I love beer. After now having visited over 490 different breweries, it’s fair to say I have sampled a lot of beer (follow me on Untappd). From post-race pints and run club meeting locations, to beer miles and relays, running and the kegged nectar seem to go hand-in-hand in Oregon. Our Kegs and Legs feature is where beer drinking runners like me can go to find some new favorite beverages.
I distinctly remember being in Bend in 2013 when Worthy Brewing first opened their doors. East Bend, at the time, was pretty devoid of development and their new building was the last thing before the long road to Burns. Fast forward a few years and both Worthy and the neighborhood have exploded, leaving the brewery surrounded by houses, apartments, and other shops.
The brewery itself has also expanded, building a Hopservatory on site, as well as putting the Taps and Tacos downtown location. One of the things that stood out to me on my initial experience years ago was their commitment to homegrown hops in a hop research facility partnership with Oregon State University. Their brewery grounds have a greenhouse and garden beds committed to coming up with the latest and greatest varietals. This has just been one of the focuses on sustainability and being “green” and their new rebrand aims to showcase that. On March 25th, 2019, their new cans were created with the mantra “Earth First. Beer Second”, and the official can launch will be on Earth Day (4/20) with tons of great festivities going on all day.
We were sent a sample pack and are talking about their two year round IPA’s here today – Strata IPA and Worthy IPA. While the images are all different on the vessels, they seem to showcase a little more cohesiveness – making it easier to recognize that this is a Worthy beer and a part of bigger picture and idea.
The “Strata” hop was one variety that was grown through the aforementioned partnership, and the first new hop to emerge from the OSU-Indie Hops breeding program. It’s also the first independently owned hop ever designed, tested, and grown in Oregon. In the past year, it has won silver and three large beer competitions – a testament to its deliciousness. I have been impressed with Strata IPA since it’s original release and feel that it’s a super fantastic combo of pine and citrus.
A beer with a brewery’s namesake on it definitely make it a classic, and the Worthy IPA has been a very solid and consistent option in the beer world. Their new can showcases the brewery’s commitment to source locally and support it’s NW neighbors first. And given the fact that they source 80% of their hops from the Willamette Valley, they are staying true to that word. I find this a very nice option that is generally solid enough for the hopheads out there, but not overpowering where new IPA drinkers couldn’t enjoy.
We are very excited about all the new stuff that Worthy has going on. They have 117 rooftop solar panels on their main pub – 56 of which are dedicated to heating and storing water so that their boilers don’t have to work as hard to head the water used to brew. These panels also provide about 10% of their power each year. They also repurpose their spent grain 3-4 times per week to a local cattle farm – and then they purchase beef from that farm and use in their dishes when they can. They are also transitioning from 22 oz bottles to 16.9 ounce recyclable bottles on 9/1/19. I find it hard to imagine that you can’t get behind the solid work that Worthy is doing – on both the beer and environmental sides – so make sure to support them this year and beyond!
- 495 NE Bellevue Drive – Bend, OR 97701
- Sunday thru Thursday 11:30 am to 9 pm
- Friday and Saturday 11:30 am to 10 pm
Worthy also supports the running and cycling communities as well. They hosted the pre-event for this past year’s Tour des Chutes, are frequently the starting point on the Bend Beer Chase, and provided post-race beers at numerous events.