Beercation, Revisited: Portland, Oregon

According to the Oregon Brewers Guild, the city has fifty-three breweries and counting—more breweries than any other city in the world.

Emily Hutto Apr 18, 2014 - 3 min read

Beercation, Revisited: Portland, Oregon Primary Image

For the premiere issue of Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine™, I gave the skinny on Portland’s beer scene in the article “Old School, New School.” Everyone I reached out to for the article had more information to share about Portland’s craft beer scene than could fit on paper. Here are some of the tips and tidbits that had to be omitted:

"The craft brewing pioneers in Portland are Widmer, McMenamins, and Bridgeport. While Deschutes, Rogue, and Full Sail didn’t start in Portland, they all have brewpubs or ale houses here now, and I’d say that those fall in to that classic category, too. And while it’s newer, I think that Hopworks Urban Brewery is so Portland–organic beer, family friendly pubs, dedication to sustainability and bike culture." — Lila Martin, Travel Portland

"We liked the malt-driven styles best. BridgePort Ale had flavors of caramel, toffee, and toast with very low bitterness levels. Our other beers followed suit, and not until we introduced Blue Heron Pale Ale in 1987 did we place an emphasis on hop-driven beers. Of course, that all changed when we came out with IPA in 1996." — Karl Ockert, original brewmaster at Portland’s original brewpub BridgePort Brewing

"I think Portland has a lot of neighborhood spots. That helps the consumer be able to have better access to good beer. The result of that is a more educated consumer. That goes back to the brewing side because it raises the bar for the quality of beer produced." — Sean Burke, brewmaster at Commons Brewery (formerly Beetje Brewery)

"Guests seeking out Cascade Barrel House’s sours tend to be out-of-city and out-of-state beer connoisseurs who are coming to see us specifically for the sours, as opposed to the Portlanders. They live here so it's less of a pilgrimage as they have access to sours every day potentially and can touch upon the sours as new ones go on tap." — Preston Weesner, head blender at Cascade Barrel House

And finally I asked the photographer for the article, Portlander Leslie Montgomery, to give her two cents on the local beer scene:

"Portland’s breweries are the happiest places on Earth. . . . unless I take a growler of [insert any beer from Commons] on a camping trip."

Photo: Leslie Montgomery