Though bottles form the backdrop in the picture below, I actually sampled this beer on draft at the brewery from the holding tanks just a few feet away. It doesn’t get much fresher than that, and combined with the open garage door and warm summer evening, this beer really hit the spot after fighting traffic to get to the brewery’s beer release party.
The beer was an oasis in a glass – not too alcoholic, with plenty of malt and enough hops to satisfy my summer IPA obsession. This isn’t an IPA, but it’s got the hop profile of one, probably from the “one-two punch of Centennial and Cascade” Hopworks used in its creation, according to Christian Ettinger, owner and brewmaster at HUB, and host of the event.
Like all of HUB’s beers, this beer is made with organic malt, and the wort is boiled with biodiesel. The spent grain is used in the brewery’s pizza, and also fed to cows at dairies in the area … whose milk is then served at the restaurant. Hops are the only part of the brew not yet organic – while organic hops are easily obtained from New Zealand and Europe, the high carbon footprint of the hops’ travel outweighs the benefits of using them in an Oregon beer. As owner of a business trying its best to be sustainable, I really appreciate Christian’s considered, thoughtful approach to sustainability; I’ve had to make a few decisions that pitted doctrine against common sense, and so far, I’ve tried to go with the common sense approach, too.
HUB’s approach seems to be working – Rise-up Red won a gold medal in the American Style Red Ale category at the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) in 2009. I’m thinking this might be a summer staple at my house, with its high hops and low booze, perfect for an afternoon around the BBQ.
Top secret insider info: there’s a picture of Northwest legend D.B. Cooper hidden on the inside of the bottle’s label, similar to the way the skull was hidden inside the poorly-named, but tasty Ace of Spades.
Beer Name: Organic Rise-Up Red
Brewer: Hopworks Urban Brewery
Sampled: May 13, 2010
Notes: Very refreshing. Feels like the beer I wanted and needed on a warm spring evening. A little booze, some great hop bitter, and a crisp finish that’s not too heavy.
ABV: 5.8% abv
IBU: 60 ibu
Serving Type: Draft.
* I was invited to the beer release party by the brewery, who provided me free beer samples, pizza, and yes … beer blogging is awesome. I don’t think all the free stuff influenced my 4-star rating, but … now you know.