(Newport, OR) – On May 1st, 1989, John Maier walked into a garage in Newport, Oregon and began making craft beer history.
Tucked away in Newport’s commercial fishing district and across from a fish processing plant, the Rogue brewery contained only a 15 barrel brew system and a couple fermenters in 872 square feet. Barley and hops were loaded by hand and kegs were stored a few miles away in a remote warehouse.
John brewed our very first batch of beer in Newport and has subsequently overseen and created each of the 17,523 (and counting) brews of Rogue Ales, Lagers, Porters, Stouts, Meads and Braggots in the past 25 years. John is a working brewmaster. He is in the brewery brewing 5 days-a-week and often stops by on the weekend to check in on his “babies”. No Rogue product leaves the brewery without John’s blessing.
Rogue Brewmaster John Maier checking the hops at the Rogue Farms Hopyard in Independence, Oregon.
Nicknamed “More Hops”, John’s 25-year record at Rogue speaks for itself:
Named 1986 Homebrewer of the Year for a barleywine, this winning recipe is still made today in XS Old Crustacean Barleywine.
Awarded in 1997 the inaugural Russell Scherer Award for Brewing Innovation by the Brewers Association.
Over 1,000 awards for quality and excellence, including 28 GABF Medals.
The portfolio of beers created by John is astounding: over 200 varieties of beers including XS I2PA, Shakespeare Stout, Mogul Madness, Dead Guy Ale, Hazelnut Brown Nectar, Yellow Snow, Chocolate Stout, Mocha Porter, Pumpkin Patch Ale, 7 Hop IPA, Moritmoto Imperial Pilsner, Brutal Bitter, Youngers Special Bitter, Oregon Golden, Chipotle Ale, Logger Lager, Saint Rogue Red, Santa’s Private Reserve, and XS Russian Imperial Stout.
John has also created a significant “brewers family tree” over 25 years; dozens of brewers have studied under John and eventually moved on to become successful brewmasters and brewery owners across the country.
All new citizens to the Rogue Nation pledge that, “may John Maier live long and prosper.” We couldn’t agree more.
Happy Anniversary John. And thanks for an amazing 25 years.