Visiting Portland won’t be complete without a trip to a brewery. Because come on, when you’re in a city nicknamed “Beervana,” you know it’s mandatory to enjoy at least a pint of amber fluid! Needless to say, the breweries in Portland will surely make your trip one for the books.
The craft beer scene in Stumptown is notably robust and active. In fact, with nine breweries per 50,000 residents, it makes the list of cities with the most number of breweries per capita. But out of all the brew houses in the city, some stand out due to their quality of craft beers.
Here are some of the best breweries to visit if you want to sample Portland beer.
Great Notion Brewing
Great Notion Brewing or GNB offers IPAs that they describe as “hazy and fruit-forward,” as well as sours and stouts that are “culinary-inspired.”
GNB clearly knows how to brew craft beers right. In fact, it has a number of accolades under its belt, such as awards from the World Beer Cup, GABF, Oregon Beer Awards, and Best of Craft Beer Awards. In addition, Paste Magazine hailed their brew as the 2018 #1 IPA in America.
This brewery has three locations in the city – Alberta Street, 28th Avenue, and Lost Springs Terrace. In all these taproom locations, they sell beer directly to drinkers either through draft or cans to-go.
Ecliptic Brewing was founded by John Harris, a craft brewing icon and the brewery’s current brewmaster. Driven by a passionate leader, it’s not surprising that they showcase various beer releases every year. That said, they’re not only limited to crowd favorites, but they also explore modern and experimental brews. In fact, they rotate their menu every six weeks to highlight local and seasonal ingredients.
You can try their flagship beers such as Carina Peach Sour Ale, Starburst IPA, and Capella Porter. If you’re in the mood for seasonal varieties, check if they have Filament Winter IPA or Quasar Pale Ale available.
Breakside Brewery takes pride in “pushing the boundaries of technique and flavor.” As a result, they come up with exciting brews that tickle the palate. Their year-round brews include the Breakside IPA with hints of evergreen, citrus, and tropical fruit.
Breakside’s 5.9% barrel-aged sour called Quiescence ranked third in Oregon Live’s 10 Best Beers. The article describes Breakside as “arguably Portland’s most awarded brewery,” after the accolades it earned at last year’s Great American Beer Festival.
The brewery has two locations in Portland – one in Northeast Dekum Street and 22nd Ave. They also have a taproom in Milwaukie, OR.
Customer satisfaction and superior products are at the forefront of Culmination Brewing’s tenets. They aim to bring the community together with great beer and good food, thus their dedication to developing their brews and menu.
They offer crowler and growler fills with both standard and premium brews. One of their highly recommended brews is their Phaedrus IPA. This 6.7 percent brew offers hints of melon and citrus, backed by peach and mango aromas.
If you’re looking for something exciting, try their Sour Flower with Mango, Coriander and Orange Peel, or their Midas Reign – Blonde Stout with Chocolate and Coffee.
Gigantic Brewing Co
Gigantic Brewing Co is definitely one of the best breweries Southeast Portland-side.
Patrons keep coming back to this brewery because of their popular beers such as the Gigantic IPA, a brew made of Cascade, Centennial, Crystal and Simcoe hops. Also included in their crowd-pleasers are Kölschtastic, Ginormous Imperial IPA, and Pipewrench Gin Barrel IPA.
If you’re in the mood for something fruity, check out their Cloudberries Hazy IPA. On the other hand, if dark stouts are more your thing, try out their All Nighter Mocha Stout.
Deschutes Brewery is one of the well-known breweries in Downtown Portland. With a mission to “profitably deliver the world’s finest adult beverages and cultivate extraordinary experiences,” any beer lover would feel that they’re in good hands.
Some of their year-round varieties include Handup IPA, a brew with citrusy hints of floral hop flavor alongside tropical aromas. The result is a crisp, dry finish that will quench your beer thirst. Also popular is their Mirror Pond Pale Ale, which is a crisp, single-hop pale ale boosting with floral and citrus notes and has a smooth caramel malt character. Along with their year-round brews, they also have seasonals, reserve series, small-batch brews, and collaboration brews.
Von Ebert Brewing Pearl
Von Ebert Brewing often tops Portland brewery ranking lists. In fact, their West Coast IPA, a 6.7% brew called Volatile Substance ranked number one in Oregon Live’s 10 Best Beers. The article described the brew as a beer with “subtle but strong malt character” and “zesty with a touch of fruity sweetness.”
They brew their products in Canby, Oregon. Most of their brews are poured directly from their brite tanks. As a result, the aroma is conserved for drinkers’ appreciation. Added to that, they don’t use a filter, but they still make very bright beer. They typically create 100 varieties of beer per year, and their draft menu changes every three to four days.
Their location in the historic Pearl District opened shop in March of 2018 and tagged as “Most Anticipated New Breweries of 2018.” With artful arched ceilings and plenty of natural light, enjoying a cold one in this brewery is a worthwhile experience. Aside from their Pearl location, they also have a shop in Glendoveer.
10 Barrel Brewing
10 Barrel Brewing initially started operation in Bend in 2006. However, it has become one of the most popular breweries in Portland after opening a location there in 2009. Today, they have six pubs, including their locations in Boise, Denver, and San Diego.
The brewery offers crowd-favorite year-round beers such as their Apocalypse IPA, made with 4.8 lbs of hops per barrel. Their Joe IPA, on the other hand, is made with Simcoe, Amarillo, and Mosaic hops, resulting in a delicious stress-busting brew. Their hazy IPA called Profuse Juice is also a must-try. It oozes with tropical juicy hop flavors balanced with just the right bitterness.
Hopworks Urban Brewery
Founded in 2007 by Brewmaster Christian Ettinger, Hopworks Urban Brewery started as a kitchen project and eventually developed into a brewpub. Today, the brewery has three locations in Portland – in Powell, Williams, and in the Airport. In addition to that, they also have a shop in Vancouver, WA.
All their locations offer their specialty drafts. These brews include Golden Hammer Organic Lager, which has 4.8% ABV. Added to that is their Dras Hoppy Cold Beer, which is a spring floral forward IPL with notes of pear and melon along with a citrus aroma. Another favorite draft offering is A Wee Unhinged, an 8% ABV Scotch Ale with a malty sweetness and warm heat.
Wayfinder Beer is one of the most popular breweries in Portland, Oregon. In fact, their black bock brew called Funeral Bock ranked second in Portland’s 10 Best Beers list by Oregon Live. It has also earned several accolades, such as making it to the top 11 Best Beers in America by Bloomberg News 2018.
This brewery offers a lovely beer menu, sure to please any discerning palate. If you like creamy beer, for instance, you might want to sample their Theory of Mind – Cream Ale. This Shebrew beer is made from flaked corn and rolled oats. It’s cold-conditioned, and as a result, the ale is light-bodied and crisp.
Modern Times Beer
Modern Times Beer offers a wide variety of brews, from fan favorites to rarities and experimental numbers. They also offer crowler and growlers (32oz and 64oz) fills. Their brews fall under year-round brews, seasonal offerings, hazy IPA series, special release, and wizard staff series.
If you want a brew that tastes like a chocolate-covered espresso bean, try out their Black House, an oatmeal coffee stout with coffee aroma and flavor. If pale ale is more your flavor, give Fortune Islands a try. The Citra and Amarillo hops give it a distinct taste, along with Wheat Malt, Two Row, and Caravienne Malt.
Ex Novo Brewing
Aside from their Portland location, Ex Novo Brewing also has taprooms in Beaverton, OR, as well as Corrales, NM. They offer amber fluid in cans (12oz and 16oz), 500mL bottles, and crowlers.
Some of their yummy varieties include Kill the Sun Mocha, a barrel-aged imperial stout with coffee and chocolate, as well as Kill the Sun Horchata, with cinnamon and vanilla. Their crowler offerings include brews such as Mexican Lager, Puff Puff Passion Sour, and You’re As Kölsch As Ice.
If you like glugging your beer with some munchies, Ex Novo is the right place for you. They offer a simple food menu that includes chopped salad, garlic knots, fried pickles, smoked wings, and fried chicken strips.
There you have it – the breweries in Portland! But don’t take our word for it. Go out there, try them, and immerse yourself in Beervana’s craft beer scene.