Sunday, March 15, 2009

Someone Gets It Right

A while back I posted about trying to find a good local dry stout. Despite the best efforts of St. Andrei at The Newport Market, nothing could be located. There are plenty of stouts, but even Moylan's Dragon Dry Irish Stout, touted as a dry stout, is really really sugary. 

I was heartened to read a blurb in this week's The Source Weekly that McMenamin's had brewed up a dry stout in honor of St. Patrick's Day and the press release had all the right magic words:
McMenamins Irish Stout is our interpretation of the internationally renowned beer style that originated in Ireland and was popularized by legendary brewing institutions, such as Guinness, Murphy's and Beamish. Historically speaking, the style emerged early in the 19th century from attempts by Irish brewers to capitalize on the success of London porters. To cut costs, unmalted (and therefore, untaxed at the time) roasted barley was used, which imparted a unique and distinctively different coffee-like bitterness to the flavor and aroma of the ale. Thus, a new beer style was born.

McMenamins Irish Stout is made as traditionally as possible with our own little twist. It is a very dark, ebony-colored stout with a thick, creamy and long-lasting head. The flavor is a fantastic fusion of coffee- like roasted barley bitterness and semi-sweet chocolate. A moderate hop bitterness balances pleasingly with this hearty backbone, while tiny nitrogen bubbles enhance the sensation on your taste buds with a smooth, silky creaminess.

Sounds like they know what they're doing right?


They got it right. Mrs Elliott and I tooled over to Mcmenamin's last night and the stout is nearly perfect. Crisp, dry, slightly bitter, and with more flavor than Guinness, but most certainly of the style of Guinness.

The service was pretty poor, though. The french fries were nearly burnt, which the server said she also noticed (?), Mrs Elliott said that her $10 salad was "pretty good," my $12 pasta dish and uninspired chunk of garlic bread were also "pretty good." The bartenders, though. Looked like they were moving in slow motion. One's hands were shaking so badly that he struggled with his mixing.

But I forgive them for all that -- the stout is that good. It'll only be there for March, but I most certainly will enjoy it while I can. 


  1. Some of the worst food in Bend and worst service by far. I know of no one who disagrees.

  2. Ah I know where to go this Friday :)

    But I have to agree that the food at McMenamins is quite bad. That's the reason why we stop going there.

  3. March 15th? Can you not do any two things at once? Think of your audience, man!



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