While researching breweries of the Pacific Northwest, I learned that Oregon is a supposed haven for the mythological Bigfoot. On YouTube, I watched a few clips of a show called, “Finding Bigfoot.” My impression is that it would be more aptly named, “Not Finding Bigfoot.”
What you can find in Oregon is some finely crafted beers. In particular are the beers of Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Oregon. Named after the Deschutes River, it was founded in 1988 by Gary Fish. Deschutes is now the fifth largest craft brewery in the United States.
Deschutes’ flagship beer, Black Butte Porter, is easy to find at many of your local restaurants and liquor stores. Pouring a solid black color with medium carbonation, it tastes of coffee beans and light milk chocolate. Like most porters, it’s great with bacon. A great big plate of bacon.
Lightening things up is the Mirror Pond Pale Ale. This red-orange beer does a nice job of keeping the hops and malts in balance. An ongoing tug-of-war between the citrus and bread flavors never comes to a close as the drinker enjoys a creamy smooth finish.
Run, don’t walk, to your liquor store for the Twilight Summer Ale. Only available until the end of September, this seasonal blonde has a light tongue, but a full-flavored palate, a perfect pairing with a grilled seasoned salmon on the back deck, while watching the summer sun sink into autumn.
For a bit more hoppiness, the Inversion I.P.A. rounds out the list. Pouring a hazy amber with a thick, almost pink bubbly head, the subtle aroma of fruit and caramel help this beer end on a slightly dry note.
Now since Bigfoot had his arm ripped off by Steve Austin in a 1976 episode of The Six Million Dollar Man, he has been rather reluctant to interact with the public. Deschutes Brewery is ready to fill the void. Easy to find, easy to enjoy.
[ Story by Kevin Reed | Photography by Colin MacMillan | Nathan Ham Photography ]