Beerchaser Miscellany II

One Year of Touring Taverns, Pubs and Bars and Still Going Strong

Thebeerchaser Tour – One Year Anniversary

It has been one year since Thebeerchaser’s Tour of Portland Bars commenced.  During that year I have reviewed 23 bars, pubs and taverns and the original premise for taking this journey has been confirmed — each bar has had its own personality, ambiance, flaws and character.  From the first stop – Brooklyn Park Pub (August 2011) to Lutz Tavern (July 2012) and even the one in Washington (Pourhouse – August, 2012) – all have been worth the visit.

As a result, I strongly disagree with the quote from a review of one of the bars I visited:

“I’m beginning to understand the formula for what constitutes a popular bar in Portland….Make it dark, create some reason for the service to suck and make PBR cheaper than soda….”

Good – But Doesn’t Make the Bar Necessarily Great

Because of the sheer number of Portland bars, my original guidelines were to visit a bar from each letter of the alphabet and then restart the cycle; however, I have thrown that practice out.  I go where you suggest or where I happen to see bartenders, bar stools, PBR or microbrews sold, etc. ……The guideline of reviewing only Portland bars also fell by the wayside when I reviewed Pour House – a Port Townsend establishment.  It was too good not to share and I will occasionally do future non-Portland venues.


During the last year, seven Beerchasers-of-the-Month (or Quarter when I get lazy) have been designated – an “honor” for which the person may or may not have a direct or indirect with beer or bars – I just wanted to tell you about them.  They include:

Craig Hanneman – Former OSU and Pittsburgh Steeler Football Player and Business Executive

The Crew of the USS Constitution

PSU Economics Professor, Dr. John Walker

Retired Oregonian columnist, John Terry

Author Dr. Frankfurt – Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at Princeto

Dr. Harry Frankfurt, Author of On Bullshit             

Crime Novelist James Crumley *

Four Portland Bartenders

Retired Chemical Engineer, Harold Schlumberg

* Crumley, a now deceased Montana writer, had an affinity for bars and beer (and gin) and was credited by some reviewers with the best opening line of any crime novel.  From his book, The Last Good Kiss:         

      “When I finally caught up with Abraham Trahearne, he was drinking beer with an alcoholic bulldog named Fireball Roberts, in a ramshackle joint just outside of Sonoma, California, drinking the heart right out of a fine spring afternoon.”                  

Drinking Buddy — Fireball Roberts

After reading another of his novels – The Mexican Tree Duckone gets a taste for Crumley’s perspective:

“I went through so much help that I actually hired a woman so drunk that she had forgotten that I had fired her the week before.”

Noted Crime Novelist


Bar Joke Update

Occasionally, I have posted a few bar jokes from my collection.  This month’s selection is timeless – so to speak….:

“The past, present and future walk into a bar —

 It was really tense…..”              

It’s All Relative….

Becomes “light” headed when he drinks too much!

% * @ + !




What Distinguishes Portland Besides Its Beers and Bars?

Voodoo Donuts, of course –

Brewer’s Inspiration

and as The Week, a national magazine in its August 17th issue reported on the new Rogue Brewery  Voodoo Donut Bacon Maple Ale. “This brew combines the flavors of wood-smoked malts and real maple syrup and bacon to create a ‘smoky, porky, nutty’ taste.”

Do you want pancakes or hasbrowns and eggs with that beer?

Makes Thebeerchaser wonder if he should stick to Keystone Light….!

Phoenix Sign

This sign from our visit to a bar named “The Speakeasy” in Phoenix last spring was worth sharing:

John Mansfield Update

A good friend and one of my favorite lawyers and former colleague, Schwabe Williamson and Wyatt’sJohn Mansfield, accompanied me on my visit to Mock Crest Tavern last May.  John is a patent lawyer and one, like many lawyers, who is extremely literal as contrasted to literate.   For example, after reading the phrase in the Mock Crest menu, “Breakfast Served – Any Time,” he tried to order “French Toast from the Renaissance Era.”                      

John and Hanna

Since our visit, he turned 50 and had a wonderful birthday party planned by his wife, Hanna (“John Mansfield Goes to L”) – As pointed out previously, John is a Renaissance Man having majored in music at the U of O before getting his law degree Magna Cum Laude at Cornell.  Highlight of the evening was John dazzling the crowd with classical (Dvorak) and then some more contemporary George Gershwin selections on the piano.

The Piano Man Will Also Prosecute Your Patent

He revealed to me another example of an attorney’s tendency to be literal causing a problem.  “A lawyer walking to the courthouse is waiting at a corner for a “Walk” signal next to a German Shepherd and a teenage boy walks up.  The boy asks the lawyer if his dog bites and the lawyer says “no,” so the kid leans down and pets the dog, who promptly sinks his teeth into the kid’s arm.  The boy says to the lawyer, “I thought you said your dog didn’t bite.”  The lawyer responds, “I did.  That’s not my dog….”

Not the Lawyer’s Dog…..

I was glad that John related this tale rather than that of the lawyer he knows whose last case was Budweiser.


Phoenix Sun – Not!  And Speaking of Keystone Light….

Most basketball fans know that former Phoenix Suns guard, Steve Nash, was traded to the Lakers recently.

I loved the story from his first trip to SmogTown.  Some fans, saw him driving down the freeway.

Rates a Keystone Light Before Even Playing……

They recognized him in the back seat of his chauffeur-driven vehicle and shouted to  him when they pulled up beside him – both vehicles still traveling at full speed.  As the story goes, they proceeded to hand him a Key Stone Light, which he said he appreciated.

Perhaps when he has his first good game, he’ll rate a Stella.

Beerchaser of the Quarter – Summer 2012 – Craig Hanneman — “The Dude”

The Dude

The Dude in Uniform in 1970 at OSU

According to the 2010 US census, Turner, Oregon had a population of 1,199.  In 1949, the population was not dramatically different .  Gas sold for 17 cents per gallon, the Dow Jones reached a high of 200, 45 RPM records and NATO were both rolled out.


Craig Hanneman was born in Salem.  He grew up in Turner and the population may have jumped by the equivalent of 2.5 people.  That’s because his accomplishments as an athlete, business executive and family man in the next 63 years would exceed what many individuals accomplish in a lifetime.

For those who are bored or with a morbid sense of curiosity, Turner was incorporated by the  Oregon Legislature in 1905 and has a total area of 1.6 square miles. Its motto – “The Good Neighbor Town.”

Incorporated in 1905

Craig recently stated, Turner had one sawmill and two taverns but no medical facility, so I was delivered in the big city of Salem. I went to Cascade Union H.S. for three years  but transferred to South Salem my senior year.”

Cascade Union High – Where Hanneman First Played on the Gridiron

Former OSU All-American tackle, Olympic wrestler and Craig’s future SAE fraternity brother, Jess “Froggie” Lewis, also went to Cascade Union High.

All American and Olympian

Hanneman’s taste for our favorite beer – “Blitz – at Price’s Tavern in Corvallis, helps to earn Craig (hereafter “The Dude”) the August Beerchaser of the MonthHowever, his off-season exploits at Prices and other long gone venues such as Don’s Den and The Peacock (it seems to be the only pub we frequented that is still around) are overshadowed by other contributions to his athletic teams, state and his recent high-profile exploit shown below:

Mt. Everest 29,029 Feet in Elevation

For in May, Craig become the first former (or for that matter, active) NBA or NFL player to successfully reach the summit of the world’s highest peak which equates to 2.6 times the elevation of Oregon’s Mt. Hood.

This 2012 Mt. Everest climb literally capped a mountaineering hobby started when Craig turned 50 and climbed Mt. St. Helens with football buddies, Mark Dippel, Scott Freeburn and Bob Jossis and includes reaching the top of Mt.McKinley in Alaska and Mt Vinson in Antarctica (and perhaps Mary’s Peak back in Corvallis.)

Accommodations on the Ascent

Thebeerchaser (known as “Dirt” in college) was privileged to be Craig’s SAE fraternity brother, and in 1969 was even his room-head in a four-person study room in which we became much better acquainted.  In college I was about 5″10″ and weighed 140 pounds dripping wet, so you can see by the relative comparison below that The Dude’s athletic prowess as a defensive tackle was due to speed, quickness and desire rather than bulk…..
“Dirt” (aka Thebeerchaser) and “Dude”
First let’s look at his athletic accomplishments:
Oregon State:  Defensive tackle from 1968 to 1970 under legendary Coach Dee Andros.  Some of the awards include Rookie of the Year and culminate with being named Team Captain and Most Valuable Defensive Player in 1970.  In the Cal game, he had 13 tackles!        
He was 2nd Team All American and First Team All Pac 10 and All Coast in addition to playing in the East-West Shrine Game, the Hula Bowl, the All America Bowl and the College All-Star Game.  In 1992, he was inducted into the OSU Athletic Hall of  Fame.
NFL: Although his career was relatively short (1972-76) because of injuries, he played for the Steelers in the 1972 Divisional Playoff Game against the Oakland Raiders – a contest most remembered for the “Immaculate Reception” by teammate, Franco Harris. The Dude’s anecdotes about Harris, Mean Joe Greene and Terry Bradshaw are very entertaining.  He also played two years for the Patriots.
Besides his Mt. Everest accomplishment, another “first” for the The Dude was in 1970 in Dr. Ed McGrath’s upper-division political science seminar .   That’s when he and teammate, Mark Dippel, a starting guard on the OSU Football Team, became McGrath’s first students to chew tobacco during class. McGrath, who was my advisor and always glared at me because I walked into class with the “chewers,” at least appreciated the fact that they used a pot-pie tin for the residue……..

Chew in the Context of Political Theory


His fraternity brothers will also remember the restraint he showed after being bitten in the shoulder (three stitches required) by a Sigma Chi center in the C-Team Intramural Basketball Championship Game at OSU.


Craig absorbed the lessons from Dr. McGrath’s and other classes at OSU because he had a very successful business and political career after his NFL Days.  Perhaps the best summary from the following excerpts in a testimonial by Oregon Republican Congressman Greg Walden, from the September 28,2008 Congressional Record:


“Hanneman didn’t exactly coast into the next chapter of his professional life when his football career concluded.   Craig owned and managed a 200 acre farm and forest operation in Polk County, Oregon for seven years after his NFL career, where he honed his expertise in the agricultural and natural resource arena.

Craig was elected County Commissioner of Polk County in 1985, and his determination and inclusive ways were instrumental in eliminating an inherited county budget deficit and establishing a $1 million reserve fund without levying new taxes

Throughout 12 years at Willamette Industries (as Director of Public Affairs), 2 years at the Weyerhaeuser Company (which bought Willamette Industries in 2002), and 5 years at Oregon Forestry Industry Council, Craig has achieved a tremendous list of accomplishments and established a sterling reputation throughout Oregon and his industry nationally as a highly effective and inspiring leader of great integrity.

 Madam Speaker, as you can see, Craig Hanneman is a special leader. I would be remiss, however, if I didn’t note that Craig is also a great family man. Craig and his wife, Kathy, an educator, have been married for 34 years. Together they have raised three outstanding and successful children. Molly is a public servant here in our nation’s capital, Paul is an Army Staff Sergeant serving his second tour in Iraq, and Annie is a junior at Oregon State University.”                       

Tribute From a Republican Beaver…

However, let’s finish with a little bit more about the Mt. Everest climb.  I quickly learned when rooming with him in 1972, that Dude had an obsession with Dean Martin.  I learned, through endless repetition, the lyrics to “Thirty More Miles to San Diego” and “”Ain’t That a Kick in the Head” which to this day periodically return during night sweats.

And as a recent e-mail from Craig attests, it may have been some of the “conditioning” he got in Room 2 at the SAE house that helped him in  his climb:

“Okay, I’ll admit it, all those late night sessions playing “flinchies” (that’s another story…..)really hardened me up to climb Everest!   And to prove some things never change, you’ll be pleased to know I had plenty of Dean Martin tunes on my iPod Nano to help drown out the noisy wind at night.”                                              

Thirty More Miles to San Diego or 7,500 More Feet to the Summit…


Another climb issue worth noting was the MIA Flag that Craig carried and planted at the Summit.

“My son is an Army 10th SF Group guy and he and his team are very supportive of what the MIA flag stands for. So I flew it in Base Camp for over a month and carried three to the summit. I planted one and brought two down. I gave one to Paul’s 10th Group and the other I would like to give to a POW-MIA organization so they can have the first MIA flag that flew on top of the world to honor those who never returned.”

Craig and the Sherpa, Phunuru, plant the MIA Flag on the Summit


Mike, Heidi (fellow climbers) and Craig

Mt. Everest, Lhutsa and Nupte from Pomoroi

So What’s Next??

Who knows what the Dude plans to do next.  Based on his Everest Climb in 2012, however, and his trip to Pamplona, Spain in 2011, where he and four other former defensive lineman on the 1970 OSU Football team Ran with the Bulls, he’s not going to be passive.

The Dude, Scott Freeburn, Mark Dippel, Jim Sherbert and Bob Jossis drink beer after their run in Pamplona

SAE’s at OSU in 1969 (Hanneman 3rd Row up on Left)