Belgian Beers & Seafood Dinner And other pub news to feast on…

The Belgian Beers and Seafood Dinner is coming up December 17 th at the Fort George Brewery + Public House (in Astoria, OR). The dinner will be from 6 to 9 p.m., is limited to 30 people, and reservations are required. All-inclusive nonrefundable $65 tickets cover your food, beverages, and gratuity. Season passes at a reduced rate are available for those wishing to attend at least four dinners. Call (503) 325-PINT or stop by the Fort George to reserve your spot.

For the first time, limited Fort George beer is now available in 22 ounce bottles. This year’s holiday brew, North II - Grand Crüe, is available for purchase at the brewery. There are 50 new members in the Fort George Mug Club. Mugs for 2009 went on sale earlier this month and sold out. Past club members still have until December 31 st to renew their membership. Members get the benefit of ordering beer in their own numbered mug, which holds 21.5 ounces of beer for the price of a pint. There will be a total of 150 memberships for the new year.

During your next visit to the Fort George, you may notice a few big additions. A more than two-story grain silo now towers over the parking lot. Owners say it will more efficiently help the brewery keep up with demand. And, they’re raving about their new custom-made bar stools, which they consider pieces of art. Recycled steel and old growth fir make these stools one-of a-kind, and the industrial-organic style fits right in at the pub.


Collaboration Dinner Seafood and Belgian Beers Wednesday, December 17th 2008

Beer Lovers,

Christmas is coming up and the elves are working overtime at the Fort George Brewery. The Belgian Beer and Seafood Dinner is December 17th this will be a collaboration dinner with 5 chefs preparing unique signature courses. This is very popular dinner, we have a few tickets left so we encourage you to reserve a seat soon. Click on the menu below to enlarge.

Happy Holidays,

Chris Nemlowill

These sit-down brewer's dinners include several courses of food, each with a complimentary beer. At least one beer for each dinner comes directly from the Fort George’s own brewery, and brewers hand-pick the rest from other breweries from all over the world. Dinners will be from 6 to 9 p.m., are limited to 30 people, and reservations are required. All-inclusive nonrefundable $65 tickets cover your food, beverages, and gratuity. Season passes at a reduced rate are available for those wishing to attend at least four dinners. Call (503) 325-PINT today to save your spot. Fort George Brewery + Public House · 1483 Duane Street Astoria, OR 97103 (503) 325-PINT ·


Holiday Ale Dinner

Wednesday, November 19th 2008

Beer Lovers,

Sure the forecast is calling for a week of rain and the grey clouds are rolling up the Columbia River as I type this email, but I assure you relief is on the way. The line up for our Holiday Ale Dinner is sure to whisk away seasonal depression disorder for at least one evening. Please see the attached menu for beer and food pairings. An all-inclusive cost of $65 a person will guarantee that you leave with a brighter outlook on the grey days to come. We are also still offering a season pass discount for people who purchase 4 brewer’s dinner tickets at once. The cost for the season pass is $200 all-inclusive. The Holiday Ale Dinner is on November 19th from 6-9pm. Seats are on sale now and are sure to fill up fast. So call 503-325-PINT(7468) to reserve your spot.

Chris Nemlowill

Holiday Ale Dinner

Wednesday, November 19th 2008

House Smoked Turkey and Tart Cherry Sausage with Sauerkraut and Dijon Mustard
Great Divide Brewing Company – Hibernation Ale

Classic Tijuana Caesar Salad with Garlic and Anchovy Croutons
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. – Celebration Ale

Pumpkin Bisque with Blue Schorcher Rye Bread Croutons and House Smoked Pumpkin Seeds
Elysian Brewing Co. – Night Owl Pumpkin Ale

Crown Roast of Pork served with Croquette Potatoes, Ratatouille and Brandy Apricot Sauce
Fort George Brewery – North II Grand Cru

Cranberry, Almond, Caramel Tart with Cinnamon Ice Cream
Hopworks Urban Brewery – Noggin Floggin Barleywine

Introducing North II – Grand Crüe

North II – Grand Crüe

OG: 1.074
FG: 1.014
ABV: 8%
IBU: 50

Sugar, spice, and everything nice… this is a beer to cuddle up with in front of the fireplace. The best way to describe North II Grand Crüe is a Belgian-style barleywine. This is the second in a series of Fort George beers created for wintertime enjoyment, the Holiday Ale Festival in December, plus the Great Alaskan Beer and Barleywine Festival in January. Our brewers weaved together ingredients from all over the globe including Canadian Pilsner Malt, Golden Promise from Scotland, Belgian Wit yeast, raw Hawaiian sugar, and oats from the mainland USA. North II is gently warming, with a spiciness of cloves and cinnamon, a creamy body, and a ripe peach finish. Come in and enjoy a glass. See you there.


Northwest Brewcup 08'

This year the Fort George Brewery is helping put together the Northwest Brewcup and donating proceeds to the Clatsop County Food Bank. Any way you can spread the word about the event would be greatly appreciated. We are glad to see the proceeds going to a great cause this year and want to support the festival in any way we can. Below is a press release we have put together for the event. The beer list is great and growing everyday. A lot of beers available at the festival this year are not usually available on the coast. Please feel free to call if you have any questions, want to participate or know someone who wants to bring beer.

Thank you,

Chris Nemlowill

Press Release

Beer Festival Brewing in Astoria

Summer may be ending, but things are just heating up on the coast! You’ll have a chance to taste some of the best craft beers the region has to offer in Astoria at the 7th annual Pacific Northwest Brewcup this September. Festival organizers aim to have a variety of beers, which are new and diverse to the coastal beer drinking community.

The focus of this year’s festival is to promote handcrafted artisan brews. An estimated three-dozen northwest microbreweries will have beers available for sampling. Root beers and ginger ales will also be available, making this a family-friendly event. There will be food vendors, three days of live music, and an opportunity to vote for your favorite beer.

This year, organizers from the Baked Alaska Restaurant are joining forces with Astoria’s newest brewery, the Fort George Brewery + Public House. The Fort George hopes to make this an especially brewer-friendly event, and is inviting other regional brewers to participate and attend.

Proceeds from the festival will go to the Clatsop County Food Bank. Nearly one third of the county’s residents tapped into the food bank last year to help their families. A new food pantry is in the works to meet the growing need and volunteers are gearing up for a long winter, providing to families in especially tough economic times.

The Pacific Northwest Brewcup takes place in downtown Astoria September 26th, 27th and 28th at the Astoria Public Plaza on Duane between 11th and 12th streets.

The Band Line-up

Friday 2:30-4:30 Rowdy James Band
5:00 7:00 StormTrain
7:30-9:45 HindSight 20/20

Saturday 2:30-4:30 Richard T and The Swing Cats
5:00-7:00 The Distractions
7:30-9:45 Broken Soviet

Sunday TBA
For more information call (503) 325-PINT and ask for Jack or Chris.


Beer Dinners are Back at the Fort George Seasonal Food and Beer Pairing Events

This fall and winter the party will be moving indoors at the Fort George Brewery + Public House in Astoria. The beer-pairing dinners are back for the second year in a row. Customers have a chance to attend these special events, with seasonal cuisine that breaks from the normal casual-fare pub menu.

Colby Lennon goes in for seconds of crab at a brewer's dinner last winter. Photo by: Megan

These sit-down dinners include several courses of food, each with a complimentary beer. At least one beer for each dinner comes directly from the Fort George’s own brewery, and brewers hand-pick the rest from other breweries from all over the world.

The dinners are as follows:

September 17th Wild Local Mushroom Harvest & German Beers
October 15th Graveyard Beers (Hard-to-Find Aged Beers from the Past)
November 19th Holiday Dinner & Holiday Seasonal Ales
December 17th Belgian-Style Ales & Local Seafood
January 21st Indian Food & IPA
February 18th Oysters & Stouts
March 18th Celtic Ales & Cuisine
April 15th Homebrewer’s Competition Dinner

All dinners will be from 6 to 9 p.m., are limited to 30 people, and reservations are required. All-inclusive nonrefundable $65 tickets cover your food, beverages, and gratuity. Season passes at a reduced rate are available for those wishing to attend at least four dinners. Call (503) 325-PINT today to save your spot.

Fort George Brewery + Public House · 1483 Duane Street Astoria, OR 97103
(503) 325-PINT · www.fortgeorgebrewery.com


Fort George interviewed on the Libation Station

Click here to hear one of our brewer's on the Libation Station news radio show!!

The Fort George Brewery and Public house was featured on the Libation Station news radio show on 750AM KXL out of Portland, Or. The show is co hosted by the much loved Beer Goddess, also known as journalist Lisa Morrison with Bruce Bjorkman and airs Saturday from 3-4 p.m


“Liberate the Ales” Festival: Fort George 4th of July Party

This Independence Day, the Fort George Brewery + Public House will liberate the ales with a beer garden, music you can dance to and a barbeque. The festival takes place in the Fort George parking lot in Astoria July 4th from 4:00 p.m. until the fireworks. According to the local chamber of commerce, this is the only community event of its kind happening this year.

There is much anticipation within the local music scene for the reunion of Los Comatosos kicking off the party at 4:30. The band broke up several years ago, leaving its fans thirsty for more of its catchy, rhythmic songs in its unique genre of Latin-folk.

Reggae group, Ma Barley, headlines the entertainment at 7:00 p.m. Ma Barley made its debut at the Fort George about a year and a half ago, and with its covers and originals, has since become known for creating a dancer’s delight wherever the band perform around the area.

Fort George craft beers will be flowing, including the brewery’s non-alcoholic Wasabi Ginger Ale for the kids. Jerk chicken hot off the BBQ, along with jicama salad will also be available to festival-goers.

In July, breweries across the state, including the Fort George are holding special events for Oregon Craft Beer Month. The craft beer industry is a major economic driver and part of the state’s brand, as Oregon is the second largest craft beer market in the US.

All ages are welcome and there is no cover charge to participate in the festivities.

The Fort George Brewery + Public House is located at the corner of 15th and Duane Streets in Astoria, Oregon. For more information, call 503-325-PINT, or go to www.fortgeorgebrewery.com.

Fort George Brewery + Public House · 1483 Duane Street Astoria, OR 97103
(503) 325-PINT · www.fortgeorgebrewery.com


The Fort George Parking Lot Music Series + BBQ, Sat., June 21st

Posted by John Foyston, The Oregonian June 05, 2008 09:50AM

A celebration of the first day of summer will be held outside the Fort George Brewery + Public House . You're invited to come hear live music, eat barbeque, and of course, drink beer

2-6 p.m, Saturday, June 21st, Fort George Brewery + Public House, 1483 Duane Street Astoria; free, 503-325-PINT www.fortgeorgebrewery.com

There is no cover charge to attend the party, which is open to all ages . Music starts at 3:00 p.m. Food and beer, crafted with fresh, quality ingredients from the Fort George, will be available for purchase including southern-style barbeque ribs, corn on the cob, and baked potato bar.

Also, local blacksmith, David Curl from Solstice Forge, will be coming for a live demonstration, forging steel into various items. Forging is to make or shape a metal object by heating it with fire and beating it or hammering it.

It's all part of the Fort George Parking Lot Music Series + BBQ happening the third Saturday of each month through September.

For more information, call (503) 325-PINT or visit www.fortgeorgebrewery.com.


Mother's Day Beer from Ft. George: Illuminator Doppelbock

by John Foyston, The Oregonian May 05, 2008 09:45AM

The Fort George Brewery + Public House releases its new Bourbon Barrel-Aged Doppelbock this Mother's Day, May 11th --- which coincides with the start of the Astoria Sunday Market, so moms who are out and about downtown are encouraged to stop by and try the Fort George's latest creation.

Doppelbock is a strong German-style lager, traditionally brewed in the winter to be consumed in the springtime. The monks of St. Francis of Paula originally brewed this style of beer, calling it Salvator, which means savior. Other German brewers began making the beer, of which there are now about 120, all with the suffix, -ator. (blogger's note: As you might imagine, the incorporation of the -ator suffix is an occasion for much brewerly ingenuity... my favorite is Walking Man's Somnabulator, or sleep walker...)

Now, after months of fermenting and aging their brew in Jim Beam bourbon barrels, Fort George brewers are calling their Doppelbock Illuminator, which reflects the experience of drinking the beer.

Mom-tested tough: (From Left) Tracey Erfling with son Toveri and Zetty McKay with daughter Amelia...

"Warm and inviting, the beautiful, dark brown color sparkles as it catches the light. Illuminator tastes rich and malty, with an intriguing hint of bourbon, and a nice dry slightly hoppy finish to balance it out," said Chris Nemlowill, of the Fort George Brewery + Public House.

Fort George Brewery & Public House, 1483 Duane Street Astoria, 503-325-PINT


April's Brewer's Dinner on the 16th

Five homebrewers have been chosen to provide five different beers, which will be paired with different styles of food for a unique taste experience. They are: Dan Hamilton—Red ESB with Chicken-Fennel Apple Sausage; Chris Gustafson—Still Finnish Sahti with Lemongrass-Leek Soup; James Sullivan—Bourbon and Oak Aged Porter with Smoked Albacore Salad; James Bunnell—American Style IPA with Spicy Lamb Kabobs; Anthony De Luz—Bourbon and Oak Blended Stout with Dark Chocolate. Call to reserve your seat now! 325-PINT Tickets are $50 all-inclusive. Hope to see you there!


Welcome Amelia to the world!!

On April 1st Amelia Isis Nemlowill was born at 2:35 PM. She was 7lbs. 1 oz. and 21 inchs long. Both baby and mom are healthy and doing well. Congratulations Chris and Zetty. It's just a matter of time before Zetty can enjoy her first glass of our very special Coffeegirl Imperial Stout that she has been waiting so patiently for.


Fort George to feature Lovell Lager at first anniversary party

Astoria businessman Bob Lovell will tap his namesake beer, Lovell Lager, for the Fort George Brewery and Public House first anniversary celebration from 1 to 2 p.m. Sunday, March 9. The Lovell name is well-known in the area, with a family legacy that includes a Chevrolet dealership in Astoria as early as 1910. The event is open to the public.

To thank the community for a successful first year in business, the brewery will have special deals, raffles and door prizes, including Fort George apparel and gift certificates all that day. Live music with Colin Spring and the Naugahyde Nights starts at 8 p.m.

The Lovell Lager is the first commercially produced lager made in Clatsop County since Prohibition. Lager is a difficult beer to make. It is cold fermented and takes six weeks to produce versus only a couple of weeks for ale. Fort George brewers describe the Lovell Lager as a Pacific Northwest-style lager, golden straw in color, crisp and smooth with enough of a hop kick to balance it out.


Beer + coffee: Talk about love that was brewing

The Oregonian Staff

Astoria businesswoman Zetty McKay hasn't yet had a pint of Coffee Girl Imperial Stout, the beer her husband named after her and brewed in honor of their quicksilver romance and Las Vegas elopement last spring.

She has to wait for their new daughter to arrive first.

"We didn't waste any time," she said. "Our little girl is due next month and we celebrate our anniversary in April." And they will celebrate it in a typically Oregon manner, with a deep black imperial stout brewed by husband Chris Nemlowill at his Fort George Brewery & Public House, and barrel conditioned on five pounds of espresso beans from McKay's Coffee Girl coffee shop on Astoria's Pier 39.

"I had a couple of sips of Coffee Girl and I told him it was the best beer I ever had," she said. "I think it's really romantic that my coffee is part of his beer."

When she finally has a pint of her own later this year, she'll probably be ready for a beer. She and Nemlowill, both 29, went to the same high school in Astoria but never really talked until McKay and a girlfriend walked into Nemlowill's new pub in Astoria last April, and she spotted him doing paperwork at the bar. She started to chat him up, then stopped. "I said, 'I hate it when people bother me when I'm doing payroll, so I'll leave you alone.' He said something like, 'No, don't do that, don't leave me alone. . . .' "

"She asked me to come out to Pier 39 and maybe have a beer," Nemlowill said, "and I couldn't pass that up: a beautiful woman asking me to have beers at the place with the best view in town."

Next stop: Las Vegas and the Little White Wedding Chapel, although they didn't know it for another week or so.

"We hit it off right away," Nemlowill said, "because we're both in the same spot in our lives -- she's got a new coffee shop that's been open just a year and I've got a new brewery and pub." Nemlowill opened Fort George in March 2007 with brewer/partner Jack Harris.

It's just as well that Harris is also a great brewer, because Nemlowill was thinking of asking for a little time away from the new pub. "Zetty and I dated and hung out for a few days and it was like a honeymoon," he said. "I found myself thinking, 'I need to run off and marry this girl or I'll regret it forever.' "

Which is how he soon found himself with two Mason jars of India Pale Ale in his pockets, walking with McKay along the path to North Head Lighthouse near Ilwaco, Wash.
"I was hoping for the rain to break, but I finally said, 'C'mon, we need to take a little trip.' And then, as we were walking up the path, the rain broke, the sun came out and I went down on my knee and proposed to her. And then we sat there and drank the beers and watched the ocean."

It was nearly check-in time at that suite at The Venetian in Las Vegas.

"But we finally decided we should tell a few people," Nemlowill said, "so I got some friends together and said, 'I've got something to tell you and you can try to talk me out of it, but you won't be able to.'

C'mon, there's the limo to the Little White Chapel. . . .

"They had a drive-up window," McKay said, "and if we wanted, we could've been married by an Elvis impersonator, but we decided to go a little more traditional and get married in the chapel by a minister. It was magic."

Then they went back to Astoria, where it was manic.

"The whole town knew we'd eloped,"said McKay. "I think it's in the minutes of one of the City Council meetings. When it comes to small-town gossip, there's making waves, and then there's making a tsunami like we did."

John Foyston: 503-294-5976; johnfoyston@news.oregonian.com


Fort George Brewery Updates Message

Hello Friends of Fort George.
We are getting very close to Stout Month. We have a bunch of activities planned for February. Eight fabulous Stouts will be on tap, including Our Cavatica Stout and a Bourbon Barrel aged version of the Cavatica. We'll have a Russian Imperial Stout from Stone Brewing, The Abyss from Deschutes Brewing, Port Barrel aged Stout from The Lucky Lab, Old Growth Imperial Stout from Caldera Brewing, Chocolate Stout from Rogue Brewing and a Super Special Treat, Coffee Girl Imperial Stout from Fort George. A special taster tray will be available giving you the opportunity to taste them all blindly and surprise yourself with the actual identities of the stouts. More Stouts will be added if necessary to get to the end of the month.

The Fort will Celebrate Fat Tuesday on February 5th. with Boiled Crawfish, Dungeness Crab Hushpuppies, Crawfish Etouffee and Bourbon Barrel Cavatica Stout Pecan Pie.

Also, A Beer Appreciation for Women seminar will be held Saturday, February 9th. $25.00 gets you instruction, written materials, samples of at least 8 beers from a variety of top craft breweries, decadent snacks, server gratuity and a brewery tour all from one of the most renowned beer writers in America, the "Beer Goddess" aka Lisa Morrison. There is a 30 person limit on this so call or email to sign up quick.

Also, our February Brewers Dinner is on Wednesday the 13th and will feature Stouts and Oysters. Chris is getting some special stouts in addition to our draft selection and Dana is serving up oysters on the half shell, oyster flan, Champagne Oyster brie bisque, oyster and mushroom stuffed pork roast and Coffee Girl stout sorbet. Tickets are $50.00 and include everything you need for a great Valentines eve night out.

Thanks for reading all this. Remember, I see a Red Beer and I want to paint it Black. Stout Month starts Friday.



TIDES & TABLES: Artisan beers inspire cuisine at Fort George Brewery

Coast Weekend

A magical fusion happens when flavors of wine and food come together.

It's like music - with harmonic flavors, counterpoints, staccato notes, pauses, drum rolls ... all evolving on the palate. So, while I have experienced and written about many great food and wine pairings over the years, I confess to being a novice when it comes to matching beer with food.

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a brewmaker's dinner at Fort George Brewery in Astoria, where I was excited to see if beer and food could create the chemistry that food and wine share. It's true. It is also true that beer can and does pair beautifully with the right foods.

In January, Fort George Brewery hosted a dinner featuring Indian cuisine paired with a selection of IPAs (India Pale Ales) from the West Coast. According to owners Chris Nemlowill and Jack Harris, IPA was created near the end of the 18th century, during the British occupation of India. Brewed with lots of hops (the fragrant vine vital to beer making) and high alcohol content, the Brits found that this beer would preserve well, enabling it to survive the month-long ship rides to India.

To contrast the bitterness and delicate fruit of India Pale Ales, Chef Dana McCauley chose the hot spices of Indian food. With Indian music playing in the background, a spicy eggplant dip served with charbroiled naan (flatbread made by the Blue Scorcher Bakery next door), paired with a Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing, got the evening started. Served in a brandy snifter, the molasses-colored beer was thick, rich and malty, with notes of coffee and spice - a "wine lover's" beer. It balanced out the heat and earthiness of the eggplant.

Vegetable samosas, spicy Indian pastries filled with green chilies, Yukon gold potatoes and roasted red bell peppers, are served with a tamarind raisin chutney.
Vegetable samosas, a sort of Indian turnover, were baked in a flaky crust and flavored with hot chilies and cardamom. Filled with green chilies, Yukon gold potatoes and roasted red bell peppers, accompanied by a fruity-hot tamarind raisin chutney, these were a favorite among guests. Bracing against the heat of the chilies, a rich, honey-colored Stone Ruination IPA with the bitterness of dandelion wine and hints of floral sweetness kept me wanting more.

For the main course, lamb saag, a slow-cooked lamb shoulder simmered with green chilies, spinach and fenugreek, with a side of fragrant cinnamon cardamom rice, was nicely matched with Green Flash Brewery's Imperial IPA.

Focusing on a different beer variety each month at Fort George Brewery, McCauley says he looks for foods that "balance out" the flavors of the beer. So far, his favorite pairing has been a slightly sweet panacotta with caramelized flavors that, he says, " flowed into a Belgian beer."

Coming up Wednesday, Feb. 13, Fort George Brewery hosts its "sexiest beer dinner," starring oysters and stout - "a recipe for love on the eve of Valentine's Day." The five-course meal includes a trio of oysters on the half shell, savory oyster flan, Champagne oyster Brie bisque, oyster and mushroom stuffed pork roast and Coffee Girl Stout sorbet. Each course will be paired with a stout beer from some of the most highly coveted and eclectic in the beer community. The current menu includes Beamish Dry Stout, Caldera Old Growth Imperial Stout and Fort George Brewery Coffee Girl Imperial Stout, among others.

According to Nemlowill, the bond between oysters and stout dates back to the 18th century, when the waters of England and Ireland teemed with oysters, which the working class widely consumed along with their stout. "Oysters and stout are both considered aphrodisiacs," he says, "so this event could whet your appetite in more ways than one!" Seating is limited to 30 people, so reserve your spot soon. The cost, $50 per person, includes food, beverages and gratuity.

Daily offerings at Fort George Brewery include a variety of freshly made soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches. House specialties include rockfish tacos, pan seared oysters and jambalaya. Don't miss the housemade sausages served with sauerkraut and German potato salad - perfect beer food. Fish 'n' chips, made with locally caught albacore and hand-cut fries, are the best I've ever had.

The Fort George story

Located in the Fort George Building, built in 1924, which originally housed a Ford service station and dealership that ran until the late 1990s, the brewery has been beautifully restored to expose massive old growth Doug fir beams. Wood is a theme throughout the space, with heavy wooden tables, hand-carved wooden benches, wooden mosaics on the bar and more. Light and open, with lime green painted brick walls, the original distressed cement floor and corrugated steel, the brewery exudes an urban touch.

The location of the building was the original settlement site of Astoria, founded in 1811. Then, under temporary British rule, it was called Fort George, after King George III. In 1814, when the Canadian Northwest Fur Company's ship Isaac Todd reached Fort George, the fort housed 65 people including Native Americans, whites and mixed breeds from Canada. Defended by bastions overlooking the river and armed with artillery, the fort was established in part to guard the Pacific fur trade's growing business. Located just behind the brewery at 15th and Exchange streets, Astoria Park, built in 1956, holds a recreation of the original block house of Fort George. Interestingly, in 1814, Oregon's first white female, an English barmaid named Jane Barnes, lived at Fort George. If she was still around, she might feel right at home at the brewery.

Visible through huge windows at the back of the building is the state-of-the-art brewery, where brewmasters Harris and Nemlowill, both from Astoria, work their magic. The two have worked as brewers for many years. Harris recently brewed at Bill's Tavern in Cannon Beach, where Nemlowill also came to work, before moving on to brew at the Wet Dog Café in Astoria. After a while, the two decided it was time to join together and start a brewery of their own.

After finding the historic building, which they are thrilled about, the next step was to locate a brewing system. They found one - a neglected but impressive 8.5-barrel capacity system, with all the equipment they needed. The only problem was that it was located on the East Coast. On their way back from Virginia, with a huge load of stainless steel tanks and more, the two encountered a tornado in Nebraska. You can see the fire in Harris's eyes when he recalls the event. "It was really frightening. It came out of nowhere and we almost lost all of our equipment," he recalls. But they made it. In honor of surviving the frightening event, they named the brewing system "Sweet Virginia," and named one of Fort George's first beers "Vortex IPA."

"Beer is made with just four ingredients - grain, water, hops and yeast," explained Harris on a tour of the brewery. "You don't really make beer," he said humbly, "You just feed it yeast." But, like a seasoned bread baker, each brewer has a special feel for when the mix is right. Here is what I learned on a five-minute tour:

To start, organic grains are fed into a mill located high in the rafters. The ground mix is shot through tubing into a specially made stainless steel hopper, where it is slowly mixed with hot water, using an overhead spray ball, to create an oatmeal-textured mash. "We call this the 'drip coffee' part," says Harris. After brewing, the "coffee" flows into a giant heated kettle, where it boils for an hour before being pumped into four stainless fermentation tanks. This is where the beer comes to life. As yeasts ferment, their cells transform sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, breathing new and distinctive aromas into the liquid. Next, the beer is siphoned into cooling tanks in the walk-in cooler, where it stabilizes before being bottled or stored in kegs. Author's note: This is my very simplified understanding of beer making. I take no responsibility for any errors, especially after drinking a beer.

Diners at Fort George's Indian Cuisine and West Coast IPA Pairing Dinner sat down to drink Vortex IPA and a candle-lit serving of Vegetable Jalfrezi, a dish with sautéed peppers, onions and eggplant served on a bed of spinach with spicy saffron yogurt sauce.
Jack Harris, right, who owns the Fort George Brewery and Public House with Chris Nemlowill, hosted a dinner Jan. 16 pairing India Pale Ales with Indian cuisine. The monthly themed dinners at the brewery include five different courses and five different beers.


Fort George Brewery Updates Message

Beloved Patrons of Fort George,

In a week or so we will be introducing a new menu. All of your favorite items will remain and we have added a couple of things, such as the Double Bacon Cheeseburger, Anaheim Pepper Burger and Albacore Fish and Chips.

The new menu will also come with modest price increases on almost all items including the beer. You might be aware of the current hop and grain shortages plaguing the brewing industry. We are luckier than some as we have contacts in the hop industry that are looking out for us, but the cost of most hops have more than tripled in the last year. These pressures as well as steadily increasing fuel prices have combined to make us raise prices.

We appreciate your patronage and support and have been creative in finding ways to increase our efficiency and lower our waste as to minimize the impact of these price pressures. We take our mission to provide a place locals can eat, drink and meet in an affordable manner very seriously and we resort to raising prices reluctantly.

Thank you for your understanding and if you have any questions or concerns please ask for Chris or Jack.