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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Sesquicentennial Beer?

A while ago, I mentioned that Rogue has somehow been designated the quasi-official beer of the Oregon Sesquicentennial. At the time, I said it seemed a little inappropriate for there to be an official beer, and Jon points out that other breweries apparently think so, too. From their twitter feed, he picked up this necessarily brief comment:
Brewing 2 beers this week with 100% Oregon ingredients to celebrate Oregon's 150th birthday on Feb 14th.
Good for them. I hope ever brewery brews a birthday beer. It's too enticing an opportunity. If they do, it will be a fascinating study of the way in which breweries approached the beer. Something traditionally Oregonian? Something that would have been brewed in 1859? Something crazy over-the-top?

A hundred and fifty years ago, beer was wholly local. It was the pre-refrigeration era, so you had to get your beer fresh. Oregon already had a number of tiny breweries, and the number would jump to the dozens around the time of statehood. Mostly they were run by German immigrants who had come West with the pioneers to make their fortune. And of course, most of them are lost to the mists of time. Early Oregon beer would have mainly been German lagers--though not entirely. A few breweries produced English-style ales, too.

So anyway, consider this my effort to lobby Oregon breweries to brew a special beer for the Sesquicentennial. It would make for great fun, and after all, no one can lay claim to being the "official beer." It's our state, we can honor it how we wish.


  1. sounds like a great plan... i'd love to see other brewers create birthday beers with Oregon grown ingredients and then they beat Rogue in sale numbers.

  2. Those Pre-Prohibition lagers are nice summer brews. Even better with a nice hop punch.

  3. Right on!!! let's get all the locals brewing a sesquicentennial beer!Just like it was before prohibition. To bad we can't honor the pre-prohib price....5 cents a glass...$3.25 a barrel.