Organic Rise Up Red, Hopworks

Well, you don't have to take my word, last year the GABF bestowed a Gold Medal in the American Style Amber/Red Ale on this beer.  I haven't had this beer since it was out about a year ago and after trying again tonight, I'd have to agree with the GABF.  This beer is an amazing representation of the style.  Now, through a 22 ounce bottle, it'll be easier for you to get your hands on some.

From the press release: "Organic Rise Up Red is a classic Northwest red ale featuring a rich mahogany color with organic malts providing a mild caramel sweetness and smooth, bready flavor.  An ample dose of locally-grown Cascade and Centennial hops delivers a floral and slight citrus flavor.  The beer checks in at 60 IBUs and 5.8% ABV."  Anyone who knows hops, understands that Cascade and Centennial can easily bring a hop bite to almost any style.  While this is definitely a hoppy red in taste and aroma, the feat pulled off in this beer is the great balance between sweetness and bitterness in its base.   "The challenge in crafting a great red ale lies in striking a balance between the style's assertive malt characteristics and our Northwest drive to 'amp up' the hops. We love this beer and are pleased that the judges at the Great American Beer Festival did too," said Christian Ettinger, owner and brewmaster of Hopworks.

Organic Rise Up Red, Hopworks
Christian Ettinger, owner.

Hopworks is well know for their sustainable practices and organic beer.   Even though the love of beer is the driving force behind their business, it's just as important to find balance within the community and environment.   For example, the greatest varieties of organic hops are available in Germany and New Zealand.   Purchasing these hops toward a 100% organic beer creates a large carbon footprint just to ship the hops from where their grown all the way out to Portland.  Getting the exact ingredients at any cost is not part of the decision making process at Hopworks.  Figuring out how to make the same product with a lower environmental impact and remain cost effective is complicated, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be done.  While other brewers are dealing with costs and shipping logistics, Hopworks deals with many other layers of complexity when choosing the ingredients and the process for their beer production and distribution.

This attention to details and focus on sustainable practices is at the heart of the Hopworks business model.   In fact, the milk served to the kids in the restaurant comes from cows fed on the spent grain from the brewery!  Luckily, delicious, award winning beer is also at the heart.  You can always find ten organic beers (plus two cask varieties) on tap at Hopworks.  Of course, you can fill up your kegs and growlers to go, or grab a 22 ounce bottle from their selection in the fridge.

Check out the rest of the photos here.