Come on, the waters fine


It’s well known that Central Oregon is a national hotbed for brewing beer. Bend’s new nickname is Beer City, thanks to its abundance of high-quality, artisan, craft beer breweries.

But it isn’t just Bend. Redmond and Sisters have breweries, and recently a micro brew pub opened in Prineville. Brew pubs are everywhere in the area — except on the north end of it. Jefferson County is still waiting for its first brew pub, or micro brewer that bottles for public consumption.

Our Deschutes Valley Water District was recently recognized as the best tasting water in Oregon. Hear that, brewers?

We do have our local bottlers of that fine resource — Earth2O and Opal Springs Water Co. in Culver — that are strong contributors to our economy. Through their product, they are also promoting our excellent water, thereby the Madras-Culver area in general.

Not that DVWD is overly interested in a brewery locating here (DVWD’s focus is serving the local resident and business consumers of their water, not necessarily the exporters of it), but it is a primary focus of other economic entities. Economic Development for Central Oregon has made the brewing, distilling and wineries sectors one of five which it will focus on for Jefferson County. That’s an indication of the importance of that sector.

Let’s hope the Madras-Culver area soon joins the rest of the Central Oregon and lures a micro brewer and/or brew pub — or a distiller — to establish here. Can’t you just see our local micro brewer’s creations on the shelves right now? Maybe a Jackrabbit Ale, Willow Creek Porter, perhaps an Irrigator’s IPA.

One of the West’s former “macro” brewers, Olympia, used to profess that “it’s the water” that made their beer so unique and good. I’m not sure Oly was either, but the ad campaign was strong.

If it is indeed the water, then “it” is right here.

- Tony Ahern