The Bar at the new Cider Riot tasting room
Cider Riot! is moving out of its crowded little garage to a significantly larger facility, expanding its production space, and adding a fine new pub (owner Abram Goldman-Armstrong would rather not call it a “taproom”) as well. The building itself is still discreet, without much in the way of signage; but for the tables outside, it’s hardly obvious that there’s a cidery and inviting pub inside. The new Cider Riot! facility is just a short walk away from Burnside Brewing at 807 N.E. Couch Street in Portland. Passing the tables outside, there’s a bar immediately on the left, and an expansive, roomy pub, and still has that new-pub smell. This is a big transition for Cider Riot!’s Goldman-Armstrong, whose passion and infectious enthusiasm for cider is unstoppable.
There will be a few dartboards hanging in this corner alcove
Once inside, you’ll pass some tables to the main bar at the back, where the taps are installed. The tap box is a small piece of Portland bar history: it was originally installed at the Rose and Raindrop, one of Portland’s best beer bars when it was open from 1998 to 2006. Besides a broad selection of house ciders, there will be up to three beers on tap; house policy favors beers from breweries which have Cider Riot! on at their own taprooms, like Burnside Brewing and Cascade Barrel House. Five ciders were on at the preview: house stalwarts Everybody Pogo! (hoppy cider), Never Give an Inch (Oregon blackberry cider), Chaos de Tejas (blood orange Amarillo cider), Le Scrumpie Normand (an experimental cider in Norman French style), and Van Dieman’s Land (Ella hopped cider).
Tasting the Cider Riot! Rainbow
Cider has been a growth category, and cider in the Pacific Northwest is a great way to showcase locally-grown fruit. Cider makers are encouraging orchards to establish more acreage in heirloom apple varieties that are optimal for making cider, and Goldman-Armstrong is a strong proponent of this. He wants the new Cider Riot! pub to be a place for people to enjoy and become educated in cider and cider-making. To that end, it’s a welcoming and roomy place. The cidery itself is just off the pub in a huge back room that will serve as Cider Riot!’s new production area.
lucky Gnome that oversees the cidery
That machine that looks like a snack dispenser, by the way, is also a book machine. Cider Riot’s new facility shares space with Portland’s 33 Books Co., which publishes pocket-sized themed journals for recording tasting notes for cider, beer, wine, and whiskey. Soon this punk rock back room adjacent to the bathrooms will also have two pinball machines!
Goldman-Armstrong Presents Cider Riot’s Excellent 1763 Cider
As a special treat, Goldman-Armstrong poured tastes of Cider Riot’s 1763 Cider, one in which he takes personal pride. It’s made with a blend of heritage cider apples, with a balance of sweet, tart, and tannic flavors. It’s recommended, as is a visit to Cider Riot!’s fine new cider pub when it opens on Thursday, August 11th at 4pm.
Cider Riot! Pub will be Open Thursdays and Fridays from 4 – 9pm, Saturday Noon – 9pm and Sundays Noon – 6pm starting August 11th, 2016. The Pub is all-ages with outdoor seating and on-site food truck Ramy’s Lamb Shack serving until 7pm. Outside food is welcome.
807 NE Couch St
Portland, OR 97232