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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Seven Brides Serving Up Great Rural Nectar

Seven Brides Brewing in Silverton isn't what you think. It isn't operated by seven young ladies who were recently hitched. Rather, it's the brainchild of five guys who among them have five daughters. They hope the brewery will help them pay the eventual weddings costs.

The five partners shared an interest in homebrewing, a common path to brewing competency. After a few years of brewing, the would-be partner with sales mojo suggested the stuff they were making was good enough to sell. So they launched the business...and the beer has sold.

Home of Seven Brides Brewing and Vitis Ridge Winery
You've probably seen bombers of Seven Brides beer around Portland. The Fred Meyer I frequent typically stocks two Seven Brides beers...both pretty good in my book. But a road trip (to the Oregon Garden Brewfest) gave me the opportunity to visit the Seven Brides. And I try not to miss such opportunities.

I walked in the joint around 11 a.m. and was surprised (and perplexed) to discover they had 12 beers available. That's more beers than I usually want to sample before noon on a weekday. It was gut check time. I opted for the full flight...nothing says you have to drink every drop.

Flight of 12...minus one (the Kolsch got clipped)
I'm not going to give a blow by blow review of each beer. I really don't care for beer reviews. Suffice it to say these beers were all clean and high quality. At any given time, I could drink any one of these beers. But I did have several favorites:

Maggie's Marzen -  This is Seven Brides' Oktoberfest beer. It has a lovely, deep orange color and is balanced, smooth drinking. The brilliant character is courtesy of several German malts. 6 % ABV, 25 IBUs, 15 SRM.

The Weezin-ator - Seven Brides' dopplebock is dominated by deep roast flavors and a touch of warm sweetness. It has plum notes on the nose. Jeff DeSantis, Seven Brides sales and marketing guru, took a minute out of his Brewfest prep to talk to me about this beer, then poured me part of a snifter, which really brought out the aromas. 9.7% ABV, 71 IBUs, 18 SRM.

The Weezin-ator
Lil's Pils - A traditional Bohemian Pilsner. Very light body and color. This stuff is super clean with not a lot of hop aroma or flavor. It has a mildly bitter finish. I liked Lil's Pils better than Kili's Kolsch, which is similar. 5% ABV, 40 IBUs, 4 SRM.

Abbey - A bold Belgian Dubbel, this beer is fermented in Port barrels. Similar to some Cascade Barrel House beers, the Abbey is light in color and mildly tart. This is a terrific gateway sour. Jeff told me people either love or hate this beer. I fit into the former category. 8.1% ABV, 20 IBUs, 17 SRM.

Seven Brides is a perfect example of why you can't discount a brewery due to its location. Silverton is a ways off the well-beaten path. You might expect them to be producing just mainstream beers. That is decidedly not the case. These guys are serving up a long list of varied, quality beers.

If you get a chance to stop by the pub and tasting room in Silverton, definitely go for it. Otherwise, you can find Lil's Pils, Lauren's Pale Ale, Emily's Amber and Oatmeal Ellie in 22 oz bombers in stores around the area. Keep up the great work, folks.


  1. Frankenlou's IPA and Becky's Black Cat Porter are also available in bombers in many places in Portland (including some Fred Meyers)

  2. Thanks for the update. I haven't seen these beers at my Freddies, but I'm glad to know they're out there.


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