Waterfront brewery to open by summer

January 12, 2012

If all goes as planned, downtown Hood River will have a fourth brew pub by the summer, and when activity picks up with the wind along the waterfront, people will have a new place to kick back, enjoy the view and sip a cold brew just a stone's throw from the river.

Josh Pfriem, Ken Whiteman and Rudy Kellner expect their new brewery - called Pfriem Brewing Company (pronounced "freem") - to be up and running by June. The three have signed into a five-year lease with the Port of Hood River to occupy the eastern portion of the new Halyard Building, and bids to ready the 5,600-square- foot space for the brewery and tasting room are due this week.

"We're excited, to say the least," Pfriem said. "The location is exactly what we were hoping for, the timing is right and we're ready to bring something new to the area. This is a lifelong dream for us. We can't wait to get started and share with everyone what we've been working so hard on."

The brewery will feature classic hop-forward Northwest varieties, but will specialize in producing traditional Belgian-style ales. The three originally chose the name Cascadia, but felt it wasn't right and decided to change it.

Pfriem, who has been honing his talents at several breweries over the last decade, including most recently as a brewer at Full Sail, will take on the brewmaster title, while Whiteman will fill the role of general manager and Kellner will remain a silent partner.

For the Port of Hood River, the brewery represents another step toward success in its goal to utilize the waterfront and support economic growth and job creation. The Halyard Building, completed in 2010, will be half-occupied, with the brewery on the east end and Real Carbon, which moved into the space last year, on the west.

Although the building is zoned light industrial, a tasting room and restaurant (commercial activity) is allowed as long as it takes up no more than 25 percent of the total floor area. In an application to the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, the company applied for indoor and outdoor seating for a total of 50 people and for possible live or DJ music on Friday and Saturday evenings.

"Our focus is definitely going to be on making and distributing craft beers," Pfriem said. "But we also want to have a relaxed space for people to hang out, enjoy the location and have a beer. We'll be right across from the waterfront park, and we definitely want to take advantage of that with a friendly, family atmosphere."

Whiteman said they plan on distributing across the Northwest, mainly in kegs, with Belgian-style beers as the main focus for the brand. They also plan on featuring 750 ml Belgian-style bottles.

"We're looking to do something different," he said. "We'll have some classic Northwest beers, but our focus is going to be on traditional Belgian style, which is pretty unique for the Northwest."

"Craft beer is definitely on the rise right now," Pfriem said. "And Hood River is an amazing place to be doing this. It's becoming quite a world class destination for making, and enjoying, good beer."

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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