Tonight: Signing and meet me at Rat Hole Brewpub

Rat Hole BrewingTonight started at 7pm I’ll be at Rat Hole Brewpub in the Old Mill District for a signing and meet the author event. Rat Hole is one of Bend’s newer breweries, launching early in 2013 and by the the middle of that year had moved into their current Brewpub space, which was formerly occupied by Old Mill Brew Werks (itself having moved into a larger space).

Brewer Al Toepfer brews all of their beers on nano two-barrel system, located in a renovated barn/utility building on 10 acres of land east of Bend. All the beers are served exclusively on tap at the brewpub (they bottled briefly, early on), and in addition to a variety of porters, pilsner, wheat, pumpkin beer and more, the brewpub menu focuses on Southwestern styled cuisine—fairly unique in Bend! They occupy a great little spot in the Old Mill so come on down.

Signing and Meet and Greet with Juniper Brewing

Juniper Brewing Company is one of Central Oregon’s newest breweries, having opened up this past March over in Redmond. Owners and brewers Curtis Endicott and Scott Lesmeister made the leap from homebrewing to production, crafting a variety of beers on a two-barrel system.

Juniper Brewing Company

Redmond’s brewing scene is vibrant and growing (there is a great overview here) and Juniper Brewing is right out at the front of it. I’m pleased that they have invited me out to their Tap Room today for a book signing and meet and greet from 4 to 6pm, and I hope Redmond comes out to check out the book and the beers Juniper has to offer!

Their Tap Room and brewery is located at 1950 SW Badger Avenue in Redmond, Suite 103, over by the Deschutes County Fairgrounds. They’ve got a nice lineup of beers on tap, so come on out to enjoy beer from one of our newest breweries and get a signed copy of the book! Oh, and you get to meet me as well.


Barnes & Noble Discovery Weekend: Friday the 21st

This Friday, November 21st, I’m happy to be invited to Barnes and Noble‘s Discovery Weekend for a presentation and reading of Bend Beer starting at 5pm!

Barnes and Noble Discovery Weekend

I will of course be signing books as well, and Barnes and Noble will have plenty on hand that you can purchase, if you don’t already have the book.

This event is definitely more “presentation” than previous events, so my plan is to do a reading of selected passages from the book, relevant to both the early history and current events, as well as a Q&A afterward. So if you have any suggestions for just what you would like to hear from a reading, let me know and I’ll see about incorporating them into the talk!

See you Friday!

Excerpt: History of 10 Barrel Brewing

10 Barrel BrewingThe news of 10 Barrel Brewing selling to Anheuser-Busch has died down a bit since it broke last week, but I am still running into a good number of people who want to talk about it and know what I think. I wrote down some of my own thoughts on the sale, but it’s also helpful to know a bit more about the history behind 10 Barrel to get a sense of where they are coming from. And since I just happened to write a book on the subject (available now!) I thought it would be timely and interesting to post some excerpts about the brewery and how they got started.

These passages are excerpted from Chapter Six.

In 2003, twin brothers Chris and Jeremy Cox were tired of the corporate business world and were seeking a change. The brothers, originally from Lincoln City, Oregon, had graduated from Oregon State University and were working “for the man up in Portland in the corporate world.” They were ready for something new. Casting about for ideas and opportunities, they settled on two possibilities:

It came down to a drift boat company or a bar, and the drift boat company was too expensive; we didn’t have any money. So the bar was super reasonable. We never worked in bars before or anything. We just wanted to get to Bend; we couldn’t find any other way to get to Bend to get jobs, so we bought a bar.

They purchased Lucy’s Place, a small bar and diner located downtown, and renamed it JC’s Bar and Grill. For the first year of ownership, they still worked their corporate jobs in Portland during the week (in software sales and business consulting), drove to Bend on Fridays to work the bar for the three day weekend and then went back to Portland to start the process over again.

Although the brothers had no bar experience or background in the beer industry, they had the business acumen, a desire to learn and a willingness to take risks, and JC’s was a successful venture, proving to be a popular nightlife destination.

Their idea of starting their own brewery had continued to simmer [since 2004], and when brewer Paul Cook left Deschutes Brewery in 2005, he joined with the brothers to bring that dream to reality and formed a new brewing company, Wildfire Brewing, which they announced in November 2006… [By] late March of 2007, they had started brewing the first batches of beer, destined to go on tap at JC’s. The first two beers in the lineup were Code 24 Pale Ale and Logger Lager, which were on tap by late April, and those were soon followed by Backdraft IPA.

[The] young brewing company faced another hurdle in the latter half of 2008 in the form of a trademark violation notice: the Wildfire Restaurant chain… advised the brewery of its trademarked name and suggested that it change the name within six months or face a court battle. Wildfire Brewing opted to change its name, and in December, it announced the new moniker: 10 Barrel Brewing Company. It became official in January 2009.

Although 10 Barrel had a loyal following and a successful presence in Central Oregon, the owners themselves were not making any money—it all went back into the business. That began to change when 10 Barrel’s beer was picked up by a distributor that brought its beers to Portland in mid-2009. The beer was a hit in Portland, and as sales increased, the owners realized that this new market could take the business to the next level—even become profitable. They decided to take a new leap, a risky one in the current economic climate, and in August 2009, they announced plans for their own brewpub, to be opened on Bend’s west side… The pub opened in February 2010, and any doubts about opening a restaurant and pub in the down economy were put to rest, as it was an immediate success.

You can read the whole story and more in Bend Beer, on shelves now and available online.

This week: Meet me at Growler Guys West, and the Museum Chili Feed

A couple of events are coming up this week that you should check out. First, this Thursday the 13th, I’ll be at the Growler Guys over on Bend’s west side, selling and signing books and chatting up beer and history starting at 5pm. The Growler Guys have changed the face of beer in Bend and Oregon over the past couple of years and I’m excited that GG West’s manager, Cari, invited me to come for the signing!

They are located at the base of College Way at the roundabout, in the Chevron station, and feature 30 taps of excellent beers and ciders to fit any thirst. So make sure to come by and say “Hi” and I’ll be happy to sign a copy of the book for you!

Growler Guys West signing event

And then this Saturday, November 15, from 10am to 1pm I’ll be back over at the Des Chutes Historical Museum to be on-hand signing books during their Annual Chili Feed and Holiday Bazaar Fundraiser—a terrific event that has been supporting the Museum for over 30 years! Here’s their description of it:

Have a bowl of Millie’s Chili and polish it off with a piece of pie, then stop by the Bake Sale for second dessert later on. Local craft and arts vendors will get your holiday shopping started, our raffle offers chances for great prizes and staycation getaways, and our book store offers local history and historical photographs for sale.

And yes, it’s that time to start thinking about buying gifts for the holidays, so make sure to come down and check it out!

Attend the official book launch, Friday the 7th!

The first Friday in November we are celebrating the official launch of the book with an event at the Des Chutes Historical Museum—the perfect venue for a book on Bend’s history!

Official launch party at the Des Chutes Historical Museum

And even more appropriately, Deschutes Brewery will be on hand, pouring a keg of their pub specialty Botanical Ale. I like to pitch this as “Bend’s history and Bend’s first brewery” event because Deschutes (the Brewery) plays such a big role in Bend’s beer history—and the Museum embodies all of the history (beer and non-beer) that came before.

I’ll be signing books, answering questions and I’ll even do a short talk at some point, likely with a Q&A session as well. There will be food available, and the Museum will I believe be open for folks to check it out (which I would highly encourage!).

Afterwards we will be embarking on a “historic” pub crawl through downtown Bend, visiting several of the pubs that feature in the book as the source of Bend’s beer. The tentative schedule:

  • McMenamins Old St. Francis School
  • JC’s Bar & Grill (birthplace of Wildfire/10 Barrel)
  • Bend Brewing Company
  • Deschutes Brewery

So come on out and join the fun! Cheers!

Silver Moon Book Signing Party

Tonight from 5 to 8pm I’ll be at Silver Moon Brewing in downtown Bend for a book signing party, chatting with folks, drinking excellent beer, and signing away!

Silver Moon Brewing

Silver Moon is one of the original Bend breweries, established in 2001 by Tyler Reichert in the back room of the Brew Shop on a one-barrel system. That system was originally a brew-on-premise setup that Reichert purchased and picked up from Bandon, Oregon, and the harrowing tale of driving it all over the mountain pass in the dead of winter is recounted in the book.

The Moon moved to its current location in 2004, and has had a number of talented brewers over the years, including Tyler West, Brett Thomas, and currently Jeff Schauland. It also developed the reputation of being a great local music venue, quirky and homey and comfortable with a great locals vibe.

Silver Moon has been a great supporter of both the craft beer scene and the book, so come on down tonight, meet me and get a book signed!