By Gail Oberst
Sky High times in Corvallis. The restaurant with a 360-degree view that includes the city, the Coast Range, the Willamette River and the countryside in all directions is now open. Sky High Brewing’s 4th floor rooftop dining won’t open until this spring, but its third-floor restaurant and pub opened in late October 2013.
The third-floor restaurant seats 100 in booths and tables, with an extra 50 seats available in the pub.
Those who want the outdoor dining experience now can sit on the third-floor heated and covered patio, just outside the bar.
The new restaurant and bar is added to the ground level brewery and the mezzanine taproom that overlooks the brewery. Stairs and a glass elevator connect the floors. Giant sequoia wood bar tops, local art by Angela McFarland, a made-from-scratch lunch and dinner menu and the views create an authentic Oregon atmosphere. The menu entrees range from burgers and pizzas to rib-eye steak and wild mushroom lasagna, all created by the chef, Jonathan Scott, and his crew.
Sky High’s beers – usually more than a dozen Sky High varieties are on tap at any one time – now include hand-pumped cask ales and beers on nitro. Sky High’s beer comes directly from its 10-barrel brewery on the bottom floor, with one exception. With no small amount of pride, Brewer Laurence Livingston showed us the authentic English Ale casked beer storage and service set up in the third-story pub. A new firkin is tapped every Friday at 4 p.m.
Bottled beer, wine and cider are also available at the restaurant. For those who want to take home Sky High’s beer, growlers can be filled – on Growler Tuesdays, Sky High sells growler fills at a discount.
Sky High Brewing
( a ) 160 NW Jackson Ave, Corvallis
( p ) 541-207-3277
(h) Open 7 days a week
Owner: Scott McFarland, Brian Bovee, and Mark O’Brien.
Brewer: Laurence Livingston
In Oregon, it’s the time of year when people show their true colors: Do you bleed green and yellow, or orange and black?
Whether you attended the University of Oregon or Oregon State University, if you live in Oregon, you probably have a favorite to win the Nov. 29 Civil War football game between the two teams. But more importantly: What will you be drinking?
Some breweries, whose staff and patrons may favor either team, shy away from favoritism and instead invite fans of both teams to special events in front of their big screen televisions Nov. 29. Other brewers, including Ninkasi, will be hosting tailgate parties outside of the event at Autzen Stadium.
But some Oregon breweries, Calapooia and McMenamins, for example, whole-heartedly take sides.
McMenamins has breweries in both Eugene and Corvallis – but brewers Gary Nance, Corvallis brewer, and Hanns Anderson, Eugene’s brewer – said they both become partisan Beaver and Duck fans during the Civil War, although both of them live in Eugene. The competition among McMenamins’ brewers is not confined to November, however; beer drinkers reap the benefits. Every year, McMenamins stages several competitive events among its brewers to showcase the variety of brews.
“It goes on all year long with a friendly vibe from Roseburg Station's ‘Arrogant Beaver’ and ‘High ST,’ to my ‘War Eagle IPA,’ brewed when the Ducks played Auburn a couple of years ago, and Benny's Bitter and Riley's Red, said Nance. “Brewers are a friendly folk. I think we all hope no one gets hurt and we both go to a sweet bowl game. Let the festivities begin! One last thing: GO BEAVERS!”
Anderson was forgiving: Most of their competition is just friendly smack-talk, he said.
A few miles northeast of Corvallis, two OSU alums, Mark Martin and his wife, Laura Bryngelson, take a more dedicated approach. Their Calapooia Brewery in Albany puts out kegs striped in orange and black, and on game days, you might find them both decked out in their school’s colors.
“We’re huge Oregon State fans,” said Laura. Despite their allegiances, Calapooia Brewery is staging an in-house “Civil War” between the orange-labeled Paddle Me IPA and Calapooia’s green and gold labeled Chili Beer. Whichever beer sells most by Nov. 29 will win Calapooia’s Civil War. Is it a coincidence that the award-winning Calapooia Chili Beer is the brewery’s most heavily awarded brew?
Other breweries, like the new Mazama Brewery just east of Corvallis, show their allegiance by noting OSU’s part in the brewing process. CBGB (Corvallis Belgian Golden Beer) is created entirely with yeast and hops bred and cultivated at OSU, said Gillian Tobin, marketing coordinator for Mazama.
Above, Workers at Crosby's Hop Farm near Woodburn.
Following -- Emily Engdahl put this great list together for the Oregon Beer Growler's print edition. Those who want to hold this list in their hands can pick it up Oct. 1 here. If you want to see Emily's list on her website, go to http://oregonbeercountry.org. Thanks Emily!
List compiled by Emily Engdahl
For the Oregon Beer Growler
10 Barrel | Crosby Farms Harvest Ale | 5.5% | 55 IBU
Base Camp | Golden Hopportunity Belgian IPA | 10%
Base Camp | In-2-Tents |
Base Camp | Hopularity Contest Pale Ale | 5.3%
Breakside | Fresh Hop Citra | 6.5%
Brewers Union 180 | Little Green Men Cask Cond’d IPA | 5.5%
Bridgeport BridgePort | Hop Harvest | 8.0% | 60 IBU
Claim 52 | Whoa-Dang Fresh Harvest Ale | 5.5% | 55 IBU
Coalition Brewing | Green Pig Fresh Hop Pale Ale | 5.0 % | 50 IBU
Coalition Brewing | Simply Dank Fresh Hop ISA | 4.0% | 40 IBU
Crux Fermentation Project | Cruxtennial Belgian Pale Ale | 7.0% | 35 IBU
Crux Fermentation Project | Off the Fence
Crux Fermentation Project | Crystal Zwickel
Deschutes Bend | Hop Trip | 5.4% | 38 IBU
Deschutes Bend | Chasin’ Freshies | 7.2% | 65 IBU
Deschutes Bend | Cinder Cone Red | 5.9% | 47 IBU
Deschutes Portland | Fresh Hop Bitter | 5.0% | 43 IBU
Deschutes Portland | King Cone Deluxe | 6.4% | 55 IBU
Deschutes Portland | Fresh Hop Mirror Pond | 5.0% | 40 IBU
Deschutes Portland | Oktoberfest | 6.1% | 30 IBU
Double Mountain | Killer Green IPA | 7.5% | 75 IBU
Double Mountain | Killer Red IRA | 7.2% | 97 IBU
Double Mountain | Killer Brass IPA | 7.9% | 88 IBU
Falling Sky | So Fresh, So Green Fresh Hop Lager | 5.7%
Falling Sky | Nuggets of Wisdom Fresh Hop | 5.5%
Fort George Brewery | Co-Hoperative Ale | 5%
Fort George Brewery | Fresh Hop Sunrise Oatmeal Pale Ale |5.3%
Fort George Brewery | Fresh Hop Belgian | 7.5%
Fort George Brewery | Hopstoria | 5.6%
Full Sail | Full Sail Fresh Hop Pilsner | 6.0% | 60 IBU
Gilgamesh Brewing | Fresh Prince of Ales Fresh Hopped DIPA | 6.9% | 100+ IBU
Harvester | Harvester Fresh Hop Meridian Pale Ale | 5.3% | 30 IBU
Hop Valley | Citra Self Down “Fresh Hop” Pale Ale | 6% | 40 IBU
Hopworks | Bitchin’ Camaro Fresh Hop Lager | 6.0% | 60 IBU
Hopworks | Fuggin’ A Fresh Hop IPX Single Hop Ale | 5.7% | 48 IBU
Humble Brewing | Larch Creek Harvest Ale | 7% | 66 IBU
Laurelwood | Fresh Hop Mother Lode Golden Ale | 5.1% | 25 IBU
Laurelwood | Workhorse IPA | 7.5% | 80 IBU
Laurelwood | Fresh Hop Pale (Project 21) | 5.9% | 35 IBU
Laurelwood | Free-Range Red | 6.1% | 60 IBU
Lompoc | Harvestman Red | |6.1 % | 60 IBU
Lucky Lab | The Mutt | 3.6%
McMenamin’s | Thundercone Fresh Hop Ale | 6.9% | 44 IBU
McMemamin’s | Roseburg Station | Hopqua | 6.8% | 67 IBU
McMenamin’s | Old St. Francis (Bend) | Golden Sparrow Fresh Hop | 5.2% | 45 IBU
Migration | Glisan Street Fresh Hop Pale Ale | 5.1% | 33 IBU
Migration | Wild Style Fresh Hop Farm House Ale | 6.1% | 39 IBU
Migration | Better Off Fresh IPA | 7.5% | 85 IBU
Ninkasi | Total Crystalation IPA | 6.7% | 65 IBU
Ninkasi | Hop Fraiche | 5.2% | 40 IBU
Oakshire | ‘Bout a Hunerd Hops Pale Ale
Oakshire | Rogue Red Rye IPA
Old Market Pub | Schrader Brau Fresh Hopped Oktoberfest | 4.5% | 12 IBU
Old Town Brewing | Cent’s and Centsability Pale Ale | 5.5%
Old Town Brewing | Freshtoberbrau | 5.8%
Pelican Brewery | Elemental Ale | 5.4% | 55 IBU
Pfriem | Fresh Hop Mosaic Belgian Wheat | 5.1% | 18 IBU
Pints | Seismic Upgrade Imperial IPA | 8.2% | 100+ IBU
Pints | Oktoberfresh | 5.7% | 17 IBU
Pints | Crystal Lite Lager | 4.1% |10 IBU
Portland U Brew & Pub | Freshy Foystons Pale Ale | 5.8%
Portland U Brew & Pub | Papa Paul’s White Wall Pale Ale | 6.0%
Salem Ale Works | Triple F IPA | 6.0 %
Santiam Brewing | Hoppy Froppy | 6.3%
Santiam Brewing | Hopville Rye Pale Ale | 5.2%
Santiam Brewing | Fresh Hop Brown Ale | 4.8%
Sasquatch | Oregon Session Ale | 4.7%
Sasquatch | Woodboy IPA | 6.8%
Sasquatch | Red Electric IRA | 6.7%
Sasquatch | Healy Heights Pale | 5.6%
Sasquatch | Celilo CDA | 8.0% +/-
Silver Moon | Hoppopotamus Fresh Ale | 6.5%
Sky High | Fresh Hop Ale | 5.0% | 25 IBU
Solera | Chubby Bunny Fresh Hop DIPA | 9.5%
Stickmen | Single Malt – Single Hop (SMaSH) | 5.8% | 34 IBU
The Commons | Fresh Hop Myrtle | 5.3%
Three Creeks | Cone Lick’r Fresh Hop Ale | 5%
Three Creeks | Hop Wrangler Fresh Hop Red | 5%
Upright | The Hop and the Abstract Truth Belgian style pale/triticale saison | 5.1% | 30+ IBU
Vertigo | Hop Harvest IPA | 5.3% | 45 IBU
Viking Braggot | 100 Day Anniversary ESB | 5.5% | 50 IBU
Widmer Brothers | Dark and Dank Fresh Hop Lager | 5.1%
Widmer Brothers | Bring the Boom Fresh Hop IPL | 6.6%
By Gail Oberst
Doubled haploids: Think you don’t care about them? Put your beer down and read. This is important info for all beer drinkers.
My journey started with Barley Day at Oregon State University, where, oddly enough (to me) the conversation was not entirely about beer. Get this … I learned that people actually EAT barley.
Wow, what a versatile grain.
The point of this day dedicated to barley was to enlighten those of us in the beer and food industries about the tiny grains that, according to beer geeks everywhere, helped settle the nomadic world.
But forget ancient history. Behind most glasses of today’s Oregon’s ales is a bundle of research dedicated to growing, processing, cooking, malting and brewing barley.
Now, back to the doubled haploids. If not for research into barley propagation techniques such as those at OSU, you might have to wait a long time for researchers to breed barleys that do magic things like shake off diseases or withstand wet conditions like those in Oregon. Instead, researchers are breeding and growing these barleys now. And that research promises better barleys for the future.
Okay, you can pick your beer back up, and take a long, grateful swallow. Oregon may never be the main resource for the barley in your Oregon beer, but some day – thanks to this research – there may be more Oregon barley available for brewers.
In typical roguish fashion, Rogue is already growing and malting some of its own proprietary barley on 200 acres in Tygh Valley, in Central Oregon’s Wasco County.
A LOT OF EXCITING STATISTICS
According to the Oregon’s field office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Oregon grew just 25.4 million bushels of barley last year, a small fraction of the 220 million bushels grown in the U.S. About 53,000 acres were harvested in 2012, up from 32,000 the year before, so the acreage is growing. Oregon is not the only state to experience barley expansion. U.S. production of barley grew by 41 percent last year, thanks in no small part to growing demand from craft brewers. By the way, Patrick Hayes of OSU’s Barley Project says that 120,000 acres of barley would satisfy all of Oregon’s current brewing and distilling needs. Step it up, farmers!
ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS YOU DIDN’T ASK
Where does Oregon’s barley grow? Is it close to the breweries?
First question: According to Oregon’s NASS, of the 12 Oregon counties that grew any barley to speak of in 2011, only one was in Western Oregon – Washington County. The rest were in 11 counties in Central and Eastern Oregon, where dry conditions promote healthy grains.
The second question hardly matters, so why did I ask it? Because you may think it does. You don’t just toss a bunch of barley into the fermenter and “poof,” beer happens. Beer is made of malted grains, and so almost all of the barley grown in those 11 counties detours to Country Malt/Great Western Malting in Vancouver, across the Columbia River from Portland. At Great Western, after malting, a tiny bit of the Oregon-grown barley malt is bagged separately as Oregon Select Malt. The rest is blended with finished malt made from barley grown in six other Western states. It is then shipped all over the world. Because the Vancouver company is Ground Zero for much of the West’s malting Oregon has great access to the West’s malted barley – not to mention malts from around the world available through Country Malt Group, the warehouse and distribution arm of Great Western Malting Company.
THE FUTURE OF OREGON BEER
OSU’s research could further improve brewers’ access to Oregon’s barley, especially to those who want to offer small batches of all-Oregon beers, as Rogue does now. Rogue has been a great company for spending time and energy on things that might work, with occasional success. The barley farm in Tygh Valley is also home to Rogue’s malting floors. Rogue is among a few breweries that offer beers made with all-Oregon products including “Good Chit,” and others. In a related note, Rogue’s Independence Hopyard Farm, in the Willamette Valley, valiantly attempted to grow barley there without much success. Last year’s barley fields in Independence are now filled with pumpkins and other farm produce that does well in the Valley including honey, livestock, roses, nuts, berries, rye and acres and acres of hops.
Western Oregon farmers in no small way look to OSU for new breeds of barley that can give new meaning to the words “local beer.” Beer barley breeds able to withstand west-side cool, wet conditions are in experimental fields and greenhouses right now. Some of that barley is already in your bottle.
In OSU’s greenhouses, researchers tell visitors how the doubled haploids are part of a propagation technique in which plants are germinated directly from pollen. This allows researchers to bring plants to seed in 2 to 3 months, rather than an entire year. As a result, experimental breeds can be grown and tested 3 or 4 times faster than in traditional breeding programs. Viola! Better barleys! Better beers!
“It’s a fast and efficient method,” said Alfanso Cuesta-Marcos, an OSU researcher who has developed DNA modeling that predicts – with 73 percent accuracy -- how barley will fare in the field.
OSU’s beer-related research is not limited to the field. The university’s Food Science and Mechanical Engineer programs are working together to develop a small malting plant – small enough to fit in a brewery.
The experimental malter under construction in OSU’s experimental brewery can turn 300 pounds of barley in 4 to 7 days into enough malt for a three-barrel system, replacing the time and labor-intensive floor malting system with a one-vessel automatic system. Earlier this year, Jeff Clawson, pilot plant and brewery manager for OSU’s Food Science program, said students and staff are still working out the malter’s kinks. Stay tuned. Meanwhile, farms like Zack Christensen’s Heritage Malts operation west of McMinnville are experimenting with updated floor malting techniques that could bring small batches of malted barley to the public.
“The Willamette Valley could be a phenomenal malt barley production area,” said Clawson.
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