Carlton, Oregon – Fire Mountain Brew House

Food & Drink
fire mountain brew house

When I pull into the Fire Mountain Brewery tasting room I am greeted by three sweet dogs on the driveway. In the brew house, Henry Gorgas the brew master and Ken Venezuela of Carlton’s Filling Station Deli are locked in jovial conversation. Ken explains that Henry worked for Lackheed Martin and that the brew house was  Henry’s workshop for experimental aircraft in the 90′s. The attention to detail required in manufacturing sheet-metal carries over well to brew making. Henry shows me the custom horizontal fermented he designed for his own style of brewing, and Ken notes the precise construction of two enormous hanger-like doors to the refrigerator unit.

My first impression of the beer is that Henry does not skimp on ingredients: his beers are rich. The Steam Stout is roasty with hints of creamy chocolate. The Bad Henry IPA is a big surprise. It’s well hopped but not overly bitter, and has strong fruit loop note.

steam stout bad henry ipa

Despite its quality, a micro brew beer may be sought out  simply for its obscurity. Fire Mountain Brewery is both obscure and excellent, which makes it worth seeking out at your beer shop (John’s Marketplace in Multnomah Village or a Portland-area New Seasons).  But I recommend you make the a pilgrimage to the Fire Mountain tasting room, twenty minutes west of Carlton, OR; past Oregon’s wine country and down Panther Creek Road, a full hour and twenty minutes from Portland but most definitely worth the trek. (10800 NW Rex Brown Road, PO Box 692, Carlton OR 97111, 503-852-7378)

One Response to “Carlton, Oregon – Fire Mountain Brew House”

  1. Don Lyda says:

    Heard about you from Jesse Holycross at U S Bank. We’re coming over to see you folks. Should be fun.
    Sherry probably doesn’t miss the banking. See you soon.

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