Lucky Labrador's new Solar Flare ale glows as golden as sunbeams in a glass, but a new solar water-heating system makes it Portland's greenest beer.
Solar Flare will be pouring only at the Lucky Lab brewpub on Hawthorne Boulevard where it was brewed. Sixteen solar panels on the roof are the most visible part of a $70,000 system designed and installed by Ra Energy of Portland.
Glycol pumped through the panels and then to a heat exchanger and computer-controlled valves warmed Portland city water from about 55 degrees to more than 100 degrees in cloudy February.
"Come spring and summer, the system should keep a 900-gallon tank of water heated to 180 degrees," said Gary Geist, co-owner of Portland's three Lucky Labrador pubs. Pointing to a big natural gas heater in the brewery, he said, "that boiler should just sit there all summer."
I could excerpt the whole article--it's that interesting. Instead, go traffic the Oregonian's site so the higher ups realize how valuable beer news is to their bottom line.
Also of note--but mainly because there's no more information--Max Tieger has left Max's Fanno Creek. My spidey senses tell me something more is going on than meets the eye. Dave D., who broke this news on the Portland Beer Blog, adds this cryptic comment, "His great beer styles will continue under the watchful eye of owner, Marvin Bowen." He says he will add no more. (Whenever a source refuses to add more, you know there's more to add.) Hmmm.
Finally, this just in from the Cheerful Tortoise, one of Portland's venerable drinking institutions. (And not a bad place to sneak out to for a midday break during March Madness, given its proximity to my office. Shhhh.)
The Cheerful Tortoise is experimenting with a Randall The Enamel Animal from Dogfish Head Brewing. This is a device you fill with fresh hops and force the beer through on the way to the tap.Go forth and meet Randall and have a great weekend--
This Sunday (2/24) all day (opens at 9, runs till the keg is gone) will be Bridgeport Hop Harvest with Bridgeport supplying the same kind of hops used in the beer.
More info about the Randall here.
This will be happening every other Sunday for now and maybe more often in the future. If people attending have suggestions for new beers to try, please let us know.
The Cheerful Tortoise
1939 SW 6th Avenue