803 E 4th St., Enterprise, 541-426-3000, terminalgravitybrewing.com.
What's the best brewpub burger you've ever had? I've had a lot, and none of them has come close to the burger at this remote brewpub in Enterprise. Nestled in the rugged Wallowas, in the far northeastern corner of the state, Terminal Gravity has been making IPA for 20 years now.
TG's eponymous hop bomb was once the trendy pick for lupulin-lovers. It was originally delivered to Portland in the owner's truck, eight kegs at a time, and you'll still see handles at old-school bars around town. But few fans make the trek out to this remote brewpub, which sits inside a homey former sausage factory next to the newer 18-barrel production facility.
The beers are very good when fresh—I was especially taken with the Kentucky Common, a throwback style of dark cream ale popular in the whiskey-soaked Louisville, Ky., area between the Civil War and Prohibition.
But that burger is the reason to drive six hours to Enterprise. It's made with a third of a pound of grass-fed beef from 6 Ranch, a local operation working with the Corriente breed, descended from the cattle the Spanish turned loose on the open range upward of 500 years ago. Mine was a perfect medium, with rich juiciness bursting out onto the melty blue cheese atop the patty.
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