Heater Allen – Amidst all the wine tasting in McMinnville, we hear about a small brewery just a block away from The Eyrie, so we wandered over for a quick tasting of a few lager beers. The tasting area was very industrial and while the pretzels were a bit stale, the conversation was lively. Bobtoberfest was the best so we bought a bottle to share with friends back home.
Grain Station – Just a short stroll away from Heater Allen was the brand new Grain Station. We opted for a beer sampler and found the beers to be just okay. The stout was the clear winner for both of us. At $4, it’s worth stopping in to give them a try. They serve food and there were also a few food trucks parked outside.
Venti’s Cafe and Basement Bar – Located in downtown Salem, we stopped in on our second day of wine tasting for food and beer at Venti’s Basement Bar. We shared the spicy tots and a bowl of the roasted red pepper and ginger soup, and for drinks Leandra tried the Vader Cascadian Dark Ale and Eric had the Witch Hunt Spiced Harvest Ale. Wanting to also sample a local cider, we split the Wandering Aengus Anthem. The basement atmosphere was cozy and beer list was stellar.
Cascade Brewing – The Holy Grail of sour beers in Portland, we had to pay this place a visit. We found free on-street parking across the street but it wasn’t well signed beyond the one hour mentioned time limit. Thankfully, this turned out to not be a problem. I started with the very interesting oblique black and white stout (looked like a blonde ale, tasted like a coffee stout) and we tried a bunch of sours: Figaro, Raspberry Wheat, Apricot, Tangerine Dream, Elderberry and Kriek. Good thing you could get sampler sizes of all these! Our favorites were the Apricot and Elderberry, both of which we bought a bottle of to bring home. This will be a must stop on future Portland visits.
Eric in heaven!
Bailey’s Taproom – Even though we were pretty tired of drinking at this point, I wanted to hit up one last place before turning in… Our hotel was nearby so after walking around a bit we stopped in for a small beer to end the night. We grabbed a two-seater table near the bar and ordered a pumpkin stout for me and an ale for Eric. We sipped and reminisced about our visit and vowed to come back again soon.