Meet the Rogue who dared go to all pubs in one epic day
“I’ve been doing this ‘everything in a day’ thing for a while,” John says. “In 1998, I hit every street on the London Monopoly board in one day.”
John Lovegrove wanted to be the first mortal man to visit all 11 Rogue locations in one day on his birthday. In true Rogue fashion, he made that dream a reality and became the stuff of legend.
This wasn’t some spur-of-the-moment trip, though. After discovering he and his drinking buddy, Don, share the same birthday, the two set to work on an itinerary for the extravaganza.
A travel agent by day, John is no stranger to organizing marathon pub crawls. In 2006, he visited 22 breweries in one day. In 2009, 34. 2012, 50. His current record is 77 breweries in a day, a truly Herculean feat.
An Oregon transplant from New Zealand, John’s father-in-law introduced him to Rogue in 1998 and he has since made an annual trip to the Rogue World Headquarters in Newport every year.
So why all 11 Rogue locations in 24 hours? “I’ve been thinking about it for years,” he said. “Just seems like the thing to do.”
Rocking a soundtrack of Podcasts, 90s indie Brit-pop, and some ex-Beatles singles, the trip kicked off at the San Francisco Pub at midnight. From there, John flew to Portland, where he traveled 461 miles, drank 115.5oz of beer, took a few dozen selfies, received well wishes and “happy birthdays” a few hundred times, visited all 11 pubs, was accompanied by several drivers and ate 3 meals.
John and company crossed the finish line at Issaquah Brew Pub on the razor’s edge, clocking in just before midnight. Though most of the trip was smooth sailing, they fell 25 minutes behind at one point. “We made up 15 minutes on an empty I-5,” John said.
For John, the journey was like being king for a day. “Meeting all the people and feeling like a celebrity was cool,” he said. “Also, not having to drive!”
Some of his highlights were the Honey Kolsch (“delicious”), Hazelnut Spice Rum (“amazing”) and his final drink of the day, a 32oz. of Hazelutely Choctabulous (his official “birthday beer”).
What’s next for the Olympian champ of brewpub marathons? John has a few ideas: every Oregon brewpub in a week, and the “holy grail” of trips, every brewery in America in one year.
And with that, John Lovegrove, we salute you.