It’s official, Portland will hold its first beer week August 19-28. While many cities have a beer week, Oregon, of course, has Oregon Craft Beer Month. The difference is OCBM is about all Oregon beer and is spread out over a month that includes many filler events and a lot of the same ol’, same ol’. On the other hand, the beer weeks hosted by many cities are full of interesting food-related beer events and creative events like sour beer blending classes. Portland Beer Week aims to bring the best of other beer weeks to Portland, while keeping everything great about OCBM. PDX Beer Week is not simply about Portland made beer, but about celebrating Portland’s LOVE of beer no matter where it comes from and in all the many forms it takes.
The week kicks off Friday, August 19th, at the Horse Brass Pub with the debut of the official Portland Beer Week beer by Widmer Bros, a golden ale brewed with rose hips tentatively called Rose Hipster. The party will feature other special Widmer beers, all PDX guest taps, food specials, and swag giveaways from Widmer and Google Places.
The other highlights of the event are numerous and range in size from the Lagunitas Beer Circus to The Mighty Mights, a session beer festival spearheaded by our favorite beer blogger, Jeff Alworth at Beervana.
Some of the more creative events I am looking forward to:
1. A brewery team-up between Double Mountain and Hopworks for a Beer Brunch pairing at Spirit of 77, which is opening early and designing a special menu. Each beer will be paired with a different dish and you can choose your favorite combos without committing to the whole meal.
2. Beer & Sushi pairing. Pairing brews with food is no longer novel. Brewers Dinners are now common, as are cheese and chocolate pairings, but how often do you see anyone try something as challenging as pairing craft beer with sushi? My friends at Taplister and Behind the Pint have teamed up with Roscoe’s and Miyamoto Sushi to do just that.
3. A Brewers Burger Brawl that pits 5 local brewers against each other in a battle to determine who has the best burger and beer recipe.
4. A Panel on Barrel-Aging with some of the best brewers in town, like John Harris of Full Sail, Ben Love of Hopworks, Nick Arzner of Block 15, and MC Ben Edmunds of Breakside Brewery. Listen to these masters speak and get to try some of their amazing barrel-aged brews.This kind of event is exactly the kind I find missing during OCBM. It is both fun and educational.
5. Washington and California Brewers Nights. As mentioned before OCBM is largely about Oregon brewers. PDX Beer Week organizers thought it would be fun to give a little love to the brewing brothers from the North and South. Look for tap takeover events at Bailey’s Taproom and APEX featuring beers and breweries never seen before in Portland.
6. Breakside Breakfast Beers Night. When Brewer Ben Edmunds first told me about this event I was confused. Breakfast beers at night? Actually it’s genius, breakfast themed stouts and a special breakfast food menu on Thursday night.
7. Collaboration Beer Summit. Just when you think Roscoe’s is running out of beer summit ideas, we get a bright new idea to collect the best brewer collaboration beers that are all the rage right now.
8. Belgian-Themed Street Party. For the closing beer week festivities, organizers have closed off an entire city street on SE 32nd Avenue right off of Hawthorne, in front of new European/Belgian inspired beer bar Bazi Bierbrasserie. The street party will be a separate enclosed portion of the Hawthorne Street Fair and feature some of the best Oregon made brewers of Belgian-style beers from Upright Brewing, Beetje, Double Mountain, Full Sail, as well as five beers ice creams made by Salt & Straw, who will be there with their mobile cart. All five base beers from the ice creams will be available, too, from brewers Ninkasi, Upright, Burnside, Hopworks, and Breakside so you can pair everything up.
These are just a few of the OVER 24 events on the calendar so far with more being added still.
Check them all out at http://pdxbeerweek.com.
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