Saraveza is a recent arrival to the crowded beer scene in Portland. (I mean that in a good way) They have a small but awesome selection of beer. Recently, I have seen Dogfish Head Black and Blue, Widmer 84-09 Double Alt, Lagunitas Sumpin’ Sumpin’ amongst others. They also have a rotating tap list that recently included…Bear Republic’s Oso Rojo and New Belgium’s Dandelion. Where else has that combo?

When I was there last, I had Fort George’s spruce beer and a lovely plate of summer sausage, cheddar and ritz crackers. Hit the spot.

They also host special beer nights like the recent Session Black party so you should check them out. They are doing it right.

Rauchbier from the BJCP Style Guidelines

Classic Rauchbier

Aroma: Blend of smoke and malt, with a varying balance and intensity. The beechwood smoke character can range from subtle to fairly strong, and can seem smoky, bacon-like, woody, or rarely almost greasy. The malt character can be low to moderate, and be somewhat sweet, toasty, or malty. The malt and smoke components are often inversely proportional (i.e., when smoke increases, malt decreases, and vice versa). Hop aroma may be very low to none. Clean, lager character .

Appearance: This should be a very clear beer, with a large, creamy, rich, tan- to cream-colored head. Medium amber/light copper to dark brown color.

Flavor: Generally follows the aroma profile, with a blend of smoke and malt in varying balance and intensity, yet always complementary. Märzen-like qualities should be noticeable, particularly a malty, toasty richness, but the beechwood smoke flavor can be low to high. The palate can be somewhat malty and sweet, yet the finish can reflect both malt and smoke. Moderate, balanced, hop bitterness, with a medium-dry to dry finish (the smoke character enhances the dryness of the finish).

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Medium to medium-high carbonation. Smooth lager character. Significant astringent, phenolic harshness is inappropriate.

Comments: The intensity of smoke character can vary widely; not all examples are highly smoked. Allow for variation in the style when judging.

History: A historical specialty of the city of Bamberg, in the Franconian region of Bavaria in Germany. Beechwood-smoked malt is used to make a Märzen-style amber lager. The smoke character of the malt varies by maltster; some breweries produce their own smoked malt (rauchmalz).

Price is relative

I want to get something off my chest. I do not care what beer costs. There, I said it. And I don’t regret it.

I just had Magic Hat # 9 recently. It was one of the best beers I have had in a while. It really made an impression. I could have been charged $8.00 for it and it would have been worth it.

How can I say that when I am “at liberty” employment wise. Shouldn’t I be going cheap. NO. I want to taste the best beer, not any beer. The point is not to get drunk. The point is to savor and explore. That is part of the reason why I started this blog. I want to guide people to better beer.

I firmly believe that it is better to have one really awesome experience of 16 ounces than it is to get a sixer and feel woozy.

The esteemed Garrett Oliver explains via cheese and bread this same theory. Are you going to buy white bread and pre-packaged cheese slices or would it be better to have great farmhouse cheddar on a baguette from the local bakery?

Same goes with beer. I’ll skimp elsewhere.

Goose Island

Belgian is obviously the style of 2009. From The Bruery in Orange County to Ommegang in New York, it is where the cutting edge of brewing is happening.

Now I hear through the grapevine about two new offerings from Chicago’s Goose Island. Juliet which is a Belgian Sour and Sofie which is a farmhouse ale. They are now on my ever expanding list of beers I really need to taste.

If you have sampled them and have an opinion you would like to vent then comment below. I would enjoy seeing what people think.

Taplister of Portland, OR was founded in February 2009 by tech and beer geeks, Kerry Finsand, Scott Wray, Ken Baer & Kevin Scaldeferri. With the singular goal of creating a community resource that helps you find what craft beers are on tap in Portland, Oregon. has achieved this by creating the first live beer search engine using the popular social network Twitter. Beer Fans can visit and search to see where their favorite beers are on tap. Mobile users can download the free iPhone app called Beer Signal or use the mobile version of to search for their favorite beers. In addition has installed Pubcams at EastBurn & Saraveza that displays a live feed of their tap boards on

City Beer Store


I stumbled upon this wonderful store when I was passing through San Francisco. Over 300 different bottles of really great stuff. I purchased Siamese Twin from Uncommon Brewers, some obscure Norwegian beer with spruce tips and the seldom seen Kriek from New Belgium. And if that is not enough, you can sit and have tastes while you are there!

There should be a place like this in every city worth its salt.

Christmas in July

Sure it’s hot outside, but it’ll be cooler than ever at Port Brewing and The Lost Abbey’s first Christmas in July Celebration and Fundraiser, Saturday, July 25, 2009 from noon to 7pm.

Beer releases:

* Santa’s Little Helper (Bourbon Barrel-aged) – 22ounce bottles; 6 bottle limit
* Older Viscosity 2009 – 375ml bottles; 12 bottle limit
* Duck Duck Gooze (yes, that Duck Duck Gooze) – 750ml bottles; 6 bottle limit
* The Angel’s Share (Bourbon Barrel-aged) – 750ml bottles; 6 bottle limit

Food & Beer:

* Food Stylings from our own Chef Vince Marsaglia
* Tastings – Duck, Duck Gooze, Older Viscosity & Santa’s Little Helper (Bourbon)
* On Tap – All of Port Brewing and The Lost Abbey’s regular line-up


* A Visit from St. Nick – Get your photo with Santa Claus in the Barrel Room
* Live Music – Special musical guests, The Professors

Toys for Tots drive and fundraiser:

* Toy Drive – Bring a new, unwrapped toy values at $15 or more to benefit Toys for Tots
* Giving Tree – give a $15 donation to Toys for Tots & you get to select a gift from under the Christmas Tree (Gifts include many rarities from our barrel archives – Isabelle Proxiums, Cuvee de Tomme, Veritas `04, and more!

The Details:

* When: Saturday, July 25, 2009; 12pm to 7pm. Beer and bottle release sales begin at 12pm. Santa arrives at 1pm. Food and music begins at 3pm.
* Where: Lost Abbey / Port Brewing Co., San Marcos, San Diego County, CA
* How Much: Food, music and photos with Santa are FREE! We are, however, asking everyone who attends to bring a new, unwrapped toy valued at $15 or more to donate to Toys for Tots. (Beers are all regular price.)

Session Black

Those cute, little, stubby red-labeled bottles from Full Sail are such a hit that brand extension was inevitable. What we get is a dark lager at 5.4 abv.

They will come in the same cases as the regular but with slate grey coloring and a more malty taste. I will be harassing my local Whole Foods to start stocking it soon.