Thirty years and several careers ago, Brian and Ami Shannon met, fell in love and started a family together. Fast-forward two daughters and 42 taps into the future, and the couple has become community fixtures with their taphouse, Valley Growlers. Sitting pretty, in the middle of the expanding Happy Valley, Oregon, landscape, Valley Growlers features everything from the latest Pacific Northwest IPA and the trending sour, to craft root beer and sparkling kombucha.
This 21-and-over beer haven is more than a local spot to grab a cold one, it’s a three-generation family affair. At any given time, Brian Shannon’s mother can be arranging a tasting tray, their daughter, Emma, can be tapping a new keg, and Ami Shannon can be going over the plans for the upcoming public house project they have in the works. With their youngest daughter Laurel working on non-pouring projects, this is a true family business.
From passionate homebrewers to ice-cold pint providers, the Shannons are doing what few people are lucky enough to attempt; working with their best friend and pouring what they love. “We’ve been working together through everything for so long, it’s just what we do,” Brian Shannon says. “I couldn’t imagine it any other way.”
Valley Growlers has grown and cemented the Shannon’s as intricate cogs of the community, so have their visions for the future. Less than a block away, ground has been broken on the highly anticipated Happy Valley Public House, which should be gracing the community in the spring. Showcasing over 60 taps downstairs as well as a wine and whiskey bar upstairs, there is far more to enjoy than simply a refreshing libation. The upscale Whiskey Kitchen will highlight farm-to-table dining, while Bunk, Pizza Jerk and Mi Mero Mole will be the cornerstone eateries with more to come.
The couple’s drive to make Valley Growlers something more than a watering hole is evident in how their relationships have grown with their customers. The ambiance is much more of living room with 42 taps and a smiling host with a generous pour. Valley Growlers has seen two wedding proposals and countless friendships made. “With us being here nearly every day for several years, we were able to make a group of friends rather than just a group of regular customers,” Ami Shannon adds.
When the spot for Valley Growlers first became available back in 2013, the Shannons jumped on the opportunity to bring to life a dream for both of them. The community was chomping at the bit to support the husband and wife who had grown-up just a few miles away. Their story and local involvement is rooted in outreach and has formed the way they have raised their daughters. The couple has their sights set on taking this dream to the next level with the new public house. Taking the same vision and ambiance there, this future gathering place is the next step for the Shannon family and the people are ready to enjoy the fruits of their labor.