Tuesday, July 22, 2014

OBF #27 Tomorrow!

The 27th Annual Oregon Brewers Festival starts tomorrow. And as in years past, Emily and I plan to be there waiting in line on opening day.

These are some of the beers that we will be sampling:
With the returning Specialty Tent and other beers on the list that we are sure to sample we should easily be able to sample in the range of 30 beers.

Hope to see you tomorrow....rain or shine.

Oregon Brewers Festival
OBF #27 Beerlist
OBF#27 Trailer/Taplist
OBF #27 Entertainment
OBF #27 Food
OBF #27 Vendors
Oregon Brewers fest Facebook
Oregon Brewers Fest Twitter - use #OBF27 & #OBF2014 (hashtag)
Oregon Brewers Specialty Tent Twitter  - Will have info posted about special beers/schedule/tappings/etc

Monday, July 21, 2014

Stone Brewing Opening a Brewery and Restaurant in Berlin, Germany

Press Release:
ESCONDIDO, CA (July 19, 2014) – The 10th largest craft brewer in the United States, Stone Brewing Co.,  today announced plans to open a production brewery and expansive destination restaurant in Berlin, Germany. With an anticipated opening in late 2015 or early 2016, Stone is making an initial investment of more than $25 million to renovate a historic gasworks complex in Marienpark Berlin, turning the more than two acres (9,290 square meters) of indoor and outdoor space into a world-class operation that will welcome beer enthusiasts from around the globe. Stone will be the first American craft brewer to independently own and operate a brewery in Europe. Stone Brewing Co. – Berlin will encompass three components: a brewery and packaging hall, a Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens restaurant and a Stone Company Store.

“This is a historic moment for Stone. I’ve wanted to say these next words for many years now: We’re coming to Europe. We’re coming to Germany. We are coming to Berlin!” said Stone CEO and Co-founder Greg Koch. “It has been a long time coming and I couldn’t be more proud to say that we are finally on our way to being the first American craft brewer to own and operate our own brewery in Europe. Once open, we will bring Germany and the rest of Europe a taste of our craft beer vision, and look forward to sharing the unique beers that we have spent the last 18 years brewing.”

“Stone’s future European home will serve as the company’s international hub; a central location promoting goodwill and quality craft beer spanning the globe,” said Stone President and Co-founder Steve Wagner. “With this expansion comes our commitment to brewing bold, aggressive, hop-forward beers in a country with a long history rooted in the art of brewing.”

The company will transform the setting into a one-of-a-kind destination that includes:
  • A spectacular, historic, red brick main hall built in 1901 measuring 43,000-plus square feet (3,994 square meters), featuring a vaulted ceiling that will house a custom-built, stainless steel brewhouse, an eclectic farm-to-table restaurant, and retail store featuring specialty Stone beers and merchandise.  
  • A second 20,775-square-foot (1,930 square meters) building that will be utilized for brewing operations and house fermenters, bright tanks, and packaging equipment and materials. Ultimately, the company’s signature ales will be packaged and distributed throughout Europe from the facility.
  • A third 1,300-square-foot (120 square meters) building, situated in what will be the expansive gardens, to be utilized as event space.

The property’s brewhouse will produce year-round and special-release Stone beers to be packaged, kegged and enjoyed on site and eventually distributed. Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Berlin will highlight locally grown, organic food that complements the harmonious nature and seasonality of the location’s surroundings. As proud supporters of the international Slow Food movement, Stone will ensure that every dish is made from ingredients adhering to Slow Food’s principles of good, clean, fair food. An ambassador of the craft beer movement, Stone will serve an extensive array of exceptional craft and specialty beers from other breweries in Germany, Europe and across the world, both on tap and in bottles.

Additionally, the company launched an Indiegogo crowd-participation campaign today, so fans can participate in the venture by purchasing special collaboration beers to be brewed with award-winning, renowned craft brewers from around the world at Stone Brewing Co. – Berlin once the facility is operational.     

Friday, July 11, 2014

Don's Double Down ESB release at Horse Brass

A new four-way collaboration beer in honor of Portland's most famous Publican Don Younger. Brewers from Lompoc, Fort George, Gigantic and Solera have created a special draft release of Don's Double Down ESB and it will be released tonight at 5pm at the Horse Brass. So make your way to Horse Brass and get a pint and raise it to Don Younger.

This Friday, July 11 at The Horse Brass Pub at 5pm is the very special draft release of Don's Double Down ESB, a four-way collaboration between some of Don Younger's favorite brewers: Lompoc Brewing, Fort George Brewery, Gigantic Brewing and Solera Brewery. The ESB combines some of the finest NW grains and hops to create an easy drinking special bitter just in time to celebrate what would have been Don’s 73rd birthday. The brewers combined two of Don's favorite things into the logo: drinking and gambling. So raise a pint to Don, his birthday and Oregon craft beer! A portion of all proceeds from Double Down ESB will go directly to the Don Younger Educational Foundation which supports the food and beverage industry. 5.3% ABV 32 IBUs.
A limited supply of 22 oz. bottles will be available starting next week for $4 at all Lompoc pubs, as well as Gigantic Brewing and Solera Brewery.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Beer Trippin' to McMinnville, Oregon

We are way behind on posting actual beer stops. We travel quite a bit with sporting events, family vacations, and just the occasional need to get out of the house so there's a ton to catch up on! We originally started Freshpints.com to give my friends some good information on breweries, festivals and taprooms. We hope to get back to more of that soon, since we have quite a backlog of recent visits.

McMinnville has changed quite a bit since I moved away. It's changed from being a farm town to being a wine town, the population has grown as people have moved away from the big cities, and its quietly becoming a beer town....which all I can say is its about time!

Any discussion of McMinnville beer should mention Golden Valley Brewing which, since 1993, was the lone brewery/beer destination in McMinnville. Emily and I have had many beers and delicious meals there over the years.  She swears the Greek Salad is the best ever.  If you haven't been to Golden Valley, please make the time to stop in and have a tray and a snack. 

Another great brewery (and the second brewery that came to town in 2007) is Heater Allen BrewingHere is an older post when I stopped in at Heater Allen in September of 2012. 

On to the newest members of the beer community in McMinnville! Grain Station Brew Werks


The Grain Station Brew Works is the newest brewery in town and is based in the Granary District in McMinnville; the complex where the brewery is situated is owned by Mark Vickery (former brewer for Golden Valley) and Kelly McDonald (owner of the Granary District). Grain Station is in a renovated building that looks like a barn and also houses other businesses such as fresh seafood, dog grooming, coffee,etc. 

Emily and I stopped in this last fall. The barn is really cool and they did a great job renovating the building but leaving the charm intact. Walking in you are greeted with a huge space, high ceilings, and that cool rustic barn feel.

 Emily and I were seated and ordered up a taster tray and a 1/2 Pepperoni 1/2 Margherita pizza.

The beers we sampled were. Haystack Gold, Sprout Hefe, Nut Red, Bet The Farm IPA, Hank's Dark Ale, and Grain Station Stout.  All the beers were great and I wouldn't have expected anything less from Mark Vickery especially since I drank a lot of his beer while he was at Golden Valley and it was always very good.  The standout for me was Hank's Dark Ale, the combo of the hop and the roasted malt flavor was excellent. The pizza was good and neither Emily nor I felt like it lacked anything. We hope to go back soon and try out some other menu items.

While we were eating the pizza and sampling the beers, I noticed that Mark Vickery was in and I made my way over to ask him if I could take some pictures of his 7bbl brewery. You can view the brewery from windows from the pub side, but the wall is pretty high up. For pictures you either need to be sitting right along the windows or see if you can view from inside the brewery.

The Grain Station Brew Works is a nice addition to the brewery scene in McMinnville and will do very well.
Grain Station Brew Works Twitter

Note that all the breweries are centrally located only a few blocks from each other in this section of McMinnville so you can make a nice little brewery hop between them. However, check Heater Allen's taproom hours as they are open for limited hours on Friday and Saturday.
A side note to the McMinnville breweries: A couple of new growler fill stations have opened up in McMinnville. Growlers Tap Station and Mac Taps Growler Fill Station.  Both are situated right on Highway 99, so if you're driving through McMinnville on Highway 99 they are easily accessible.

Golden Valley Brewing Website
Golden Valley Brewing Twitter
Golden Valley Brewing Facebook

Heater Allen Brewing Website
Heater Allen Brewing Twitter
Heater Allen Brewing Facebook

27th Annual Oregon Brewfest Opens In Two Weeks

Hard to believe the 27th Annual Oregon Brewfest is just two weeks away. This will be my 21st year attending and I'm once again looking forward to a great opening day on Wednesday. A couple of great additions this year. OBF for the first time has added 12 brewers from Europen, eleven from the Netherlands and one from Germany. Also returning this year is the Speciality tent or what was formally called the Buzz tent. See you at OBF #27. 

Event Name

27th Annual Oregon Brewers Festival


Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Portland, Oregon Main entrance at SW Oak Street and Naito Parkway; other entrances at SW Pine St, under the Morrison St Bridge and along the sea wall at Pine.


July 23-27, 2014 — "Always the last full weekend in July"


Weds through Sat, taps are open from Noon to 9 pm
Sun, taps are open from Noon to 7 pm
Token & glass sales close one-half hour prior to the taps shutting off: this is 8:30pm every night except 6:30pm on Sunday.



Admission into the festival grounds is free. In order to consume beer, purchase of a 2014 souvenir tasting glass is required and costs $7. No other vessel will be filled. Beer is purchased with wooden tokens, which cost $1 apiece. Patrons pay four tokens for a full glass of beer, or one token for a taste. The OBF glass/token sales booth is CASH ONLY and does not accept credit cards or checks. The festival does offer eight ATM machines on premise.


The Oregon Brewers Festival is one of the nation's longest running and best loved craft beer festivals. Situated on the west bank of the Willamette River, with towering Mt. Hood as a backdrop, it is the ideal venue for anyone who loves craft beer. With a laid back attitude and scores of award-winning beers, the festival reflects the essence of the city of Portland, aka Brewvana.
The Oregon Brewers Festival exists to provide an opportunity to sample and learn about a variety of craft beer styles from across the country. More than 80 craft breweries from all parts of the nation offer more than 20 styles of handcrafted brews to 80,000 beer lovers during the five-day event.
The festival's focus is craft beer, but there's more than sampling involved. The event features live music, beer-related vendors, beer memorabilia displays, beer writers and publishers, homebrewing demonstrations, and an assortment of foods from a variety of regions. The Crater Lake Root Beer Garden offers complimentary handcrafted root beer for minors and designated drivers. Minors are always welcome at the festival when accompanied by a parent.
The Oregon Brewers Festival strongly encourages responsible drinking, and urges patrons to take advantage of the MAX Light Rail line, located just one block west of the festival on SW Oak Street. Go by bus, train or taxi, just don't drink and drive. The festival also offers free, on-site bicycle parking

Contact Information


Picture I took from last year

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Sierra Nevada continues it media buzz pushing the upcoming Beer Camp Across America Beer Festivals with the release of the Beer Camp Across America Mixed 12 pack.  The Pacific Northwest makes its mark on the 12 pack with Ninkasi Brewing of Eugene, Oregon. Ninkasi was picked as one of the 12 breweries to partner with Sierra Nevada and Beer Camp Across America. Ninkasi’s contribution is the Double Latte Coffee Milk Stout.  You should see 12 packs (10 bottles & 2 cans) arriving everywhere. Don't forget to pick up your tickets to a Beer Camp Across America beer Festival, its sure to be a blast
The variety pack, including 10 bottles and two cans, is a first in craft beer

Chico, CA—July 7, 2014—Less than two weeks shy of the kickoff to Beer Camp Across America, an unprecedented seven-city traveling beer festival, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. has released a one-time-only Beer Camp Across America mixed 12-pack to beer shelves across the nation.

Sierra Nevada partnered with a dozen exceptional craft breweries to create 12 different beers for one mixed 12-pack—including 10 bottles and two cans—a first in the craft beer world. These brewers will board the Beer Camp Across America tour bus later this month and hit the open road to take part in the largest craft beer celebration in history.

“A lot of creativity and hard work went into the Beer Camp Across America 12-pack, and we’re excited to finally share it with drinkers,” said Ken Grossman, founder of Sierra Nevada. “We’ll pour these beers at every festival stop with hundreds of other craft brewers who are pushing the boundaries of our industry. It’s a traveling party, and we’re going to have a great time.”

The Beer Camp Across America 12-pack features the following coveted breweries, which were selected for their innovation and reputation for brewing world-class beers. Craft drinkers can explore all dozen beers in full detail at www.SierraNevada.com/BeerCamp.

Allagash Brewing Company, Portland, ME | Myron’s Walk Belgian-Style Pale Ale
Asheville Brewers Alliance, Asheville, NC | Tater Ridge Scottish Ale
Ballast Point Brewing Company, San Diego, CA | Electric Ray India Pale Lager
Bell’s Brewery, Inc., Kalamazoo, MI | Maillard’s Odyssey Imperial Dark Ale
Cigar City Brewing, Tampa, FL | Yonder Bock Tropical Maibock (CAN)
Firestone Walker Brewing Company, Paso Robles, CA | Torpedo Pilsner
New Glarus Brewing Company, New Glarus, WI | There and Back English-Style Bitter
Ninkasi Brewing Company, Eugene, OR | Double Latte Coffee Milk Stout
Oskar Blues Brewery, Longmont, CO/Brevard, NC | CANfusion Rye Bock (CAN)
Russian River Brewing Company, Santa Rosa, CA | Yvan the Great Belgian-Style Blonde
3 Floyds Brewing Company, Munster, IN | Chico King Pale Ale
Victory Brewing Company, Downingtown, PA | Alt Route Altbier

More than 700 craft brewers from around the country have already signed on for the multi-weekend Beer Camp Across America tour, which kicks off July 19 in Chico, Calif. With around 1,400 total craft beers on tap, collectively representing almost every state in the union, the event is shaping up to be unlike any to date.

Tickets for the seven Beer Camp Across America festivals are on sale at www.SierraNevada.com/BeerCamp. General admission is $65, which includes a commemorative tasting glass and unlimited tastings where possible, as well as live music from the provocative Oregon-based MarchFourth Marching Band. Local food trucks will be on hand with tasty offerings for purchase. The tour path:

Sat, July 19: Northwest Edition at Sierra Nevada Hop Field in Chico, CA, 12-5 p.m.
Sun, July 20: Southwest Edition at Embarcadero North in San Diego, CA, 1-6 p.m.
Fri, July 25: Rocky Mountain Edition at Civic Center Park in Denver, CO, 5-10 p.m.
Sun, July 27: Midwest Edition at Navy Pier in Chicago, IL, 12-5 p.m.
Fri, August 1: New England Edition at Thompson’s Point in Portland, ME, 5-10 p.m.
Sat, August 2: Mid-Atlantic Edition at Penn Treaty Park in Philadelphia, PA, 12-5 p.m.
Sun, August 3: Southeast Edition in Mills River, NC, 1-6 p.m.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Press Release:
EUGENE, Ore.—July 2, 2014This July, Ninkasi Brewing Company, a regional craft brewery located in Eugene, Ore., will continue its quest to Perpetuate Better Living anywhere mankind’s journey leads—even to space. With the first mission in the books for this summer, Ninkasi is proud to announce NSP, the Ninkasi Space Program.

In partnership with the Civilian Space eXploration Team (CSXT), the first amateur rocketeer group to successfully launch a rocket to space in 2004, the team will do it again, 10 years later, and carrying a payload of 16 strains of brewer’s yeast above Earth’s atmosphere.

“NSP is a very serendipitous project,” explains Nikos Ridge, CEO and co-founder of Ninkasi. “I don’t think you could have planned a more perfect pairing of beer and space geekery.”

Introduced through a mutual friend, Ridge met with Bruce Lee, of CSXT, at an amateur rocket launch competition in 2013 where the idea first came about.

“As a result of meeting Nikos, CSXT is pleased to include Ninkasi as a team member for the launch,” says Bruce Lee, principle and range safety officer for CSXT. “Launching brewer’s yeast into space will be an interesting experiment – something we’ve never done before.”

With almost a year of planning, NSP will finally get off the ground this month. Ninkasi’s lab technician, Dana Garves, and RapidMade, a Portland, Ore. company specializing in 3D printing, worked hand-in-hand to design and create a payload container built specifically to safely carry the 16 yeast strains into space and back to Earth for brewing—the first to do so.

“I couldn’t contain my excitement when I first heard of NSP,” says Garves. “We spent hours researching, developing and testing what we think will ensure that the yeast travels safely and returns to us healthy enough to brew with.”

After the launch, CSXT will retrieve the payload and immediately hand off the yeast samples to Garves who will analyze the yeast on-site with a microscope used in conjunction with her smartphone.

“Since we’ll be off-the-grid for the launch, I had to figure out a way to examine the samples remotely,” explains Garves. On-site, Garves will be testing for the viability of the yeast, analyzing the number of dead and live yeast cells.

If successful, the NSP team will return to the brewery with healthy yeast, ready to make its way into a very special beer for craft beer and space aficionados alike.

“Obviously, the fact that we’ve never launched yeast into space presents many challenges in itself even with months of planning,” says Ridge. “While we have confidence in our partners and the process, this is uncharted territory on several fronts and I can’t wait to see how it all unfolds on launch day.”

Ninkasi has released a microsite to help followers keep up-to-date with all NSP happenings including the July launch. To learn more, visit: http://nsp.ninkasibrewing.com