Breaking News: North End/Rivergate Brewing Closed?

Just heard some surprising news that the North End Pub/Rivergate Brewing at 3011 North Lombard has already shut its doors after only about a year of business. I never made it to the pub as its location is a way's out of the inner SE neighborhoods where I spend most of my time but I have only heard less than pleasing reviews of their beer so in that sense it is not a surprise. What is surprising is that they are supposed to be pouring at Brewpublic's upcoming Microhopic 2 at Bailey's Taproom on  9/8 and there had been talk of them even expanding their brewing system.

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Review Panel: Deschutes Jubelale 2010

Jubelale 2010 photo by SNOB Ritch

Does it seem a little weird to be reviewing
Deschutes Brewing's classic winter warmer Jubelale in August?
Yeah, I thought so too, but these days breweries just keep pushing the seasonals out earlier.
Hold on, though, don't head to the store yet, because this beer will not actually be released until sometime in early October. The New School was lucky enough to get our hands on some preview bottles of this highly anticipated brew.

Beer News: New taphouse, Hopworks expansion, Bushwhacker Cidery, Columbia River Brewing and more

When you spend all your life in the craft beer scene, you often hear interesting rumors about goings on. Often times these rumors are true, but you cannot necessarily prove them, or don't have enough background or context to make an entire post about them. Once enough of them build up, though, I can compile them all into one post.

Below you will find word of
Hopworks' new "nano" system and possible 2nd location, buzz on the brand new Columbia River Brewing Co., updates on the upcoming Bushwhacker Cidery, the scoop on a brand new taphouse coming to Hawthorne Boulevard, and even some tidbits on Upright Brewing's future plans...

Study abroad in Beervana: Gustav's German bier is here to stay

(Introducing the first column by new contributor Lauren aka LalePrincey aka The Beer Princess who will be covering mostly beer culture and brings the first female perspective to this site. You may recognize her from such well known blog postings as girl who won the Craft Dash 5k or girl who convinced me to quit being sober. Please treat her with the the same lack of respect as you do me. -Samurai Artist)

Being verifiably ¨uber-Deutsch myself, I had both a twinge of skepticism and anticipation walking into Gustav’s Pub & Grill/The Rheinlander German Restaurant; Portland’s certifiably most German of German restaurant offerings. Skepticism due to the over-the-top kitsch (read: tacky-factor) that often comes with German themes… Think Bavarian-esque towns like Helen, Georgia and Leavenworth, Washington. Anticipation because I largely credit my Germanic heritage with rooting my drinking acumen. (Yes, it’s true: German beers are the beers of my childhood... But I digress and that is a post for another day.) In short, Gustav’s lived up to the anticipation and obliterated my doubts.

Hopworks debuts Piledriver barrel-aged wild ale at Biketobeerfest

Today I got to sample a new beer called Piledriver from Hopworks Urban Brewery another classic wrestling inspired name. Piledriver is built from the base beer of their winning entry to Cheers To Belgian Beers Fest from 2 years ago the Suplex dubbel only it has been aged for 18 months in 4 different barrels. At 8.5% abv 18 IBU's and 17.7 Plato it is not to be trifled with.

What Is a Nano brewery and Why Should We Care?

Breakside Brewing's 1 barrel system
Over the past year I have heard a lot of use of the word "nano" in reference to breweries and their production size. I do not think I had ever heard the word used in a beer context until 2009, and now it feels like I see it thrown around everyday With Fanno Creek's Nano Beer Fest just passed and Rogue's Nano Fest at the Green Dragon coming up this Saturday, as well as Brewpublic's recent Microhopic events at Saraveza and Bailey's Taproom next month, there seem to be plenty of events geared towards the nano set. So I have been wondering what does Nano brewery mean and more importantly why should I care if a brewery is nano or not?

Your Guide to Biketobeerfest Saturday August 28

There are few events more Portland than
Biketobeerfest, which celebrates its 2nd year this Saturday. Hosted and created by Hopworks Urban Brewery, Biketobeerfest combines a beer festival with a celebration of PDX's bicycle culture and its love of local independent music. This year's festival is also benefiting the Bicycle Transportation Alliance and Sunday Parkways.

New Brew Odyssey: Proposing the City Beer Showcase

Eyeing voter distaste for government spending and typical politicking, an article in the Christian Science Monitor ( from a few days ago looked at famous ‘pork barrel’ projects. Amongst the guilty endeavors was the National Brewery Museum ( in Potosi, WI that was built with federal funding back in 2004. Appellation Beer’s Stan Hieronymus commented on the story, disputing the pork-barrel pedigree and arguing for the merits of a national beer museum ( Hieronymus, of course, is right.

Biketobeerfest next Saturday, Volunteers needed!

 The 2nd annual Biketobeerfest from Hopworks is coming very soon, as in next weekend. Last year it proved to be one of the most fun and exciting new beer festivals in Portland so this year should be even better.
Hopworks has put out a call for volunteers and I have the details from them below:

Beer, Food carts, Indie Rock @ Deschutes Street Fare

I am skeptical about street parties. They seem like a good time but usually just offer more of the same. So it is with a critical eye that I HIGHLY recommend Deschutes Brewery Street Fare this Thursday 8/12 from 5-9pm.

Deschutes is clearly demonstrating how you do it right, we all know they make great beer and they will of course have a beer garden but they have wisely tapped into Portland's street food cart culture and love of indie music. With tickets attendants will be able to purchase pairing samples from 10 different food carts with 10 different beers. All the while some of Portland's best musicians will be roaming about busking and performing onstage. It is even for a good cause to support the Morrison Child and Family Services.
For a more in depth look at the Food Carts, the beer pairings and the performers please read on...

New Brew Odyssey: The Right to Write

This may be ‘old’ news now in the beer world, but last week, there was an interesting row between brewers and beer geeks that started on ProBrewer and incited reactionary threads on Beer Advocate and Rate Beer. For those who haven’t (or don’t want to) read the hundreds of postings on the topic, the storyline goes more or less like this. A contributor on ProBrewer asked what other brewers thought of beer rating sites in the industry; the immediate reaction was fierce—many brewers, especially from what seem to be small brewpubs, lashed out against beer geeks. The responses on the beer rating sites was a mix of equal parts surprise, anger, and condescension. Eventually, some brewers in favor of the beer rating sites chimed in, praising the sites and their contributors for their valuable service.

On The Wagon

Last week, following the end of Oregon Craft Beer Month and the beginning of August, I thought it would be a good idea (and an enlightening experiment) to take some time off from drinking. I set my sights at 2 - but hopefully 3 days - without having a beer.
You may laugh now at my modest goals, but I seriously think it has been years since I took a day off. I mean, many days I only have 1 beer, but always at least 1.
Apparently I was not the only one to have this idea. After a hard month on both our livers and pocket books, both Angelo De Ieso of Brewpublic and Yetta Vorobik of The Hop & Vine decided to go on the wagon, too.

Review Panel: Ninkasi's Maiden The Shade

The ever popular Eugene, OR based brewery Ninkasi's latest seasonal bottling is Maiden The Shade an IPA inspired by the band Iron Maiden as well as the Grateful Dead. The label artwork was even done by Jerry Garcia's daughter Annabelle Garcia. It has also been said that co-owner Jamie Floyd brewed this hop monster to emulate the aroma of Marijuana.

The Hop & Vine's 2 Year Anniversary Party

Tomorrow The Hop & Vine celebrates its 2nd Anniversary, and we can scarcely believe it. It seems like it just opened earlier this year, but it really has been 2 years and it is still the most under-appreciated beer bar in town. A few weeks ago Ben Edmunds named it the #1 Most Underhyped Beer Spot in Portland in his New Brew Odyssey column, and I concur.
The Hop & Vine balances a love of beer, wine, cocktails and food, plus a well-chosen bottle selection for there or to go. Few other beer bars offer the options of The Hop & Vine, which makes it stand out, as far as I am concerned. Couple that with their art gallery and beautiful backyard garden patio, and owner Yetta Vorobik has built one of the best and most up-and-coming hangout spots in Portland.

John Harris' Bonds That Please

Beer and Coffee geeks take note. Two of my favorite things in life have finally come together on a T-Shirt thanks to Full Sail Brewmaster John Harris with his new endeavour.

John Harris, more well known for creating some of Full Sail's best beers like the Brewmaster Series, LTD's and being involved in the creation of some of Oregon's best breweries like Deschutes has delved into a pet project combining his love of alcohol and caffeine and science.
The name of the project is "Bonds That Please" and is based on the chemical compounds of alcohol and caffeine.
Learn More.

Mayor Sam Adams is a Homebrewer?

The newest in our video series Behind The Pint - produced by "Snob" Ritch Marvin - is up. It focuses on the Oregon Brewers Festival, featuring enlightening comments from none other than Portland Mayor Sam Adams on his latest homebrew and what his favorite Portland breweries are!

Also included are comments from the dean of beer writers, Fred Eckhardt, Angelo De Ieso of Brewpublic, Charles Culp of An Ear For Beer, writer and festival organizer Abe Goldman-Armstrong, as well as footage of the parade, firkin tapping and more...

2010 Oregon Brewers Parade & Festival from Ritch Marvin on Vimeo.
Highlights of the 2010 Oregon Brewers Festival. Featuring interviews with Portland's Mayor Sam Adams, Beer Legend Fred Eckhardt and others.

Debating the merits of Oregon Craft Beer Month

We have been doing a lot of best and worst lists lately on The New School, and this is sort of another one. But instead of talking about the worst of Oregon Craft Beer Month, I am going to talk about its highlights and what we can do to make it even better.

Recently there has been a lot of critiquing of Oregon Craft Beer Month and how it does not live up to other cities' "Beer Weeks", even though we have a full month. The most recent critiques are by the well respected The Daily Pull and Beer Around Town blogs and the much less respected and abysmal Dr. Wort. As much as I hate to lend any credence to what Dr. Douche says, with the cacophony of other voices in the brewing industry, it has now become an issue worth addressing. First I will highlight the best parts of OCBM, and then contrast them with highlights of this years SF Beer Week...

Late Harvest coming from Upright Brewing on 8/8

This coming Sunday August 8th Upright Brewing is finally releasing the long anticipated 'Late Harvest'. Regular readers of the blog may remember that I designed this label and chronicled the progress of the artworks' design in 3 previous blog posts so I am happy that after much work and back and forth with the printers that its finally going to be released...

Best Beers and the Dissapointmens of Bailey's 3rd Anniversary

I closed out Oregon Craft Beer Month with a bang, along with other New School contributors Ben Edmunds, SNOB Ritch and ElGordo at Bailey's Taproom's 3rd Anniversary Barrel-Aged Beer Festival last Saturday. I was burnt out on beer events after a long OCBM, but was looking forward to this always-great event.
There was some great brews, as well as some surprising duds, so I asked the contributors to again pick their Top 5 favorite beers, along with any disappointments. The results are quite varied...