Worthy Brewing

Year: 2015

By in Indie Hops 0

For the Love of Hops…

Fri, 09 Oct 2015 18:55:00

Hops are the heart and soul of Worthy. We love everything about them – their flavor, their design, their history, the scientists who breed them, the farmers who grow them, the millers who mill them, and so on.

We love the old guard. Workhorses like Cascade, Crystal, Centennial, Chinook, Sterling, Willamette, Nugget and more. But we also can’t wait for the new generation of hops to alight our brew kettle.

Those fresh recruits are coming in fast. And we’re mega-stoked. In the next few years, Worthy will be pilot-testing more and more experimental hops that are emerging from the Indie Hops/OSU aroma hop breeding program.

My partner Jim Solberg and I started the program in 2009 with a gift to OSU of $1 million. Since then, we’ve developed dozens of new crosses (or genotypes), each with a particular aroma and flavor profile in mind.

In the past few years, the program has yielded several promising new genotypes.  The flavors range from pina colada, to pomegranite, to green apple, to lemon citrus.

In 2012, I was so excited about the promise of brewing beer with brand new hops that I had a hand in designing that I decided to build Worthy Brewing. Why let all the other brewers have all the fun? Everybody loves to taste and test new spices.

The story of hop breeding is fairly complicated. We considered telling the story with charts, graphs, numbers and academic jargon. But, in the end, hop breeding is about sex. It’s about selecting the juiciest male ova and the heartiest male and hoping for a unique and powerful offspring. The story is as old as the Garden of Eden.

So with the help of my friends I made a video. Glorya: A Hop Love Story.

Glorya is a ripe, plump and juicy aroma hop from Corvallis, Oregon.

Glorya’s mother is Perle, a royal noble land-race hop from Germany.

Glorya’s father? We’re not sure. Glorya was open-pollinated. We suspect her Daddy was a rogue, Oregon hop stud floating around the Willamette Valley.

For the past six years, Indie Hops has been working with Oregon State to develop Glorya.  She’s survived the farm trials and has performed well in our brew trials.

Enjoy the show.

In coming chapters, we’ll show you how Glorya survived the farm trials and brew trials. And, most importantly, we’ll show you how she performed on the stage where it matters most – in the pint glass.

In the very near future, Indie Hops and OSU will be releasing a variety of unique aroma hops whose genesis began in 2009.  The future is very bright. Stay tuned.

Cheers!

Roger Worthington

10/9/15

By in PMC 5k 0

Worthy Proud to Support the Pacific Meso Center 5k Walk

Wed, 30 Sep 2015 18:55:00

Los Angeles, CA.  Neither the heat, the dust, the threat of rattlesnakes nor the specter of bad guys with six shooters were enough to deter over 300 cancer warriors from braving the Pacific Meso Center’s 5k walk in the iconic old Hollywood saloon town of Paramount Ranch this past Sunday.

This is the kind of courage and give-back, can-do, never-say-die spirit that motivates Worthy Brewing. We are always proud to sponsor cancer advocacy events, but this one is personal.

Mesothelioma. It’s hard to even pronounce the word. Very few people have heard of it. It’s a rare cancer of the lung and abdominal linings that’s caused by asbestos. About 3,000 Americans are afflicted annually with mesothelioma and the average survival without treatment is about 9 months.

Our owner, Roger Worthington, has been representing men and women stricken with this rare cancer since 1988.  Over his career Worthington has donated millions of dollars to non-profit efforts to find a cure for this deadly disease.

“It was a joy to see so many families out there on the trail, “ beamed Worthington. “Despite the heat and dust, everybody was smiling and laughing and enjoying the blessings of doing a worthy thing for a worthy cause.”

In it’s fourth year, the PMC 5k walk generated slightly over $100,000, a new record.  The money will be used to support ongoing benchwork research and clinical trials on the use of immunotherapy, cryoablation and vaccines to convert mesothelioma from a drop-dead fatal cancer into a chronic and treatable disease.

“It was also gratifying to see so many thirsty Californians enjoying Worthy’s Easy Day Kolsch,” said Worthington, noting that the light, crisp German style ale was the first beer to sell out. “Cancer patients and their families are forced to endure unspeakably hard days and nights. They deserve an Easy Day.”

In the next few weeks, Worthy will again brew it’s delicious Local 36 Red Lager, a beer dedicated to the first Asbestos Workers labor union in Portland, Oregon to retain Worthington in the early 1990s. Local 36 Red Lager – the so called “Lagger’s Lager,” will be on tap at taverns and restaurants along the Columbia and Willamette River waterfront.

For more information on the Pacific Mesothelioma Center, a 501©(3) non-profit, please click here.

Sept. 29, 2015

 

A Worthy raffle winner!
 

Easy Day Kolsch – Light, crisp and refreshing. Cancer patients have earned an Easy Day!
 

Worthy Warriors! From Left to Right: Diana Jasniy, Victor Jasniy, Michael Johnson and R.G. Worthington. Meso brings out the worst in corporate America and the best in hard working Americans. Bless courageous people like the Jasniys and Johnsons for standing up against the ruthless asbestos companies and demanding justice.
 

Friends. Familes. Survivors. Advocates. Happy Campers.
 

A Day to Remember, Rejoice and Give Back. Thanks to 300 walkers, a small army of volunteers and the leadership of Clare Cameron and Dr. Robert Cameron, the Pacific Meso Center raised over $100,000 on National Mesothelioma Awareness Day.
By in Private Stash 0

A Salute to the Beers That Brung Us

Thu, 16 Jul 2015 18:55:00

Worthy is pleased to bring you the beers that brung us.

We’ve reserved a 10 barrel fermentation tank for the oldies but goodies – the lagers, pilsners, and for me, the wits.  We’re calling this tank “R.G. Worthy’s Private Stash.” We’ll take those watered up, hopped down recipes and do our best to make ‘em worthy.

Back inda day, down in Texas, the only two ingredients that mattered for a good beer were temperature and price. We were always thirsty, so as long as it was ice cold and around a buck a six pack, it was good.

We’re talking way back: the late 1970’s. I spent three summers scraping about as a boilermaker helper at the Exxon Refinery in Houston. I’d build up a powerful thirst working on piping hot boilers all day under a hot stinky sun and at about quitting time my Mom would put two cans of Texas “craft” beer in the freezer.

We’re talking about homegrown champions like Texas Pride, Pearl, Lone Star and Shiner. I’d steam home and sprint to the fridge and before you can say “Shotgun Willie” I’d slam that cold, canned hopless beer down and eagerly pop the top on another.  I didn’t even know what a hop was. Didn’t matter. It was cold and I was melting.

My “Private Stash” will showcase these easy to drink beers that delay the buzz as long as possible. We’ll juice up the flavor with the finest noble-ish aroma hops Oregon has to offer, but keep the alcohol down. Some of just feel better, and even think straighter, with a cold fizzy yellow beer in our hand.

As a tribute to another beer that brung me personally, we’ll also be brewing cloudy yellow wheat beers. Back in 1987, a cub lawyer buddy of mine, Andy Klein, went to Amsterdam and brought back two things: a beautiful wife and a recipe for this “new” white beer called “witbier.” He decided to quit lawyering and build up a brand called “Wit,” a beer he contracted brewed in Milwaukee and then trucked in kegs for sale in New York City.

Andy’s “Wit” beer tasted wonderful – a hint of coriander and lemon peel. He gave me a taste and I gave him a check as an investor.  Wit did well but it might have been ahead of its time. After a series of financial issues, including a robbery at gunpoint in his small office in NYC, Andy move on.  His peer at the time, another entrepreneur brewer up the road, Jim Koch, likes to say that if Andy had stayed with his “Wit” beer, today he’d “be bigger than Blue Moon.”

After working in the Texas refineries, and witnessing first hand corporate America’s reckless indifference toward blue collar workers, I became an asbestos lawyer.  The first major set of labor unions who hired me had members blowing and going down at that shipyards in Portland, Oregon.

Starting in about 1989 I’d come up from Texas and after a day of depositions I’d kick back at this cool place downtown where they served up a delightfully crisp and refreshing hand-crafted hefeweizen. We all know that brewpub today as Widmer Brothers.

So that’s the story. R.G Worthy’s Private Stash will be reserved for the beers that brung us  – the lagers—and brung me —  the wits and hefes. Beers for those of us who love the repetitive biomechanical action of hoisting a crisp refreshing pint.

We’re dedicating the tank to all the great Americans who helped build this great country and win our wars but in so doing were poisoned by asbestos. It’s been a privilege to represent men and women in the metal, shipyard, construction and industrial trades afflicted with asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.

It’s a personal triumph for me to be able to hire craftsman from many of these same trades to build Worthy Brewing.

Cheers!

R. G. Worthy
July 16, 2015

Support the TDC and Celebrate Survival with Gary’s No Quit Wit

Fri, 10 Jul 2015 18:55:00

Superman?

Yes. We think so. Bend’s own Gary Bonacker. One of the loveliest guys on the planet. And strongest and…

… orneriest. When he was diagnosed with brain cancer 12 years ago, he didn’t crawl into a hole. He didn’t retreat. He got busy fighting back and giving back. He’s one of those guys who doesn’t just talk about living life to the fullest. He does it. Each and every breath. Each and every day.

Gary Bonacker: Super Survivor. And Giver. And Smiler.

Worthy Brewing is proud to again sponsor the Tour Des Chutes. This will be the 12th year. Each year, it gets bigger and better. This year the TDC decided to let the runners in on the fun. We’re predicting 1,500 pedalers and another few hundred plodders, padders and pounders.

We’re cooking up another Gary’s No Quit Wit to commemorate our superhero. By the way, Gary does NOT think of himself as a superhero. He did not suggest the artwork. He probably would’ve objected but he’s wise enough to know that resistance is futile when it comes to how we regard him.

This year’s No Quit Wit will be amazing. With the addition of lemon, coriander and orange to the batch we don’t think there will be any need to hang an orange or lemon wedge on the lip of the pint glass. It should be plenty citrusy, crisp and refreshing.

We’re pleased to offer a complimentary pint of Gary’s No Quit Wit to riders, runner and volunteers. If you haven’t already signed up, don’t hesitate. The Tour Des Chutes is one of those signature events that makes you proud to live in a community of humans who are striving to live up to their high-minded billing as Homo sapiens. The TDC is put on mostly by wise volunteers who simply care. Nearly 100% of the proceeds go to local programs to directly benefit cancer patients and survivors. Now that’s worth supporting and celebrating.

To register for the TDC, or to learn more, please click here.

On Friday, July 10th, from 6p-8pm, here at Worthy Brewery, Restaurant and Gardens we’ll be celebrating Gary, the volunteers and all the participants in Worthy’s bier garten. We’ll have live music from Greg Botsford and of course plenty of space for the younger (and adult) kids to frolick and corn hole (always feel weird about that down home nomenclature).

Come on down. Super Gary will be on hand to sign posters. He promises not to wear his tights. We’ll see about the cape.

Cheers!

BGL

6/23/15

It’s a bird, it’ s a plane, it’s a home brewer add’n grain…Yep, that’s our Gary, working the Worthy pilot system, spicing up his namesake wit.

Good Gruit! And there’s Gary again, armed with big juicy lemons and oranges. Mash ’em up and mash in!

Gary can fix just about anything.

A worthy fun ride and fun-raiser deserves a Worthy beverage.

Gary on stage with his buddy Chris Horner and his fan R. Worthington at the 2013 TDC.

All Hopped Up in Dana Point

Thu, 07 May 2015 18:55:00

Worthy Hydration! (L-R) Tyler Magner (Worthy Hopped Up Rider), Champion Karl Menzies, and Ryan Aitcheson. Bull Goose working the hambone.
* Photo courtesy of 
Resul Kurtbedin
 

DANA POINT, CA. It’s been said a million times to win big you have to risk losing it all.  In bike racing, the propensity of the pack is towards prudence. Few are willing to take risks.  At Worthy, we want to reward the risk takers – the warriors who don’t sit back, but instead attack, again and again, early and often, in the moment, in search of the zone, glory, endorphins and out of body exhilaration.

This is what the Worthy Most Hopped Up Rider prize is all about – encouraging racers to bust out and go for the gold. We were not disappointed. In the nine years that I’ve been emceeing the Dana Point Grand Prix, I’ve never seen a more hopped up group of Pro Men.

From the gun, Karl Menzies (United Health Care), Tyler Magner (Hincapie), Ryan Aitcheson (Astellas), and David Santos (KHS-Maxis), attacked the 100 man field, which featured a who’s who list of world class sprinters.  They quickly opened up a lead.

Few people thought they would hold off the thirsty peloton over the next 90 minutes. Working together, they opened up and held an 18 second gap. With a few laps remaining, after two more riders joined, all camaraderie was shattered. It was every man for himself. With $12,000 cash on the line, along with the $500 Worthy Hopped Up rider cash prize and jersey, the alliance was dead.

The six man break assumed a jerky, chaotic “cat and mouse” anti-rhythm. Meanwhile, the peloton, sensing cannibalism in the break, mounted a furious chase. At the end, with the charging pack within a keg toss, the wily 38 year old veteran from Tasmania Karl Menzies outsprinted the upstart 24 year old Tyler Magner.

Who was the most Hopped Up? Who electrified the crowd the most? Who enjoyed pounding hard for its own sake the most? Now that was a hard choice. Certainly the break away riders put it all out there. All were deserving, but Tyler stood out as the hard charger with the tireless legs and indomitable spirit. Worthy ride Tyler!

What a great day. We want to thank our friends at Sierra Nevada and Karl Strauss, two outstanding craft breweries with big hearts who have been supplying the DPGP beer tents with cold frothy kegs the last five years.  All proceeds from the sale of SN Nooner and Pale and KS Red Trolley and Tower 10 were donated to the Dana Point Fifth Marine Regiment Support Group and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Capistrano Valley.

And a big thank you to the City of Dana Point for a great day of bike racing for all ages from four and under up to age 75.  Worthy cannot wait to begin selling our hop friendly beer made with the best water in the world down in thirsty Southern California!

Cheers!

Roger Worthington

5/6/16

To see the exciting finish of the John Johnson Family Pro Men’s Criterium at the DPGP, click here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=be3sLlxS-vQ

 

Ramping.
* Photo courtesy of Christy Nicholson
 

Rock Solid! 50+ Champions, (L-R),Chris Genghis Hahn, John Walsh (Also Worthy Most Hopped Up Rider) and Mike Okano.
* photo courtesy of Dan Munson
 

All Furred Up! 40+ Champions (L-R), Dan Easter, Phil Tinsman, Big Mike Guy Who Beat Charon. Worthy Most Hopped Up awarded to hammerdawgs Easter and Tinsman.
* photo courtesy of Dan Munson
 

Pro Women’s Podie, (L-R), Samantha Schneider, Champion Erica Allar, Kendal Ryan.
* photo courtesy of Resul Kurtbedin
 

Uncorked!
* photo courtesy of Resul Kurtbedin
By in Fuss, Pilot Brew 0

What’s All the Fuss?  

Thu, 12 Feb 2015 18:55:00

Calling all “Fussy” Craft Beer Lovers – lend us your snouts, tongues and brains.

We’re tapping a new beer today from our Heart & Soul pilot brew series that utilizes an experimental hop – X-331- from the OSU-Indie Hops aroma hop breeding program.

We’re calling the beer “Fussy X-331 Pale.” We used Nugget for bittering and IH-OSU X-331 for aroma.  As with all of our pilot beers, it’s unfiltered.

Normally we’d gladly tell you all about the hop’s aroma, flavor, and mouthfeel. But that might prejudice you. What we’re doing here is scientific. We want your honest sensory evaluation.

We’d like you to come in blind with no preconceived notions and do what the Industrial Beer Flavored Water Brutes either mock or detest – we want you to get fussy!

We can tell you that Indie Hops and OSU have been evaluating this hop since 2009. It’s performed well in farm trials for yield and disease resistance.  In terms of parentage, we don’t mind telling you the Mother originates from Germany but this frauline was “open pollinated,” which means her mating partner (the fertilizing father) will remain forever unknown.  Fortunately, the Willamette Valley in and around Corvallis is teeming with strong Hop Daddies so we’re sure he’s good breeding stock.

Take a snort and a sip and tell us what you think.  All opinions, good or bad, accepted with open arms.

Remember, trained sensory “experts” in blind taste tests have been all over the board even with proven hop heroes. For example, in 2010, when Citra was being pilot tested among a panel of Oregon brewers, the majority of the judges rated the experimental hop as “catty.” A few thought it was “sweaty.”  Today, it’s one of the most sought after aroma hops in the world.

Thanks in advance for participating in this fuss-friendly project. We’re going to be doing this a lot at Worthy in the coming years. Indie Hops and OSU have a steady stream of new hop flowers in their pipeline that we’re privileged to be able to fuss over. Let’s see what happens and have fun in the process.

Cheers!

Here is the scorecard which we will provide. Results will be sent to OSU and IH. We appreciate your support.

By in Oregon 0

Good Day for Oregon

Mon, 05 Jan 2015 18:55:00

Oregon doesn’t like to brag. I learned that growing up in Corvallis when Tom McCall was our Governor. Back then the unofficial slogan was “Please visit Oregon. Then leave.”

Oregon knows it’s awesome and doesn’t need to boast (unlike another state I’ve lived in – Texas, where it’s borderline treasonous NOT to insert the words “the Great State of” before intoning it’s hallowed name). So let me do a little bragging about our Great State.

Oregon makes great hops and great beer. That’s a fact.  And we have great water. Everybody knows this. But now, to that list of Oregon superlatives, let’s add “Great College Football Team.”

On New Years Day, my girlfriend and I watched Oregon crush Florida State. We watched the game, in Spanish, in Bariloche, Argentina, at the home of Klaus, a multi-lingual and brilliant motorcycle guide we met while kicking about Patagonia. We ate platefuls of grilled beef and washed it down with locally brewed pilseners and it was just great to see the Ducks roll.

This kid grew up a Beaver, but I was enormously proud to see the Ducks kick ass. There was a time back in the early 1970’s when serious people seriously considered dropping the Oregon schools from the “Pac-8” conference because, as it went, we were a small state with sub-marginal breeding stock and we’d never be able to compete at the national level.

Oregon 59, Florida State 20. Take that naysayers!  It was a great day for the State of Oregon. And what’s great for Oregon is great for craft beer, aroma hops and about a thousand progressive causes that make my friends Down South cringe.

But wait, there’s more. The Beavers stepped up big time, as well. The next day, Michelle and I drove down to El Bolson.  It’s a small “hippy” town smack dab on the 42nd Parallel, nestled between snow-capped mountains in a fertile valley along the Rio Azul (picture opal colored glacier water).  We’d heard El Bolson was where Argentina grew the bulk of the country’s hops.

We easily found the hopyards. They’re owned by Lupulos De La Patagonia.  The conditions were perfect for hop happiness: long hot days, cool nights, alluvial soil and plenty of TLC, administered in big doses by Marcus, the farmer we had the pleasure of meeting.  We asked Marcus for permission to bless his budding flowers, because … you know… it seemed like the right thing to do.  Marcus, with a chuckle, consented. “These crazy gringos!”

Now here’s the “Oregon Proud” moment.  We estimated the hopyard at about 50 acres. Of those, Lupulos grew only two varieties, which they had been planting for the last 30-40 years.  The lucky lupulos? Tah Dah! Nugget and Cascade — yes, two hops born and bred by our friend Dr. Alfred Haunold, at Oregon State, with the help of the USDA, about 4 decades ago.

Way to go Oregon State!  Two great hops, one for bittering, the other for flavoring, created in The Great State of Oregon, now thriving in the heart of Patagonia’s hop country. And, just like Bend a few years ago, the town of El Bolson is at the cusp of a craft revolution.

With a population of around 20,000, El Bolson supports six craft breweries (“Cervezerias Artesanal””): Pilker, Ruta 40, Piltri, Araucana, AWKA and Parapoto. Oddly enough, this list doesn’t include the major “small guy” brand, El Bolson, which apparently uses the town’s “hip” name but doesn’t brew it’s beer there.

Do the math. That’s about one “Cervezeria Artesnal” for every 3,000 inhabitants, which seems to be about the same outrageously beercentric ratio we have in our little mountain berg of Bend.

About the beer.  We didn’t get to taste all of the brands and we came across only a few IPAs.  I’m not being mean or nationalistic here but, overall, I’d say El Bolson is a few years, maybe decades, behind the Big O. I’m sure they practice good industry standards, but it’s hard to wow the palate with only a few hops.  It turns out that in Patagonia the only hops that are commercially available are… Nugget and Cascade.

A local bartender educated us about the slow trajectory of craft brewing in Patagonia. His grandfather began hop farming in El Bolson in the early 1970s.  At that time, nearly 100% of the hops were owne by and grown for Quilmes,  the dominant brewery in Argentina. Back then, as well as now, all the hops grown in El Bolson are trucked some 870 miles to the country’s only hop pellet mill in Buenos Aires.

And who owns that mill?  Quilmes, of course.  Quilmes appears to have achieved the monopolist’s dream: complete vertical integration. Not surprisingly, InBev (which owns Bud), gobbled up Quilmes in 2004. In short, Quilmes is, was and for a long time likely will be totally Monolithic. They won’t take kindly to small artesnal cervezerias, and the ones who manage to thrive will likely be take-over targets.

That said, we wish our artesanal breweries in Patagonia good luck (suerta!) But, alas, theirs is a long and dusty road, full of potholes and river rock, with well organized banditos on every ridge. To break the iron grip of In Bev/Quilmes, the locals will need to do what we began doing in the early 1980s: work with veteran farmers to grow more aroma varieties (we grow more than 40 varieties in the US), design and build their own aroma-oriented pellet mill, commission talented breeders to invent new varieties and, in the interim, contract to buy great hops from the US, New Zealand and Europe.

Salud!

RGW

El Bolson, Patagonia, Argentina
January 5, 2015