Talking about Cascade Brewing might leave a sour taste in your mouth… the delicious Lactobacillus-induced wonderful type of sour that Cascade has become quite famous for. And, this week, they celebrate the long awaited official opening of their Barrel House.
The new Barrel House, a 7,000 sq. ft. former produce warehouse in southeast Portland devotes over half of the space to aging more than 200 oak barrels and 100 waiting to be filled with delicious concoctions. The other section, the pub, features 16 different beers, of which more than half of those are pouring their most famous sour offerings.
Cascade’s Rise to Fame
With more than 40 years of brewing experience between them, Cascade Owner Art Larrance and Brewmaster Ron Gransberg decided to capitalize on the abundance of wine barrels and local fruit from the Portland area’s wine region and focus on sour beers—they have to be quite pleased looking back on their choice!
The popularity of the brewery has grown right along with their success at the Great American Beer Festival, which they first entered in 2008, winning a bronze medal for their Cascade Kriek in the Wood-and-Barrel-Aged Sour Beer category.
Expanding on this success, in 2009, Art and Ron brought in 4,500 pounds of Bing and sour pie cherries for the Kriek, Sang Royale and Sang Noir specialty ales. They also personally drove to Yakima, Washington to pick up 2,500 pounds of apricots for their Apricot Ale. This type of attention to detail is far from abnormal for the team at Cascade.
Their hard work was rewarded at the 2009 Great American Beer Festival when they were awarded a gold medal for the Bourbonic Plague and the silver for Vlad the Imp Aler in the Wood-and-Barrel-Aged Sour Beer category. They were now on the ever expanding craft brewing map!