The Mash Tun

Not Rated.
The Mash TunThe Mash Tun
BEER AVG
3.7/5
Based on:
12 Beers
33 Ratings
Place Score: 84
Ratings: 17
Reviews: 9
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: n/a
Taps: 12
Bottles: 20
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

2204 NE Alberta St
Portland, Oregon, 97211
United States
phone: (503) 548-4491

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: freed on 09-07-2005

Sunday - Thursday: 12:00pm - 11:00pm
Friday - Saturday: 12:00pm - 12:00am
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 17 | Reviews: 9
Photo of stumac
4.53/5  rDev +29.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5

Very chill spot. Emily the bartender was great. She told me info about this brewery and other local breweries. Beer was good. Didn't get food this time but they have a pretty solid menu. And Emily told me it's $2 brews all day Tuesday so I might hit that up!

Photo of koopa
3.23/5  rDev -7.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3

Stopped in here for a pint after an ok meal at Ciao Vito since it was right across the street. Fairly large space with your classic "normal bar" vibe. Dart board, pool table, juke box, etc. But with mediocre to decent craft beer in addition to the standard fizz. Service got the job home although they were nothing to write home about. Prices were reasonable. Brewing equipment could be seen behind the bar, which was probably the nicest aspect of the joint. Definitely a place to skip while in this great beer city that is clearly chock full of better choices.

Photo of cbarrett4
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Being vegan, I love the menu! Had their house made veggie burger (the quinoa one) and fell in love instantly. The tots were a crispy and delicious side. My partner had the roasted beet salad and bravo!

The beer they actually had on tap was nice. They had five house selections and a few guest taps (they actually had Moose Drool! a worthy brown ale). They seem to play with the beer and make a truly rotating selection. They had a cream ale (yum), a blackberry oatmeal ale (yum!) and a pale ale (yum!) as well as a stout (good) and an Imperial IPA (did not try). Also had Double Mountain IRA, Victory Pils, and a couple of other guest taps.

It has a garage like feel with a sunny back patio. Service was non-existent on back patio so we sat at the bar. Food took a long time, but we were in no real hurry. It was also Labor Day, so.... perhaps next time on a non-holiday?

But I'll be back. For the food for sure!

Photo of msubulldog25
3.36/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3

I have visited this brewpub on two occasions, once on a fairly busy Tuesday evening in July and more recently on a sleepy Saturday afternoon in September.

Mash Tun occupies a storefront just off of popular NE Alberta St. on NE 22nd. It's front facade is like wood that has been aged to a warm coppery, caramel-brown color and sealed. Large windows display the copper and stainless brewing equipment. Inside is like a refurbished industrial garage, with high exposed ceilings with several skylights and bare concrete floors. Sheetrock finishes have been added in front of otherwise concrete walls and have been painted a warm tan color; the artwork (quirky paintings of cats) is for sale. There are about 10 wooden tables (seating around 30-35) and 10 stools at the bar. Behind the bar is the brewing room, with gigantic windows that give the whole space a very open feel. Adjacent to the bar is a large garage door, which opens onto a quiet covered patio. Corrugated metal separates one side of the patio from the neighboring home and another wall is festooned with a colorful landscape showing several mash tuns in front of Mt. Hood. There's one TV (above the bar), a pool table (which appeared to be free), a jukebox (by the pool table) and a dart board (adjacent to the restrooms).

Now for the beer...on a previous visit there had been 4 or 5 taps of brews by Mash Tun but on this recent visit there was only one (Portside IPA). Listed as "coming soon" were the Alberta Pale Ale and Razorback Red. I have had several of their beers earlier and found them to be pretty average - but as this is a pub that's been open only about a year and has been brewing for less time than that, I give them some margin for error. Still, in a beer-crazy city like Portland, I feel like they need to step up the quality.

Regardless of why they had only one beer of their own available, the bar did have a number of "guest" beers on-tap including: Red Tail, Pyramid Hefeweizen, Lagunitas IPA, Snowcap, Elysian ESB & Great White. Imports were Spaten Bock and Pilsner Urquell. Pours are $3.75-$4.25 for Imperial Pints or $2-2.50 for a 12 oz. glass. Prices drop to $2 for pints on Tuesdays. Bottles available are: Hamm's, Amstel Light, Belhaven, Paulaner Salvator, St. Peter's Ale, Duvel, Beamish & Miller Lite...prices vary.

Service was friendly - both times I've been it's the same young woman tending bar who serves beer and offers food from the menu. the menu is typical pub grub. Wings, rings, fries, nachos, etc. for appetizers ($4-7); some salads (under $7); a dozen sandwiches & burgers ($7-9). I've skipped the food when I've visited, but friends who've tried it said it was generally good. I'll abstain from scoring it til I try for myself...

Mash Tun is a good and welcome addition to NE Alberta St. (which happens to be within blocks of my home). My hope is that they can continue to improve the quality of the beer and that they'll be around a long time.

Photo of slander
3.5/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Jon's brother showed up a little while ago. This brother, he's strangely Jonlike but not. We will call him Ryan. He lives in the neighborhood so he knows where to play and he's got us on the move again, heading off to I don't know where. We trekked through some street fair or something; a carnival of sorts, food, art, music, street performers, it was Crazytown. And then we turned a corner and headed over to the Mash Tun, to wind down a long day of drinking that began 7 beerflys ago...

At first glance, The Mash Tun seems to be a not so large garage with a bar and a pool table. Yeah, well, that's pretty much it. An "L" shaped bar seating a dozen wraps around a glass front room to the front with kettles, and a dozen adjacent tables spotting the room. Wood slat ceilings with fans and exposed duct work, drop lighting over the bar and pool table, dangling plants, a CD jukebox, and darts near the entranceway, framed prohibition era photos abound. A roll down garage door opens to the patio section; 6 round plastic tables in sight of the mural wall and lots of dirty smokers.

6 house taps (Alberta Pale Ale, Inclusion Amber, Ford Perfect Porter, Bohemian Pils, Portside IPA, Kitchen Sink #2 which had kicked) and 6 guest taps of which 3 were regional micros (Pyramid Hefe, Elysian ESB, Great White Wheat) and the other 3 imports (Spaten Bock, Pilsner Urquell, Blackthorn Cider). I had the Porter, served in a plastic cup. It was clean, dry, chocolaty & roasty. Quite quaffable.

Although the place was jammin' when we got there, I was able to quickly draw the bartender in with my patented "want of beer leer", and we easily scored a table on the patio. We have skills.

It's a much younger, somewhat of a frat like crowd, too many damn kids here. Still, I would've liked to have hit an obligatory sampler here.

Photo of RedDiamond
3.45/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 3 | food: 4

I thought I'd show up on a Tuesday to avoid the crowds. That didn't quite work out as planned. Tuesday turns out to be "Two-dollar Tuesday" with (get this) two-dollar imperial pints of house ales. Yeah. Two-dollar imperial pints. Needless to say, the place was packed.

Things have changed since that first hectic visit. Tuesday is still cheap beer night, but pints are now $2.50 and are served in 16-oz. shakers, not nonic imperials. They've also added a small selection of mixed drinks to their lineup.

But much remains as it was in '05. The Mash Tun is a sectional one-room establishment in a converted industrial environment with a hip, urban vibe. Its address is listed as Alberta Street but it's more properly situated a few doors down on NE 22nd Ave. A pool table and jukebox give the place a neighborhood American feel, while the sheltered patio offers an adjoining oasis of greenery with festive strings of white lights. Patios and beer gardens are invariably the best place to sip a pint, but be advised that city noise ordinances require the patio to shut down at 10PM sharp. Smoking is permitted and on a crowded Tuesday the effect is unavoidable.

The menu lists four house beers and three guest taps. Food is light but imaginative fare that includes burgers, sandwiches, and a thoughtful array of appetizers and snacks. Your vegan girlfriend won't go hungry either. I thoroughly enjoyed the red lentil puree served with warm pita and it looked like there were more tasty treats to be had.

Beer quality has varied in the past three years and my most recent visits revealed, tepid uninspired ales lacking in freshness and vigor. That's too bad as there's a lot to like about the place. The neighborhood has been transitioning upwards for over a decade now and The Mash Tun would seem to be a welcome addition to the cluster of art galleries and new restaurants nearby. Objects d'art line the walls and the bright copper kettles facing the street are very classy. I'm pleased to give them a warm thumbs up for appealing food and a relaxed atmosphere. But beer quality doesn't achieve Beervana standards.

Photo of libertygrails
3.33/5  rDev -4.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 2.5 | food: 3.5

There's a Mash Tun folding placard out on Alberta Street so you won't miss this brand new local Brew Pub!! Another welcome addition to the developing businesses on Alberta St. An area that's done a serious 180 since we moved here in '92.

The pub. Mash Tun has the feel of a college town hang-out. The Coppers are immediately to your right as you walk in. Kinda loose, kinda sparse, tables and chairs, local art hangs proudly on the walls, free jukebox (with some tasty selections i might add..) a pool tabe in front of the lengthy L shaped bar. From what i remember there were 5 House brews and around 20 bottled choices to choose from.

The food. Food is average College town hang-out fare, with one exception: THE ONION RINGS !!! Some of the best i've ever had with that magical "Special Sauce" that makes eatin' 'em that much more fun...

The beer. There was a House Stout, Bitter, IPA and an Amber from what i recall. I had the Amber. It was okay. I ordered a bottle of Goose Island Imperial IPA next as that's one of my fave IPA's. Will go back and try another House brew soon.

Say it over and over again: SUPPORT LOCAL BREW PUBS!
Live it too.... :)

Photo of charlatan
3/5  rDev -14.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3

This serves a something of an update. First of all it should be noted that the entrance is on NE 22nd rather than Alberta. It would have been easy to walk straight by the place without spotting it.

They still don't have their own beer on tap, but it seems to be coming very soon. The brewer was handing samples to a select few regulars (apparently that set already exists). Perhaps if I had mentioned I was writing a review I may have got one.

If their beer list were more up to date I would have pounced on the Dogfish Head 30 min IPA but unfortunately it wasn't and I ordered something inferior before noticing the availability of the old half hour.

They seem to be aiming at the minimalist approach to decoration (the art Freed mentioned has disappeared) despite the cavernous nature of the premises. This makes for a rather bland atmosphere. The clientele reflected the youthful profile of the neighbourhood.

Photo of freed
3.78/5  rDev +8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

This is a very preliminary review since it refers to the opening night. I just thought I'd throw it on for reference.

My dog and I have been walking by here once or twice a week for the last couple months. We'd stop, peak through the windows, read the menus, poop on the concrete (Barley did, not me). Finally on Tuesday the 6th, we noticed a new paper quietly giving notice of opening that very night ("finally").

Later that evening, my wife and I returned and had a seat in the very middle of the place. The decoration is very nice and the current collection of art is excellent, though this is a pretty big value judgement on my part. The noise at this site is rather overwhelming and I'd recommend sitting around the edges instead.

The brewery is of decent size and incomplete, which is why only guest taps are available at this point. The menu apologizes, but the selection is quite nice. My pint was actually served at the perfect temp, and was quite delicious.

We ordered some onion rings which were different from most and yet very good. The rest of the menu looks nice but I can't say how it actually tastes, and I suspect onion rings aren't the perfect litmus test for food. We'll have to try again.

Service was attentive, quick and friendly. No complaints at all. Maybe a clandestine opening has its advantages?

There is a patio coming at some point, which the owner informed me a couple weeks back would allow dogs, but it isn't yet ready.

Just as we were leaving, we noticed that someone at the bar had started smoking. Damn. There was ventilation in place over the bar that might help, but I doubt the success of it. We'll see if it affects the atmosphere. Not being a smoker myself I was somewhat disappointed. Still, if Horse Brass can do it, maybe the Mash Tun can too. I suppose it all depends on their beer.

update:
I've been back a couple times for beer and finally sampled a kitchen sink brew. Decent start, but I'll be excited to see how things happen when the brewery is in full order. This place is still quite loud owing to the geometry, but generally the noise is happy which makes for a more pleasant pint. Still waiting for them to finish their facade so you can tell what the hell the building is. The copper kettles are the only indication.

The Mash Tun in Portland, OR
84 out of 100 based on 17 ratings.