Industry News

Mt Tabor Brewing Opens New Southeast Portland Taproom & Brewery

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Mt Tabor Brewing owner Eric Surface (left) and Head Brewer Ben Dobler (right)

Mt Tabor Brewing owner Eric Surface (left) and Head Brewer Ben Dobler (right)

Mt Tabor Brewing returns home. The nano brewery started on the east slope of Mt. Tabor before moving to Vancouver, Washington, in 2011, but has now returned to southeast Portland with a new production brewery and tasting room. The 15bbl brewery comes with a new head brewer–Ben Dobler joined the brewery in February 2016 after nearly 20 years at Widmer Brothers Brewing.

 

Mt Tabor Brewing Portland Bar

Mt Tabor Brewing Portland Bar

The new tasting room is managed by local beer evangelist/advocate Nicole Kasten and is now officially open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays from 3-9pm, with Sundays being added soon. The tasting room pours fifteen taps, including two guest hard ciders. Pints will be $5 and 11oz glasses $4, with $12 growler fills to-go. It’s outfitted with a nice stereo system and big flat screen TV for sports–they plan to play all sorts of games with the sound ON. There will also probably some live music on occasion as well. As the place is still in the soft opening days, other amenities will be coming soon, including indoor bike parking.

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Owner Eric Surface reminds us, though, “we are a brewery first,” and you can tell with a quick look around. It’s an open 90 degree warehouse space with plenty of room for brewing and more tanks. To start, there is a 15bbl Practical Fusion brewhouse, pumping into four 15bbl fermenters from Pioneer tanks and one brite tank of the same size. It’s a big step up from the old setup, but Eric still sees it as “an extension of my basement bar.”

 

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For those sad about the closing of Mt Tabor Brewing’s downtown pub in Vancouver, they can look forward to Mt Tabor’s pizza joint coming soon to the Felida neighborhood of Vancouver. The 7bbl brewery will be relocated there and the location will have 24 taps, a family friendly atmosphere that the tasting room in Portland does not have, outdoor seating, and wood-fired pizzas. A longtime home cook into barbecue and butchery himself, Eric has been perfecting his own wood-fired pizza oven at home for some time. The pies at his new spot will mostly be Neapolitan in style, but he is not afraid to play with some thicker, puffier crusts and influences. The menu and ingredients will be farm-t0-table seasonal, including plenty of roasted veggie possibilities and salads.

Head Brewer Ben Dobler brings a wealth of experience to his new job. As a fan of drinkable beers and classic styles, the beer lineup is full of balanced lower-ABV styles. There is the 4% ABV Lamp Post Lager that fuses modern hops like Mosaic, Galaxy and El Dorado into a traditionally German style. Ash St. Amber Ale is a traditional throwback to pub-style ales that are going extinct in America–it’s chewy, malty, and not particularly hoppy, but is one of the best-selling beers. Asylum Ave IPA is naturally a popular beer, using five different hops for a complex dank nose. The rest of the lineup contains such tried and true styles as porters, pale ales, and Belgian blondes. The beer lineup is not super adventurous, but it fills a niche that’s been left empty at our local breweries too often these days.

Mt Tabor Brewing
124 SE 11th Avenue
Portland, OR 97214

Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding. Contact: [email protected]

1 Comment

  1. Heffler

    November 29, 2016 at 1:01 am

    We love mac and jacks African amber ale. ASH ST AMBER IS BETTER. We love in Vancouver we. Where can we find your beer here, did find it in Battle Ground, but where else? Please, my new favorite. Growlers? Pony kegs? Almost Daily drinker. [email protected]

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