I recently had the chance to head over to Northwest Portland’s industrial area and hang out with Ryan Pappe, head brewer at Portland Brewing Co. Located at 2730 NW 31st Ave., it’s tucked away next to a salvage yard, machine shop, and some sort of industrial steel beam manufacturer. It doesn’t fit the typical mold of a hip, trendy brewpub.
In part, that’s because they’re not.
Portland Brewing celebrated their 30 year anniversary in 2016, and are one of the oldest, and largest continually operating breweries in Oregon. Pappe told me that is part of their uniqueness. They don’t necessarily have to push as hard to stand out in a sea of new breweries. Their reputation and longevity help differentiate them.
That said, they aren’t sitting back on their laurels, and take nothing for granted.
During our conversation (which you can watch below), Pappe shared three brand new beers with me. Two of them products of their tiny pilot system. This allows them to experiment with new brews, and test the waters before putting into full tie productions. It’s a bit of a competition between all of their brewers and allows them to experiment with new, innovative brews, while still selling their flagship drinkers.
A Brief History of Portland Brewing Co.
Founded in 1986 by Fred Bowman, Art Larrance, Jim Goodwin, and investor Robert Malcolm “Mac” MacTarnahan, Portland Brewing Co. has had a few name changes and numerous owners, yet remains committed to its Portland roots.
After falling on hard times in the late 90’s, MacTarnahan “purchased $3.5 million in debt in exchange for stock.” This is when the brewery began using MacTarnahan labeling. Then, in 2000, they merged with Saxer Brewing Company of Lake Oswego. Four years later, the 88-year-old MacTarnahan sold the company to Pyramid Breweries in Seattle. “The Portland Brewing facility was renamed MacTarnahan’s Brewing Company, and continued its operation and product line.”
In 2008, Pyramid was acquired by Magic Hat Brewing, then bought by North American Breweries of Rochester, New York, and is now owned by a Costa Rican company, Florida Ice and Farm Co. In 2013, the brewery changed their name back to Portland Brewing Co., and the rest is history.
Watch our full interview below, then register for the Earth Day Run on April 22!
Click on the link to watch the full interview!
We’re excited to be back at Portland Brewing Co for the Hoppy Earth Day Run. Not only will you get entry to the run, but VIP access to the Brewfest. To share in our excitement, we’d like to offer a few FREE entries. The first 5 people who use the code EarthDayPDXFree will get a free entry. If you miss out on that, don’t worry. Use code EarthDayPDX20 and get 20% off. Remember, all proceeds from this event go to benefit our non-profit partner Oregon Wild and the Brewshed Alliance.