Great Lakes Brewing Company and Deschutes Brewery Release Imperial Smoked Porter Collaboration Brew

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Smoked porter is the second beer in Deschutes Brewery’s Class of ‘88 Collaboration Series to celebrate 25th anniversaries shared with other craft breweries around the nation.

Cam O'Connor of Deschutes Brewery (left) and Mark Hunger of Great Lakes Brewing Co collaborating.

This collaboration was especially gratifying as we are recognizing a true landmark in the history of both our companies – 25 years of bringing craft beer to market. What a great way to celebrate.

Deschutes Brewery and Great Lakes Brewing Company, both founded in 1988, have come together to create an imperial smoked porter to celebrate their shared silver anniversary. This beer is the second in Deschutes Brewery’s Class of ‘88 collaboration series, which celebrates the anniversary of craft breweries around the country that were founded in 1988. This new beer was created to build on a history of great porters from both breweries: Great Lakes Brewing Company’s Edmund Fitzgerald Porter out of Cleveland, Ohio and Deschutes Brewery’s Black Butte Porter out of Bend, Oregon.

“We enjoy creating collaboration beers, and the sense of camaraderie and partnership that it brings, both to us and to our fans,” said Mark Hunger, brewing and quality control manager for Great Lakes Brewing Company. “This collaboration was especially gratifying as we are recognizing a true landmark in the history of both our companies – 25 years of bringing craft beer to market. What a great way to celebrate.”

Hunger and Deschutes Brewery brewmaster, Cam O’Connor, traveled to each other’s locations to work together on the development of the beer. The beers were brewed using the same raw ingredients, with the exception of the yeast and water in each respective location. The result? Fans will have to decide how much the two versions of the beer differ (or not) from brewery to brewery.

Both breweries have distribution in the states of Minnesota and Illinois, so side-by-side tasting events are being planned for mid-May in those regions. Stay tuned to the Deschutes Brewery events page and Great Lakes Brewing Co.’s website for more information. Both beer versions will be available in each respective brewery’s distribution area for a very limited time in 22-ounce bottles. ABV: 9% IBUs: 50

The first beer in the Class of ‘88 series was a barley wine made in collaboration with Rogue Ales and North Coast Brewing Company. The other planned brew in Deschutes Brewery’s Class of ‘88 series includes a Belgian-Style Strong Golden Ale with Chicago’s Goose Island Beer Company.

About Deschutes Brewery
Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, Deschutes Brewery began as a brew pub in downtown Bend, Oregon and is known for such brands as Black Butte Porter, its flagship brew and the nation’s number one selling craft porter, and the popular Mirror Pond Pale Ale. In addition to its original Bend pub, this family and employee-owned brewery opened a second pub in Portland’s Pearl District in 2008. The company’s main brewing facility is located on the banks of the Deschutes River and produces over 250,000 barrels of beer annually for distribution in 20 states and two provinces. To find out more, visit

About Great Lakes Brewing Company
Great Lakes Brewing Company, which is comprised of a brewery and brewpub, was founded in 1988 by brothers Pat and Dan Conway as the first microbrewery in the state of Ohio and today remains Ohio’s most celebrated and award-winning brewer of lagers and ales. For more information or to learn more about the company, visit

For more information, contact:
Marie Melsheimer, 541-815-3951
Marissa DeSantis, 216.325.0226


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Marie Melsheimer
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