Honest Pint at Henry's Tavern

The other day I happened to be downtown and somehow ended up at Henry's Tavern for a beer. They were pouring Ninkasi's well reviewed Sleigh'r to my delight, for $6.25 a pint, but hey atleast they were honest pints. The other day I was also at Fred Meyers and saw this:
 That is all.

Enemies of the State

Sometimes I lose faith in beer geeks and people in the beer community. There is a pretty well known saying about the beer community, that it is 99% free of douchebags. Well, I think I found that 1% and that is why I created the "Enemies of the New School" from day one. It has always been a bit tongue in cheek, and to call them "enemies" is a bit strong, but I thought it would be cool to have an opposing list to the "Friends of the New School". Since starting the site the Enemies List has become stale, boring even, so no one talks about it anymore and I have been thinking it needs some refreshing when all of a sudden a few contenders come along...

Today I thought I would highlight 3 different individuals/establishments who are showing us how not to do it. One is an aspiring beer media outlet/person, another is a PR person for a new local brewery, and the 3rd an owner and Brewer himself.

How To Brew in the New School: Peanut Butter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

This is not a homebrewing blog, but every once in a while it is time to make an exception. The last How To Brew in the New School post on the Mini-Moon Pie Porter has seen many, many hits over the past few months. So, I believe the time is right for the next homebrewing post, chronicling my adventures brewing the Peanut Butter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout at Coalition Brewing for the Halloween Night of the Living Ales: 28th Street Pub Crawl.

New Brew Odyssey: The Case for Beer Styles

The beer blogging world has been abuzz over the past ten days about the merits of beer style, and the vast majority of what has been written treats beer style as, at best, a useful evil. Amongst the Portland cognoscenti, only Jeff Alworth has chimed in, and he links us to a long list of previous writings where he picks apart the concept.

Hawthorne Hophouse: Open for Business

I wrote about the Hawthorne Hophouse, a new Portland taproom, earlier this month. The place has opened its doors to the public and features 24 taps (all but a couple from Oregon), a full liquor license, and a pretty extensive food menu.
I stopped in last night for a beer with New School editor ElGordo and his wife Katie, and was pleased by the variety in the tap selection. It was late and I had just 1 beer (Upright Five, of course) and no food, but I have scanned their menu and beer list for your perusal. Just click below to read more...

Review Panel: Deschutes Hop Trip

Fresh hop season is winding down and we have barely covered any of the beers, but it is not too late to pick up one of the most consistent bottled offerings. Hop Trip from Deschutes Brweery was probably the first fresh hop beer I ever had (either that or Great Divide's Fresh Hop). Hop Trip must be one of the largest-volume fresh hop beers out there, because you can find their bombers all around town for a few months and it typically holds up pretty well. I gathered four contributors to the New School to sit down and sample the beer for review
These are our thoughts...

Night of the Living Ales

There are so many beer events in Portland, yet there never seems to be much going on major holidays. For example, Halloween, a holiday mostly that is enjoyed by kids and the occasional adult costume house party. With that in mind, I, along with cohorts the Beer Goddess Lisa Morrison and Meghan Letters, came up with the Night of the Living Ales .

Night of the Living Ales is in the simple form of a pub crawl, something that has seemed obvious for the bustling 28th Street neighborhood with all of its bars and restaurants, including the recent spurt of new breweries and taphouses. It's a ripe street to take advantage of the close proximity of great bars. Thus NotlA was born, but not without adding a few unique flourishes to make it interesting...

Review Panel: Hopworks Abominable Winter Ale

Portland's favorite sustainable brewery, Hopworks Urban Brewery, has thrown its hat into the bottled winter seasonal beer game with an early release for their Abominable Winter Ale. This beer has a sharp and fun label that even tweaks the Hopworks logo a bit.
There is really not a lot of info on this one; here is the description from the label:

"This mythological beer emerges from the depths of our brewery every winter. Made with Cascade, Centennial and Simcoe hops and six organic malts, “A-Bomb” has a complex floral, spicy and citrus hoppiness backed up by just the right amount of malt sweetness. 7.3% ABV, 17 deg. Plato, 70 IBU."

Below are the notes from our New School review panel, with reviews from 4 panelists and an overall score by each between 0-5 in .5 increments.

This Weekend in PDX: Cider Fest, Art & Beer, Saraveza's Anniversary

This is one of the busiest weekends for me, so much so that I am calling off work today to make sure I hit all of the cool happenings. 2 of the 3 events I am highlighting below you have probably heard about: Saraveza's 2 year anniversary party and perhaps Art & Beer at the Portland Art Museum, but have you considered the Apple Tasting and Portland Cider Fest? Find out more about all of these events and why I think you should attend them below:

Review Panel: Ninkasi Sleigh'r

The winter beers are lining the shelves already and Ninkasi is one of the first local breweries out of the gates with their Sleigh'r billed as a Dark DoĆ¼ble Alt Ale. Many people are complaining about how early the winter beers come out which I think annoys most of us but is unfortunately part of the way the distributors and stores force a brewery to do business. That is a talk for another column however as this will focus on simply judging the beer for what it is: a hybrid German, American, Hard Rock inspired Holiday ale.

Preconceptions Shaken and Stirred

Yetta, Jake and I - Photo by John Foyston

I borrowed the title of this post from the new Mix Magazine article "Beer Cocktails: Preconceptions Shaken and Stirred" (click the link, read it, come back) by John Foyston. As you might guess, it is an article about the Brewing Up Cocktails event Jacob Grier and I put on with the Hop & Vine and Yetta Vorobik in July as part of Oregon Craft Beer Month. Foyston does a great job making the article not so much about our event, but rather the small but growing movement to use beer as a cocktail ingredient. He even interviewed some other notable bartenders from around town, like Kevin Ludwig owner of Beaker and Flask. It is exciting to see the trend growing and other bartenders, writers and brewers catching on. More on this below.

Beer by Bus or Food Cart

With Portland's insanely fast growing Food Cart Culture eclipsing even it's growth in new breweries many people have wondered why not have beer available in these food cart pods? Well anyone who has worked with the OLCC knows you cant just pull up and serve beer from anywhere even if your certified and you are ID'ing customers, the space is too open and too easy for minors to access alcohol. You need an enclosed space and quite possibly alcohol monitors too. Well it looks like the ever clever Captured by Porches Brewing Company may be the first to find a way to knock down that wall and open the first ever (that I know of) beer cart or beer bus...

New Brew Odyssey: California Rules

It is time to accept that Californians are brewing better hoppy beers than we are here in the Northwest. At least, that is what this year’s results from the Great American Beer Festival would lead us to believe. In the twelve categories devoted to beers driven by their hop character (English pale ale, English IPA, American pale ale, Strong pale ale, IPA, Double IPA, American amber, Imperial red ale, Belgian IPA, CDA/Black IPA, Bitter, and ESB), California dominated the competition winning 15 of the 36 medals, including golds in six of the categories. Oregon came in a distant second with 5 medals; no brewery in Washington, Alaska, or Idaho medaled in any of these categories. It was, from this attendee’s perspective, the most noteworthy trend from this year’s list of winners.

PDX's Newest Taphouse: Hawthorne Hophouse

In Portland there is no shortage of beer bars/breweries especially in the SE and there is really no sign that demand has been met especially in my own neighborhood of upper Hawthorne Boulevard with Horse Brass, Bridgeport, Lompoc Hedge House, APEX, Beermongers, Green Dragon, Lucky Lab and more all within a mile or so of me, still when I heard about yet another taphouse, Hawthorne Hophouse I was very interested, especially considering this one is only 2 blocks from my house! Horse Brass is 8 blocks away so this allows me to be even lazier.

Thirsty for more information than the liquor license application could devulge I tracked down the responsible parties for an interview and to snap some pics of the opening very soon (mid October) Hawthorne Hophouse.