Oregon’s first not-for-profit brewery, Ex Novo Brewing, opens to the public this Wednesday, July 2nd, but we got an early preview yesterday of what you can expect from Portland’s newest brewpub. Located at 2326 N Flint Avenue–just a few blocks from Upright Brewing–the new Ex Novo Brewing has three of its own housemade beers available as of opening: a Session Pale Ale, a Scottish Red, and an IPA.
If you are dying to check out our newest brewery or just join in the party, then you may want to head over on Wednesday for the Grand Opening bash with live music and food carts, but I might recommend holding off until Friday when the in-house food menu will be rolled out.
The space is pretty, almost beautiful except for a lot of finishing touches that need to be added, and though it is in an odd location, I think it will have a great draw from the neighborhood. More importantly, the beer is tasting fresh. I enjoyed a couple of pints of the 4.9% ABV Session Pale Ale; the Scottish Red was just like what you might expect in the best sense; but, unfortunately, the IPA was cloudy and very unfinished. Clearly rolled out early for the opening, I’d bet by the end of the week this beer will be tasting fine. Ex Novo only began brewing 12 days ago and the IPA was rumored to have been only a day old, with the Session Pale being the first out of the gates. Head Brewer Ian Greene spoke to me about setting up hop contracts and running into shortages of the hot varieties like Citra, but seemed confident in the beers and excited to brew more one-offs and start sour and barrel-aging programs. Next on his plate is to brew a stout, and then the brewery’s first festival beer, a Black Raspberry Wheat for the Oregon Brewers Fest.