Oregon’s first meet-the-brew pubcrawl was a huge success. The culmination of great people, great beer venues, outstanding beer, and spectacular weather was the perfect recipe for one hell of a time!
Victory Bar proprietor and barkeep Yoni Laos adds special beers to the chalkboard. You can always count on exceptional beers at Victory, but today was even more special. The pub usually opens at 5pm, but on this special day, Victory opened at noon to accommodate droves of thirsty craft beer drinkers. Brewers Matt “Speck” Speckenbach and Ben Love of Hopworks Urban Brewery (just down the street) were on hand to debut their new For Those About to Bock lager. From Double Mountain in Hood River, Oregon, Kyle Larsen was on hand to showcase his pitchy, booze-a-licious Imperial Choas Double Stout. Lots of other delicious geek-friendly beers adorned the taplines including Le Trappe Isid’or, Mt. Shasta Lemurian Lager, Mikkeller Single Hopped Centennial IPA, and Southern Tier Hoppe Imperial Extra Pale Ale.
After a great reception for the brewers at Victory and an hour and a half at the inaugural stop, the crowd dispersed and headed west down SE Division Street to stop #2 at New Old Lompoc’s Hedge House. The Hedge House is a beloved neighborhood watering hole and dining destination where the delectable beers brewed at two Lompoc breweries can be enjoyed. For this first day of spring, the sun was shining bright and the outdoor patio and lawn seating was a bonus.Pouring at the Hedge House were some brewhouse specialties including Lompoc’s peppery Saison the Beach, a tropically scented Simcoe Survivor Belgian IPA, the 69 Baltic Porter lager, and a handful of other quenching Lompoc brews. Lompoc’s NW 23rd brewery’s Zach Beckwith was on hand to greet the crawlers, many of whom made this their lunch stop as well.
Onward to stop #3 at Bar Avignon where Full Sail Brewmaster John Harris was on hand in his own neighborhood. Harris, a seasoned pro in the brewing industry has been an inspiration to many brewers climbing the ranks. His Full Sail Hop Pursuit was pouring at Avignon. The beer is a vibrantly hopped pale ale with no apologies. Quite refreshing and appropriate for such a day. To make things even better, Fort George brewer Spencer Gotter made the trek in from Astoria, Oregon to greet folks. Fort George’s Vortex IPA, a boldy hopped, yet well-balanced Northwest brew was featured to the delight of the crawlers. Avignon prepared special toasted hazelnuts for the event that went perfectly with the grubbin’ beers.
Finally, the crawl made its way to the stop #4, the last stop, at The BeerMongers. Though the bottleshop and pub has only been around a few months, they’ve been making quite a splash in the neighborhood. On this fine day three breweries were on hand to partake in the festivities. Walking Man brewers Jacob Leonard and Dan Munch made the trip from Stevenson, Washington to exhibit their sought after Big Black Homo Imperial Cascadian Dark Ale and to unveil a special new sour wheat ale known as Foot Funk. From the far expanse of Eastern Oregon, Barley Brown’s owner Tyler Brown and Brewmaster Shawn Kelso made the long haul to deliver two special beers: WFO India Pale Ale and the 2009 Great American Beer Festival bronze medal winning Tumble Off Pale Ale. From even further away, Oregon’s easternmost brewery Beer Valley’s Pete Ricks came through with the debut keg of his new Rosebud IPA. Ricks also brought a special blend of his Black Flag Imperial Stout and Leafer Madness Imperial Pale known as Black Magic. Not a less than killer beer in the whole bunch, this served as the perfect closure to a perfect day.
For more pictures from BrewPubliCrawl No. 1, visit our photo page
This post was written by Margaret and Angelo on March 22, 2010