April 27, 2009 (Updated February 2, 2012)

Most weeks, Grant McOmie travels into the great Oregon outdoors to find unique adventures but not so this week. Instead, he’s found his way into the heart of Portland where the natural world is alive and well. Grant visits a unique eco-pub where sustainability is king and where reduce, reuse and recycle provide the foundation of a thriving new business called the “HUB – Hopworks Urban Brewery.”

Folks come from all over to SE Portland’s 29th and Powell to sip a brew, dine with friends and relax in the knowledge that things are different in the newest neighborhood eco-pub.

The HUB is an eco-Pub and it’s a first on the SE Portland brew scene that’s built upon the practices of sustainability, organic ingredients and eco-friendly ideas. The business is the brainchild of Christian Ettinger, the HUB’s Brewmaster (he has fourteen years experience brewing beer,) and alongside his dad, Roy Ettinger, (a veteran architect of forty years experience) the team co-designed the nearly 17,000 square foot eco-pub.

Christian noted that the bones of the building, the old growth doug fir posts, beams and planks were solid, substantial and deserved new life. The old wood became the booths, bar and other varied pieces of furnishings in the HUB. And then there is Christian’s signature statement; scores of bike frames and old wheel rims that were incorporated above the bar and the booths of his pub.

“Every one of these frames was recycled and I’m only about 300 bucks into this – and it really sets the bar apart from anyplace around.”

Downstairs, you could say the same thing about the HUB’s brewery where pesticide-free and fertilizer-free ingredients are staples of the 10 crafted organic beers that the HUB produces each week. In the kitchen, organic ingredients take center stage too – from pizza dough to the sauces to the sandwiches with all the trimmings and more.

In fact, even the heat from the pizza oven is recycled and circulated to heat the heat the pub’s water. “That’s free heat,” said Christian. “Free heat is free energy and lowers our bills but it also lowers our needs to bring in fossil fuels.”

The Hub is one of just three Oregon breweries – out of 80 statewide – that have made the move to produce all organic beer. The folks who work at the HUB are eager to share and explain all of the different ways that they walk the talk of sustainability. So, stop in and enjoy a beer and strike up a conversation! The folks at HUB will be pleased to tell their story – it’s that sort of a friendly, neighborhood place.

To find other Oregon breweries, click here, and select ‘Breweries’.

Check out photos from this episode here.

About The

Grant McOmie
Grant McOmie is a Pacific Northwest broadcast journalist, teacher and author who writes and produces stories and special programs about the people, places, outdoor activities and environmental issues of the Pacific Northwest. A fifth generation Oregon native, Grant’s roots run deepest in the central Oregon region near Prineville and Redmond where his family continues to live.