Barley’s brews of Baker City beat out beer’s big boys

| Print |  Email
Monday, October 01, 2007

TylerBrown1007.jpg Tyler Brown

PHOTO BY BRYAN BLOEBAUM

BAKER CITY Once the work of an after-hours home-brew hobbyist, Tyler Brown’s beers are now winning national honors. At this year’s North American Beer Awards, Barley Brown’s Brew Pub pulled in five medals, three gold and two silver. Up against more than 1,000 entries from industry powerhouses, the tiny Baker City brewery was one of only five to take home three gold medals.

Ten years ago, it was just an idea. In 1997 when Brown’s parents were considering whether to remodel the family restaurant or sell off the building, Brown thought, “Shoot, I seek out brew pubs when I travel; we could use one in town.” At first there wasn’t a lot of support for the project. Equipment manufacturers questioned the size of Baker City’s market, and some wouldn’t even give Brown a quote. Undeterred, he found a company to build a small four-barrel brewery, spent five months remodeling and opened in the summer of 1998.

Despite the popularity of microbreweries in the western part of the state, there wasn’t much interest in Barley Brown’s when it first opened. To survive, the brewpub also served hard alcohol, wine and domestic beers such as Bud Lite and Miller. Free samples to customers who ordered more familiar drinks helped cultivate an appreciation and appetite for Brown’s original brews.

The perseverance paid off. In addition to the national attention, Barley Brown’s is now a local favorite. So popular, in fact, that Brown can barely produce enough beer to keep up with demand and is looking for an additional brewing site.

Beer competition medals are nice, says Brown, but he’s more enthusiastic about giving Baker something to brag about. “People who live here love to say, ‘Our brewery is better than the ones in Portland.’”

BROOKE MATSCHEK


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Banking Perspective

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

A conversation with Craig Wanichek, president and CEO of Summit Bank.


Read more...

European Vacation

Guest Blog
Thursday, April 23, 2015
norristhumbBY JASON NORRIS | GUEST BLOGGER

There are winners and losers with a strengthening U.S. dollar.


Read more...

Announcing the date of the 100 Best Green Workplaces in Oregon event

News
Friday, March 20, 2015
OBM-100-best-Green-logo-2015-250pxwBY OB STAFF

Join us to celebrate and network with Oregon’s best green workplaces!


Read more...

Courtside

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER

Power lunching at the Court Street Dairy Lunch in Salem.


Read more...

It's a Man's Man's Man's World

May 2015
Friday, April 24, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Male tech workers speak out on the industry's gender troubles.


Read more...

5 questions about the FLIR FX

The Latest
Wednesday, April 08, 2015
FLIR-FX-IndoorBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

The Wilsonville-based company is targeting GoPro enthusiasts with its latest release. Is spy gear poised to go mainstream?


Read more...

5 questions for Flywheel CEO Rakesh Mathur

The Latest
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
FW splashBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Portland is awash in rideshare options. We ask the head of Flywheel what sets his app apart.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS