Fat Head’s

“It’s the windows,” I say.

The question, posed by my friend Luis. Like so many folks, he’s new to town, and wanted to know, was: “Of all the breweries in Portland, why is Fat Head’s Brewery your favorite?”

“The windows are huge. They allow for uninhibited and always interesting Portland People Watching. Plus, you know, headwiches and beer.”

“Headwiches?” He said.

Located in the Brewery Blocks of NW Portland, Fat Head’s Brewery stands out as a unique place to grab a nice microbrew and headwiches. “Come, Luis. I’ll show you” I said. “It’s on me.”

And our journey began.

We hopped on the MAX (just to be on the safe side) and made the leisurely trek through Portland from Cedar Hills. We exited the MAX and wandered through the Brewery Blocks until we hit the standalone building, bedecked in red brick. It’s impossible to be missed.

Inside, brick walls and tall wooden ceilings adorned with hubcaps, posters and large wooden beams mingled with the hum of conversation. Traditional seating, as well as giant spools for those who want to stand and observe, also add to the ambiance. Of course, I made sure we grabbed a window seat.

It was a delightfully, weird Portland day. One guy walked by, his skin so covered in tattoos that his true skin tone was hard to determine. A few moments later, there was a child, could not be more than five years old, with a torn Black Flag shirt and hair coiffed to perfection. His mother sauntered with him holding him with her left hand, and a bull mastiff in the right. More dogs. More kids. A guy strolled by on a unicycle holding a brief case. A lady, who was seventy years if she was a day, pulled up to the curb in a Vespa. Yes. This was Portland, Oregon.

We ordered Headwiches and beer. You might think of them as sandwiches, but at Fat Head’s Brewery, they’re “Headwiches.” Each headwich is stacked high with no less than two meats. Its name derives from the fact that each one is roughly the size of your head.

“That’s a big sandwich,” Luis said when his Pull Monty (pulled pork, jalapenos, bacon, coleslaw) arrived.

“Headwich,” I corrected him. I ordered the Twisted Brisket, which consists of beef brisket (smoked in house), smoky barbecue sauce, onion crisps, Tillamook cheddar cheese and a sunny side up egg.

But, we took the max because the beers here are big, and have higher alcohol content than other beers. From the Hop Juju IPA, to my favorite (the Alpenglow Weizenbock), to the Battle Axe Baltic Porter, these beers are award winning, creative and delicious.

All in all, between the gigantic and delicious headwich, the beers and people watching, the night at the Fat Head’s Brewery was a success. The Fat Head’s Brewery is located in the Brewery blocks in Portland at 132 NW 13th Ave.

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