Sometimes I see strange things while out on the road. Like a grown man dressed up as Minnie Mouse wearing combat boots walking into the Buoy Brewery bar and asking for a beer. The real question was, where was Mickey? And what kind of footwear was Mickey wearing?
Perhaps the guy was just bringing a little weird to Astoria.
Well done sir.
Buoy Beer Company sits on the shoreline of the Columbia River in Astoria Oregon. I arrived on a sunny spring afternoon and parked in the lot across the train tracks from the brewery. Don’t let the tracks scare you off as the tracks are not signifying a shady part of town. The tracks are actually for the trolley that carries tourists along the Astoria Riverwalk. You can also stroll along the riverwalk, a 6-mile path (9.6 km) that follows the shoreline of the Columbia River.
Outside of the brewery, there is dog-friendly seating outside, however on the day of our visit the two picnic tables were both occupied by dogs and their owners. So I headed inside for a table minus my two furry companions. It was here I had to make a decision between the restaurant and the bar, as they were separate. It was a little early for lunch so I picked the bar. And don’t judge me, it wasn’t so early that it was socially unacceptable to be drinking beer. Let’s just leave it with that I had a late breakfast.
The restaurant menu consists of seafood, burgers, sandwiches and salads with most items ranging around $13 USD. The restaurant opens daily at 11 am, for those of you who like to get some food in your belly before consuming your daily beers.
I walked into the brewery and forwent the bar seating, finding myself a table near the back. It was an odd location for me and validated why I like to sit at the bar. Service was slower than it would have been at the bar. Perhaps they were also distracted by Minnie Mouse’s attire?!?
I also forwent my traditional tasting flight and opted for 12 oz beers. They’re handy, in a cute sized glass, giving you a nice amount of beer to try out. My first beer was the Not A Session IPA. This beer is categorized as a Pale Ale, with a 4.9% Alcohol By Volume (ABV) and a 40 International Bittering Unit (IBU). The name is a little funny as it is a pale ale but lists IPA (India Pale Ale) in the name. You can ignore that as you enjoy the trifecta of hops used: El Dorado, Citra, and Mosaic. These hops deliver on their promises with a flavor punch of citrus and fruit notes.
My next beer was the Cascade Single Hop IPA with a 6.7% ABV and a 60 IBU. Typically I am not a fan of single hopped beers as I like a little variety in my flavors. This beer, however, was brewed with my old friend the Cascade Hop and won me over. How could it not with a hop profile filled with delicious flavors of grapefruit pairing up with earthy and floral notes.
My last taste was the IPA. A simple name for a not so simple beer. With a 7.5% ABV and a 70 IBU this beer is brewed and dry hopped with the Meridian and Crystal hops. Orange citrus, earthy and spicy notes run through this beer. I definitely picked up more citrus notes over the earthy/spice mix.
I rounded up my last sip of the IPA as I finished up my visit to Buoy Brewing, still contemplating whether or not we were going to see Mickey join Minnie at the bar. But alas I had to be on my way, the dogs were waiting.
Buoy Beer Company is located at 1 Eighth Street Astoria Oregon.