The craft beer industry has a diversity problem, which should be obvious to anyone who has ever seen the overwhelming amount of burly bearded white dudes (full disclosure: I am one of those dudes) roaming tap rooms or spraying down tanks in the brewery.
Pelican Brewing and Breakside Brewery were two Oregon standouts at the International Beer Cup competiton recently held in Shinmai Media Garden in Matsumoto City, Japan. Founded in 1996, the prestitions International Beer Cup was traditionally primarily Asian breweries but has begun expanding to include more brewers from around the world. The judging pool is international with many well respected brewers and experts making the trek to Japan for the competition. IBC2019 expected more than 900 beers from 25 countries and was judged by more than 80 judges from 25 countries.
Barel-Aged Beers from Oregon were the big winners of the cup. Though Pelican Brewing did not win any medals at last weekend’s Great American Beer Festival awards, the five medals they claimed in Japan must really take the sting off of Denver’s results.
Pelican Brewing won SILVER medals for Father of All Tsunamis, Five Fin Pilsner and Sea’N Red Irish-style Red Ale. They also won two BRONZE medals for Mother of All Storms and Tsunami Stout.
Breakside Brewery did very well last weekend at GABF with three medals and they repeated in Japan with another three medals. Breakside won two gold’s and a silver, all for barrel-aged fruited sours.
Sun Ripened, is a Chardonnay-barrel-aged Golden ale with Nectarine and Chamomile and They’ve Got the Best Peaches is a lambic-inspired sour ale with peaches that will be available at Peche Fest on Sat. October 26th in Portland. Both Sun Ripened and They’ve Got the Best Peaches won GOLD medals while Strawberry Ballyhoo, a fruited mixed culture sour won SILVER. Sun Ripened also won the ‘category trophy’ for all the Fruit and Spice categories. (the gold medal winner in each sub-category goes head to head in a Best of Show taste off)
PELICAN BREWING WINNING BEERS:
Father of All Tsunamis (Silver, in Wood/Barrel-aged Strong Stout): One-upping the mighty Tsunami Stout is no easy task. To create a beer with even more stout character, our brewers reimagined the fabled Tsunami Stout and created a new Imperial version. Full of rich roasty flavors reminiscent of dark chocolate and espresso, Father of All Tsunamis takes things one step further by aging in Rye whiskey barrels. With layers of spiciness, vanilla and caramel coming from these barrels, Father of All Tsunamis emerges with a richness and balance beyond any stout ever created at Pelican before now. ABV:11.2% IBU:55 PLATO:24° INGREDIENTS: pale malt, malted white wheat, Midnight Wheat malt, Black Prinz malt, pure cane sugar, Magnum hops, Willamette hops, pure local water, pure ale yeast. Available from April-June in 22oz bottles and on draft in select locations.
Five Fin Pilsner (Silver, in International-style Lager): Five Fin is named for the five ocean-going species of fish that benefit from the Salmon SuperHwy Project. This comprehensive effort works to reconnect ocean-going fish species with their spawning habitat. As long-time advocates for this amazing place, Pelican Brewing Company donates a portion of proceeds from every barrel of Five Fin to the Salmon SuperHwy Project. Inspired by the crystal clear waters of the six Tillamook County rivers benefitting from the Salmon SuperHwy Project, Five Fin is a uniquely “West Coast” take on the classic Pilsner beer style. Crafted with a unique blend of Centennial and Sterling hops from the Pacific Northwest and Mandarina Bavaria hops from Germany, Five Fin marries the hop-driven flavors of tangerine, pineapple, and lemon zest with classic spicy, floral notes, all balanced against a toasty malt character. ABV:5.3% IBU:45 PLATO:12° INGREDIENTS: Centennial hops, Mandarina Bavaria hops, Sterling hops, Magnum hops, Great Western Pilsner malt, flaked barley, pure local water, pure lager yeast | CAL: 158 per 12 oz. Available year-round in 6-packs and on draft in select locations.
Sea’N Red (Silver, in Irish-style Red Ale): Sea’N Red has a beautiful dark copper color and a medium-bodied presence. This smooth, richly flavored beer has a malt aroma reminiscent of toffee, caramel, and cocoa with a subtle floral bouquet. The lush aroma gives way to a full, rounded malty flavor with toasty biscuit-like character and notes of caramel. A smooth, well-balanced finish both satisfies and quenches. Sip and sea for yourself—Sea’N Red is a round malty brew whimsically served up in a bold, colorful name. ABV:5.4% IBU:25 PLATO:13° INGREDIENTS: Golden Promise Malt, Melanoidin Malt, Caramel Malt, Chocolate Malt, Santiam Hops, pure local water, pure ale yeast | CAL: 169 per 12 oz. Available year-round in 6-packs and on draft in select locations.
Mother of All Storms (Bronze, in Wood/Barrel-aged Strong Beer): There are many storms out there, all of them perfect in their own way. But there is only one Mother of all Storms and it only happens on the Oregon Coast. Based on Stormwatcher’s Winterfest, our English-Style barleywine, Mother of all Storms spends a year aging in Kentucky bourbon barrels. Now at its peak, Mother of all Storms delivers deep flavors of toasted malt, bourbon and oak. The finish rewards with whispers of vanilla, toffee and caramel. We suggest you hunker down, this beer is best enjoyed with winds in excess of 60mph. ABV:14% IBU:40 PLATO:32°. INGREDIENTS: Golden Promise malt, Munich malt, Melanoidin malt, Caramel malt, torrified wheat, Magnum hops, Glacier hops, pure local water, pure ale yeast. Available from November-December in 22oz bottles and on draft in select locations.
Tsunami Stout (Bronze, in Export-style Stout): Like the force of nature it is named for, Tsunami Stout will bowl you over with its jet black color and dark seductive aroma. Roasted malts and unmalted barley give this full-bodied brew its dense creamy head and distinct dark chocolate and cappuccino flavors that swell to a clean, rounded malty finish. Grab a Tsunami and head for high ground. ABV:7% IBU:45 PLATO:16.8° INGREDIENTS: pale ale malt, flaked barley, chocolate malt, Black Patent malt, roasted barley, Magnum hops, Willamette hops, pure local water, pure ale yeast | CAL: 221 per 12 oz. Available year-round in 19.2 oz cans, 6-packs and on draft in select locations.
BREAKSIDE BREWERY MEDAL WINNERS:
Sun Ripened (Gold, Belgian-Style Fruit Beer): Chardonnay-Barrel Aged Golden Ale with Nectarines and Chamomile. Taking inspiration from summery cocktails, fresh fruit sangrias, and spritzers of all kinds, Breakside crafted a beer that is low proof, bright and fruity, tart and dry. Sun Ripened is a lightly tart golden ale brewed to about 6.5% ABV before it goes into wood-aging. Breakside then stored it in California chardonnay barrels for 6 months before conditioning it further on freshly harvested white nectarines–also from California—and delicate chamomile flowers. You’ll get notes of intense fruit, light tea, and sparkling wine. Savor the interplay of ripe stonefruit and light oak; relish this glass of West Coast liquid sunshine.
They’ve Got the Best Peaches (Gold, Belgian-Style Lambic or Sour Ale): They’ve got the best peaches,” a customer exclaimed upon learning that we were releasing a new beer with fruit from Baird Family Orchards, and the name stuck. This blend comes from two batches of sour beer fermented directly on peaches, one from the summer of 2017 and the other from 2018; the fermentation was completed entirely by resident microflora on the fruit and resident cultures in the oak barrels. Only 8 of our favorite fruit-laden casks comprise this blend, which serves as a tribute to the beauty of Oregon- grown fruit and the wonderful farmers and orchardists who grow it.
Strawberry Ballyhoo (Silver, Mixed Culture Brett Beer): Strawberry Ballyhoo is a fruited sour beer that Breakside has released in several forms since 2017. The base beers in each version have been distinct, but it is always meant as a showcase for first-of-season Oregon strawberries. The 2019 vintage is a blend of three beers: two wild beers, both fermented and aged in Pinot Noir barrels, plus a Brett saison fermented in stainless steel. These beers were all brewed between May and August of 2018, and the finished beer has Mt. Hood and Albion strawberries from the 2019 berry harvest. We hope you enjoy the interplay of fresh fruit, funky microflora, and subtle barrel character in this multilayered blend.
About Pelican Brewing CompanyPelican Brewing Company was born at the beach in 1996. Here, in front of a rundown old building at the water’s edge, stood three enthusiastic young folks whose thirst for great beer overshadowed their understanding of what it would take to build a brewery. They did it anyway. Thanks to the vision of founding owners Jeff Schons and Mary Jones, Oregon’s only beachfront brewpub became one of the state’s most popular destinations. And now 24 years later, Pelican Brewing Company is an iconic beach brand and one of the most decorated craft breweries in Oregon. Pelican has been honored with more than 450 awards including the prestigious 2015, 2016, 2017 Australian International Beer Awards Champion Medium International Brewery; 2014 World Beer Cup Champion Small Brewery; 2013 Great American Beer Festival Large Brewpub of the Year. Why? Pelican brews are playful, but not frivolous. Brewed with purpose, passion and a deep respect for the craft. Pelican operates brewing and brewpub facilities in Pacific City, Cannon Beach, and its state-of-the-craft brewery in Tillamook, Oregon where it brews 40,000 barrels of award-winning beer annually and distributes to six states. Pelican’s vision, its beer and values were born at the beach where the team wakes up each day in a place that reminds them that amazing is possible. Cheers, Fellow Fanatics! For more information, visit Pelican Brewing Company.
About Breakside Brewery Breakside Brewery opened in 2010 in Northeast Portland as a restaurant and pub brewery. The brewery is known for its innovative, experimental and diverse beers. In 2013, Breakside expanded operations to Milwaukie, OR with a 30 bbl production brewery filled with 30, 60 and 120 barrel tanks, barrel rooms for wild and non-wild/sour fermentations, a high-speed bottling line and a 24-tap tasting room. The brewery opened distribution to Northern California in 2016 and in 2017 Breakside opened its third location in the Slabtown district of Northwest Portland. In addition to winning several national and regional awards for its beers, Breakside was named Brewery of the Year at the 2019 Oregon Beer Awards and the 2017 Best of Craft Beer Awards. Breakside sells on draft and in 12oz, 16oz and 22oz bottles and cans in Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, North Carolina, South Carolina, Massachusetts, Northern California, British Columbia and Alberta. www.breakside.com
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.