Alex Ganum founded Upright Brewing in 2009. He had a passion from brewing and spent seven years doing so before opening Upright in Portland, Ore. According to its site

Upright Brewing specializes in farmhouse inspired beers rooted in France and Belgium but made with a Pacific Northwest twist, while also dabbling in both classic and quirky projects from around the world. The name references the primary instrument of Charles Mingus, a musician whose compositions defy categorization. At Upright the recipes and processes are decidedly unbound, making for true hybrid styles that share Mingus’ spirit of exercising creativity and craft.

If you are wondering about the name, Upright names its beers based off the starting gravity in Belgian brewing degrees. The goal is in large part towards minimalism.

Upright Five bottle

Five was brewed very much in line with the company’s mantra. The bottle indicates the beer was created after the brewers had consumed an array of small production European beers that were heavy on hops. As such, Wiliamette, Liberty and Perle hops were all used and in the bottle version of the beer, Xanthohumol was added.

Upright’s Five is one of the prettier beers I have ever poured in my life. It has a beautiful hazy deep orange and brown color. It is almost like a thick orange juice, but had a cascading of color that went from lighter on top to being darker at the bottom. There is also a good amount of sediment that settled towards the bottom of the beer.

Upright Five

Aroma on this beer is really complex, consisting of light hops, stone fruits and a little bit of a soapy, clean smell and some funk as well. There is a lot going on forcing me to spend awhile taking in deep smells to try and pinpoint everything that is present.

Unfortunately, the taste from Five leaves a bit to be desired. The light hops on the nose turned into a overpowering bitter hop presence on the taste buds. There is a mild sweetness there as well, but not near enough to balance the saison out. The beer is very dry leaving my mouth with a slight cardboard or chalk feeling and bitter taste. Five to ten minutes in and it’s extremely bitter with the balance completely faded.

Upright Brewing Five
BREWERY: Upright Brewing
LOCATION: Portland, Ore.
STYLE: Saison
ABV: 5.5 percent
IBU: 37
PRICE: $11
AVAILABLE IN: 750ml bottles
In the end this was neither a bad beer, nor was it a great beer. It fell into the middle, as most beers do, and is something that I am not disappointed in drinking, but not something I would seek out again. This beer is pretty subpar for Upright as well, they have much better offerings out there. For me, Five was a miss, but it won’t keep me from seeking out future offerings from them.
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