More and more craft brewers continue to move in the direction of what many had railed against, adjunct lagers. Portland Brewing joins this trend as it releases Portland Lager, a new year-round beer that incorporates the use of flaked corn.
Portland Brewing describes its new Portland Lager as a domestic lager that’s brewed with Pilsner malt from the Pacific Northwest, pale malt, flaked corn, and pelletized Mt. Hood hops. The beer is also priced at a competitive $8.99 for a 6-pack of 16oz cans.
Here are additional details from Portland Brewing’s press release…
To make the Portland Lager, the brewer begins by using a six roll mill with three different sets of rollers to crack the grain, leaving the husk as whole as possible and breaking the kernel into small pieces. The brewer mixes the grains with water in three steps at 122 degrees, 146 degrees, and 158 degrees fahrenheit to break down starches in an efficient way. The mash is stirred the whole time so that every grain has the highest chance to reach the desired temperature.
The mixture is pumped to another vessel to create an even layer of grain while more water is added. The liquid wort is separated from the grain and collected for boiling. It is boiled for 90 minutes and hops are added. The boiling sterilizes the wort, coagulates proteins, and drives off compounds that have negative effects on the finished lager beer.
The brewer lowers the temperature of the liquid and adds it to a fermentation vessel for a cold fermentation at 50 degrees fahrenheit. The fermentation occurs over the course of at least three weeks and then it is cold conditioned for multiple weeks after that. During this time the beer develops a clearness and the flavors stabilize.
The beer is spun at 5500 rotations per minute to separate much of the yeast out of the liquid and further clarify the beer. It is packaged on site into 16 ounce cans, with proper sealing, and stored in large refrigerated warehouses.
Every new batch is scientifically studied at least five times throughout this process. The brewers must ensure the beer has the proper taste, color, bitterness, alcohol, carbonation, and that it is free of unwanted microbes.
If everything is over analyzed and done perfectly, Portland Lager is delivered to taverns and other establishments throughout the Pacific Northwest, where it is enjoyed by the region’s finest people.
“We made an American Lager that we as brewers would want to drink,” said Portland Brewing Head Brewery, Ryan Pappe. “The beer is light and smooth, clear, contains a hint of sweetness from the flaked corn, and it exhibits a nice balance. It is quite good and we are proud of it.”
Portland Lager is available in 6-packs of 16 oz. cans and on draft throughout the city of Portland and the metro area. 6-packs are priced at $8.99.
D.J. is a Portland, Oregon based writer that spent his formative years in the Midwest. With over 20 years under his belt of drinking beer at festivals across America and the world, he has developed a strong appreciation and understanding of craft beer and the industry that surrounds it. He can be found in any of the great breweries or beer bars that make Portland the best beer city in the world. His writing can also be found in Northwest Brewing News and can be followed on Twitter at @hopapalooza.