a CDA brewed especially for the Winter Ale Festival, this medium bodied CDA is built on a Pils and Maris Otter base combined with White and Midnight Wheat malts. The malty backbone is balanced with loads of Zeus, Cascade and Amarillo hops. As well, a special beer was brewed just for us from Occidental, our neighborhood brewery.

Some of the newer beers also include:
-Stone's Double Bastard
-Lagunitas' Sucks Holiday Ale
-Ovila Abbey Quad
-Gilgamesh Winter
-Rusty Truck's Bellsnickle
-Off the Rail's Sin after Sin, a Belgian Triple.

We'll also have some old favorites to quaff, such as Jubelale, Wreck the Halls, Celebration, Winterfish, Abominable, and Old Foghorn.

We'll have two areas to buy food and vendors from the neighborhood. Come out to St John's for some tasty beers and a good time!"


Plew's is located at 8409 N. Lombard

Wednesday, November 16

Lompoc Brewing 2011 Holiday Beer Release Party


I was fortunate to attend the Lompoc Holiday Beer release event last night at their well know Sidebar location at 5:00 PM. Those of you who know good beer in Portland, know that this place can't be left out of a good beer venture whether a local beer geek, or out-of-towner scoping the goods in one of the best places on Earth for amazing craftbeer.

I first stopped in at the next door Hopworks Bike Bar and had a delicious Secret Alt before I ventured over at 5:00PM with fellow local PDX Beer Geek and co-founder Michael Umphress. Also co-founder of PDXBeerGeeks.com Emily Engdahl popped in right after. Of course I was sporting my #pdxbeergeeks T-shirt to represent our awesome community of craftbeer loving peeps and bloggers. There was a fantastic turnout of some of the better known bloggers, writers, and faces in the business. It was a great time shared by all.

There were 9 amazing holiday beers to be had, and we got right to them. I think one of the most amazing things about this tasting event was the fact that the Lompoc owner, and brewers were so very open to let us all in on the ingredients, blends, brewing processes, and stories behind the beer. Nothing was kept a secret. I think I speak for us all when I say that we felt a really close connection to the people, the beer, and the art. It was very educational. In school my attention span lasted about as long as head on a flat beer. When discussing the beer.. my attention was latched on like a thick barleywines lace about the glass.

Let's start off with the first beer in the lineup shall we? Blitzen.

Blitzen is a spiced golden infused with cinnamon, clove, lemon zest, and fresh ginger. It weighed in at about 4.6% ABV which made for a wonderful drinker that one could enjoy a big glass of, or more.

This I think was my favorite of all the beers. The aroma alone made me want to soak large pine cones in the stuff, and scatter them about the house. Wonderful clove, cinnamon, and spicy aromas resting in a fantastic bready golden brew. Certainly a top notch brew. Light citrus in the finish, and some smooth sweet vanilla character appeared for me as well.

Cherry Christmas is a blend of four different beers. A golden fermented with sour cherries, a golden fermented in Port barrels with sour cherries, a brown ale inoculated with a Lambic blend yeast aged in Merlot barrels for four years, and a two year old Gueze. Still rather light at 5.6% ABV.

This beer too was a light drinker, and had wonderful sour characteristics. A clear light red to brown ale with a spotty white head. Light grain and sweetness with a lot of lovely barrel and dry wine qualities. This was a great blend, and for me it almost came out with some apple juice qualities. It was tart and not overly sour. Certainly a refreshing brew, and one I could see drinking in the Summer months as well. 300 lbs. of cherries were used in the goldens, and another 40 lbs. in the barrel. This certainly got a lot of it's tart character from the wonderful sour cherries.

Brewdolph is a Belgian red ale with some heavy malt character and creamy body. Brewed with the Belgian Ardennes yeast strain, the spicy clove and ester flare really shined. The yeast really made the beer.

Not many hops were used. The intent was to really get a nice red malt backbone, and let the yeast do its thing. I think it worked perfectly. I feel red ales are kind of the forgotten red-headed step child playing the Nintendo in the back room. This beer really turned out great, and should be a huge hit even for those who are not big hop-heads.

Holiday Cheer is a standard porter, or robust porter with a creamy body, chocolate malt flare.. and brewed with whole vanilla beans.

This is the first one I grabbed before the tastings. I'm glad I did. I allowed it to warm up over the couple hours of the tasting, and the whole vanilla beans truly shined. This was one smooth puppy. They focused on using the whole vanilla bean to avoid any extract-like flavors, and it worked. Nice dry, earthy, and solid vanilla flavor without being overpowering like so many can be.

Jolly Bock is a German style lager brewed with lots of Munich malt which developed a lovely dark amber to brown color. Lovely dry bitter hops were used, as well as a Bavarian lager yeast which added some very nice roasty and dry grainy character to it.

I felt this beer was really true to the style, and was created by one of Lompocs newest brewers who has been at it there for about the last 6 months. I would seek her out, and try to get in some good discussion, and see what beers of hers might be on tap.

C-Sons Greetings is a bigger version of their C-Note Imperial Pale brewed with even more "C" hops. Seven different varieties to be exact. Crystal, Cluster, Cascade, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus, and Challenger. 8% ABV

I had last years, and this one wasn't quite as heavy as they explained. They were aiming for better drinkability and a super good hoppy brew that won't get a person totally tossed after just one. This was also dry-hopped much more than the regular C-Note. I think they nailed it. What huge resinous and pine-like hops.. perfect bitterness, and huge aroma/flavor hops. I tried to pick out what was used for most the dry-hopping, and my guess of Cascade was pretty much right although others were used as well. The malt was great and not too caramel sweet. Bready, grainy, biscuit.. floral, spicy, pine green hops.. like a fresh cut Christmas tree. Wonderfully chewy and dry.

Bourbon Barrel Aged C-Sons Greetings was brewed this year in February, and aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon Barrels for seven months and cellared for one more. 8% ABV

I loved it. Easily my second choice. It was a calmer, smoother, more rustic bad boy with fantastic oak character, and light vanilla. The majority of this beer was all barrel aged by for one later batch added in. What a treat. The barrels weren't fresh, and had been used previously, which I think was a great move, because as they stated, they wanted more of the lighter qualities of the barrel aging process which was to give it a more woody, dry, light vanilla flavor. They nailed it. Easily might be my second favorite there.

Old Tavern Rat is their beloved barleywine which was aged for almost a full year prior to its release. 9.4% ABV

This beer was first brewed back in '97-'98, and adopted the name in '01 to commemorate the late Don Younger who used the nick "Old Tavern Rat" as an email or contact handle. Brewed on their old 7-bbl system, this turned out to be one amazing example of a true English style barleywine. Sometimes I get a little frusterated with some barleywines because I think of them more as an American Barleywine. This bugger was good. Wonderful molasses, and toffee character. Sweet grain, caramel, and light spice. Lightly cloudy and brown.. with some tobacco, spicy hop, and light smokey character. This is a tough one for me as a close 2nd favorite.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat was originally brewed in December of 2009. Then it was aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for 10 months, and then cellared for an additional 13. 9.7% ABV

A treat. A real treat. I am a huge fan of BBA barleywines, and this hit the spot. I did however like the later regular version better. This would make a nice night cap for any holiday though. Big robust bourbon character, vanilla, wood, tobacco, earthy spice, and vanilla. Butterscotch candy almost. Sticky sweet bad assness. Darker character, and more cloudy for sure than the regular. Compared to other BBA barleywines that I have had.. this one came out swinging, and got itself a KO. If you're not careful, you'll get yourself KO'ed.

I did also get to try the 8 Malty Nights. It was a bit young still, and had a little more sitting time needed, but it was still a treat, and really showcased the malt, grainy character, and roasted qualities within.

My focus on the tasting is... well, the tasting. I wanted this article to show a focus on what they showed the focus on. Though a great meet with many popular faces, brewers, bloggers and more.. I left out a lot of that info to show my determination for the art of craft beer. I had a great time, and hope that I will soon enjoy many more tastings, and events with my fellow beer geeks, bloggers, friends, and masters in the industry.

Get over to the multiple Lompoc locations, and grab yourself some of these goodies. Maybe next year we will all be able to enjoy the 12 beers of Christmas at Lompoc Brewing.

Lompoc Brewing
@LompocBeer

Monday, November 14

Breakside Brewing Imperial Pumpkin Stout Release Party

Imperial Pumpkin Stout Release Party!
Thursday, November 17, 2011 6-11 PM

"Join us this Thursday for the release of one of our most popular beers. This year's Imperial Pumpkin Stout clocks in at 8.4% ABV and was made with over 18 lbs per barrel of locally grown pumpkin and aged on toasted coconut

At 6 PM, we will release the beer on draught and will tap a special 'pumpkin cask' of the beer. That's right—we'll pour free tasters of the beer straight from a giant pumpkin!"



Breakside Brewing
820 NE Dekum St, Portland, OR 97211

Beer Review: Pelican 2011 Bad Santa CDA


Grabbed a bomber at Northwest Liquid Gold here is Vancouver for about $4.52.

Appearance: (4.5)
- Nice super dark brown brew with a very beautiful slow forming 3 fingers of thick light tan head.. lacing all over and a thin pillow left for your upper lip. Great looking beer.

Smell: (3.5)
- Grainy smell.. bread, light alcohol aromas. Subtle sweet dark chocolate smell as well perhaps with a bitter grassy and earthy hop. Scent is a tad subdued.

Taste: (4.0)
- Roasty light bready grain, light chocolate flare. Not overly sweet at all, and has a nice grassy and herbal hop presence. Quite good. Light alcohol presence detected. Light spice flare, and floral hop.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Medium bodied with a nice creamy feel. Certainly drying and chewy. Well carbonated and not so bubbly light. Certainly a good drinker.

Overall: (4.0)
- Solid hoppy and tasty brew. Not at all sweet like many others, but more dry, and drinkable. Certainly is one to try, and one I would buy again for sure.

B+ / 3.93

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Thursday, November 10

Beer Review: American Brewing Caboose Oatmeal Stout


Read a lot about the brewery, found some bottles.. loved the IPA.. here goes the stout.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Super dark stout.. poured black. Like a quiet sleeper stout. Minimal light mocha colored head.. maybe a half a finger or more slowly hit, and went away. Little ring left, and some scattered dusting. Looks like a nice stout.

Smell: (4.5)
- Nice grainy smokey, and husky malts. Like chocolate, big smoke... and a grassy earthy hop flare that spices it up. Smell is super good. Semi-sweet oats and sugars.. but that isn't what stands out.

Taste: (4.5)
- Smooth sailing stout. This is very good. Perfect touch of a smoked roasted character that I find to be missing in many other standard stouts. Smoked malt, light chocolate, perfectly balanced with some good grainy malt sweetness. Bitter early boil grassy hops.. solid stout. I think I found a new favorite.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- This is almost the perfect stout. Or maybe it just is. Great medium bodied and slightly creamy brew.. not at all chalky like a find a lot of stouts. Certainly chewy though, and dry like it should be. If I wanted to brew my own perfect stout, I would be happy with the way this turned out.

Overall: (5.0)
- I think this is my favorite stout that I have ever had. I am going to be buying many more. This tastes really good.. is easy to drink, is just the right strength.. with not a touch of alcohol flavor to be noticed. A very good job with this beer. I recommend you all try this soon. Superior.

A+ / 4.58

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Beer Review: American Brewing Breakaway IPA


Was finally nice to spot some of this brewers beer here in Vancouver, WA at the QFC on 192nd. I spotted this beer, the Oatmeal Stout, and Golden Ale. Each cost $4.49 before tax which for me is just a bit steep.

Appearance: (3.5)
- A murky amber yellow with big thick white head. Settles to a thin film which is spotty and lace about the glass. Certainly an unfiltered beer.

Smell: (4.0)
- Bready grainy malt, light caramel, and some good smelling hops. Little light citrus hop, zingy lemon zest.. little grassy and floral. Overall not bad.

Taste: (4.0)
- Solid hoppy brew. Big citrus hops, lovely earthy grains.. caramel, bready.. zesty bitter hops. Some of all the hop characteristics. Pine, citrus zest, and floral all packed into this brew. Tastes quite good.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Somewhat of a light body.. easy to drink. Rather chewy as well and drying. Well carbonated. Almost seems a little too light.. but overall the chewiness takes hold.

Overall: (3.5)
- This is a very good tasting IPA. Big bitter hops, and wonderful hop flavors. It's odd though really.. the mouth feel doesn't seem to match the flavor etc. It certainly packs in the hops though and won't disappoint the hop heads out there like myself.

B+ / 3.88

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Tuesday, November 8

Beer Review: He'Brew (Shmaltz Barrel Aged Release #5) Genesis 15:15 Harvest Barleywine


Glad I got a hold of what i think was the last bottle at By the Bottle here in Vancouver. Never really had much from Schmaltz, and am now on a Shmaltz kick.

Genesis 15:15®
Barrel Aged Harvest Barleywine
Brewed with Pomegranate Juice, Fig Juice, Date & Grape Juice,
Aged in Sazerac 6-Year Rye Whiskey Barrels


Appearance: (4.0)
- Nice super dark brown brew that I can hardly see through in my large glass. Wonderful slowly rising light tan head.. settles with lace all about, and scattered pillows of foam. Pretty beer.

Smell: (4.0)
- Rich sweet malts. Very caramel and candy-like with a molasses, fig, and touch of esters. Little bit of alcohol with a touch of whiskey, vanilla, and earthy oak flare. Certainly smells like a heavy one.

Taste: (4.5)
- Hot damn. This is one heavy barleywine full of complex flavors. Certainly one to share with friends. Big caramel malt with wonderful vanilla whiskey flare. Esters, fig, all melded in there with maybe a small dose of earthy hops. Hard to say, but there is a nice gritty rye note going on. Win.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- High marks on the feel. Not so hot, not overly dry by any means though just a touch, and not too thick and syrupy. Very well put together. Medium to heavy body, and super easy to drink for its strength.

Overall: (4.5)
- Great beer, and well made for sure. I can't quite recall, but I don't think the price of this brew broke the piggy bank. Price doesn't affect my judging though. It's about the beer. This is a great beer, and makes a nice sipper late at night while reading a book or relaxing with friends. Easy to drink, very full of flavor, and hits the spot. Get it if you can.

A / 4.38

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Sunday, November 6

Two Beers Brewing: Expansion News, & New Taproom Opening


Over the last couple of months big things have been brewing down at the Two Beers Brewing in Seattle’s SoDo neighborhood. Most notably, they are expanding into the space next door and are now poised to open the new taproom. The beautiful new brewing equipment, which they recently installed, is encroaching on the exiting taproom.

Increased brewing capacity, more packaging, and more room for the public to enjoy the product onsite. Instead of me telling you the details here’s the press release.

---------------------------------------

I first had the opportunity to try their beer at the last 'Cans Fest' in Portland, OR. I was pleasantly surprised, and immediately starting asking around if any of their kegs and cans were even distributed around the local Portland/Vancouver metro area.

Only until recently have I spotted some tappings at By The Bottle, as well as some cans.

---------------------------------------

"Two Beers Brewing to Double Production, Packaged Products and Tasting Room Size

A bigger brewhouse, dedicated tasting room and expanded hours are all on tap; new facility to be unveiled at grand opening November 12

SEATTLE (November 2, 2011) – After what has already been a record-breaking year, Two Beers Brewing is excited to announce the expansion of its popular SoDo location. Thanks to growing demand for the brewery’s dynamic selection of Northwest-style beer, Two Beers Brewing is in the midst of expanding its production facility to 4,800 square feet – double its current size – allowing for increased production, a dedicated tasting room, new packaged products and much more.

“We are thrilled about this expansion and the overwhelming response we’ve seen to our beer over the past year,” said Joel VandenBrink, Two Beers Brewing founder and head brewer. “This expansion will help us ensure we can keep up with growing demand in Seattle, as well as expand into new markets. Our goal is to make sure craft beer lovers across the Pacific Northwest have access to Two Beers Brewing whenever they want it.”

Two Beers Brewing – which produced just over 1,100 barrels (34,100 gallons) in 2010 – is now on pace to eclipse 3,500 barrels (108,500 gallons) by the end of 2011, just four years after opening. The expansion project adds 2,400 square feet of brewery space, allowing for the addition of a 15-barrel state-of-the-art brewhouse, up to five additional 60-barrel aging tanks and up to 15 new 60-barrel fermentation tanks. With room to grow, the new space will allow for future production of up to 28,800 barrels annually.

The added space also allows for the installation of an automatic canning system capable of producing 60 cases per hour, bringing the brewery’s can production – currently accounting for 23 percent of the brewery’s total sales – up significantly from the current 12 cases per hour. The new production capabilities will allow for the introduction of five new packaged products to the market. New 22-ounce bottle offerings include Heart of Darkness Imperial Cascadian Dark Ale (CDA) and SoDo Brown, while new 12-ounce cans – available in six-packs – include Persnickety Pale Ale, Immersion Amber and SoDo Brown.

A dedicated tasting room is another feature of the newly expanded quarters. Double the size of the current space, the new tasting room will feature twelve tap handles showcasing Two Beers Brewing’s award-winning beers, six dedicated growler filling stations, seating for 62 people (not including the sun-filled dock) and a beautiful custom built bar. Additional features include a dedicated storefront, HD TVs for watching the game and more. The tasting room – which will continue to serve pints and tasters, as well as offer growlers, kegs, cans and bottles to go – will feature new tasting room hours, open Tuesday through Friday, 3 – 8 p.m. and Saturday, noon – 6 p.m.

To celebrate, Two Beers Brewing will be hosting a Grand Opening on Saturday, November 12 from 2 – 7 p.m., coinciding with the brewery’s fourth anniversary. Enjoy $4 pints, beer-infused food from Skillet Street Food, tours, limited edition beers, free anniversary poster and more! The event is open to the public; dogs and kids are welcome.

Available on tap in more than 300 restaurants and bars statewide, Two Beers Brewing offers twelve beers – including five year-round, seven seasonal and a host of intricate infusions. For more information, be sure to follow Two Beers Brewing on Facebook, Twitter or visit www.twobeersbrewery.com.

Media interested in attending a sneak peek preview of the tasting room on Thursday, November 10 between noon – 4 p.m. are encouraged to contact Caitlin Braam at caitlin@twobeersbrewery.com.

Retailers interested in learning more about Two Beers Brewing’s line of cans and bottles should send inquires and requests to getmebeer@twobeersbrewery.com."


Two Beers Brewing
4700 Ohio Ave. S., Unit A
Seattle WA 98134

Deschutes Brewing 2011 Abyss Reserve Series Release


Tuesday, November 15th


"Join us as we celebrate the sixth release of The Abyss, the imperial stout that is the heart and soul of our Reserve Series.

Walk, hop or skip down to our Bend or Portland Pub at 11 am to be one of the first first to purchase bottles of this year's vintage of The Abyss (6 bottle limit per person please).

Then, at 5 pm, treat your tastebuds to a vertical flight of The Abyss [2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011] and a special menu that our chefs created just for this event. These flights will not last long so don't be late.

The special menus for both pubs are slightly different with each chef featuring what they like to pair best with The Abyss.

Buckle your tastebuds folks, and we'll see you on the 15th!"


Deschutes Portland Pub
1044 NW Bond St, Bend, OR
97701


Deschutes Bend Pub
210 NW 11th Ave, Portland, OR
97209

Thursday, November 3

Beer Review: Shmaltz/Terrapin Reunion Ale '11


This has been brewed for a great cause. Instead of me copying & pasting the description, check out the link at this other very cool beer blog HERE.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Nice somewhat cloudy dark molasses colored ale with a big frothy beige head that has settled to a thin spotty thicket of foam. Lace all about the glass.

Smell: (3.5)
- Very light, but good grainy smell. Oats, woody grain and light cocoa. Lovely vanilla and floral aromas as well. All together it smells light, but very good. Little burn back in the sinuses too from the peppers.

Taste: (4.5)
- Smooth creamy vanilla over a bed of light bready grain. Light cocoa, and grassy bitter hops. Nice slightly tart finish and a subtle pepper burn. Will warm up nicely I am sure. Little roasty touch, and woody earthiness. Very well balanced and light.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- Medium bodied brew which is a bit chewy and dry. Overall very easy to drink, and is well carbonated with what seems to be a killer yeast. Very small bubbles, and a perfect match for the creamy body and flavor. Little chalky.

Overall: (4.5)
- This is an impressive beer. No flavor addition overrides the other in character. It is a very well brewed beer, and very balanced... and is for a great cause. This beer represents a true art form, and mastery in brewing. It is for me, a must have.

A / 4.28

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Beer Review: Midnight Sun Mammoth Extra Stout

Today is apparently 'Stout Day'. I guess I am a little late on knowing this earlier. Thankfully I had a stout in the fridge ready to go that I snagged up a few days ago at By The Bottle.

I like most Porters better than Stouts overall. But with each, I like them best when they are either dubbed as 'Robust', or as in a stouts case 'Extra'. I many times like the stronger versions best before they enter a bourbon barrel.


"Mammoth Extra Stout
7.8 % Alcohol By Volume
50 International Bittering Units (IBUs)

Dark and full-bodied, Mammoth Extra Stout provides a cozy blanket of warm and fuzzy flavors, including chocolate, caramel, coffee and nut. Huge portions of pale and specialty malts give this mammoth brew a complex palate while hops provide well-rounded balance.

Any time of year, pair the robust flavors of Mammoth Extra Stout with slow-roasted, caramelized meats and vegetables. Or contrast the deep dark roast flavors of this wonderful brew with silky soups; creamy pasta dishes, cheesecake or crème brulee; or berry fruits, compotes and sauces.

DISCOVER THE WOOLLY ONE.

Availability:
AK - 22-oz bottles and draft (year-round)
WA, ID, OR, CA - 22-oz bottles (year-round)"


Appearance: (4.5)
- Wonderful dark jet brown brew.. chalky look, can't see through a single bit of it. Wonderful frothy mocha colored head.. slowly settled to a thin layer which looks like a very dense and bubbly foam. Lacing all over the glass. A very pretty stout indeed.

Smell: (3.5)
- First hit with a mild sweet chocolate, followed by some grassy and earthy bitter hop aromas.. mainly grass, some pine, woodiness. Some esters going on.. raisin.. light alcohol aromas. Not bad, but the viscous fluid seems to be hiding much more.

Taste: (4.0)
- Great stunning chocolate and cream tasting stout. Balanced very well with some citrus and bitter hops which too are quite grassy and herbal. Nice roasted touch, and sweet fruit. Earthy woodiness as well.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Not as thick as I thought it would be. It is however a bit dry, and chalky like many stouts, but it's balanced sweetness keeps the palate moist. Overall very easy to drink, and perhaps dangerous.

Overall: (4.0)
- This is a solid, and balanced stout. Very drinkable for it's strength. Overall it's not a super impressive beer.. but it does stand out among many others. I can only imagine what this would be like on a nitro tap.

B+ / 3.93

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)

Lompoc Release Party for C-sons Greetings & Bourbon BBL Aged Old Tavern Rat


"Lompoc Brewing will release its perennial favorite C-sons Greetings and its Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat on Friday, November 11 from 4 to 11 pm at Sidebar, its tasting room located at 3901 N Williams Ave. Both beers will be available on draft and in bottles.

Csons GreetingsOne of the most anticipated beers of the year, C-sons Greetings is a higher alcohol version of Lompoc's popular C-Note Imperial Pale Ale, brewed and dry-hopped with even more of the seven "C" hops - Crystal, Cluster, Cascade, Chinook, Centennial, Columbus and Challenger. It features a deep copper color with a piney, citrusy, floral and resinous aroma. The full hop flavor and endless developing hop presence are balanced by a rich caramel malt finish. This is a big one at 8% ABV.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Tavern Rat Barley Wine was originally brewed in December 2009, then aged in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for 10 months and cellared for another 13. The dark amber-colored barley wine features a soft oak character with notes of raisins and figs. Get a designated driver, this beer comes in at 9.7% ABV. This beer was named in honor of legendary publican Don Younger.

The release party will also feature on tap 2007 Batch 69 Baltic Porter, a porter with hints of chocolate and black licorice that was brewed with a lager yeast for a much cleaner and smoother finish than a traditional porter; Bourbon Barrel Fermented Proletariat Red, fermented in Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for two months for a malty body with strong oak and vanilla flavors; Bierz Brown, a dark brown beer with a malty body and strong chocolate and roast flavors; and Condor Pale Ale, a crisp and nicely hopped pale ale that's great for quaffing with comrades or enjoying alongside some pub grub.

As is the case with all of Lompoc's release parties, there will be complimentary appetizers to nosh while imbibing. Lompoc will release seven more holiday beers at a release party on November 29, and its Hanukkah beer, 8 Malty Nights, on December 14."


Lompoc Sidebar

Friday, November 11 · 4:00pm - 11:00pm

3901 N Williams Ave.
Portland, OR 97227

Wednesday, November 2

Beer Review: Fort George North V Strong Ale


"A holiday tradition continues at Fort George Brewery with our Fifth rendition of the North series. Originally brewed to attend the Great American Beer and Barleywine Festival in Alaska we change this beer every year, but keep the Strong Ale base as a constant. Last year we imagined a Christmas tree being thrown into the beer and devised a recipe that included spruce buds, cranberries, and a giant candy-cane. This year we took another holiday icon, the fruitcake, and designed our holiday seasonal in its’ honor. A mash of barley, oats, wheat, rye, rich caramel and honey malts are mildly spiced with Cascade and Saaz hops, fermented with Fort George house yeast then allowed to condition on hand-splintered, rum inspired oak. A Glase Fruit concoction that includes cherries, pineapple, orange and lemon peel is dissolved into the finished beer to add the final touches. Designed and bottled to age, we are sure this version of the Fruit Cake will not be passed down for generations, but opened and imbibed at many a cheerful gathering."

Fruitcake? I do like the sound of rum-inspired oak... I think I tried this at last years Holiday Ale Festival. We'll see if I even go to this years.

Appearance: (4.0)
- Every so slightly cloudy dark rich amber brown brew. Off white finger of foam settles to a pillowy blanket and large ring in the glass. Looks like a strong ale to me!

Smell: (3.5)
- Some strong caramel notes, and a bit of a rubbing alcohol punch to the face. Esters, fig, and some citrus notes present.. as well as an herbal grassy hop. Lot's of bready grainy goodness. Just by the smell, I think they were right about the aging.

Taste: (3.5)
- This is pretty darn good! Smell threw me off. And then I also just now read that it is only 7.5% alc. by vol. which is hidden somewhat well in the taste at least. Nice dry hoppy touch.. earthy and grassy. Nice subtle fruity touch, some esters, fig, raisin.. not a really huge amount of citrus though.. but it is there so slightly. Little oakey flare.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Bit dry actually. I think there is some serious hopping with this one. Medium bodied, slightly creamy, and carbonated as it should be. Average carbonation. Little cloying, puckering.

Overall: (3.5)
- Overall I like it a lot better than most other winter seasonals out there. But to me it still isn't a super excellent beer. I don't know if any winter beers are as i am normally not the biggest fan of the style. But it certainly shows some determination, and uniqueness in brewing. I am, and always will be a fan of Fort George Brewing. Unless they go soft on me ;)

B / 3.58

(BeerAdvocate.com Rating Scale)