Puppies and kittens are very much like a newly minted brewery. They inspire thoughts of joy, happiness, and wonder. But like puppies and kittens, breweries have to mature and grow beyond their innocence, to grow into something more, while still continuing to inspire smiles, laughter, sadness, and yes occasional headaches. But they must grow up because no can take an immature kitten, puppy, and yes even a brewery; seriously.
Nearly six years ago, pFriem Family Brewers arrived along the shore of the Columbia River with the goal of producing some of the most vibrant and unique beers in the area. It started with their beloved India Pale Ale, continued with their Pilsner, while simultaneously educating a growing community of tourists and residents to styles from far away regions, like Flanders, the Czech Republic, and even Mexico. But through it all, the brewers and ownership have continued to learn, to grow, and yes mature. None of what this writer just said will have any bearing unless we tell you about what pFriem Family Brewers has in store for 2019.
Over the next 2 years, pFriem will install new fermentation capacity, as well as a second larger brewhouse and a canning line in Hood River. This will allow the company to brew more than 60,000 barrels in this facility. As part of this process, the brewery will relocate their barrel-aging program, including their coolship to their new space in the Port of Cascade Lock campus. Oh, that's right, the other piece of news.
“The Cascade Locks project will allow us to significantly expand our barrel aging program while consolidating our warehousing and cold storage operations in a beautiful new facility. It will also free up space in our current Hood River brewery for a new state-of-the-art brewhouse, increased fermentation capacity, and sophisticated canning line. The goal has been to increase our offerings, continue to boost quality and innovation and to create opportunities for our employees to further their careers and personal lives in the special communities that we are lucky to be a part of. We feel that we are on an exciting path to accomplishing these goals throughout these two interconnected expansion projects.”
Having surveyed numerous sites, Pfriem, Ken Whiteman, and Rudy Kellner; finally selected the Port of Cascade Locks' Business Park, in the fourth-quarter of 2018. As part of the agreement between the brewery and the Port, a 20,000 square-foot, secondary production, and warehousing space will be completed in the first quarter of 2020. The sole purpose of this space will be for the production of wood barrel-aged and sour beers, in addition to hosting both cold and dry storage. Plus, Pfriem isn't the only excited about this relationship, just ask Port Commission President Jess Groves.
“The Port of Cascade Locks and the City of Cascade Locks are excited to be working with a premiere and award-winning family brewery that recognizes Cascade Locks as a community with enthusiasm and the ambition to grow local Gorge businesses. We look forward to a long-term partnership with pFriem Family Brewers and the opportunities the brewery brings to the community with new family wage jobs and a positive business attitude!”
For co-owner Josh Pfriem, this is another opportunity to reinforce their commitment to making the Columbia Gorge their home.
About pFriem Family Brewers
pFriem Family Brewers (pronounced “freem”) is a Northwest, German, and Belgian inspired 15-barrel brewery and tasting room in Hood River, OR. Founded in 2012 by Josh Pfriem, Ken Whiteman and Rudy Kellner, pFriem has experienced incredible growth in its short six years and has earned prestigious awards, including being named GABF®2018 Mid-Size Brewing Company of the Year and numerous medals in national and international brewing competitions. Best known for artisanal beers influenced by the great brewers of Europe while staying true to homegrown roots in the Pacific Northwest, pFriem craft beers are unmistakably unique in both flavor and balance. Visit pFriem online at www.pfriembeer.com, or onsite daily at 707 Portway Ave., Suite 101, Hood River, OR 97031.