In Greek mythology, Atlas was a titan. He not only held up the celestial spheres, but was the titan of astronomy and navigation and governed the moon. A little thing called the Atlantic Ocean was even named after him, so, in other words, he did pretty well for himself.
On a more local plane, Atlas is the cider company created in 2013 by Dan McCoy and his wife, named after their adorable 3-year-old son. You can get most of their ciders on a number of local taps all throughout Central Oregon (plus Washington and Idaho), but starting on June 19, you will be able to check out their new cider bar in the Old Mill Marketplace, smack dab in the middle of the Bend Ale Trail.
This new cider tasting room was the next logical step for McCoy after the tasting room on Wilson Avenue, where their production facilities are located. "This new cider bar will be a great spot to hang out and drink our ciders," McCoy says. "Being on Wilson, that was originally the goal—to make great, craft Oregon cider. As people have our ciders and visit Bend and want to see us for a pint, that's where this location will be the missing link."
McCoy was initially a social studies teacher for the Redmond School District, but after a backpacking trip through Europe introduced him to ciders, he went back to college to study fermentation. Seeing that Central Oregon did not have much in the way of cider variety, the McCoys knew what they had to do.
"We have world class beer all around us and my wife and I were like, 'Where are the ciders?'" McCoy says. "So I went back, studied how to make ciders, saw the different fruit varieties I could get from Northwest farmers and from there I was tinkering and fermenting and here we are."
The grand opening will include live music infused block parties (continuing every Friday through August). Also, there will be food carts including The Brown Owl and Dakine Grinds; beer from Silver Moon, Crux, Goodlife, and several others; the full line-up of Atlas ciders (including the grapefruit seasonal and cinnamon pear); plus a vintage gaming room with pinball machines and pool tables. For the kids, there will be a bounce house outside (post-cider bouncing not recommended) and other delights.
Oh, and the Oregon Wildlife Conservatory will be bringing a cheetah! McCoy smiles and says, "It's not a party until you have a cheetah running around."
Atlas Cider Tasting Room Grand Opening
6 pm, Friday, June 19
Old Mill Marketplace, 600 Industrial Way.