I was on a local radio show, the Wake Up Call, this morning, for the second time. In advance (i.e. yesterday), I sent a text to a handful of brewers asking for an update. Since the pandemic hit, with its accompanying transition into full-time parenting, homemaking, gardening, and other on-the-ground efforts, I haven’t paid a whole lot of attention to the day-to-day in Eugene beer.
It’s not for want; I want nothing more than to maintain my status, and I didn’t say this about myself, as “Eugene Beer Guy.” My benefactor in this case, who recommended me to the DJ, remembered me; a distant clink of glass and some kind words (Thanks, Matt!). The resulting wave of gratitude and relief and confidence instilled by that act contrasted with a bit of personal guilt for abandoning my post. And so I declare: as I am able, I will continue to carry the torch.
My day’s advance request yielded 100% response rate, which I was not able to relay 100% in my ten minutes on the air, much of which was spent on Oktoberfest and fresh hop beers. So here, please:
ColdFire has a barrel-full of new beers coming out. First to mention is Lupulin Crush, a fresh hop IPA available, like, now. Get it. Forthcoming are Valley Melange, a bottle-conditioned, foeder-fermented wild ale, aged in pinot noir barrels with Oregon-grown marionberry and raspberry. The Speaking Tree is a blend of golden ales refermented in oak with Brettanomyces yeast, and finished with coriander, orange peel, and Amarillo hops. Foeder on Peche is a returning champion, also foeder fermented, then matured in neutral French oak with peaches from Me And Moore farm and Detering Orchards.
Plank Town has just released an Oktoberfest, and currently has a one-off SMaSH (single-malt and single-hop) called Alsvin, a 4.8% abv session beer made with Maris Otter malt, Citra hops, and Kveiking, a blend of Norwegian farmhouse yeasts from Imperial Yeast.
The Wheel Apizza recently acquired a manual, 2-head canning line from Hop Valley. As a sidebar, this is Wheel brewer Tobias Schock’s second turn on the machine, as his first pro brewing gig in town was at Hop Valley’s pub around 2012. His lagers, Quest Pils and Vanora Amber Lager (personal favorites, both), along with hoppier cans will be rolling out to specialty shops around town. The Wheel also released the first of its barrel-aged beers, Dark & Stormy. This barrel-aged imperial stout with adjuncts corresponding to the cocktail, sat in rum barrels from Thinking Tree Distillery, just a short bike ride from The Wheel.
Viking Braggot Company is releasing cans of its honey-infused brews for the first time this weekend. 16-ounce cans of Battle Axe IPA and Freyja Blonde will be available in stores and at both of Viking’s locations – the brewery on Commercial Ave. in West Eugene and the Southtowne Pub on Willamette. Brewer Perry Ames said that Oakshire Brewing has been a big help in getting the cans packaged, and that Viking plans to have its own canning line in the near future.
Alesong Brewing & Blending has some announcements coming soon, but could not disclose upon request. However, the next beer release is scheduled for November 7. The tasting room in Lorane will move to winter hours starting November 1, rather than October 1, which means you can still scoot on out there from 12-8 daily until all the leaves have fallen.