With a free afternoon and nothing to do, I decided to hop over to the Oregon coast to check out a new brewery that just opened, Newport Brewing Company. Newport, long famous in the craft beer world as the headquarters for Rogue, has welcomed a new 15 bbl brewery to an area that has been surprisingly sparse in this arena. Founded by a local real estate developer and employing what sounds like a top-notch brewer, I’m excited to see how this place continues to grow over time. So, sit back, grab a beer, and listen as I reel in a review about the new kid on the block.
- Beer – Being so new, they only had 7 beers on tap when I stopped in. Most of the beers were on the lighter side, including the ever-present IPAs, a pilsner, lager, and a pale ale. For those of us who like dark beers, they do have a stout available, as well as a surprisingly delicious gose that had an interesting twist I’ve never had before. They added lactose to the sour beer, mellowing out some of the tartness and giving it a smoother mouthfeel that worked really well. Overall, I was really impressed with what they have created so far, and I look forward to what comes next. It’s obvious their head brewer can create both classic styles and can experiment with flavors to create some unique beers, which bodes well for their success. Score: 3.5/5
- Brewery – Often breweries will try to embody the history of their town, and Newport Brewing really dives headfirst into that mindset. The entire brewery has a nautical theme, with a lovely blue color scheme throughout along with anchor motifs and wall art that complete the design. The indoor area consists of about a dozen tables as well as a long bar with seating. What is really unique is that all of the tables along the wall have a television set into the wall just above the table, perfect for watching whatever sporting event du jour is on. Out through a large set of roll-up doors is a small patio with a few more tables for when it isn’t raining. They offer a modest food menu that, unsurprisingly, consists of pub-style food with a seafood emphasis. The food was good, and I highly recommend the pretzels with beer cheese if you are looking for a snack. The prices are reasonable, with a flight of 4 beers at $10. They are open every day from lunch until late, though I would suggest going around lunch or dinner time so you can try some of the delicious food. Score: 4/5
- Ambiance and Entertainment – If you are looking for a place to watch a game, this would be one of my top choices. As I mentioned, all of the tables along the wall have television built in, plus there are a few hanging above the bar. Being so new, they can be forgiven for not having a lot in the way of live events yet, though it does look like they host fundraisers from time to time. What they do offer that I thought was pretty neat are chartered boat tours. You can go out fishing for a few days, then have your catch cooked up in their kitchen while trying some of their brews. It certainly sounds like a fun time and really leans into the core of what Newport is. Score: 2/5
- Location – Just a few blocks from the waterfront district, Newport Brewing perches on a hill overlooking the bay. Be sure to take a stroll down along the shore as there are tons of interesting little shops and restaurants scattered about. Across the bay is the Newport aquarium and Rouge Brewing headquarters, and up and down the coast there are lots of really neat state parks and hiking where you can work up a thirst. They have their own small parking lot on site as well as street parking, and the large, blue warehouse building that houses the brewery is hard to miss. Score: 4/5
- Customer Service – Customer service was a delight here. I was seated quickly, had my order and drinks at my table taken with equal speed, and did not have to wait long for them to arrive. The staff was super friendly and checked in often. To me there seemed to be a lot of staff compared to the size of the brewpub, but that is probably a good thing for when it gets really busy. All around I had a good experience and felt genuinely welcome. Score: 4/5
Total Score: 17.5/25
Favorite Beer: Salty Bay Gose
Final Thoughts: I was pleasantly surprised at just how much I enjoyed my trip here. Good food and a solid beer menu bode well for the future. I definitely recommend making a stop here if you are in Newport and keep an eye out for their beers in the store. I know I will be making many more visits in future and I look forward to trying whatever is on tap.