Upright Brewing Company

BEER AVG
3.95/5
Upright Brewing CompanyUpright Brewing Company
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Beer-to-go

240 N Broadway St, Suite 002
Portland, Oregon, 97227
United States

(503) 735-5337 | map
uprightbrewing.com

Notes:
The Brewery is located in the basement of the Hazelwood/'Leftbank' Building (its history includes a well-known early jazz club, Dude Ranch - an inspiration for the name 'Upright' - read more here: http://leftbankproject.com/the-history/ ) and is Production-Only during normal weekday business hours.

A Tasting Room is open Thu 5 - 9 pm, Fri 4:30 - 9 pm, Sat 1 - 8 pm, Sun 1 - 6 pm, and prior to basketball games at the adjacent Rose Garden arena (Trailblazers only - check their home schedule). Food, when available, is basic: bread, an occasional charcuterie tray or sandwiches (provided by Grain & Gristle).

Added by msubulldog25 on 04-22-2009

BEER STATS
Beers:
76
Ratings:
4,269
Reviews:
1,110
PLACE STATS
Score:
89
Ratings:
97
Reviews:
29
Avg:
4
pDev:
5.5%
 
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 97 |  Reviews: 29
Photo of olympuszymurgus
3.1/5  rDev -22.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 1 | selection: 3.5

Wow, I am not hip enough for this. The pours are cheap and good, the "tap room" sexy (barrels and concrete, a fine view of the mashtun) and the selection reasonable. % taps, a small display of bottles, all above average beers but nothing that really shook my world.

But, in the end, I will just remember these guys for the snobby service and dickish attitude. Guy wasn't busy, just bullshitting with a buddy. I'm not a local, I don't know your selection, I don't know your beers. Don't be a dick when I ask a few questions about your beer. My two buddies, the locals, they are not coming back here, nor am I.

I'm sure the brewers are great guys, I'm sure they are fighting the good fight and all that jazz, but come on, your tap jockey is a prick.

 751 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.24/5  rDev -19%
vibe: 2 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25

This place is located in the basement of a seemingly mostly empty, mixed use building. There is one small sign on the sidewalk outside and a sign inside telling you to head to the basement. There is also a sign saying they don't take plastic, but they don't have an atm either so you will have to go to a gas station two blocks away if you don't carry cash... get a fucking square reader guys. Anyway, their actual taproom is in a dank basement and seems like calling it an afterthought would be giving them too much credit. I'm sure a lot of visitors think it's cool to get to sit in the actual brewery, but it isn't a very actractive brewery and it just reminded me of the storage closet they moved Milton's desk to in Office Space.

So, the beer is decent enough. Mostly saisons, which were hit or miss, and a Pilsner and red ale I didn't really care for. The service was fine, just one dude operating the register and pouring, but it worked well enough. The selection was a bit disappointing, they had maybe 8 beers on tap when we were there, and honestly that's pretty weak compared to every other brewery I visited in Portland.

Overall, it was worth visiting once, but I'd never bother going back. My least favorite Portland brewery visit, with the odd distinction of having the crappiest atmosphere and location of any brewery I've ever visited.

 1,361 characters

Photo of cptbenjamin
3.26/5  rDev -18.5%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3

The location in the basement in a dimly lit brewery was a little unappealing. The beers were just "ok" to me. We tried everything they had on draft and it was just kind like "meh". We stayed maybe 30 minutes.

 208 characters

Photo of Mothergoose03
3.46/5  rDev -13.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.25

This was stop #23 for my wife and I on a 21-day pub-crawl from Michigan to N. CA and OR. We stopped here on a Sunday afternoon to enjoy their beers. (Actually we had stopped out front the day before after driving around the building a few times, but did not realize it was the correct place and moved on to the next brewery, so the visit this day was a success.) The brewery is located in the basement of this large red brick building, but there is no brewery sign (or a building address number that we could see) other than a small sandwich board that they put out on the sidewalk in front of the entrance door when the taproom is open.

After winding our way to the basement we walked into an obvious brewery setting with equipment all around. In a corner was a tap arrangement with an employee who was the bartender that day. Five ounce, 12 oz. and pitchers are available, and the price is right at this brewery. Tables are spread out around the area where some brewing equipment is sitting, so you get a true feeling of drinking at the brewery in this place.

We ordered a sampler of 6 of the 9 beers that were available (a cider was also listed), and went back later to get samples of the other three. All of these beers are very well made, and we got bored assigning the same B grades to all of them, but it was an enjoyable ‘bore’ session. There are some packaged snacks available, but no food.

This was an enjoyable experience, and we’re glad that we tried again to find this place after using up so much of our drinking time the day before in our search to find this brewery. We’d come back again when we’re in Portland.

 1,642 characters

Photo of RedDiamond
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

In its first year of operation, Upright secured a welcome niche as brewers of traditional "farmhouse-style" beers. These Franco-Belgian-derived ales - saisons and bieres de garde - form the mainstay of their enterprise but otherwise make infrequent appearances on Northwest beer lists. Beers are treated to organic ingredients, open fermentation, saison yeast, and a frequent use of wheat. Most are available in 750 ml capped champagne magnums. Many are aged in oak wine barrels.

Guests may visit the tasting room on weekends and on game nights during basketball season when Upright's proximity across from the Rose Garden provides an ideal spot for a pre-game ale. The tasting room is a no-frills enclave adjoining the brewery in the basement of the Leftbank Building. The gray cinderblock environment dotted with small wooden tables amid racks of oak barrels may evoke a certain casual charm. Others might find it raw and confining. But the cellar atmosphere seems suited to the purpose of aging beers and the plates of sliced rye bread waiting for you on the tables complement the flattering simplicity of the saison style. Beer prices at the tasting room are charitable. Nine beers are offered, food is not served.

Though I enjoy most Upright beers I can't say as I'm enthralled with them. Saison yeast, bottle conditioning, and barrel aging are great ideas. But implementing these ideas into a product line evoking the measure of sophistication they imply is not easily done, and I'm inclined to say that while Upright beers have their merits, their best moments are perhaps yet to come. Meanwhile, best bets may be had in the form of their hoppier beers such as their seasonal saison/IPA hybrid Congo Pale or their regular hoppy saison "Five".

 1,751 characters

Photo of Gobzilla
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%

Photo of atpca
3.5/5  rDev -12.5%

Photo of Drift
3.55/5  rDev -11.3%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Photo of CTJman
3.56/5  rDev -11%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.57/5  rDev -10.8%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

Well, easy enough to find the building...and bit tricky finding parking and then the actual brewery. Go inside, down the stairs (or elevator). It's a barrel room that serves beer. Fine enough

Small. Two picnic tables, a square table and small round top. No bar, just a register and taps with 9 beers flowing. Good local music playing on the old time stereo (alas, not on vinyl).

Service is one person and pretty good. Seemed a bit irked to be working on a Sunday. I don't blame him. Geeks like me seem to show up on odd days.

Beer is really good. I only had 3 tasters (at $1.50/ea) b/c I was driving. But did pick up some bottles.

Not a great destination, but if you like UR beers and want something not on shelves, hit this place.

 738 characters

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.67/5  rDev -8.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75

Photo of squaremile
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

This is the basement home for one of the best up and coming breweries in PDX. I have been there twice, the first was for Zwickelmania and they were pouring generously from bottles and the firkin. The second time was before a Blazers game and the atmosphere was somewhat different but still fun. The basement makes you feel like you're in some kind of secret club. There is one guy associated with this place that has the worst attitude I've seen in the beer community, you'll know who he is, and it unfortunately puts a damper on things a bit. It's also cool checking the open fermentation tanks. Their beers are all over the map but stay with the Five, Billy, and Late Harvest and you should be OK.

 699 characters

Photo of SFCraft
3.74/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 1.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Photo of claspada
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of Gig2828
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5

This is a bit of an odd place, tucked away in the basement of what seemed to be an office building. It almost felt like a speakeasy. A little disorganized too. That being said, this was still an interesting place that I was happy I visited. The selection was a little thin, but the beer was all great.

 306 characters

Photo of djbreezy
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

It's a really rad experience to hop down on the elevator to the basement. The open fermentation tanks are cool and the taps and everything else are pretty sweet. It's cool how exposed everything is and it's nice that you get to go into the place where the beer is brewed to taste it. A comfortable setting.

I can partially agree with the reviewer below. I've had mixed experiences with the staff. However, I recently spoke with the owner at Farmer's Market where he was staffing a tent and he was very receptive and courteous to my questions. Seemed like a good dude.

 568 characters

Photo of TreeBear
3.83/5  rDev -4.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Photo of almostjay
3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

Definitely a departure from the typical Portland brewery experience. Upright is tucked into a basement room in a mixed commercial building. It's a cool building, one that I wouldn't mind working in, but definitely different than your typical brewery space and on kind of an island in Portland, albeit and island well connected to public transit.

The place was somewhere between slow and kinda busy on a mild afternoon in January. The quiet, intimate space was livened up by a man playing a hollow body guitar. Thank goodness for him, because otherwise the silence (or maybe the quite, polite separate conversation) would have been deafening.

In the end, this place is worth visiting if only for the fact that it is unique in the busy Portland brewing scene. The fantastic beer is the icing on the cake.

 804 characters

Photo of Eternal218
3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

Photo of yemenmocha
3.89/5  rDev -2.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3

Cold basement location was interesting, and probably provides the most authentic brewery feel of any place I hit on my Portland visit. Once you actually find this place it's nice if there's a place to sit (we had to stand for awhile first) but then the range of samples are fairly good, with several very good beers. Prices were reasonable, and I apprecaited the free bread crumbles for palate cleansing & munching. Their hours are a bit restrictive, which is a pain. Not far from bus stop & train stops either, and not a long trip from downtown by train.

 555 characters

Photo of BDeibs
3.93/5  rDev -1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.75

Photo of acurtis
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Photo of John_M
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 3.5

Just my opinion, but I really don't see much point in this place being on beerfly. The tasting room is tiny, has no food (despite what the BA info says... maybe I was just here on an off day?), and just a couple of tables (some with chairs, some without). Nothing wrong with the layout I suppose, but it's really not all that conducive to hanging out and having a beer or three.

Have to confess I'm a pretty big fan of Upright beers, and across the board the quality is pretty high with all their beers. Had a redwood lager and a five when I was here, and both were excellent. Otherwise, this day they had 4 regular selections, three seasonals, and one guest beer (the Walking Man brown... for the life of me I can't fathom the reason for having the walking man beer available).

Service was good I guess. Aside from myself, there were 7 or 8 other patrons, and the brewery had one staff member standing by the tap handles, pouring sample trays and 12 ounce glasses for customers. He wasn't all that communicative, but would answer any questions you had, and seemed fairly pleasant otherwise. As one might expect, he was pretty knowledgeable when it came to Upright beers or the PDX beer scene in general.

Prices were good I thought. 12 ounce glasses were $2 for the regular line-up, and $3 for the seasonals and guest beer. Got a 4 ounce sample size glass of the lager and that was $1.

I can see where someone might stop by for a beer before a blazers game, but otherwise I can't see any reason to come here again. Really like Upright beers, but for the most part, they're available all over town. At least that's my impression based on a single visit, but hope to make it here some time when there's a one off or some other rare beer on tap (today it was the fresh hop and redwood lager listed as speciality items.... nice beers, no doubt, but as already mentioned, both can be found around town).

Edit from 2/14. Still don't come by here all that often (for the reasons noted in my original review), but they have expanded the space somewhat, and so now there's a bit more room for hanging out and having a few of Upright's excellent beers. Quality has never been an issue or concern here, but lately their special release beers have been so outstanding, I feel as if I have to give my original quality rating a bump as well. As before though, unless you're in the area for a Blazer game, or unless there is some special, limited release going on, there's really little reason to stop by the tasting room (IMHO).

 2,523 characters

Photo of Intlpostman
3.99/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.5

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Upright Brewing Company in Portland, OR
3.95 out of 5 based on 4,269 ratings.
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