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Posts by Ryan Lamb

Febrewary Sweets

Feb 8

By now you’ve completed your New Year’s Resolutions and you’re ready for some chocolate & alcohol. Here are some upcoming options:

Rock Bottom Beer & Chocolate Dinner
Join Head Brewer Dan Anderson and Chef Alberto Lucatero on Saturday, February 10 in La Jolla. After a welcome beer of your choice, enjoy these pairings:

  • Round 1: Citrus fruit Medley w/ chocolate vinaigrette, paired with New Garde Belgian Witbier
  • Round 2: Homemade peanut butter ice cream w/ toffee & caramel, paired with Surfer’s Solitude Red Ale
  • Round 3: Slow oven roasted short ribs served over chocolate infused hash browns, paired with Wicked Elf-Bier De Noel
  • Round 4: Chicken breast in mole w/Spanish rice, paired with Simcoe S.M.A.S.H IPA
  • Round 5: Rich Chocolate moose pie w/homemade cherry sauce paired with Bourbon barrel aged imperial oatmeal stout w/Madagascar vanilla beans & cacao nibs

Andrea’s Truffles

Andrea’s Truffles Events
In business since 2012, Andrea’s Truffles collaborates with, and distributes to, a variety of local breweries and beverage businesses.

  • Thursday, February 8: Truffle and Beer Pairing at Mission Brewery (5 p.m.)
  • Sunday, February 11: Truffle and Beer Pairing at Kilowatt Brewing OB (1 – 3 p.m.)
  • Wednesday, February 14:
    Mastiff Kitchen Collaboration at North Park Beer Co. (7 p.m.)
    Truffle and Beer Pairing at Eppig Brewing (5 p.m.)
    Truffle and Beer Pairing at Hamilton’s Tavern (Time TBD)
  • Thursday, February 15: Educational Beer and Chocolate Pairing at White Labs (6 – 7:30 p.m.)

So Rich! Chocolate Events
In addition to these events at wine and mead spots, So Rich! is available at three Stone locations, Wild Barrel Brewing, and North County Wine Company.

  • Friday, February 9: Wine and Chocolate Pairing (plus optional cigar pairing) at Beach House Winery Oceanside (6 p.m.)
  • Saturday, February 10: Societe Brewing Beer and Chocolate Pairing (1 p.m.)
  • Thursday, February 15: Mead, Chocolate, and Cigar Pairing at Golden Coast Mead Oceanside (6 p.m.)

Cookies on Tap
Three official brewery partners share a portion of pairing proceeds with Girl Scouts of San Diego during these Friday, February 23 to Sunday, February 25 events.

  • Stone Brewing (Kettner, Oceanside, Escondido, Liberty Station)
    Savannah Smiles w/ Stone White Ghost Berliner Weisse
    Samoas w/ Stone Exalted IPA
    Trefoils w/ Stone Scorpion Bowl IPA
    Tagalongs w/ Drew Curtis / Wil Wheaton / Greg Koch Stone Farking Wheaton w00tstout (2016)
  • AleSmith Brewing Co.
    Trefoils w/ Spezial Pils
    Savannah Smiles w/ X – Extra Pale Ale
    Do-si-dos w/ Nut Brown
    Thin Mints w/ Decadence 2017 – Imperial Oatmeal Stout
    Samoas w/ Hawaiian Speedway Stout
  • Mike Hess Brewing North Park
    Thin Mint w/ Steel Beach Lager
    Trefoil w/ Festivus Altbier
    Savannah Smiles w/ Grapefruit Solis IPA
    Do-si-dos w/ Habitus Double IPA
    Samoas w/ Tangerine IPA
  • Mike Hess Brewing Miramar
    Do-si-dos w/ Claritas Kolsch
    S’mores w/ 8 West Orange Honey Wheat
    Trefoil w/ Grazias Vienna Cream Ale
    Savannah Smiles w/ Habitus Double IPA
    Thin Mint w/ Umbrix Stout
  • Mike Hess Brewing Ocean Beach
    Savannah Smiles w/ My Other Vice Berliner Vice
    Toffee Tastic w/ Grazias Vienna Cream Ale
    Trefoil w/ Hooligan Irish Stout
    Thin Mint w/ Tangerine IPA
    Samoas w/ Umbrix Stout

Feelin’ Funky: Fermentation Fest Sunday 2/11

Feb 6

A multi-faceted, fermentation-focused festival returns to Encinitas on February 11 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Info & Tix)

Organizer Austin Durant, who’s run San Diego’s Fermenters Club since 2011, says that he’s looking forward to helping educate attendees on how fermentation relates to everyday life. Below is a breakdown of what to expect this Sunday for the San Diego Fermentation Festival:

  • Presentations on cheesemaking, the fermentation of beverages such as kombucha, cider, mead & coffee, plus a keynote discussion featuring new data in microbiome research.
  • (21+) The San Diego Beverage Times Ambrosia Garden ($45 presale/$50 at the door) features San Diegans Boochcraft, ChuckAlek Independent Brewers, Cutwater Spirits, Golden Coast Mead, Home Brewing Co., Lost Cause Meadery, Misadventure & Co., Raging Cider & Mead Co., and the San Diego County Vintners Association. 101 Cider from the Thousand Oaks area also joins the party.
  • A “Makers Marketplace” with more than 25 vendors offering free samples and/or selling goods/services. Local beverage producers will include Cafe Virtuoso, Cultured Provisions, Edible Alchemy, Fully Loaded Micro Juicery, Good Stuff Tonics, Kombucha Culture, and Living Tea Kombucha.
  • A “starter swap” hosted by Fermentation on Wheels, an educational, traveling bus hub for all things cultured. Experienced fermenters are encouraged to bring their starters to swap with each other.
  • Hands-on pickling stations.
  • A “Wellness Pavilion” with yoga, reiki, sound healing, acupuncture.
  • Kids’ activities including a Coastal Roots farm tour with focuses on composting and pickling. Children under 12 are free with a paid adult ticket.
  • Live music on two stages.
  • Vegetarian food court.

8 SD Brewers Crack RateBeer Top 100 of 2017

Jan 31

Yesterday, the “connoisseur-focused beer site” RateBeer released their list of the world’s top 100 brewers. According to the website, “the summarization is based on ten different weighted scales that place an emphasis on reviews of the past year and top performing beers but also includes historical all-around performance, a brewer’s range of performance across styles, and other factors to compare newer and older, larger and smaller brewers under a single method of processing.”

Eight local brewers made the list, including AleSmith at number four. Mikkeller San Diego’s parent organization, Copenhagen-based Mikkeller, ranked ninth.

AleSmith has been a constant on the list for years, making the cut of 100 in 2016, ranking second in 2015, and eighth in 2014. In 2013, AleSmith was dubbed the top United States brewer in a format divided by country.

Outside of this year’s top ten, the breweries were listed alphabetically: Abnormal, Alpine, Ballast Point (Constellation), Mikkeller SD, Modern Times, Port Brewing / The Lost Abbey, and Stone.


This Sunday: Coffee & Beer Collaborations

Jan 23

This Sunday from 12 – 4 p.m. Bay City Brewing Co. teams up with local coffee roasters Swell Coffee Co.Ryan Bros. Coffee and OB Beans Coffee Roasters to pour collaboration beers. Our affiliate magazine San Diego Beverage Times helped develop this event concept.

$20 tickets (available at this link or $25 at the door) include a ‘welcome pint’ of the tasting room staple Coffee Pale Ale, plus three eight-ounce pours of the brewery’s one-of-a-kind coffee beers, and coffee samples from each roaster.

“What makes this event unique is each beer uses coffee beans from three major coffee-growing regions – the Americas, Africa and Pacific,” said Chris West, Bay City’s Head Brewer, who will be on hand to discuss the beers:

  • Ryan Bros Coffee: Brown Ale with Papua New Guinea
  • OB Beans Coffee Roasters: Nitro Stout with Mexican Chiapas
  • Swell Coffee Co.: Belgian Dubbel with Ethiopian

5 Questions After 5 Years: Alex Pierson

Dec 4

Alex Pierson’s Amplified Ale Works celebrated 5 years during SD Beer Week. We caught up with him for a quick five questions:

1. If you could go back in time 5+ years, what would you tell yourself before opening the PB brewery?
Don’t do it! Hah, just kidding, no regrets here, but I would have told myself to really think through the longer term business plan beyond a single location, as there were definitely things we could have done from an investor and business formation perspective to better prepare us for growth. That said, I never imagined the local craft beer movement would blossom so fast, and so we’ve chosen to grow in a cautious manner.

Alex Pierson with then-outgoing SD Mayor Jerry Sanders (center) and Amplified co-founder JC Hill,  during SDBW 2012. Hill now runs Alvarado Street Brewery in Monterey, CA

2. What do you see for the next 5 years of Amplified?
Our goal is to be growing into a larger, more permanent brewery space and commissary kitchen in the next year that can support the growth of additional Amplified locations in Southern California. As for future locations, we would really like to partner or even create a live music venue where we can evolve the intersection of live music and craft beer. Being able to be a part of a community and a local gathering hub is something I’ve been really proud of in PB and something we hope to emulate in any future locations.

3. Which SD music venues have the best local beer selections consistently?
Casbah has a solid tap lineup these days and is the venue I probably frequent the most. Soda Bar has an extensive list as well, and honestly it seems that every venue is stepping their game up recently. I’ve loved seeing more local options available inside the Observatory too.

4. Can you give us an update on the Pathways collab?
We actually just had our 2018 planning meeting for Pathway Ale, and to date we have raised more than $14,000 in the two years since we started our partnership with beautifulPB and Karl Strauss to create pedestrian, bike, and skate-friendly paths around the neighborhood. We’ve got some fun recipes in store for next year, and you may also be seeing some of the previous favorites coming back for an appearance. We’re also hoping to have several new retailers commit to selling the beer on tap, so that we can better communicate to our neighbors where exactly they can drink it while supporting community improvement projects and the development of PB’s EcoDistrict.

5. Can you discuss both recent & upcoming collabs?
Our Western Settings collaboration, DIYPA, was our most recent can release, and it was a lot of fun given the timing with them playing their largest show at 91x’s Scallywag, and leading into Beer Week. We also released our second beer with Motorhead, Live to Win, for our 5 year anniversary party at the Lafayette Hotel in early November. We previously did collaborations with The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble and Reel Big Fish earlier this year that were a lot of fun. We’re actively working on several future band collaborations, including one we’ll be brewing up north at Fieldwork Brewing in early 2018. Stay tuned for that and a few other exciting music collabs in store for next year!

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