900+ Awards, 50 States, 37 Ales, 25 Years, 32 Countries,
12 Pubs, 2 Farms, 7 Spirits, 2 Distilleries, 1 Brand
In the Beginning… A group of like-minded Rogues got together to start a new brewery. In March of 1988 a Revolution in beer began in the basement of the Rogue Public House in Ashland Oregon. One of the founders of Rogue ended up stuck in Newport, OR on the coast for three days and, after enjoying the hospitality of the locales, named the small stretch of coast the land of Barley and Hops and decided to open a second brewpub. Mo Neime offered her garage with one condition–help your community when times are good, and feed the fishermen when times are bad. Thus the next Rogue Outpost was created with a 15 bbl brew system in a garage and a promise to be a good neighbor. Beer drinkers soon discovered the heavenly ales being produced and came to worship at the Rogue Nation Pub on the bay.
In 1991 the brew system was moved across the bay, where a marine repair shop was converted into the Rogue Brewery. Rogue now produces over 37 different ales distributed in all 50 states and exported to 32 different countries (Rogue now owns 50% of the craft market in Guam!). And after 25 years and 15,000 brews, John Maier, Rogue Brewmaster and Prophet of Pacman yeast, is still hand-making each batch.
Today the Rogue Nation has a museum, a library, a university, a newspaper, a Film company, Record company, coins and currency, passports, national ID cards, stamps, license plates, a flag, a constitution, uniforms, shoes, a Creamery, a national past time, a literary journal, a bakery, a chef laureate, a bull, a pledge and boxer shorts—all the indicia of a Nation which should lead to the approval of our pending application to join the UN.
Rogue was first A century before oenophiles were chasing their pinot dreams in the Willamette Valley, pioneer farmers were growing hops. They found a magical combination of rich soil, moderate temperatures and the perfect balance of sun and rain that made this land the hops growing capital of the world.
When Prohibition drove Oregon vineyards out of business, Willamette Valley hops growers prospered. They flourished through two world wars and the Great Depression.
But somewhere in the 20th century Oregon’s hops heritage was lost. Vinters planted their vines, built their tasting rooms and laid claim to the terroir of the Willamette Valley.
NO MORE PINOT ENVY
In 2008, Rogue became farmers. Rogue constructed a 42 acre hop yard on a wide bend of the Willamette River near Independence. This year they will harvest 64,000 pounds of Alluvial, Freedom, Independent, Liberty, Newport, Rebel and Revolution varieties of aroma hops in the Wigrich Appellation. The hop cones are picked, kilned, cooled and baled right on the farm and shipped to their brewery in Newport.
In the rain shadow of Mt. Hood they planted barley. Nearly 200 acres in the Tygh Valley appellation will produce more than 900,000 pounds of Risk winter malting barley and Dare spring malting barley. Rogue built their own floor malting house and hand craft their own styles of artisan small batch malts.
They know where their hops and barley come from. They know the soil, the temperature and how much rain and sun they receive. They know when and how they were planted, cared for, harvested and processed.
The beer from Rogue farms will be 1st Growth, Estate Hopped, Estate Barleyed, Estate Brewed and Estate Bottled. From now on their taking about Dirtoir, not Terroir.
Beer begins in the dirt It starts in the soil where barley roots and hop bines draw moisture and nutrients. It begins in the rocks of the Cascades and Coast Range as creeks rush over gravelly bottoms where salmon and steelhead spawn.
The right climate encourages healthy crops and clear, cold water. Barley and hops need a certain amount – and timing – of rain, sun, warm summers and cool winters to help them thrive. Streams need to be refreshed
with rain fall and snowmelt or they become stagnant and stale.
Making that dirt and climate takes time Over hundreds of millions of years ago, the North American continent began its slow creep westward. The moving tectonic plate scraped sediments, underwater ridges and volcanic islands from the ocean floor. It built a huge pile of dirt that became the Coast Range. The movement spawned massive volcanic eruptions that uplifted the Cascades and smothered much of Oregon with hot, molten lava. Huge ice age floods drowned the Willamette Valley for thousands of years and deposited layers of rich, volcanic soils that are hundreds of feet thick.
So when you open a bottle of Rogue you’re tasting more than just the barley, hops and water. You’re tasting the results of millions of years of geologic forces and history that are unique to the place where hops and barley are grown and where the water comes from.
This “Taste of Place” is what we call terroir Luckily for Rogue, Oregon has everything we need to grow our own. There’s a reason why Rogue grows aroma hops in the Willamette Valley. The rain shadow of the Coast Range, ice age soils and its position along the 45th parallel have made the valley one of the most important hops growing regions in the world for more than a century.
There’s a reason why Rogue grows barley near Tygh Valley. The rain shadow of Mt. Hood and loess volcanic topsoil is why this region is the most productive in Oregon for cereal grains, such as barley and wheat. And there’s a reason why Rogue gets the water to malt the barley and brew the beer from the free flowing streams of the Coast Range and Cascades. These are some of the purest, most natural sources of water anywhere.
The final element of terroir is personality. No one else can make Rogue Ales or Spirits. Not even if they had the same ingredients from the same places. Rogue’s personality is unique and you can taste it in the beer.
Rogue and Oregon have the right combination of dirt, climate, water and personality. A terroir superfecta that’s impossible to duplicate.
BEERS – Here’s a small sampling of some of the Rogue Brews
American Amber Ale
Delightful and yummy as can be this coffee aroma beer shows as an excellent amber. It contains Cascade hops and three different malts. The beer is full of caramel, bread and hops smells, The taste hides notes of floral and citrus, as well as a bitter finish. This craft is truly full of balance and grace – great job well done. It has an alcohol level of 5.6 percent.
Shakespeare Oatmeal Stout
This American-style stout contains earthy flavors with a creamy, but soft, chocolate finish. Drink it with a dessert – it practically is one itself! It tastes of slightly roasted malts, but the smoothness of the oats softens the entire drinking experience. There is just a hint of both coffee and dark chocolate finish. It has a 6.1 alcohol percent.
Dead Guy Ale
Brewed as a mock German Maibock, this beer is deep honey in color and has a highly malty aroma. It’s made with Perle and Saaz hops and four punchy malts! The body is extremely creamy. The smells circle around coffee, butter, malts, sugars and all other delightful scents. The taste follows by being sweet, but with enough bitter to back it up. It has a 6.5 percent alcohol percentage.
Bitters on bitters on bitters, this is a greatly adventurous IPA. It has all the classic citrus and grassy hop flavors and aromas, but amplified! The bitter however does not overpower the malts and sweet tastes. It is surprisingly well balanced for the amount of hops. The bready aspect also dips into a pineapple blast, making this a memorable IPA. It has a 5.8 percent alcohol percentage.
An interesting ale to say the least – they say spice is the variety of life! Well this beer does it well. The aroma is literally smoky, as well as being malty. The taste hits notes of spice, malts, pepper and leaves the tongue happy if not a little singed. It’s a flavor burst, mixed into a great brew, that you’ll just have to try for yourseld! It has a 5.5 percent alcohol percentage.
There’s more than just one location, though, with all the growth. Rogue Ales are brewed in the Newport, Oregon locations, while two separate brewpubs the Rogue Public House, located in Eugene, and the Issaquah Brewhouse, located in Washington. The brewpubs brew their own beer and offer great eats. Rogue also owns nine separate restaurants along the northern West Coast, stretching from San Francisco to Issaquah. For added fun, there are two high-spirited distilleries in Portland and Newport, making some spicy rums and powerful vodkas.
With all the great venues and ways to experience Rogue’s commitment to fine crafts, checkout the website to find out which place is right for your visit. www.rogue.com They might all be! There’s also a video tour of the brewery online and tons of information.