This summer my boyfriend and I went on a beer roadtrip through Oregon and California; the goal was to sample as many tasty beers as possible. The first stop on the beertrip was a tour of the Widmer Brothers Brewery – our favourite brewery from our last trip to Oregon. We started out in a tasting room above the Gasthaus Pub with a short video about the history of the brewery; the gist of which was two brothers started out brewing beer in old farm equipment, made good beer and made it big. Following the video, the tour guide poured our group of around 15 a bunch of pitchers of beer (Hefeweizen, Drop Top Amber Ale, Broken Halo IPA and the seasonal OKTO), explained a little bit about each beer and let us sample them until the pitchers were dry.  (Keychain bottle openers were also provided – yay free swag!).

Next, the guide led us across the street to the brewery. There she showed us the pallets of grain and cooler full of hops (yum!) used to brew the beer along with a fancy bottling machine and a row of shiny beer tanks. While all this was exciting, we didn’t actually learn much about the actual brewing process. The guide talked more about the distribution of the beer and partnerships with other breweries than about how they made the stuff. A bit disappointing but easily assuaged by the free pint glass at the end of the tour (more swag!).

Free pint glasses in hand, we ended our Widmer excursion with lunch at the Gasthaus Pub. The food was very good and the beer list extensive. In addition to the 3 regular Widmer brews and the seasonal, the list contained several small batch beers. I sampled a special strong IPA which was a nice complement to my Bratwurst on sourdough with sauerkraut and potato salad. The server also provided us with some complimentary samples of some of the other beers upon request. Overall, a pretty good morning for the price of lunch and a few pints.

Tours are held Fridays at 3:00 p.m. and Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Make sure to call ahead to reserve your spot (503-281-2437).

See the Widmer website for more information.