Great Notion Brewing to Officially Open on NE Alberta


What once was the overlooked The Mash Tun brewpub on NE Alberta in Portland is no more; what now takes shape is Great Notion Brewing, set to open on January 1st. Great Notion Brewing plans to make exciting IPAs with trendy hops, barrel-aged beers with fruit and maple syrup, and wild ales with cultivated Brett and aging in clay amphora vessels. Last month the brewery raised funds on kickstarter successfully and recently got its TTB approval, leading to plans for an official soft opening on January 21st.

While January 1st marks the official transition from The Mash Tun to Great Notion Brewing, there won’t be Great Notion beers available quite yet. Though the Great Notion crew recently started brewing, you will begin to see first batches showing up on tap at some point in January, leading up to an official Grand Beer Release on March 5th, 2016. In the meantime, the crew has been fixing up the place, has added a new chef and menu, and will be offering free tastes of upcoming beers.

After trying Great Notion’s experimental homebrews and hanging out with the founders back in July, I am excited to report I am assisting in the launch over the next few months. I will be helping in the marketing and promo department in getting these three neighbors and friends’ vision to become a reality.

Great Notion will boast an updated space and elevated bar menu, which Chef Ryan O’Connor describes as ‘approachable Americana’. To celebrate its opening, the brewery is welcoming families during the month of January when kids eat for just $1 every Wednesday.

Great Notion Brewing owners (left to right): James Dugan, Paul Reiter, Andy Miller

Great Notion Brewing owners (left to right): James Dugan, Paul Reiter, Andy Miller

Although founders Paul Reiter, James Dugan and Andy Miller took over the space earlier this year, the new team has been operating as Mash Tun while awaiting the TTB brewer’s license. That license came on December 9, 2015. Now brewers Miller and Dugan are hard at work, brewing barrel-aged sours and juicy IPAs, along with some experimental beers, such as the Double Stack, a breakfast stout brewed with coffee and maple syrup.

“We will slowly be adding Great Notion beers to our tap list, most likely starting with our flagship IPA,” said Reiter. “We can’t wait to share our new space and new menu with all of Portland.”

That menu comes from Chef Ryan O’Connor, formerly at local spots such as Vita Café and Helser’s on Alberta. His menu will focus on artfully crafted Americana food with influences spanning the Western Hemisphere. Patrons can order eclectic menu items such as Succotash Tacos and Philly Empanadas, or enjoy comfort food such as the Mac and Cheese with sharp English cheddar, smoked Gouda, Muenster, Roquefort, broiled plum tomatoes, and chives.

The brewery is also inviting its neighbors, partners, and friends to a soft opening on Thursday January 21st,

“We recognize the amazing community we are a part of, and we want to share our passion with those who have supported us throughout this process,” said Reiter.

Great Notion Brewing is a family-friendly establishment and operates daily. Guests can call the brewery directly to book events, parties, and more. To learn more about Great Notion, visit, or follow the brewery on Facebook,Instagram, and Twitter.

Samurai Artist
Samurai Artist

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: