Hi. My name is Paul Arney. I began working as a brewer in 1995…I had friends in the Seattle area who brought me into the crazy world of craft beer. After spending some time at the Glacier Peak brewpub in Everett and Maritime Pacific Brewery in Seattle, I sold my vehicle to put myself through brew school in Davis, CA in 1996. Near the end of the program, I wrote all the craft breweries in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana to let them know that I was available for hire (ha!). I received 2 responses out of about 300 letters. One was from the tiny Roslyn brewery near Snoqualmie Pass. All the letter said was, “We’re never hiring anyone. Good luck!” The other letter was from Dr. Bill Pengelley at Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Oregon. We arranged an interview after my courses and I jumped into commercial craft brewing with some of the most passionate brewers in the state of Oregon. After 6 years of working shifts, cranking beer out of a 50 barrel JVNW brewhouse (with occasional reprieves at our 12 barrel pub), I quit. My wife and I had socked away enough money to leave Bend and travel for a year and a half. We drove the AlCan highway, visited Europe, spent 7 months in SE Asia, and traveled interior Mexico. Upon coming back to Bend, we moved back into our house that we had rented out to our friends and I promptly got a job back at Deschutes Brewery, now a completely different company. The brewmaster, Larry Sidor, was pushing the brewing into new commercial realms and encouraging our brewers to find any and all boundaries (so we could subsequently break them). I ended up running our pub brewhouse and our R&D program, brewing anything that I wanted with any ingredient that I could get my hands on. My knowledge of beer and brewing skyrocketed. After 7 years of the best brewing education in the world, my interest in sustainable brewery practices and beer as a legitimate art form led me away from Deschutes and to develop a new concept-brewery based on the past 10,000 years of brewing. Artisanal brewing has been practiced by us humans for the majority of the history of beer. It is only in the last couple hundred years that industrial brewing has provided the bulk of fermented beverages to the public. Taking some of the production processes and hygenic practices that made large breweries successful and combining that with the intent and skill of a truly hands-on brewer, I have developed a concept that will take the best of the modern idea of craft beer and support it with thousands of years of the wisdom and tradition of home-made and hand-made beer. This, to me, is the future of beer. We are moving toward a local, sustainable, and relationship-built business…and when we mean sustainable, we mean the entire business, not just where the raw materials come from. Follow us on our journey in discovering how to make the best beer in the world.
The following is patting myself on the back while walking down memory lane. It isn’t a complete list by any means (I left out gluten free brewing and other less glamorous endeavors). Hopefully this list might come in handy when customers, investors, clients, and alcohol aficionados want to know if I have any experience in brewing world-class & commercially-accepted beer…which might get them to listen to my story…which should lead them to Sahalie (see definition).
Please note that the two brewmasters and our team of production brewers that I worked with at Deschutes played a major role in the creation of these beers when they reached our production facility. Increasing the size of the batch in a completely different brewhouse is a huge step (Black Butte Porter took a year of consistent brewing to accomplish it) as well as dealing with ingredients in hundreds and thousands of pounds instead of tens and hundreds. I did not make the beer that reached most of our customers’ mouths; I prepared the beer for the production facility. Ingredient arrangements and production processes continue to change to this day as the Deschutes Brewery evolves, finding better ways and methodologies (a concept that I plan on taking with me!)
Jubel 2000: Developed recipe, processes and methods for Deschutes Brewery’s first oak-aged beer.
The Abyss: Took part in developing brewing methods and processes with Jimmy Seifrit and Dan Olsen. Relied heavily on Mark Henion’s original Glass Butte Imperial Stout.
Red Chair: Developed and brewed initial recipes at Deschutes Brewery’s Bend Pub. Relied heavily on a beer that brewer David Brendgard and I created for the Bend Pub (Altitude Amber) as well as Brewmaster Larry Sidor’s extensive knowledge of hops and applications for their use.
19th Anniversary Strong Golden Ale: I developed this Belgian ale at the Bend Pub and helped to develop processes at the production facility.
20th Annivesary Wit: I worked with Jimmy Seifrit to develop the beer and the all-important fermentation profile at the Bend Pub. This was Deschutes Brewery’s first experiment utilizing fresh Seville Oranges.
Black Butte XXI, XXII, & XXIII: This imperial porter became Deschutes Brewery’s signature anniversary ale, changing each year. Jimmy Seifrit and I developed methods to incorporate such items as coffee, chocolate, fresh Seville Oranges & Pasilla Negra Chiles into one of DB’s most experimental ales.
Hop In The Dark Cascadian Dark Ale: I split over 20 brews in development of this beer with Cam O’Connor, who ran the Portland Pub for Deschutes Brewery at the time. This endeavor defines what it takes to put an idea of a beer to the test with raw material and process R & D.
Green Lakes Organic Ale: I developed the original recipe and processes and became Deschutes Brewery’s first organic guru. Relied heavily on anniversary beers that I created for the Bend Pub’s party at the end of June each year (Organic 14-year beer and the likes).
The Dissident: Worked with Jimmy Seifrit to develop recipe and processes. Relied heavily on Jimmy’s Diablo Rim, Deschutes Brewery’s first beer to utilize wild yeast (as well as cardamom, but that’s another story).
Pine Mountain Pils: Using Bill Pengelly’s original recipe, I brewed this classic German pilsner on our single-infusion pub system and won a gold medal at GABF in 2006. One of the highlights in my brewing career!
Oregon 150: Brewed for Oregon’s 150th anniversary, I created the most unique beer I could think of out of all-Oregon ingredients. 1/3 Oregon Marionberries, 1/3 Oregon honey, and 1/3 Oregon malted barley. The beer was purple and very interesting, confounding even our favorite beer blogger Jeff Alworth.
Oregon 151: The follow-up to Oregon 150 replaced the Marionberries with fresh strawberries and increased the alcohol to 10% ABV.
Berlinerweisse: I developed and brewed 2 separate versions of this classic German sour ale. One was a major undertaking that went through 3 fermentations (lactic, weiss yeast, brettanomyces) and spent the better part of a year in oak barrels. The other one was a quick and dirty lactic fermentation in the brew kettle followed up with a weiss yeast ferment in the fermenter.
Lil’ Bluebear: A blueberry wheat that started off rather bland, but with a bit of age, the blueberries popped through. We used over 200# of hand-picked blueberries for an 8 barrel batch of beer.
Fresh Hop Brews: Over my career with Deschutes I designed and brewed countless fresh hop brews. My favorites were the fresh hop lagers (with Perle and Sterling) and an IPA brewed with fresh Nuggets.
La Fleur (the Flower): The first Deschutes Brewery beer brewed without the use of hops! In an attempt to utilize other ingredients besides that fan favorite, I added ginger, hibiscus, bog myrtle, yarrow, juniper, wormwood, and orange blossom to create this most interesting beer.
Lichen Beer: The second beer to date brewed without hops at Deschutes Brewery. After reading that monks in a certain Siberian monastery brewed intensely bitter beer with the use of lichen, I sourced a similar variety (Oregon Lungwort) and brewed a batch with Ben Shirley The Instigator. We learned that we like hop bitterness much more than lichen.
Dark Rye: Inspired by the Bruery’s Rugsbroad, I developed an incredibly smooth beer with more rye than we’d ever attempted before. I will brew this beer again before I die.
Doc Holliday: Ale brewed with fresh Idaho huckleberries and biscuit malts.
English-style ales: From IPA’s to session beers, I used classic English malted barley and hop varieties to create beer that stood up to the palates of our visiting friends from the UK.
Oktoberfest: I am immensely proud of my Ayinger clone, thank you very much.
Pompion: Deschutes Brewery’s first pumpkin ale, served on nitrogen. The use of star anise, nutmeg, Saigon cinnamon, and vanilla in restrained amounts led to pumpkin pie in a glass. For real.
Saison: I developed 5 different versions of this classic Belgian farmhouse beer, all with various spices and adjuncts. My favorite included pear juice, grains of paradise, and meadowsweet.
Aphrodite: Chocolate Fig Stout that approaches my understanding of sublime.
Superbier Trippel: Classic Belgian Trippel ala Chimay White. Used spelt instead of wheat.
Mathilda’s Ring: Orval-inspired Belgian ale brewed with Orval’s maturation process.
Rio de Cerveza: Vienna-style lager brewed with agave. If I had my druthers, this beer would go into a 16 oz. can.
Wild Plum Stout: Thanks to Harv Hillis for picking 30# of tart wild plums from his tree. It made this beer one of the best stouts I’ve ever brewed.
Yama-lama!: When our kitchen received 500# of sweet potatoes that they couldn’t use, I put them in a beer with fresh hops! The result was one very unique combination of aromatics…it wasn’t for everyone, however.
IPA’s: I’ve brewed more of this style of beer than any other. Utilizing Vinnie Cilurzo’s methodology and Larry Sidor’s knowledge of hops, understanding this beer style is critical to Sahalie’s success. Also, thanks to Mission Joe for introducing me to a ridiculous hopping regime for his Magnum PIPA that actually worked!
TripppelBock: I combined two totally different beer styles here. It was the only way to make it worthy of 3 ‘p’s’.
Spice Girlz: To celebrate American Craft Beer Week, I developed a batch that utilized meadowsweet, black peppercorns, fresh Seville orange zest, pomegranate molasses and cherry bark. Each of the spice additions was named after one of the Spice Girls.
Rooster Cream Ale: Helped Bruce Macphee create a beer that he saw in his mind’s eye. Not an American Cream, but a Deschutes Cream Ale! One of our most successful session ales that appealed to all beer drinkers.
Experimental Hop brews: Larry Sidor’s endless contact list in the hop industry made privvy to us hop varieties that weren’t available anywhere else. Most showed up with just a number and no real stats on alpha. The hop variety Citra was one of these. Brewing with this kind of ingredient was a major tool in my development as a brewer.