Portland is home to breweries galore and some of the finest beer on Earth. Since the early 1980s, Portland brewers have been hard at work, pioneering the craft beer movement with fresh ingredients like Willamette Valley hops and Bull Run water. Along with bustling brewpubs and a calendar overflowing with beer-themed events, Portland brewers’ innovative creations make Portland a must-visit beer destination.
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Portland’s beer buzz began in 1984, when both the BridgePort Brewing Company (now closed) and Widmer Brothers opened facilities in what is now the Pearl District, not far from where Henry Weinhard’s brews were made back in the 1860s.
In 1985, McMenamins opened Oregon’s first brewpub in Southwest Portland; you can still knock one back at the original Hillsdale Brewery today. McMenamins now has more than 50 whimsical locations in the Northwest — each unique, but united by their flagship beers and historic locations.
Learn More About Portland Beer and Breweries
How many breweries are in Portland?
What beer is Portland known for?
Which Portland breweries have outdoor seating?
The Move to Portland
Other Oregon brewing pioneers opened Portland locations in the 1990s, including Rogue Ales, which started in Newport in 1989 and today operates two Portland locations: Rogue Eastside Pub & Pilot Brewery and Rogue Hall. Hood River’s Full Sail Brewing Company, which started in Hood River in 1987, has a small brewing operation inside McCormick & Schmick’s Harborside at the Marina in downtown Portland.
More recently, two Bend-based heavyweights have also opened Portland outposts: legendary Deschutes Brewery, founded in 1988, opened a brewpub in the Pearl District in 2008, and fast-growing 10 Barrel Brewing moved into the same neighborhood in 2015.
Portland Beer Week spotlights Portland’s breweries, high-quality brews and vibrant beer culture.
Portland isn't shy about its love of beer — the city has nearly as many beer festivals as it does breweries.
The Holiday Ale Festival, set beneath the region’s largest decorated holiday tree, returns every year with more than 50 big, bold beers designed to keep revelers warm on cold winter nights.
The Second Wave
Agile upstarts are always welcome in Portland’s brewing community, and in the 1990s a series of newcomers helped keep the city’s beer scene fresh. In 1994, Lucky Labrador Brewing Company started pouring concoctions like their rich and creamy Black Lab Stout when the first of their locations opened to the public (and their pooches).
Also coming on the scene in the ’90s was Hair of the Dog, which generated a cult following with its earliest offerings, like the bottle-conditioned — and strong — Adam and Fred. To the delight of longtime fans, Hair of the Dog opened a tasting room in the Central Eastside in 2010. Their small-batch brews pair well with the pub menu, which offers no-frills fare like salads and charcuterie boards.
Laurelwood Brewing opened in 2001 — enjoy brews like the popular Free Range Red at their family-friendly brewpub in Northeast Portland. The vast selection of organic beers offered by Hopworks Urban Brewery has been drawing rave reviews since they started brewing in 2007. An “eco-brewpub,” Hopworks is powered with 100% renewable energy. Stop by for a delicious pizza and a thirst-quenching Organic HUB Lager, which has won awards around the world.
Part aging room, part pub, the Cascade Brewing Barrel House is a 7,100-square-foot (660 sq m) emporium of beer that launched in 2010 and quickly gained attention for the excellent sour beer on offer. A live barrel is tapped every other Tuesday at 6 p.m., and their expansive patio is a favorite destination on summer evenings.
Portland is the craft beer capital and home to 70+ breweries. (No wonder we call it “Beervana!”)
Portland Beers by Style
In a city with 70+ breweries, the simple act of ordering a beer isn't always so simple. Our insider’s guide is here to help.
Dog-Friendly Portland Breweries
Plenty of Portland’s 70+ breweries cater to both two- and four-legged visitors, providing pooch-friendly patios and bowls of water for thirsty pups.
Kid-Friendly Breweries in Portland
In a city with so many excellent breweries, parents don't have to choose between spending time with their kids and enjoying a great pint of beer.
Breweries Near Portland
The City of Roses doesn’t have a monopoly on amazing ales! Several nearby towns are home to their own fabulous brewpubs and breweries.
Brewing in the Gorge
Take in the outstanding beauty of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area while enjoying five outstanding brewpubs.
Recent years continue to bring about exceptional new Portland breweries. Some brew a wide range of beers, while others take a targeted approach, focusing on specific beer styles or brewing techniques — but they all prize sharing their passion and their beer.
At both its original Portland location and the larger brew house in Milwaukie, just southeast of Portland, Breakside Brewery crafts favorites like the Breakside IPA, winner of the coveted gold medal for American-Style IPA at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival. They also take on wild experiments like the Duck Duck Drunk, a chocolate porter brewed for Breakside’s third anniversary in 2013 and infused with 100 pounds (45 kg) of locally raised Muscovy duck.
Gluten-free ale is the sole focus at Ground Breaker Brewing, where Willamette Valley chestnuts hand-roasted on-site take the place of grains in their award-winning brews. Taste gluten-free IPAs, pale ales, and dark ales, as well as experimental ales incorporating local ingredients like coffee or squash (gluten-free food is also on offer at the gastropub).
A favorite Northeast Portland hangout, Migration Brewing handcrafts exceptional beers like the Straight Outta Portland IPA and the Proper Pilsner. A new location on North Williams Avenue is drawing in beer lovers with its excellent, expansive patio.
Gigantic Brewing strives to make the best IPAs in Portland while ignoring all the rules — they come up with unique one-off beers showcasing the veteran brewers’ creativity and the region’s stellar hops. For example, their Catch 23 pale ale was focused around Hop #527, an experimental variety from Roy Farms in Yakima, Wash.
Ecliptic Brewing is a fairly recent addition to the Portland beer scene, but its founder is no upstart. Local brewing legend John Harris put in time at McMenamins, Deschutes (where he developed the recipe for blockbusters like the Mirror Pond Pale Ale) and Full Sail before striking out on his own. Ecliptic combines Harris’ two passions — brewing and astronomy — in celestial-themed brews like the Starburst IPA (named after the brightest start in the constellation Virgo) and the Cloud Core Hazy Pale Ale. They also offer an elevated food menu that rotates with the astrological calendar.
Under the shadow of North Portland’s iconic St. Johns Bridge, Occidental Brewing specializes in European-style beers. Stop by the brewery and taproom to taste their spectacular altbier or the popular kolsch. Importing the concept of French and Belgian farmhouse-style beers, Upright Brewing is a hidden gem in the local beer scene. Its basement-level tasting room has few frills but is big on flavor, with a seasonally rotating menu of one-offs and small batches, pushing the limits of their West Coast ingredients.
Baerlic Brewing offers 10 taps pouring a mix of their year-round beers and seasonal or one-off concoctions. Many brews tend toward classic European styles, like cream ales and stouts, but they also make a flagship IPA and use plenty of local hops. You can taste their motto in every sip: “the beer here is near and dear.”
Von Ebert Brewing opened in 2018, and quickly won the hearts of Portlanders with their delicious, innovative beer and elevated pub fare (they also have a spacious covered patio). Little Beast Brewing started in Beaverton in 2017, and quickly became popular enough to warrant new locations, including a Southeast Division Street spot that opened in 2018. Little Beast was founded by “partners in life and work” Charles Porter and Brenda Crow, who specialize in mixed-fermentation beers and bright, complex flavors.
Which Brews to Choose?
With such a rapidly growing beer scene, choice paralysis can become a real challenge: do you start with the classic brewers that set the stage for Portland’s rise to brewery fame, or do you sample beer from one of the new upstarts who are striving to change the game? One good solution is to head to a taproom and try them all.
With 50 beers on tap from a rotating selection of Oregon brewers like Ex Novo, pFriem, and Hair of the Dog, Apex provides a haven for beer aficionados and newbies alike. Their live online menu displays the current tap list, what’s new and what’s about to tap out so you won’t miss a drop of your favorite ale.
For the grandest selection of them all, belly up to the bar at Loyal Legion, where a menu of 99 taps dedicated to Oregon breweries awaits your perusal. Order a flight of samples from across the state or stick to Portland-born brews. With a full cocktail bar and a menu of great-but-affordable food, this elegant pub will also satisfy any non-beer-drinkers in your group, buying you more time for another pint.
SheBrew is an all genders, all ages fundraising event to show support for female-identified members of our community, while supporting LGBTQ people here in Oregon and across the Nation. Come try local female craft beer and cider accompanied by musicians, comedians, games, raffle and community celebrities. Join us for our 3rd annual festival while celebrating…
2021 event has been canceled. The festival will return in 2022 at the following July dates. The Portland Craft Beer Festival brings a huge outdoor party to the Fields Neighborhood Park, along with a huge selection of local beers, ciders and wine, originating from Portland, Oregon breweries. Only beers, plus ciders and wine, crafted within…
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