Industry News

The HiVe Taphouse Showcases Oregon City Brewers

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Source: The Hive Taphouse

The beer scene in Oregon City keeps on rolling and growing. The Hive Taphouse, the latest in the newest batch of beer businesses, officially opened earlier in the month. The new taphouse is more than a taproom, however; it’s actually two brewers, Shattered Oak Brewing and Batch 1 Brewing, that have merged into one name.

Shattered Oak has been in business for almost three years, starting out doing self-distribution and brewing from a shop in Brandon Neldner’s home, one of the co-owners of Shattered Oak. From there, the company moved into Oregon City’s Feckin Irish Brewery to do a co-op brewery, where they met Batch 1 Brewing’s Dustin Pugh.

 

Source: The Hive Taphouse

 

“We used Feckin’s brewing space, had our tanks down there, and it was a place where people could come in and taste our product. That was a huge step,” said Neldner. “Things got a bit weird down there with licensing and trying to get all of that patched through. We needed to get bigger, our demand was growing too big, and so we got our own place.”

Staying local
I always like to ask if location is a conscious decision on where deciding to open a brewery and in this case the answer is a resounding yes. “This is where we’re from. When we started, there was no real beer scene out here as far as breweries.” Since then, Oregon City Brewing Co., Coin Toss, Bent Shovel, and others have all launched. “We all hit that mark at the same time to get some breweries out here and put Oregon City back on the map.”

Another reason for the Oregon City location? It’s not Portland.

“It’s not so much that they’re (locals) tired of the Portland scene, they just want something different. They want to go out where things are a bit more personal and have that personal touch with the brewers.”

All of the Hive owners are from Oregon City, including Neldner, Pugh, Ryan Jeske, and Greg Nelder (Brandon and Greg are cousins).

 

Source: The Hive Taphouse

Oregon City’s next decade
No discussion of Oregon City is complete without mentioning the Willamette Falls Legacy Project. It’s going to be a game changer for downtown Oregon City —and even the entire McLoughlin Blvd. corridor all the way to Milwaukie. The project will draw visitors, new companies, new businesses, and inevitably more beer.

“We all know when it comes down to it, we’re going to see a big brewery come in there. We just want to have our foothold in the community. I’ve been in Oregon City for 37 years, grew up here, went to high school here, all the above. To me this is home. People are very loyal to those that have been here for a long time. The loyalties are going to lie with who’s been here longer, not the larger brewery moving in.”

On tap
Batch 1 Brewing will brew and serve cider, mead and fruit beers while Shattered Oak Brewing will offer German and American style beers. Batch 1 Brewing brews natural, fermented in honey (“he’s tired of the ciders on the market that are back sweetened”) and sometimes uses local farms and honey to do small batches.

Shattered Oak Brewing will brew on the German side of things. “We don’t overhop, we keep the IBUs low and even if we do a high IBU brew, it’s still balanced between the barley to get a good malt character that’s right there after the hops. It’s a good mix.”

The next big step? Food. The City of Oregon City, ridiculously, forbids food carts. The Hive Taphouse will try to work around that by offering an indoor food cart, but that’s still up in the air. They plan on having an official grand opening soon with a series of events spanning a week. Follow them on Facebook to keep updated.

The Hive Taphouse is located at 13851 Beavercreek, Suite C104 in Oregon City. Open daily from 11:00 a.m. to closing.

John Chilson writes about Portland history and architecture at Lost Oregon. He's also written for Neighborhood Notes, Travel Oregon, Portland Architecture, Askmen.org, San Diego Reader, and Portland Food and Drink. Follow him on twitter at @LostOregon for local history nerdism; for beer tweets he's at @Hopfrenzy. Shoot him an email at hopfrenzy@gmail.com if you want to get in touch.

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