More drama from the Green Dragon. The Portland beer-snob community is completely up-in-arms about the proposed sale of the Dragon (or Ed's 2/3 of it, anyway) to Rogue.
Personally, I think it could be a positive thing. Ed was new to the pub business, and he wasn't particularly interested in beer. In my opinion, getting beer people in at the top is not a bad thing -- Ed's a nice guy, but just a few months ago everyone was wringing their hands about the loss of control by Jim Parker and Lolo.
Most people know that Ed had chosen another local brewer to take over the slowly-gestating brewing operation -- a friend of mine, as it happens. He hasn't been officially hired yet, so I'll be a little upset if the sale puts a stop to that. If he does get to become a Rogue brewer, that's a huge feather in his cap, not to mention an excellent catch by Rogue. So I'm looking on the bright side.
Why are so many people upset? There's an undercurrent of animosity towards Rogue -- puzzling to me, because they make some damn good beer -- but there is also a fear of change in three areas:
- The employees.
- The food.
- The taplist.
The food has seen its ups and downs at the Dragon. Currently it's up, though the last time I ate there I bit into a twist-tie that was in my po-boy. That was right about the time that a visiting blogger from California reported her own ewww-gross moment (long post -- see 3rd paragraph from the bottom) at the Dragon. I don't think the sky will fall if Rogue takes over the kitchen.
Finally, I think the taplist will benefit from an infusion of Rogue beers. When Parker and Lolo were first telling people about the pub they were opening, they were very proud of the fact that they would pour beers you couldn't find anywhere else in town. It's a great concept, but my experience has been that the list gets clogged with a mix of mediocre beers and expensive beers, for the simple reason that the awesome normal-priced beers get sold out quickly and everything else languishes waiting for someone to buy it.
Here's some of the brouhaha from blog-land: