If you remember your first sip of a sour beer, the first question that popped into your mind was probably “Who would ever choose to drink this??” As shocking as your first sip of beer as a young drinker, even more so may be the pucker or funk that arrives when you’re expecting bitter and malty. Finding those gateway sours that can gently lead beer-drinking ponies into the farmhouse fields of glory can be difficult, but luckily Modern Times Beer is here with their New Atlantis series.
Deal with the Devil IPA is not the beer that MacLeod Ale Brewing Co. anticipated when it was established in 2014. But in addition to being a delicious IPA, Deal with the Devil also tells the story of MacLeod’s evolution from a British-style cask ale brewery to one of the most beloved beer companies in Los Angeles.
This year, as Firestone Walker Brewing prepares to celebrate its 25th anniversary, the Paso Robles-based brewery is about to embark on another ambitious project that aims to showcase experimentation and innovation. Nowadays it’s becoming more and more difficult for larger regional sized breweries to make a splash when it comes to small-batch beer releases, but Firestone Walker has always been among a handful of brands that have been able to balance building a highly regarded barrel-program while also complementing an equally successful core lineup.
If asked about the most influential people in California’s craft beer history, names like Fritz Maytag, Ken Grossman and Vinnie Cilurzo might top the list for many of the beer enthusiasts. However, away from the public eye, Tom McCormick has had an immense impact on the success of craft beer.
How many breweries have taken this route? Start as a San Francisco brewpub in 2000; add contract brewing in Minnesota to the mix in 2008; in 2015, when the time is right, build the first production facility in San Leandro.
Rincon Reservation Road (3R) Brewery has the powerful honor of bridging Native American ancestral heritage with the craft beer community. Tucked away in Valley Center, 45 miles from downtown San Diego, Rincon Reservation Road Brewery is attached to Harrah’s Resort and Casino, cheekily re-labeled in advertisements as Funner, California. Much like this entire region of Southern California, Funner was inhabited by indigenous tribes, such as the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians.
Drink local. From t-shirts, to hashtags, to just being uttered in conversation, it’s a phrase that comes up often within the craft beer industry. The idea of prioritizing local beers in and around your hometown appeals to many. Everyone has their reasons. Whether it’s the terroir, ingredients or lack of travel time, people have an affinity to drinking beer from an establishment close to their homes. Local beer and breweries seem more authentic than some of the more well known, larger craft breweries. It is this type of originality that is on display at The Good Wolf Brewing Company as they take you on a hike through Tahoe with their brewery and, more particularly, forest beers.
Craft beer has long gone hand in hand with the outdoor adventure world because oftentimes, the prospect of enjoying a cold craft beer at the end of any great adventure can be just as rewarding as the workout itself.
Wildfires have devastated much of California this year and Humble Sea Brewing Company has responded by calling on brewery friends to help Santa Cruz wildfire victims. The impressive group of breweries has donated bottles to a wildfire relief auction benefiting the Community Foundation Santa Cruz County Fire Relief Fund. The Rare Beer Auction for Santa Cruz went live on Friday and ends at noon on Monday, October 5.
“There must be some kind of way out of here, said the joker to The Thief.” Obviously Bob Dylan was forecasting a future conversation between the Steve Miller song and the Barrel-Aged Blonde Ale concocted by Societe Brewing Company. While you might be forgiven for thinking ol’ Robert Zimmerman was out of his gourd when putting pen to paper on this exchange, there’s nothing crazy about enjoying Societe’s The Thief.
The Rocky Mountains have been in existence long before humans traveled the range’s treacherous trails for the newest camping spot or adventurous hike. They invite a sense of tranquility and appreciation, and provide a home to countless species such as bighorn sheep, mountain lions, and the yellow-bellied marmot. The Colorado cutthroat trout thrives in the cold rivers of the Rockies, while birds such as the White-tailed Ptarmigan, Mountain Chickadee, and Pygmy Nuthatch perch among the trees. Yes, this a a beer showcase, but it’s important to set the scene when discussing FTK Pale Ale from Chico, California-based Sufferfest Beer Company.
With what seems like a never-ending supply of new exciting beers coming out these days, it’s not uncommon to see a beer that was a whale just six or seven years ago now sitting on the shelf collecting dust. So when you come across a beer that has been able to generate the same high level of enthusiasm from ever-fickle craft beer fans AND sells out immediately year after year, you know you have discovered something truly exceptional. The Bruery’s Black Tuesday Imperial Stout is such a beer.
First released over a decade ago, in 2009, Black Tuesday continues to enjoy a near cult-like following in many craft beer circles. It is currently ranked 17th on Beer Advocate’s list of best American Imperial Stouts and 62nd for all around best beer.
Last week, craft beer behemoth Stone Brewing made headlines when it was revealed that the Escondido, CA-based brewery has, in recent years, issued trademark cancellation requests to approximately 100 entities across the beer, wine, and spirits world that utilized the …
You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain. Stone Brewing, which has long built its brand on “challenging the status quo” and fighting against big beer, was outed on Friday for having issued a trademark cancellation request against Sawstone Brewing in Morehead, KY.
The pandemic has had a drastic impact on the drinking habits of many Americans, myself included. While I still indulge on the weekends, I’ve also developed a new craving for lighter, better-for-you options that can be consumed guilt-free throughout the week. Spiked kombucha from the likes of Luna Bay Booch and Jiant Kombucha are frequently found in my fridge, along with some new non-alcoholic offerings. While California’s Athletic Brewing might draw the most headlines for their non-alcoholic (NA) beer lineup, Californian counterpart Surreal Brewing has generated plaudits of its own thanks to the likes of Juicy Mavs NA Hazy IPA.
A fruited cream ale might not be the first thing you think of when you hear the words “huckleberry” and “beer.”
Bootlegger’s Brewery, based in Fullerton, California, is working to change that. The brewery’s Huckleberry Cream Ale, What the Huck!, made its debut in late January, 2020, and has gained many a fan since. Brewed with Cascade hops, 2-Row barley, flaked corn and, of course, loads of huckleberries, What the Huck! was the brainchild of Bootlegger’s Regional Manager, Kristyn Biggerstaff.
The arrival of graduation car parades around town serves as a reminder that we’ve hit summertime. As new grads find exciting ways to celebrate their next chapter in life in the midst of a pandemic, some counties are starting to re-open with outdoor seating. Breweries that have been permitted to open outdoor seating and on-site consumption are now a beacon for the craft beer community.
HenHouse Brewing Company, based in Santa Rosa, California, isn’t open for outdoor seating quite yet, but that’s not stopping them from having killer curbside pick-up options and putting out freshies on the reg. One such offering is The Philadelphia Experiment IPA, named after an alleged military experiment which claimed that the union of gravity and electromagnetic radiation could render something invisible. (You know, normal things.) If you’re into conspiracy theories and enjoy juicy IPAs, be sure to follow HenHouse on Instagram for all the goods coming out of this seven-year old brewery.
In the face of adversity and trying times, it is always an encouraging sight to witness those who press forward and beat the odds. Solaris Beer & Blending in Murrieta, California, is one of such stories. Though they have no tasting room and are still under construction, the brewery was able to put the proper licensing in place in the midst of a pandemic. And despite having limited weekly releases as their sole income, the quality of Solaris’s offerings are nearly unparalleled, especially given the size of their operation.
One of the first beers Solaris released was Pink Flowers – Rose Petals, part of their Sour & Flower series. This sour golden ale was brewed with rose petals, Turkish apricots, kumquats and conditioned on French oak.
This beer was bought, saved and finally drank with hope. Hope that baseball will come back in some capacity this season. However, the light at the end of the tunnel seems to be getting further away as the MLBPA and MLB struggle for power in their latest negotiations. So while waiting with bated breath and crossed fingers we can at least pop a few crisp beers and reminisce about some of our favorite McCovey Cove bombs.