Standing Stone Presses the Re-Set Button in 2022
Guest Author: Elisha Lewis, Standing Stone Brewing Company
New year, new menu, new leadership! Talk about positive “New Year’s resolutions” put into action! Standing Stone Brewing Company (SSBC) has kicked off the start of 2022 with a renewed sense of optimism, thanks to some considerable changes across the board, including a talented head chef leading a team of highly capable team members.
Executive Chef Jared Settell hails from Eagle Point, Oregon with nearly a decade of experience working in various kitchens across the Rogue Valley. He brings a fresh, energetic interpretation of typical pub fare with an elevated flair.
“Passion is the fuel that drives me to be a chef. My love for the craft is strong, and I want to inspire and share that with others. Cooking is an extension of myself, and to create dishes for others to enjoy is what it’s really all about for me. Coming to work for Standing Stone Brewing Company is an honor, and I’m proud to develop food that pairs beautifully with our [brew pub’s] equally amazing craft beers. It’s also a pleasure to work with such great teammates to push through the challenging barriers this pandemic has continually brought to the forefront of our industry.”
Settell and his team have introduced a new Winter menu with items appealing to all tastes and palates. In keeping with tradition, there are still SSBC signature items available such as Crispy Fried Brussels Sprouts, Sweet Potato Curry Fries and their house “Create Your Own Burger.” However, guests can now enjoy new and creatively executed dishes such as a Kimchi Rueben fusing an American classic with an Asian twist, a Veggie Grinder packed with both fresh and marinated veggies, Smoked Salmon Chowder featuring Alaskan wild caught Coho salmon and Blackened Ahi Tuna with braised kale, pineapple pico de gallo and chai tea infused rice, to name a few.
Settell added that many of these menu items cater to various dietary preferences and restrictions to include vegetarian, pescatarian and vegan lifestyles. Celiac and allergy restrictions are also carefully considered. As always, gluten free buns and pizza crusts are offered, as well as tofu. Want to jazz up the vegetarian Kimchi or Quinoa Bowls? There is an option to add grilled or fried chicken, an SSBC beef patty, ahi tuna or even a 7-minute egg to these, as well as their entree salads! For vegan tastes, the Black Bean Chili is a savory crowd-pleaser, and flavor packed items such as the Veggie Grinder can be tailored to omit their house baguette in favor of the sandwich’s vegetable medley served over spring mix or chopped romaine instead. Another vegan favorite? The Vietnamese Salad. Comprised of Napa and purple cabbage, red bell peppers, red onion, cucumbers and carrots, it’s tossed in a fresh mint-sesame vinaigrette, and topped with pan-fried tofu and shaved almonds. In the spirit of keeping menu items as new and as exciting as possible, Settell will introduce a new menu quarterly that will not only embrace the seasons, but also the local and regionally sourced products available to them.
Joining Settell is Sous Chef Nathaniel Hudek, otherwise known as “Moose.” Having roughly 7 years culinary experience under his belt, he is also an Oregon native who has worked in restaurants across the valley, and as far reaching as Lake Tahoe. Sharing a love of the industry, he matches Settell’s energy.
“Cooking has always been a deep passion of mine. Nothing is more pleasing than knowing I made a dish that someone else is going to enjoy. The kitchen experience is like no other; we’re a community built on development. From the [slowly enjoyed] delicacy of desserts to the fast-paced intensity of the dinner rush, there is never a dull moment (or knife). You build deep connections with like-minded individuals and bring incredible creations to the local culinary world [for all to enjoy]. What’s not to love?”
The introduction of the new Winter menu items has already brought several accolades to include five-star reviews and a local following that validates the excellent job Settell and his team are doing.
In addition to a VIP kitchen crew, the brew pub has also focused on putting a fresh new spin on their brand. They recently introduced a new line of Standing Stone merchandise to include super soft tees, long sleeve shirts and hoodies. These retail items feature organic materials and are available in both men’s and women’s fits, as well as unisex sizes. They also offer inclusive sizing ranging from extra small to double extra-large.
New shirt designs also inspired a face-lift for their branded glass growlers, which they fill for those wishing to take their beer home! These recently released growlers (1/2 gallon and 1 liter) feature an homage to their namesake, Standing Stone, otherwise known as Pilot Rock; the new design bears their trademark logo as well as the famous landmark itself, which stands at 5,910 feet overlooking the Shasta and Rogue Valleys.
And finally, at the heart of the operation lies their craft beer itself, which they proudly produce entirely in-house at the hands of Master Brewer Scott Saulsbury. Three flagship brews, Twin Plunge Double IPA, I ❤ Oregon Ale and Tempest IPA are available year-round, while Saulsbury also adds additional, seasonally inspired, one-of-a-kind beers. They are brewed in 10-barrel batches making approximately 500 barrels a year. Regionally provided and sourced water, malted barley and yeast all go into these signature brews for their guests to enjoy! The new year has brought a whole new inspiration of vibrant, hoppy flavor profiles. Saulsbury’s latest release? A single hopped brew Called Windsor Winter Pale Ale, in honor of Mount Ashland’s ski run named after Shakespeare’s “Merry Wives of Windsor.” At 5.8% abv, it boasts flavors of citrus and orchard fruit with a lingering bitterness. Upon your next visit, order the $6 Sample Tray and try all 8 beers on tap!
While the pandemic has and continues to introduce challenges within the restaurant industry, Standing Stone Brewing Company remains strong in their resolve to overcome such adversity. Now more than ever, this family-owned brewery and other Rogue Valley restaurants need the support of locals. So, head on down to the brew pub, enjoy a meal on their open-air patio and raise a pint to the new year!
To view Standing Stone’s current menu, beers on tap or new merchandise on-line, visit: standingstonebrewing.com
All photos by Elisha Lewis