Posts Tagged ‘Portland’

West Coast Breweries Clean up at World Beer Cup

OK, so maybe this is old news to some of you, but for those of you who didn’t have the pleasure of attending the 2o12 World Beer Cup in sunny San Diego last weekend, here’s a recap of the West Coast winners. And extra super special shout out to super young breweries Sound Brewing (WA), Columbia River Brewing (OR), The Commons Brewery (OR), Breakside Brewing (OR), and Logsdon Farmhouse Ales (OR) for their first WBC medals.

According to The Weekly Pint: “This year there were 211 judges from 27 countries tasting blind; 2/3 of the judges were non-U.S. to balance results in the age of American craft brew—and macro brew—dominance, with gold, silver, and bronze medals awarded in 95 distinct beer styles. The average number of entries per style: 41. And how about this for a tap list: there were 3,921 beers judged from 799 breweries in 54 countries (and 45 U.S. states). In addition, honors for best brewery and brewmaster combo were awarded as usual, a highly coveted honor reserved for the end of festivities.”

What to do with this (in no particular order list)? Seek and find the beers! Have fun!

Brewery Winners:

Brewers Association World Beer Cup 2012 Champion Brewery and Brewmaster

Mid-size Brewing Company
Firestone Walker Brewing Company
Paso Robles, CA
Matthew Brynildson

Brewers Association World Beer Cup 2012 Champion Brewery and Brewmaster

Large Brewpub
Pelican Pub & Brewery, Pacific City, OR
Darron R S Welch

Washington winners

Fish Brewing/Leavenworth, Dunkelweizen

Elysian, Great Pumpkin

BJ’s-Tacoma, Got Beer

Fremont Brewing, Bourbon Abominable Winter Ale

Black Raven Brewing, Great Grandfather Raven

Silver City, Winter Bock

Redhook Ale Brewery, Nut Brown Ale

Sound Brewery, Poundage Porter

Silver City Brewing, Old Scrooge

Pike Brewing, Pike XXXXX Extra Stout

Silver City Brewery, Imperial Stout

Oregon winners

Hop Valley, DD Blonde

Columbia River Brewing, Drunken Elf Stout

Upright Brewing, Oyster Stout

Bend Brewing, Ching Ching

Columbia River Brewing, Stumblers Stout

Pelican Pub & Brewery, Stormwatcher’s Winterfest

Logsdon Farmhouse Ales, Peche ‘n Brett

The Commons Brewery, Urban Farmhouse Ale

Laurelwood Brewing, Mother Lode Golden Ale

Pelican Pub & Brewery, MacPelican’s Scottish Style Ale

Caldera Brewing, Caldera Ashland Amber

Breakside Brewing, Breakside Dry Stout

California winners

Rock Bottom-La Jolla, Longboard Brown Ale

Bayhawk Ales, Chocolate Porter

21st Amendment, Hqt

AleSmith Brewing, AleSmith Decadence 2010 Old Ale

AleSmith Brewing, AleSmith Old Numbskull

Alpine, Odin’s Raven

Third Street Aleworks, Blarney Sisters Dry Irish Stout

Left Coast Brewing Co., Voo Doo

Island Brewing, Starry Night Stout

Mad River Brewing, Steelhead Extra Pale

Beachwood BBQ & Brewing, Foam Top

Firestone Walker, Mission Street Pale

Firestone Walker, Pale 31

Green Flash, Palate Wrecker

Pizza Port Carlsbad, Poor Man’s IPA

Half Moon Bay Brewing, Mavericks Amber Ale

Sierra Nevada, Bigfoot

Pizza Port Carlsbad, Great American Brown

Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Tarantulas 2.0

Bear Republic, Black Racer

Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Achievement Beyond Life’s Experiences American Stout Brit Antrim Benefit Beer

Pizza Port San Clemente, Nerf Herder

Pizza Port San Clemente, Way Heavy

Oggi’s Pizza & Brewery, Alyssa’s Attitude

The Bruery, Melange #1

Mammoth Brewing, Double Nut Brown

Pizza Port San Clemente, Pier Rat Porter

Feather Falls Casino Brewing Co., Blackjack Stout

The Lost Abbey, Carnevale

The Lost Abbey, Gift of the Magi

The Bruery, Oude Tart

Sierra Nevada, Ovila Dubbel

Karl Strauss, Two Tortugas Belgian Quad

Karl Strauss, Red Trolley Ale

Telegraph Brewing, Rhinoceros

Rock Bottom-Long Beach, Rocktoberfest

Lucky Hand Beer, Cali Common

Third Street Aleworks, Annadel Pale Ale

Firestone Walker, 805 IPA

Mammoth Brewing Co, Real McCoy Amber

The Bruery, Hottenroth Berliner Weisse

Pizza Port Ocean Beach, Bacon and Eggs Breakfast Coffee Imperial Porter

FiftyFifty Brewing, Donner Party Porter

Hangar 24 Craft Brewery, Hangar 24 Winter Warmer

Sierra Nevada, Kellerweis

Marin Brewing, Star Brew

Manzanita Brewing, Where There’s Smoke…

Telegraph Brewing, Petit Obscura

Green Flash, Green Flash Brewing Co.

Russian River, Supplication

Whew, that’s quite a list, and a lot of beers to sample. For the complete list of 2012 World Beer Cup winners, click here.

Widmer Brothers’ Omission Gluten-Free Beer

By Rebecca K. Clark

As the gluten-free movement heats up in the Northwest, Widmer Brothers cools things down with the introduction of its new line of gluten-free beers, aptly named Omission to demonstrate the uniqueness of the brewing process, which involves the removal of gluten from grain. Omission is a strong contender in the beer market, introducing a crisp, nutty lager, and a refreshing pale ale.

Producing great tasting, safe, gluten-free beer is a personal endeavor at Widmer Brothers. CEO and craft beer enthusiast, Terry Michaelson, was diagnosed with celiac twelve years ago; and brewmaster Joe Casey’s wife has been a celiac since 2006. It’s only natural that these two men came together to produce a delicious, gluten-free alternative that pleases all palates, including those of average beer drinkers and craft connoisseurs. But is it really safe?

The guys from Widmer Brothers say the brewing process is a secret, but they did explain that they are careful to test every batch to ensure safety. The gluten parts per million (ppm) for the lager and the pale ale is currently 5.0—well below the international standard for safety, which is 20 ppm of gluten protein.

According to Michaelson, he and several celiac and gluten intolerant people have enjoyed Omission beers on more than one occasion, and they have given them the all clear. I am gluten intolerant. I threw a couple back. I have no complaints.

Omission beers are not produced in a dedicated gluten-free facility. That made me feel squeamish at first, but brewmaster Casey reminded me that both beers are made from barley to start. To avoid cross-contamination, they brew Omission beers in the morning after everything has been sanitized. To ensure safety, each batch is tested to meet the international standards. That is why they can label their beers gluten-free, even though they’re not made in a dedicated facility and they’re made from barley. Speaking of safety, Widmer Brothers has chosen to sell Omission beers in bottles. This eliminates server error and cross-contamination from taps.

Michaelson and Casey are not only doing their best to ensure safety, because of their relationships to celiac disease; their passions and palates drive them to produce consistently great tasting gluten-free beer. Each batch must pass the standards of a tasting panel for quality control before being bottled and sold to consumers.

Brewing gluten-free has never been easy on the consumer’s pocketbook. Gluten-free grains are typically expensive, which hikes up the price of their resulting beers. I asked Casey if gluten-removal from the barley grain was expensive, and if it would affect the retail cost of Omission beers. He said it did raise the cost, and that each six-pack would be sold at the average price of a typical craft beer. ($9.99 was the rumored price.) If you think that’s expensive, peruse the single bottle, 16 oz. gluten-free beers at your local grocer, and you’ll think Omission is a pretty good deal.

While Widmer Brothers is looking to sell Omission beers beyond the Oregon border, they are staying local for now. Expanding distribution will be a matter of defining what is gluten-free from state to state.

Considering Portland and the local food scene, the Widmer Brothers Gasthaus Pub is now offering a gluten-friendly menu by request. The kitchen staff is prepared to do everything they can to keep sensitive eaters safe. Michaelson will probably do his best to make sure the kitchen keeps its safety standards high.

If you’re interested in trying Widmer Brothers’ satisfyingly refreshing Omission beers, you can find them at these locations.

Have you tried the Omission yet? We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Fantastically Fruity

by Colin McElroy

Fruit beers have never been my thing. I don’t have an innate aversion to fruit and most certainly not to beer, but I have had some past experiences with fruit beers which I might compare to cough syrup. Widmer Brothers Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout does not draw this comparison.

To call this solely a fruit beer would be to overlook so many of it’s other qualities. This beer is a stout at heart, having its roots in Widmer Brothers KGB Russian Imperial Stout. With slight raspberry fruit tartness balanced by a toasty chocolate aroma you get the sense that the brewer really didn’t want this to be categorized as a fruit beer. The addition of Midnight Wheat to the boil adds smoothness and an extra layer of complexity.

The Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout is the second offering from Widmer Brothers recently launched Alchemy Project. Though the beers in the Alchemy series can be consumed immediately, they are designed to develop with age.

While this beer has helped partially mend my fear of fruit beers, I continue to be understandably weary. The toughest thing about trying this beer last night and taking a few bottles home is knowing that I have to (er, should) wait to drink them.

Learn more about this beer from Widmer Brothers brewer, Ben Dobler:  Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout. You can find 22-ounce bottles of Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout at your local beer retailers.

Holiday Giveaway Day 11

Today’s prize is made for the traveling beer connoisseur! It’s a night at Portland’s Hotel Modera on us, and a signed copy of Christian DeBenedetti’s The Great American Ale Trail. So pack your bags, and enjoy the hop haven that awaits you.

And the winner is… Heather Arnold!

Thanks for following us on Twitter, @VancityHeather. To claim this prize email before December 31, 2011.

To win the last prize in our holiday giveaway, be sure to “like” us on our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our e-newsletter (to your right).

Holiday Giveaway Day 7

Portland’s Food Shed donated today’s prize, which includes an Oregon coast-harvested bag of sea salt from Jacobsen Salt Co., who were featured in our Holiday Gift Guide.

And the winner is… Melissa Barber!

Thanks for liking us on Facebook, Melissa. Be sure to email by December 31, 2011 to claim your prize.

To win all of the other prizes in our holiday giveaway, be sure to “like” us on our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Winter Ale Festivals

Beer West will be bundling up all weekend long in downtown Portland’s Pioneer Square at the Holiday Ale Fest. And we’ll be representing at the Seattle Winter Beer Fest at Hale’s Ales. It’s gonna be a big weekend.

Photo courtesy Beeriety Blog.

Cold weather means welcoming a new batch of strong winter ales. Here are a few festivals and events in the West that you shouldn’t miss this season:

Portland Holiday Ale Festival // Pioneer Square // Portland, OR
November 30 – December 4

Winter BeerFest // Hales Ales // Seattle, WA
December 2-3

San Diego Strong Ale Festival // Pizza Port // San Diego, CA
December 2-3

15th Annual San Diego Strong Ale Tasting Challenge // Beer Co // San Diego, CA
December 3

Winter Wonderland CoLAboration Beer Garden // Golden Road Brewing // Los Angeles, CA
December 3

Parade of Darks
// Wynkoop Brewing Company // Denver, CO
December 3

Sono Park Holiday Fest and Chilipalooza // 32nd and Thorn // San Diego, CA
December 4

Meet the Brewer Monday with Ballast Point Brewing // The Pearl Hotel // San Diego, CA
December 5

Jingle Bell Jubilee // Blue Palms Brewhouse // Los Angeles, CA
December 10

8 Malty Nights Release // New Old Lompoc // Portland, OR
December 14

Kerstbier Fest 2011 // The Trappist // Oakland, CA
December 16

Chanukah Vs. Christmas: The Battle Royale of Beers // The Green Dragon // Portland, OR
December 17

Strong Ale Holiday Festival // Library Ale House // Santa Monica, CA
December 19

You know that warm, toasty feeling you get after your first (or maybe second) pint? We like to think of that as a beer blanket. So wrap yourself up, and get out this holiday season for some strong seasonal brews. Got more winter beer events to go to? Write us a comment, post on our Facebook page, or find us on Twitter @BeerWestMag. Cheers!

San Diego Beer Week- Part One

Greetings from America’s Finest City

I’ve arrived in San Diego from Portland, Oregon for the 2011 Beer Week (Nov. 4-13) and I’m feeling like I expect many beer connoisseurs feel when they arrive in Portland–Where do I even start?

This city is brimming with craft beer. It’s home to ­­­­38 breweries, and countless pubs and bottle shops that all serve local microbrews. Much like Portland, San Diego is comprised of many smaller neighborhoods that make up the city at large, with beer places on just about every corner of every hood. And then there’s the plenitude of local, seasonal food –now I really don’t know where to begin.

Lucky for me and the thousands of other San Diego Beer Week attendees, the huge community of brewers, chefs, bartenders, and restaurateurs has put together a 10-day lineup of tastings, pairings, and special events to showcase all of the artisan beer and food that this fine city has to offer.

Beer Week kicked off at the annual Brewer’s Guild Festival at Liberty Station, where members of the San Diego Brewer’s Guild sampled their beers and paired them with appetizers prepared by local chefs. O’Briens made Sour Wench-braised duck with Ballast Point Sour Wench Ale, and Slaters 50/50 Restaurant made peanut butter and jelly burgers to go with the Ballast Point Sculpin. My favorite pairing was the Alpine Brewery’s Mcllhenny’s Irish Red Ale with chipotle mac n’ cheese from Toronado Restaurant. By the end of the festival, I was bronzed from San Diego sunshine (even in November!), full of delicious gastro-bites, and a little buzzed off of high quality ales and lagers. I figured out why they call it “America’s Finest City” pretty darn quickly.

So where do you start in San Diego? Just dive in. You wont be disappointed.

Stay tuned to Beer West’s BeerLog for more news about the week’s shenanigans, and check out our Facebook and Twitter feeds for live updates.

For more information about Beer Week and its hundreds of events, visit


-Em Hutto

Indulge @ the Jupiter!


Indulge at the Jupiter is Portland Eastside Dining and Spirits Festival featuring 15 restaurants, 5 food carts, 7 distilleries, 7 wineries, 4 brewers and plenty more!


September 22nd, 2011 at 5:30pm-9:00pm


At the Jupiter Hotel: 800 East Burnside Street, Portland, OR 97214.


Support the p:ear program and pull off one of the best culinary events in Portland. p:ear builds positive relationships with homeless and transitional youth, ages 15 to 24, through education, art and recreation to affirm personal worth and create more meaningful and healthier lives.

Indulge @ the Jupiter, Portland’s flagship culinary event, invites guests to indulge once again in all the senses: savor, sip and nibble on the Eastside’s finest foods. The third annual neighborhood festival of culinary arts benefiting p:ear is coming Thursday, September 22, 2011 from 5:30 to 9 PM.

The premier edible event stars chef-owned restaurants, boutique wines and spirits, and the best tasty treats from local restaurants, breweries, and distilleries – all together under the Jupiter’s DreamTENT. Mingle with fellow foodies and browse a bevy of bites. Regular admission is $45, and early birds purchasing tickets before September 9th pay $40. Limited tickets available at Guests enjoy the best of restaurant and bakery fare, as well as signature cocktails crafted on-site and drinks from local distilleries and breweries inside the Jupiter’s very own guest rooms.

The proceeds from Indulge benefit p:ear programs helping to build positive relationships with homeless and transitional youth, ages 15 to 24, through education, art and recreation to affirm personal worth and create more meaningful and healthier lives. Each year these programs serve more than 550 homeless and transitional young people.

New additions at this year’s Indulge include:

- Food Cart Land: The Jupiter’s DreamBOX will be transformed into Food Cart Land with five local food carts.

- Wine on the Patio: The firepit and patio will showcase over six wineries and delicious desserts to pair with your sips.

- The Photo Lounge: Commemorate the meal with a unique photo booth capturing those spontaneous photos and sending attendees away with an instantaneous souvenir.

- Indulge Overnight Package: Sip and savor into the wee hours without worry! Stay overnight at the Jupiter Hotel with the special Indulge Overnight Package- a 25% discount on any room at the Jupiter. Crash in a Metro, Lobu, or Deuce room, or claim the DreamSUITE as an exclusive after-party site.

- Expanded Seating: The driveway will be open for attendees to mingle, socialize and rest between indulging.

Here are the Indulge 2011 Dining participants to keep an eye out for:

Laurelhurst Market

Beaker & Flask

Genoa / Accanto

Olympic Provisions

Screen Door


Doug Fir



Cheese Bar

Bakery Bar

Sizzle Pie


Shut Up and Eat

Hot Pink Taco


Tamale Boy

And of course a night isn’t complete without drinks from:

Deco Distilling

House Spirits

New Deal Distillery

Oregon Spirit Distillers

Stone Barn Brandyworks

Burnside Brewing


Double Mountain Brewery

Lucky Labrador

Dumas Station



K Vintners

Charles Smith Wines

Charles & Charles

Water Avenue Coffee


Craft beer month in Oregon!

What’s the best part of July? Well in Oregon, it’s Craft Beer Month.

Oregon will celebrate its sixth Oregon Craft Beer Month (OCBM) in July 2011 with more than 200 beer related events taking place at breweries, brewpubs, bars and restaurants across the state.  The festivities will be bookended by the first ever OCBM Kick-off Dinner and Beer Tasting  at Jeld-Wen Field on July 1 and the annual Oregon Brewers Festival (OBF) at Portland’s Waterfront Park from July 28 – 31, which draws 70,000 attendees each year.  Oregon Craft Beer Month recognizes the important role the beer industry plays in the economy, and vibrant culture that makes it so unique.

“Many cities and states have adopted similar programs like beer weeks in recent years, but Oregon was the first state to do a beer week in 2005 and beer month in 2006,” said Brian Butenschoen, Executive Director of the Oregon Brewers Guild. “It’s obvious that beer is an integral part of our culture and Oregon Craft Beer Month is an opportunity to stop and appreciate the passion and talent we have here.”

Even non-imbibers have reason to honor Oregon Craft Beer Month.  Oregon’s brewing industry plays a vital role in the economic health and vitality of the state, with a total economic impact of more than $2.44 billion.  Oregon is arguably the epicenter of America’s craft beer renaissance and boasts 82 brewing companies, operating 114 brewing facilities in 48 cities.  Oregon breweries directly employ more than 4,900 full and part-time employees. A thriving brewing industry supports a variety of local businesses including barley, hops, yeast and glass producers as well as providing a draw for tourism across the state.

For the first time ever, the Oregon Brewers Guild will host an official OCBM kick-off festival at Jeld-Wen Field from 5:00 – 9:00p.m. on Friday, July 1.  More than 24 breweries representing all seven regions of the state will be at the festival.  Admission is $50 and includes 12 tasting tickets, a stemmed tasting glass, program, and barbecue buffet from Center Plate Catering. Tickets can be purchased at


Cider Summit Heads to PDX

The Portland South Waterfront will play host to the SBS & Seattle Beer Collective created Cider Summit NW on June 11. The event is presented by Barbur World Foods & Bushwhacker Cider.

When: June 11, 2011 from 11am-7pm

Where: Elizabeth Caruthers Park in the South Waterfront neighborhood along the Willamette River.

More info after the jump