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A Historic Portland Brewpub Suddenly Closes Today

Widmer Brothers just closed its tap room for good

Widmer Brothers Brewing/Facebook

Widmer Brothers is closing its pub after 22 years of service, the storied brewery revealed in a Facebook post today. Citing financial difficulties and increased competition, the recently revamped tap room will remain open for private parties alone.

The post was met with an outpouring of sadness at the news, with hundreds of comments within the first hour speaking to the loss of an institution. The pub, which opened in 1996, was one of the earlier brewpubs to open in a city, a destination for many of Portland’s early brewers, both professional and amateur. Though it continued to be a popular spot, competition from the 100-plus other Portland brewpubs made it a struggle to be financially viable, according to the post. It’s not the first classic brewpub to close within the last six months; both Portland Brewing and Alameda shuttered their restaurants last fall.

Despite the sudden closure, the brewery itself won’t be going anywhere. Widmer’s brewing operation will continue to release signature beers like Hefe and Drop Top as well as other ales and lagers, including new small-batch brews in cans. The brewery will launch revamped tours starting in February, and will retain its retail store with beers and merchandise. The beer garden and pub will be available for private events.