Best Breweries and Taprooms in Portland


Calling all beer enthusiasts and hop-heads! Get ready to raise a pint and dive into the craft beer scene of Portland, Oregon, a city renowned for its vibrant brewing culture and innovative brewmasters.

From hoppy IPAs to rich stouts and everything in between, Portland's breweries and taprooms are a beer lover's paradise. So, grab your tasting glass and join us on a frothy adventure as we explore the best breweries and brewpubs that this brew-happy city has to offer!

Why Is Portland a Craft Beer Hub?

Portland has earned its reputation as a craft beer hub for several reasons. Here are a few key factors that contribute to the city's thriving craft beer scene:

1. Pioneering Craft Beer Culture

Portland has long been at the forefront of the craft beer movement in the United States. It was one of the first cities to embrace the farmhouse ale revolution, with pioneering breweries like Widmer Brothers and BridgePort Brewing Company opening their doors in the 1980s.

This early start laid the foundation for a strong and innovative craft beer culture that continues to thrive today.

2. Brewery-Friendly Environment

Portland's supportive and collaborative community has created an environment that fosters the growth and success of breweries. The city's residents have a deep appreciation for quality beer and a willingness to support local businesses.

Additionally, the city's government regulations and zoning policies have been favorable towards breweries, making it easier for them to establish and operate their businesses.

3. Abundance of Quality Ingredients

Oregon's fertile land and proximity to hop-growing regions contribute to the availability of high-quality ingredients for brewing.

The state's rich agricultural resources provide access to a wide variety of locally sourced hops, malt, and other brewing ingredients. This abundance of quality ingredients allows brewers in Portland to experiment with flavors and create unique and flavorful beers — whether pilsners or pale ales.

4. Craft Beer Events and Beer Festivals

Portland is home to a multitude of craft beer events and festivals throughout the year. These events, such as the Oregon Brewers Festival and the Portland Beer Week, attract both local and national breweries, showcasing their beers and fostering connections within the industry.

The festivals provide a platform for breweries to showcase their best beers and for enthusiasts to explore the diverse range of craft beers available in the beer gardens.

5. Collaboration and Innovation

Collaboration is a key aspect of Portland's craft beer scene. Breweries often collaborate with one another to create unique and limited-edition beers, pushing the boundaries of brewing creativity.

This spirit of collaboration, along with a culture of innovation, leads to the development of new beer styles, experimental techniques, and exciting flavor profiles.

6. Beer-Friendly Culture

Portland's residents have a strong affinity for craft beer and a deep appreciation for the art of brewing. The city's beer-loving culture creates a demand for diverse and high-quality brews, encouraging breweries to constantly innovate and strive for excellence.

Combining all these factors, Portland has cultivated a craft beer hub that attracts brewers, beer enthusiasts, and visitors from around the world. With its rich brewing heritage, supportive community, access to quality ingredients, and a love for all things beer, Portland has firmly established itself as a destination for those seeking exceptional craft beer experiences.

Best Breweries and Taprooms in Portland

Great Notion Brewing - NW Portland

We kick off our beer pilgrimage with Great Notion Brewing on Alberta St., a beloved spot in NW Portland that has gained a cult following for its tap list of hazy IPAs and fruit-forward sours.

Known for pushing the boundaries of brewing creativity, this West Coast brewery tantalizes taste buds with their juicy and aromatic hop bombs, often bursting with tropical and citrus flavors. With a laid-back atmosphere and a commitment to quality, this brewery is a must-visit for any beer connoisseur.

Cascade Brewing Barrel House - Buckman

Next on our hoppy adventure is Cascade Brewing Barrel House on SE Belmont St., a mecca for sour beer lovers. This pioneering brewery specializes in barrel-aged sour beers, blending traditional sour beer brewing techniques with an emphasis on Pacific Northwest ingredients.

Prepare to have your taste buds tingle with their complex and tart creations, ranging from their renowned Cascade Kriek to their experimental small-batch blends. Whether you're a seasoned sour beer aficionado or a curious newcomer, Cascade Brewing Barrel House is sure to delight.

Ex Novo Brewing - Eliot

Ex Novo Brewing combines great beer with a commitment to making a positive social impact. Located in the Eliot neighborhood, this nonprofit brewery donates all of its net profits to various charitable organizations.

But it's not just their philanthropy that sets them apart; their beers are exceptional too. From their refreshing German-style lagers to their hop-forward IPAs, Ex Novo offers a diverse range of brews to satisfy every palate. So, drink up and support a good cause!

Breakside Brewery - Dekum Triangle

Breakside Brewery is a local favorite with multiple locations throughout Portland. Known for their boundary-pushing beers and innovative brewing techniques, Breakside crafts a wide range of styles that consistently impress beer enthusiasts.

From their award-winning IPAs to their experimental barrel-aged creations and seasonal offerings, Breakside Brewery showcases the diversity and creativity of the craft beer world. Grab a pint and enjoy the lively atmosphere at any of their taprooms.

Gigantic Brewing Company - Southeast Portland

If you're looking for big flavors and bold brews, Gigantic Brewing Company in the Kerns neighborhood has got you covered. This independent craft brewery focuses on creating unique and memorable beers that challenge conventions.

From their hop-forward IPAs to their rich and robust stouts, Gigantic Brewing Company is all about pushing boundaries and delivering exceptional taste experiences. Don't miss their vibrant taproom, where you can enjoy their flavorful concoctions in a welcoming and lively setting.

Ecliptic Brewing - Mississippi/Boise

Located in the vibrant Mississippi/Boise neighborhood, Ecliptic Brewing combines two of life's greatest pleasures: craft beer and astronomy.

This space-themed brewery offers a stellar lineup of beers inspired by celestial bodies and astronomical phenomena. From their hoppy Starburst IPA to their rich and malty Capella Porter, Ecliptic Brewing offers a range of flavors that will leave you starry-eyed.

Upright Brewing - Eastside

For beer enthusiasts seeking a taste of Belgian-inspired brews on N Broadway, Upright Brewing in the Eastside neighborhood is a hidden gem.

Known for their complex and nuanced farmhouse-style ales and saisons, Upright Brewing focuses on traditional brewing methods and locally sourced ingredients. Step into their intimate tasting room and let their artisanal beers transport you to the picturesque countryside of Belgium.

StormBreaker Brewing - Mississippi/Boise

Rounding out our list is StormBreaker Brewing, a Mississippi/Boise neighborhood staple that serves up delicious beers in a laid-back and welcoming atmosphere.

With an emphasis on Northwest-style ales, StormBreaker Brewing offers a range of brews from their hop-forward IPAs to their flavorful and innovative barrel-aged creations. Grab a pint, relax on their patio, and soak in the vibrant energy of this neighborhood favorite.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Ruse Brewing & Crust Collective on SE 17th Ave
  • Occidental Brewing on N Baltimore Ave
  • Little Beast Brewing on SE Division St
  • Culmination Brewing on NE Oregon St
  • Baerlic Brewing on NE Alberta St

Raising a Glass to Portland: Wrapping Up Our Brewery Tour

Portland, Oregon, has rightfully earned its reputation as a craft beer hub, attracting fermentation enthusiasts and brewers alike from around the globe.

Little Beast Brewing

The city's pioneering craft beer culture, brewery-friendly environment, an abundance of quality ingredients, craft beer events and festivals, collaboration and innovation, and beer-friendly culture all contribute to its thriving craft beer scene.

Portland's deep appreciation for craft beer and its supportive community has fostered an environment where breweries can thrive and experiment with flavors, techniques, and styles. The city's commitment to quality and creativity has led to the production of exceptional beers that cater to a wide range of tastes and preferences.

Whether you're exploring the innovative IPAs, indulging in the complexity of barrel-aged sours, or savoring traditional styles with a unique twist, Portland's breweries and taprooms offer a beer-drinker's paradise. The city's craft beer scene is a testament to the passion and dedication of its brewers, who continuously push the boundaries of brewing excellence.

So, if you find yourself in Portland, be sure to raise a pint at one of its renowned breweries or taprooms. Immerse yourself in the vibrant craft beer culture, taste the artistry in every sip, and join the community of beer lovers who have embraced Portland as a true craft beer destination.

Cheers to the amazing breweries and taprooms that make Portland a haven for craft beer enthusiasts!

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