Friday, November 14, 2008

Obligatory Green Dragon Post

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:
  1. The employees.
  2. The food.
  3. The taplist.
Let's look at these one at a time. Rogue promises to keep the current staff; people eventually change jobs anyway -- you can't freeze the personnel in place no matter how much you like them. There's already been so much turnover there that -- except for Chris -- I feel like I'm still getting used to the current roster.

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:
  • Brewpublic: original scoop and public backlash.
  • The Beer Here: Rogue responds.
  • The Champagne of Blogs: petition to keep the status quo.
  • Beervana: voice of moderation and more reactions.
Anyway, time will tell. If Rogue takes the fun out of it -- and I don't see how that could happen -- we'll drift away from the Dragon and that will be that. But I have high hopes.


  1. Hey Bill,

    Sorry about not getting back to you sooner. After the sixth call yesterday, I could not really respond anymore. I am hoping that my reputation precedes me, but it is up to Rogue. Thanks for your 2 cents.


  2. Corey: No worries. I've got my fingers crossed for you.

  3. I've even got Vaughn's fingers crossed for you.

  4. Sharon and I cross our fingers & our toes...