Standing Stone Brewing Company

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Latest Specialty Beer: Commuter Gold

The sun is shining (mostly), the weather is warming (some days), and we feel inspired (or is it hopeful?) to bring a new seasonal specialty beer on tap. Our brewer just finished Commuter Gold, the fourth ever batch of this Standing Stone beer, and we’ve tapped it for those wanting a lighter bodied ale to help bring along spring.

About the Beer

This bright golden ale gets its spicy, herbal aroma from Sterling hops. The crisp, medium bitterness & lightly toasted finish are balanced with a refreshing mouthfeel. 4.6% abv, 20 IBU

Maltalecia commuter serve

  • Organic Pilsner
  • Briess Ashburne Mild
  • Briess Victory
  • Acidulated

Hops

  • Bittering: Sterling
  • Flavor/Aroma: Sterling

Food Pairing Suggestions

The mild bitter finish of Commuter Gold makes it a great partner for light-bodied food with a bit of oil and richness – think flash fried veggies and seafood, or tossed salad with a hearty dressing. Here are our suggestions from the brewpub menu:

Calamari with Fried Lemon Wheels and Jalapeñosbike rack

Fish & Chips

Cobb Salad

Fish Tacos

Margherita Pizza

Join us soon for a pint of Commuter Gold, and get into the commuting spirit with bike travel this spring. Help us fill our fourteen-bike yellow rack in front of the brewpub when you visit! Check out our previous post about bike tips and safety in cold weather for when you get caught in those sporadic rain storms, and feel good about biking toward a Commuter Gold in all weather conditions.

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Raising Pints & Funds During the 2014/2015 ‘Pints for a Purpose’ Season

You came, you drank craft beer, and you gave to local organizations. We want to thank everyone who joined us during our 2014/2015 Pints for a Purpose season! We gave even more money this year to southern Oregon nonprofits, and we have you all to thank for supporting the program and loving beer.

Through our Pints for a Purpose donation program, we pledged $2 for every pint of beer sold to local nonprofits on their designated benefit evening. Beer-lovers and supporters came to enjoy craft brews and give to their favorite organizations in the area. By raising your pints with friends, you all helped give hundreds of dollars to each of this year’s beneficiaries.

Here’s a recap of our 2014/2015 Pints for a Purpose nonprofits:rogue climate group

Rogue Climate

WaterWatch

Friends of the Ashland Public Library

Rogue Farm Corps

Rogue Valley Earth Day

All together, we raised just over $2,300 for these local groups. We couldn’t have done it without community support (well, actually, we could have tried but it wouldn’t have been pretty to watch us drink 1,150 pints alone).

If you know a nonprofit in southern Oregon that would like to be in next year’s line-up, encourage them to apply for our 2015/2016 Pints for a Purpose season. The program guidelines and online application are on our website, and we’ll accept submissions from June through October 1st. Once all the applications are in, we’ll get all our coworkers to vote on top five, and do it all again next year.

Thanks again to everyone who joined us on any of our Pints for a Purpose benefit evenings, and we’re excited to see new and returning faces next year. Let’s get together, drink some local beer, and give to great causes!

We’ve Joined a Call for Action on Climate Change

We’re excited to announce the debut of the Brewery Climate Declaration, a call to action that urges policymakers to seize the economic and environmental opportunities of tackling climate change. Twenty four brewery signatories have jumped on board, from small microbreweries to major international brands, and we’re one of them!

Members of the brewing industry have signed the Brewery Climate Declaration to call attention to the specific risks and opportunities of climate change on the $246 billion nation-wide industry. Breweries face multiple climate change impacts: warmer temperatures and extreme weather events can harm the production of hops, grown primarily in the Pacific Northwest. Clean water resources are also becoming scarcer in the West as a result of droughts and reduced snow pack.climate declaration

At Standing Stone, we’ve taken several steps to reduce our environmental footprint, and it’s great to operate alongside other breweries making sustainable business a priority. Here are a handful of things we do at Standing Stone to operate more efficiently:

  • Generate electricity with rooftop solar panels
  • Reduce natural gas usage with a heat recovery system
  • Reduce energy usage through lighting improvements
  • Purchase carbon and water usage offsets
  • Reduce our company-wide carbon footprint by giving bikes to employees with our Bike Program
  • Operate a farm to provide local beef, lamb and honey
  • Purchase local wines in kegs
  • Seek Salmon Safe and organic hops
  • Compost brewpub waste on our farm
  • Purchase sustainably-caught fish for our menu

And much more…breweries all over the U.S. are coming up with innovative ways to be sustainable. New Belgium captures and reuses methane to provide 15% of their brewery’s electricity needs. Odell Brewing’s modified vacuum pump triple-uses water and saves the Colorado brewery 25 million gallons of water annually.

Here is the complete list of breweries that have signed the Brewery Climate Declaration. You can learn more at ClimateDeclaration.us.

  • Aeronaut Brewing Company (MA)
  • The Alchemist (VT)
  • Allagash Brewing Company (ME)
  • Aspen Brewing Company (CO)
  • Brewery Vivant (MI)
  • Buoy Beer Company (OR)
  • Chuckanut Brewery and Kitchen (WA)
  • Deschutes Brewery (OR)
  • Fort George Brewery and Public House (OR)
  • Fremont Brewing Company (WA)
  • Georgetown Brewing Co. (WA)
  • Guinness (Ireland)
  • Hopworks Urban Brewery (OR)
  • Kona Brewing Company (HI)
  • New Belgium Brewing (CO)
  • Ninkasi Brewing Company (OR)
  • Odell Brewing (CO)
  • Redhook Brewery (WA, NH)
  • Rockford Brewing Company (MI)
  • Smuttynose Brewing Company (NH)
  • Snake River Brewing Co. (WY)
  • Standing Stone Brewing Co. (OR)
  • Wet Dog Café & Brewery (OR)
  • Widmer Brothers Brewing (OR)

Catching Up with BA Board Member Larry Chase

larry drinkThis is our head brewer, Larry Chase. 
Larry likes craft beer.
Larry makes craft beer.
Larry advocates for craft beer.
And, yes, Larry drinks craft beer.

Larry just returned from his most recent trip to Boulder, Colorado to attend the quarterly Brewers Association Board Meeting. He was elected to the Board in 2012, and this year moved into a new position as Secretary/Treasurer and Finance Chair on the Executive Committee. Way to go, Larry! When he got back, we asked him all about the Brewers Association, what they do, and where his travels take him.

What does the Brewers Association Board of Directors do?

The BA Board of Directors is the governing body for the Brewers Association. We develop high level strategy and provide direction for the Brewers Association staff of 50 employees. In 2013, we met for a two-day strategic planning session where we refined the organization’s purpose and revised our mission looking forward past the year 2020. The big goal that came from this session is for craft brewers to have 20+% market share by 2020. Board members also chair and/or participate in one or more of the ten committees that do more specific work in conjunction with staff.

How often do you attend BA meetings?larry desk

The board has four meetings per year. The first meeting is always in late February in Boulder, CO where the Brewers Association has its headquarters. The second quarter meeting generally occurs in conjunction with SAVOR (SSBC was a participating brewery at SAVOR in 2012 & 2013) and the BA’s annual legislative Hill Climb in Washington, D.C. For the Fall and December meetings the board picks locales around the country where we can meet with local brewers and state guilds. 2014 included Kansas City and Los Angeles. This year we are headed to Portland, ME and Tampa, FL.

How were you elected to the Board in 2012?

The Board is comprised of Brewpub members, Packaging Brewery members, and At-Large members. In 2012 I ran for a Brewpub seat – the third time I had run – and was elected by other Brewers Association brewpub members. As some would say, third time’s a charm. The elected position is a three-year term, so if I’d like to continue on the Board I’ll need to run for election again in Fall 2015.

How has your role changed over the last few years?_DSC3980_edited-1

One way the BA Board vets potential candidates is by looking for participation in committee work. Beginning in 2005 the Public Relations & Marketing committee is where I first began gaining experience with the work of the BA. In 2011, one year after I began working at Standing Stone, the BA created the Brewpub Committee in an effort to ensure the organization remained relevant to its brewpub members. I was an inaugural member of that committee, became vice-chair in early 2012, and briefly took over as chair in the latter half of 2014. Since mid-2012 I’ve worked on the Brewpub Server Training Manual subcommittee, and after almost three years we will be publishing Beer Server Training for Brewpubs – A Manual for Hiring, Training & Retaining Great People.

In 2011 I also joined the Finance Committee which is tasked with overseeing the financial side of the organization. Mark Edelson of Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant was the long-time chair of that committee as the Secretary/Treasurer of the organization. With his departure from the board at the end of 2014 the board requested that I take over his position. Beginning with our February 2015 meeting in Boulder, I am now a member of the Executive Committee in my position as Secretary/Treasurer and Finance Chair.

What else do you like to do when you’re in Boulder, CO?

Drink beer and hang out with BA staff members who have become friends. On this past trip Boulder received 13 wonderful inches of snow, so [my wife,] Ginger [of Women Enjoying Beer] and I went snowshoeing in Chatauaqua Park on the outskirts of Boulder.

Thanks for keeping us in the loop, Larry! Standing Stone is proud to have you as our brewer. Cheers!

By in Community, Events 0

Pints for a Purpose Benefits Rogue Valley Earth Day, 3/3

posterWe’re rallying-up for our final Pints for a Purpose benefit evening of the 2014/2015 season. From 5-10pm on Tuesday, March 3rd we’ll give $2 for every pint of beer sold at Standing Stone to a nonprofit near-and-dear to our hearts: Rogue Valley Earth Day.  This year, the Earth Day celebration lands on Saturday, April 25th at ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum in Ashland, Oregon. We’re raising some extra funds for this Rogue Valley tradition, and we’d love your help!

Rogue Valley Earth Day is an annual celebration for all ages to learn about environmental stewardship and build community in a fun and inspirational setting. Since 2001, the event has been a forum for nonprofits, businesses and governments to raise awareness; a venue for local musicians, artists and performers to share their talents, and an outlet for students to display their knowledge and creativity.

Visitors will enjoy dozens of exhibits about waste prevention, local food and farms, green products, building materials, clean energy options, transportation alternatives, wildlife preservation, and much more. Check out the live entertainment and hands-on activities, and experience a zero-waste event! Organizers encourage attendees to walk, bike, carpool, or ride the RVTD Route 10 to get to the festivities.

PrintYou’ll also find Standing Stone pouring beer at this year’s event! Stop by for a pint while browsing the vendors and exhibits, or settle in with a cold-one while watching some of the live entertainment. You can learn more about the event or sign up to volunteer at www.RogueValleyEarthDay.net

Mark your calendar, write it on your hand, tie a string around your finger…whatever method you choose for remembering, don’t forget to join us on March 3rd for Pints for a Purpose. We’re going out with a bang for the 2014/2015 donation season, so let’s get some pint-drinking buds together to support Rogue Valley Earth Day!

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Taste the Town During Ashland’s Restaurant Preview Week, 2/2-2/9

At Standing Stone, we jump on pretty much any opportunity to celebrate beer and food. Next week, February 2-9, we’re participating in Ashland’s Restaurant Preview Week, presented by the Ashland Chamber of Commerce. Restaurants around town are featuring specials and events to show off what our little town has to offer, and we’re excited to join the fun with a week-long special and Sunday pairing event.

2015RestaurantWeekPosterREVRestaurant Preview Week showcases Ashland’s culinary scene and invites visitors and locals alike to take advantage of the delicious one, two, and three-course specials offered at participating restaurants. By taking part in Ashland’s Restaurant Week, dining guests will have a chance to enter to win $25 Gift Certificates from the restaurants, in addition to savoring delicious fare. The more restaurants you visit, the more entries you can submit for the drawing.

Just for the occasion, we’re featuring a special with the main ingredient from our farm down the road. Come enjoy our One Mile Farm Lamb Pita with Tzatziki, Mixed Greens, Cucumbers, Feta and I Heart Oregon Ale Vinaigrette. Our local lamb and beer-inspired dressing make this plate truly an Ashland-crafted meal.

On Sunday, February 8th follow along with a guided multi-course sampler of Standing Stone ales and food. We’ll feature tasters of menu items and discuss beer-pairing concepts such as complementing, contrasting and matching. The hour-long pairing is $25 per person and begins at 3pm. No need to make reservations; just show up and we’ll take care of the rest!

Visit the Ashland Chamber’s website for more info and to download an entry form for the $25 gift certificate drawing. You can view all the participating restaurants along with their specials, and plan a full week of culinary enjoyment! Because, heck, why not take advantage of yet another good reason to eat and drink in Ashland?

By in Brewery & Beer 0

Latest Specialty Beer: Farmer Brown

There’s a new special beer in town, and its name is Farmer Brown. This returning seasonal brew boasts warm, nutty aromas and a slightly hoppy finish. We’re thinking fireside chats, warm boots, and leather-bound books. Or maybe this is the beer to drink after a hard day of work in the cold outdoors. Whatever your lifestyle, give the Farmer Brown a try, either here at the brewpub or at home with a growler bottle.

About the beer

Our newest seasonal sports a chestnut color and offers toasted aromas of graham cracker. This brown ale’s medium body and biscuit-like flavors are followed by a slightly dry and nutty finish, with mild bitterness. 4.7% abv 25 IBU

Maltbrown ale chalkboard

  • Great Western Organic Two Row
  • Briess Carabrown
  • Briess Organic Carapils
  • Briess Special Roast
  • Briess Organic Chocolate

Hops

  • Bittering: Organic Magnum
  • Flavor/Aroma: Organic Golding

Food Pairing Suggestions

This medium intensity beer matches well with foods in the same realm. To complement a pairing, look for items with toasted bread and nutty flavors. Roasted beef and pork work well with brown ales, as do nutty cheeses like Gruyere and Asiago. Here are our pairing suggestions from our menu:quinoa burger

  • Tempeh Stir Fry
  • Greek Salad
  • Quinoa Nut Burger
  • House Salad with Mixed Greens & Stout Glazed Walnuts
  • Bread Pudding with Whiskey Sauce

Next Tuesday, we’ll welcome Rogue Farm Corps as the recipient for our Pints for a Purpose benefit evening, and we’d say this beer feels pretty appropriate. Toast your Farmer Brown with local farming enthusiasts on Tuesday, February 2nd from 5-10pm, and give $2 for every pint sold to this organization. Come enjoy this seasonal brew while it lasts!

By in Community, Events 0

Pints for a Purpose Benefits Rogue Farm Corps, 2/3

PrintOur next Pints for a Purpose benefit evening is around the corner, and we’re excited to announce Rogue Farm Corps (RFC) as the next recipient. On Tuesday, February 3rd from 5-10pm, we’ll donate $2 for every pint of beer sold at Standing Stone to this youth-focused organization.

RFC trains the next generation of farmers and ranchers through hands-on education. Their programs combine training, classroom learning and farm-based experience on a diverse network of commercial family farms in Oregon. Led by dedicated mentors and agricultural professionals, RFC offers opportunities to learn organic farming, animal husbandry, and marketing and distribution techniques. Visit their website to get involved, and learn more about their FarmsNext and FarmsNow programs.

rogue farm corpsRFC will be our fourth nonprofit recipient for the 2014/2015 season. In summer of 2014 we opened the Pints for a Purpose application period for local, grass-roots organizations. Then, we gave the list of applicants to our coworkers and voted on the top five nonprofits that Standing Stone employees are passionate about. We’re delighted that RFC made the cut, as their enthusiasm and passion for what they do is contagious. We’re excited to welcome them on their benefit evening! You’ll find them at a table set up by the front door with more info.

Come enjoy a pint of local craft beer and give to a great local cause. Every pint ordered earns Rogue Farm Corps $2, and it adds up quick! Bring your friends, drink responsibly, and join us for a great time celebrating this Southern Oregon nonprofit.

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Celebrating Oregon Craft Beer During Zwickelmania, 2/14

zwickelmania logo 2015Whoa there, Oregon. Valentine’s Day, Oregon’s 156th birthday, Presidents’ Day Weekend and a state-wide craft beer celebration all at once? Okay, we’ll play. Zwickelmania, the annual one-day event in Oregon when breweries open their doors to any and all beer fans, lands on Saturday, February 14th this year. More than 100 breweries are participating with meet-the-brewer events, beer samples, tours and more, 11am-4pm.

At Standing Stone, we’ll host a meet-and-greet with our brewer, Larry Chase, on the brew deck. While learning about the inner-workings of Standing Stone’s brewery, guests will taste free samples of beer and pair alongside bites of cheese and chocolate (it is Valentine’s Day after all).

For those planning a long-weekend getaway in Oregon, visitors are invited to click on one of the seven regions of the state on the Zwickelmania event page to see which breweries are participating. Itineraries and maps are available for the Bend, Eugene, Portland, Salem and Southern Oregon areas.brew deck

Last year, more than 36,750 people toured 105 participating breweries statewide, and the Oregon Brewers Guild is expecting that number to increase in 2015. Let’s help make that happen! In Ashland, you can make a day of visiting Standing Stone, Caldera Taphouse, and Swing Tree Brewing, all within a half-mile radius.

For more information, head to Oregoncraftbeer.org/zwickelmania.

2015 Winter Beer Dinner Photo Recap

You came, you saw, and you ate and drank a whole lot of craft beer and food. If you joined us for our Winter Beer Dinner last Thursday, we want to say a big “Thank You” for helping us make the evening a tasty and fun success! If you weren’t able to make it, there will always be next year (and keep it on the down low…we’re considering a summer pairing event, too).

toastingWe had a full house for the three-hour-long beer and food pairing soiree. Our brewer, Larry Chase, led everyone through flavor combinations and concepts, such as matching, contrasting, complementing, echoing, and finding a homerun – when the pairing is so phenomenal that all the flavors are elevated and the whole is greater than individual parts. Mmm, yes please. You can find more about beer and food interactions at CraftBeer.com.

It sounds like everyone had a different favorite course of the evening. The brewer’s favorite (as he let everyone know before the course) was the Carrot Cake with Vanilla-Mint Coulis paired with the I ♥ Oregon Ale. Typically, IPAs are great matches for carrot cake, but this hoppy pale ale provided the right amount of astringency between bites, while the lighter body complemented the light and fluffy cake and cream cheese frosting. Yes, it was delicious.

What was your favorite course of the evening? The 2011 Reserve Rogue River Blue from Rogue Creamery certainly stands out in our mind as a treat alongside the 2014 Barley Wine. Whichever course made your taste buds swoon, we’d love to hear about it!

For more mouth-watering fun, check out some of our favorite photos of the evening, below. Our house photographer, George Rubaloff, was on-scene to make sure every dish and Standing Stone craft beer had its time in the spotlight.

And if you’d like to be on our mailing list for next January’s Winter Beer Dinner, please email us at Rachel@standingstonebrewing.com and we’ll send the word next November when we’ve picked the perfect date. Until then, keep pairing, citizens!