Hops have a history in Independence, Oregon that goes back to the beginning of time. Okay, maybe not the beginning of time but pretty dang close! Hops and hop valleys became commonplace in Independence during the late 1890s with the city even being named the Hop Capitol of the World until the early 1940s. With an estimated 4600 acres of land specifically dedicated to hops, it’s no wonder the emphasis on local beers evolved so naturally in Oregon. While the “Hop Capital of the World” title has faded, Independence’s passion for hops has not, and there are several delicious options for you to try during your next visit.
Live music and friendly atmospheres are present at all the following locations but there are significant idiosyncrasies that help make each establishment a wholly novel experience.
Known to locals as the last restaurant before you head out of town going southbound on Main Street is Gilgamesh Brewing: The River, an extension of Salem’s Gilgamesh Brewing: The Woods.
This flagship brew pub offers tasty food options including all-inclusive burgers, pizzas, salads, and a kid-friendly menu. But the real reason you’re reading this is to hear about the beer. How is it?! A beer aficionado can’t escape the clutches of the classic Pacific Crush IPA that’s built with Sabro hops and hints of coconut, pineapple, and mango.
For bolder drinkers, try the Doug Firocious double IPA—a drink not meant for the faint of heart.
Head on over to Parallel 45 Brewing for a taster’s choice full of craft brews that range from Mexican Lagers to Hazy IPAs and everything in between. Be on the lookout for their new, non-alcoholic Hop Water meant to round out the tap list whose catalog grows day by day.
A particularly exciting time under P45’s roof is Tuesdays and Wednesdays when regular trivia nights and women in Monmouth and Independence trivia nights take place. Fun is personified on these nights with the taste of one of Oregon’s finest craft breweries to boot.
Independence’s newest downtown pub is Golden Hop Saloon, a family-friendly establishment that seeks to service everyone. Stop in for one of their themed nights, half-priced kid’s meals on Mondays, Karaoke on Thursdays, or Live Music every Saturday.
Pair one of their pints with one of their signature paninis and your evening is set. A great place to bring the family while enjoying the sights and sounds of Independence’s small-town feel.
Casual Drinking and Dining
If you’re looking for some casual drinking and dining, visit the Chase Bar and Grill, Brew Coffee and Taphouse, or Arena Sports Bar and Grill. Whether stopping in to play some pool at Arena or hanging out by the fire pit at Brew, these stops will provide you with all kinds of good eats, from delicious burgers, legendary hot wings, or hand-made pasta dishes sure to please just about anyone. For a beer aficionado, the best part is each stop has a large selection of cold brews that pair nicely with their top-notch eats.
HOP Around Indy
We hope this brief snapshot of the best places to celebrate Independence’s hop history (by drink) helps you the next time you’re looking to HOP around our quaint river city.
Stay tuned for more stories featuring a Date Night in Indy, the best sweets in town, and the coziest places to find coffee in our city.
To subscribe to the City of Independence newsletter, visit: https://www.ci.independence.or.us/mayor/webform/subscribe-email-newsletter