The beer town of the coast is expecting to add another brewery to its repertoire.
Dave Coyne and Nathan Lampson plan to open Obelisk Beer Co. in Astoria in 2022.
“Hopefully, people can look forward to good times and delicious beer in our taproom soon,” Coyne said.
Lampson said he and Coyne are excited about creating a small-scale brewery and having an intimate relationship with the beer they’re making.
“Also to directly contribute our voice within the beer industry with full autonomy as far as sourcing ingredients and creating designs and packaging,” Lampson said.
“It’s such a wonderful industry to work in and it’s filled with a lot of people who are passionate about the community and where the ingredients come from,” Coyne added.
The two plan to produce oak-inspired, barrel-aged beers, as well as pub-style and hoppy beer varieties.
Obelisk is a loose reference to the shape of the Astoria Column. Although “obelisk” is not exactly the accurate term for the column, the name is still a call to place to honor the community and its history.
Obelisk Beer is planned to be a small taproom on Bond Street, the building that housed the Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Co. distribution warehouse in the 1940s and then three family generations of Columbia Fruit and Produce.
The relatively small-scale brewery will produce 10 barrels each time it brews, resulting in 310 gallons.
Coyne said Obelisk will likely host a food option as well, though he’s not yet sure what that will look like.
“We hope to have a comfortable and eclectic gathering space inside,” Coyne said.
Lampson said he and Coyne are passionate about volunteerism and raising funds for local nonprofits.
“We hope to use this space to benefit the community,” Lampson said. “That’s a core tenant to craft breweries and we’re excited to become an asset to the community.”
The Obelisk project paused during the start of the coronavirus pandemic but has picked up since. Lampson and Coyne tentatively plan to open in 2022, depending on the schedule with permits and construction.
“Where we’re at is we’ve worked on financing and we’ve signed a lease for the building and submitted permit applications for the city in order to begin the buildout,” Lampson said. “From here moving forward we would start construction when we’re able to complete all necessary permitting.”
After working together closely at Fort George Brewery, the two decided to start their own venture.
Lampson was at Fort George for about six years, most recently as the marketing and sales director. After Coyne got a degree in illustration, he wanted to get a job in something he cared about while also doing freelance artwork. He’d been homebrewing for years and was interested in getting into the brewery industry, so he joined Fort George in 2013.
He’s worked in several areas at Fort George over the years, from the brewery side to packaging, selling and running a barrel program with a small, test-batch system. He said he got plenty of creative freedom while doing research and development, and still works for Fort George as barrel manager, R&D brewer and illustrator.
“It was great working with Nathan on those projects,” Coyne said. “Now we’re excited to branch off and do our own thing.”
At Fort George, they worked with nonprofits and farmers directly and want to carry on that tradition.