1987, some like-minded Rogues had an idea to start a “Brew Pub”. The next year, a Revolution in beer began in the basement of the Rogue Public House in Ashland, Oregon. The Brewery and Pub opened in October 1988 with the brewery housed beneath a 60 seat Pub. The first beers brewed were American Amber and Oregon Golden.
The brew pub was located in a very pretty and scenic location along a little stream called Lithia Creek. The beer flowed freely and soon Rogue began to seek new land upon which it could grow the Revolution.
In early February 1989, one of Rogue’s founders wandered to Newport in search of the perfect place for another Rogue pub. A terrible and unusual snowstorm struck and our founder was stranded in Newport along its Historic Bay Front. He walked the streets and happened upon Mohava Niemi, founder of Mo’s Restaurants. Mo extended her signature hospitality, welcoming him to the city with a her famous clam chowder. Over a bowl, Mo shared her dream of living above a bar and described the perfect spot for the next Rogue Ales Brew Pub. Mo had a large building that sported three apartments upstairs, a sweater shop, an art gallery, 1,100 sq. ft. of empty storefront, and an 800 sq. ft. garage that was used to store antique cars.
offered the vacant space and the garage at a very generous price, under two stipulations:
“Feed the Fishermen” Mo’s way of saying give back to the local community
Forever display a memorable picture of Mo (it’s still there today to the left of the bar)
onstruction began immediately on Rogue’s Bayfront Brew Pub. Moving a step up in the world, our brewery, which began in a basement in Ashland, was now operating from a garage in Newport. The front of the house was readied.
A short three months later, in May of 1989, John Maier joined Rogue. A Seibel Institute graduate, John’s career prior to brewing for Rogue was engineering. He was a Senior Technician with Hughes Aircraft Co. in El Segundo, CA. for over a decade.
Rogue’s Bayfront Pub opened in May of 1989, with a small but enthusiastic crowd, made up of curious locals who dropped by to see what was happening…and then never left. Many of our first patrons were like family – helping with construction, building a community and participating in projects as needed. The names of many of these early pub-goers have been immortalized with brass plaques that grace the bar today. One of our most notable Rogue patrons was Chuck Linquist. Chuck was retired and had a lifetime love of beer. Chuck crafted the shelves that line the bar area, installed our light sconces and bequeathed most of the memorabelia that rests along the shelf above Mo’s picture at the bar.
So begins the story of Rogue Ales, enjoy!
ogue is a small revolution, which expresses itself through handcrafted Ales, Porters, Stouts, Lagers and Spirits, and this is the way we conduct our business. The spirit of the Rogue brand, even the name, suggests doing things differently, a desire and a willingness to change the status quo. A Rogue Ale, Porter, Stout, Lager or Spirit is crafted to give it unique character, innovative in its makeup and brewing, a process that has not compromised quality. We believe if a Rogue Ale, Porter, Stout, Lager or Spirit cannot be all of these things, it should not be made at all.
We do what we do to become a meaningful industry leader through the products we create and by building an organization that is successful without being big, bureaucratic, or common. To be a leader doesn’t mean you have to be the biggest. The best leaders lead by example and by doing things the right way, even if it means going against the grain. Rogue will stand up to the big guy trying to bully his way into whatever business or territory he wants. Rogue will be David, only this David doesn’t really care if the stone hits the giant or not. Just the idea of throwing the stone is exciting. We make products for the connoisseur, the entrepreneur, and the revolutionist.
Over time Rogue has developed principles to guide what it considers to be a revolution in fermentation. The principles start with six statements known as Rogue’s “Fundamental Agreement.”
The way ahead is clear.
Be honest about the battlefield.
Throw out the old rules that don’t make sense.
Get out of the comfort zone.
Go to the front of the fight and stay there.
And most important, cut out all the B.S.
Behavior principles based on the Fundamental Agreement were developed and dubbed
“The Rogue Way.”
Be there for each other.
It requires working with the best, whether it’s hops, malts, yeast, water, or people.
To brew the finest varietal ales & spirits in the world with an uncompromising devotion to Quality and the Art of Brewing.
To present the finished work with a touch of educational, entertaining mischief.
To be dedicated to the Rogue in each of us.
To remember it is not simply a matter of profit but a highly personal work of art.
To build relationships, not just ales.
To be like great friends and remember it’s what’s inside that counts.