For me, the phrase “you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone” is most applicable to beer. After being spoiled by incredible microbrews in Eugene the last four years, my standards for taste, quality, and brand creativity are on the up and plan to stay there. Think about a crisp glass of Ninkasi’s Spring Reign Ale in a frosted pint glass, handed to you by a smirking bearded man covered in tattoos. Now compare that to a warm cardboard box of CoorsLite. It’s safe to say there is no contest. When I was living in Peru a few years ago, my main source of culture shock came from 1) the fact that all the homeless street dogs somehow are all wearing sweaters and 2) I could count the nationwide beer (‘chela’) selection on one hand.


Me with a glass of Cusqueña, Perú’s darkest beer.

I don’t mean to complain, but simply set up a contrast, that when good craft beer is available, it should always be the number one choice, because we’re so lucky to have it!

My favorite thing to explore are brewery happy hours, because, well, I’m usually broke. Craft beer is nice because it’s a relativiely cheap hoppy hobby. The whole craft beer movement is based mostly on spending quality time with people you like over a good glass of beer. In essence it is a pastime I can relate to.  The fact that it is called craft beer lends naturally to the idea that it is an artform, a labor of love, and something all beer drinkers can and should enjoy.

In conclusion, my goal here is to explore one of the worlds I love most, BREWSKILAND!    I’m still deciding if this beat will focus mostly on the Pacific Northwest or all over the place, but I’ve offered up a few sites that cover the microbrew sphere and do it well. I’m originally from Santa Rosa, CA, home to Russian River Brewing, who’s double IPA Pliney the Elder is a three-time Beer of the Year winner so I’ll be focusing not only on Eugene and Portland beer bloggers but the San Francisco Bay Area as well.

1. Craft Beer was created to “energize and engage craft beer enthusiasts and arm them with the resources to be active and educated appreciators of the ever-expanding craft beer movement.” Published by the Brewers Association, it’s a one stop shop for home brewing tips, articles on happening breweries, even recipes for food that pairs well with certain beers.

2. Hop Bunnies is a beer blog run by women “who are not afraid to be feminine” but wanted to talk about beer just as much as the next guy, so they started blogging about it “without having to fit stereotypes, act like tomboys or just review simple, “girly” beers.” I love this concept because women have always been portrayed in movies and TV with Dirty Shirleys or Cosmopolitans. Way to represent ladies.

3. The concept behind Beer by BART is genius. It maps out where to find the best beers according to which bart station you get off on in the bay area. Geography+consumption is always a great hit.

4. I stumbled upon Brewpublic while looking for the new Beir Stein location, which just expanded to a location on Willammete see the article. This site is a great resource for PNW drinkers.

Look forward to more bear beats comin’ up! Cheers!


About Ella Gummer

Ella Gummer is a fourth year Journalism and Spanish student at the University of Oregon. Her professional interests include gender studies, travel writing, media literacy education, and multimedia production. Hailing from Northern California where her large, hilarious family still lives, Ella now works, studies, explores, and gardens in Eugene with good friends and her fat cat. You can listen to her campus radio show, where she is known as DJ Boots, every Monday at 11am on KWVA 88.1 Eugene. Follow her on Twitter @ellaGummz.
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