Brew pub expands operations after six years
Six years and change since opening its doors, Chehalem Valley Brewing continued its maturation as a business this month with word that it is expanding its operations, both in terms of size and culinary offerings.
The business at 2525B Portland Road (behind Ye Olde Pizza) has moved its brewing operation to a location on Industrial Way. That has allowed the business' co-owners, John Price and Paul Looney, to move its kitchen from a trailer behind the building to a newly-built facility within the pub. The development not only allows the business to expand its menu, but also provides additional space at the brewery to host small events.
The kitchen is now shepherded by Chef Jeff Rott, a 30-year veteran and former executive chef at Bon Appetit, who is responsible for creating a lunch menu, which is set to launch Oct. 2 with new hours: 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 Monday through Friday and noon to 2:30 p.m. on Saturdays.
"Jeff recently came on board with CVB to experience a more non-corporate lifestyle and help take the CVB menu to the next level," Looney said. "Jeff is creating dishes for CVB that he's never created before and we look forward to seeing what new tasty dishes he comes up with next."
The culinary selection will augment the pub's primary emphasis — beer. The pub typically carries 12 of its own beers, ranging from blonde and amber ales to IPAs, a porter and a stout. The establishment also brews seasonal beers that range from Belgium blondes to berry wheats and vanilla stouts.
"We also carry what we call guest taps," Looney said. "Typically these consist of styles that we cannot make ourselves: ciders, gluten-free beers, lagers, etc."
The business' success has been consistent since opening in June 2011. "We have averaged about a 10-percent increase in sales since opening," he said.
Adding lunch should add to those sales and fill a need for customers apparently that have gone unmet.
"Every day we see people driving by the pub to see if we're open for lunch," Looney said. "We also have people come in all the time who say they didn't realize we serve food now."
That's understandable as the business opened as a public house with only a few flagship beers on tap and allowed customers to bring in their own food or have pizza delivered from Ye Olde.
The expansion has given the business additional space for brewing, bottling and distribution, while also allowing space at the pub for construction of the new kitchen.
"The last three years have been very challenging providing food for the ever-increasing patronage out of a 12-foot mobile kitchen behind the pub," Looney said, adding the new expansion will allow the operation to grow and cater more effectively to its customers.