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Beer Event | Collabapalooza Recap

Beer Event | Collabapalooza Recap
Jadon Flores

This past weekend was one of the most highly rated beer festivals in Southern California: Collabapalooza. The ethos of the beer festival is a sense of community within the beer industry–in most cases, all of the breweries involved were friends with each other and the brewers were all trying each other’s beer while talking shop. As we got to talk to several breweries in the preview article on the beers they were bringing, we got to experience the selection of a ridiculous tap list contributed by all the breweries. Here are some standouts.

Stave & Nail Brewing is a small barrel-aged brewery in San Marcos (right next to Ripcurrent) that worked together with Booze Brothers in Vista to create one of my favorite beers from this festival, Brothers Blend (mixed fermentation barrel-aged sour raspberry IPA). It was uniquely tart (but not overly), a little bitter and the raspberries complemented the beer beautifully. It was an extremely complex beer that was very refreshing. Stave and Nail was also pouring some of their bottles they will be releasing November 1-3. For more information follow their Instagram.

Another great one was Reapeur Wee Heavy, a collaboration with Black Plague Brewing and Rouleur Brewing: a traditional Scotch ale with a nice reddish color and bit of roasty character. The little logo the guys came up with (a plague doctor riding a bike) brought me to the booth, but the beer kept me there!


Without Karl Strauss Brewing, Collabapalooza would not be possible. Their collaboration with Alesmith of their “Blink of an IPA” was very well-balanced and very refreshing. The two breweries used Kveik yeast, a Norwegian strain that finishes much quicker than standard yeast. This beer comes out clean, bright and fruity with a nice hop character. Definitely stop by one of the locations for a taste or a four-pack while supplies last!

And finally, Gravity Heights was able to collaborate with both Pizza Port and Automatic Brewing on a couple of fantastic beers. Chain of Events with Automatic Brewing is a Belgian blonde ale with honey, Meyer lemon and ginger, which is like drinking a beer version of the best cure for a sore throat. It coats your mouth with a nice honey and lemon taste and ginger ting, balanced by the natural texture of the Belgian yeast.


If you were not able to make this year’s Collabapalooza, keep your eyes and ears open for next year, as this festival usually happens close to San Diego Beer Week (quickly approaching November 1-10). The spirit of this festival is unlike any other; because of the collaborative efforts of all of the breweries, they aren’t businesses in competition for consumers, but partners in a thriving community of beer lovers.

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