A Who’s Who of coastal brews came to Seaside Saturday for the ninth annual Pouring at the Coast craft beer festival. Beermakers from Cannon Beach, Seaside, Astoria and beyond shared their magic as the event coincided with St. Patrick’s Day festivities, a wall of green everywhere.
“This has been a fantastic day,” Brian Owen, executive director of the Seaside Chamber of Commerce said. “The weather broke — the sun came out — it’s called Oregon.”
Owen proclaimed Saturday’s event one of the best-attended days in the event’s history. Guests mingled from display to display, with occasional breaks for snacks and catching up with old friends.
“People are running around, happy and drinking beer,” Brandy Stewart, of the Seaside Chamber of Commerce, said. “Smooth as can be.”
Stewart said 25 volunteers in two shifts helped with pouring, ticket sales, security — “You name it.” An hour into the event she said she anticipated about 1,200 guests.
Local breweries, including co-sponsor Seaside Brewing Co., along with Seaside’s Buoy and Cannon Beach’s Public Coast and Pelican brewers, stood out among the more than 30 brewers from around the Pacific Northwest.
Pelican Brewing Co.’s head brewer Bryce Snyder came up from Pacific City, where he joined Trevor McLean, assistant general manager of Pelican’s Cannon Beach location.
“We’re getting a ton of visitors,” McLean said. “They’re coming back for the dark-hearted blonde,” he said, referring to the Sleepy Monk-inspired stout with a coffee infusion.
Seaside’s Stephanie Stevenson of Rascals volunteered with Ecliptic Brewing of Northeast Portland, Daria Stein, who, though posted next to Gearhart chamber volunteer Andrew Stein, is no relation.
Buoy Beer’s founding brewer Dan Hamilton and his daughter Jessyka Dart-McLean, events and marketing manager of Buoy, poured a European lager and a Czech pils.
Public Coast’s master brewer Will Leroux, attending his second Pouring at the Coast event, presented his award-winning ’67 Blonde Ale and Candy Cap Russian Imperial Stout, a maple-, caramel- and pecan-flavored beer from a local mushroom, the candy cap. The concoction proved a favorite with Jim Paino, newly appointed director of the Cannon Beach Chamber of Commerce and Cannon Beach Police Chief Jason Schermerhorn as they showed support for the local craft brew scene.
Seaside Brewing Co.’s Jimmy Griffin described the event’s “exciting vibe.”
“We’ve got some breweries you don’t see a whole lot out this way,” he said. “People are breaking out the seasonals. A lot of breweries send things out here as a ‘live lab,’ to see how it’s going to fly for the rest of the festival season.”
Griffin said there are more brewers than ever. “Some of them are into their business more than the brotherhood. But out on the coast, specifically, everybody’s really tight and everybody helps each other out. The North Coast is going to become its own beer destination in and of itself. We think it’s unique and we’re glad to be part of it.”