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Posts Tagged eppig biergarten

Beer of the Week: Special Lager

Mar 9

Special Lager from Eppig Brewing in North Park

From the Beer Writer: The Mexican lager is in the midst of a renaissance. As craft-beer drinkers meld an enthusiast’s hunger for artisanal brews with a frat bro’s desire to pound suds in great quantity, this adjunct-fortified style has risen to prominence. These days, it seems like just about every San Diego brewery is making a Mexican lager…and that’s exactly why Eppig Brewing isn’t. It’s not a high-and-mighty stance against adjunct lagers. They just figure if everyone’s going one direction in this arena, why not go another. Enter Special Lager, a dry Japanese-style lager that, rather than utilizing corn like Mexican lagers, introduces rice into the grain bill. The result is a crisp, clean beer that goes down easy as one would expect. But what’s not status quo is the advanced flavor-level of this beer with its tantalizing lemon and mineral notes, and the alcohol-by-volume, which comes in at a respectable 5.8% as opposed to the sub-five session strength of most adjunct lagers. That low ABV and minimal production costs are primary reasons adjunct lagers are suddenly popular again. They are highly profitable…just like the Big Beer products they’re based off of. Though most are truly craft and taste better than their AB InBev and MillerCoors progenitors, this trend smacks too much of macro-beer sensibility for yours truly. But not in the case of Special Lager. I applaud Eppig’s decision to go a more craftsman-minded route to turn out an adjunct lager that dares to have significant flavor and an ABV that inspires slower intake and intelligent contemplation versus tailgate-party over-indulgence and not much else.

From the Brewer: “Eppig Special Lager has been my after-shift beer every day since we put it back on tap last week. This beer fills the void for the devout craft-beer lover who quietly shames themselves for occasionally wanting a cold, crisp (probably) macro lager on a hot day. I, too, can be guilty of this from time to time. Special Lager is a Japanese-style dry lager brewed with rice as a featured ingredient. Rice is traditionally an adjunct used in the brewing process to lighten body, which it does, but we also use it as a flavor component in this beer. The combination of pilsner malt and rice with a dose of citrusy, late-addition hops creates an aroma faintly reminiscent of sweet, starchy sushi rice and lemon blossoms. Special Lager finishes exceptional dry and clean, the perfect beer to drink outside in a beer garden. On the water, perhaps. (Brewer’s Note: We just opened our Waterfront Biergarten in Point Loma!)”Nathan Stephens, Principal Brewer, Eppig Brewing Company

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Eppig Brewing opening Waterfront Biergarten February 9

Feb 5

Construction, permitting and the majority of trial-run services are in the books, and North Park-based Eppig Brewing is ready to open its new Point Loma tasting room to the public. That will officially take place noon this Friday, February 9. While most breweries’ satellites are smaller than their home bases, the Eppig Brewing Waterfront Biergarten is significantly larger than its North Park Brewery Igniter progenitor, solving what has been the company’s biggest problem in its just-over-a-year of existence—providing enough space for the many that wish to consume its beers.

With 1,200 square feet of interior space, much of which is taken up by a cold box and service space, the Biergarten’s public space is comparable to North Park, but this venue is not about indoor drinking. Ownership selected it (outbidding other breweries in the process) for its immense outdoor space and position right along the water. Eppig’s Biergarten is the first-ever harborside brewery-owned venue in the county. Though currently in the midst of phase-construction that will eventually expand the patio to a whopping 2,000 square feet and introduce sculptured pillars supporting shade sails mounted to the building’s exterior, even in its current truncated state, there is plenty of room for patrons to imbibe al fresco, on rail bars overlooking the water or German-style Biergarten tables offering cross-bay views of the downtown San Diego skyline.

Back inside, approximately 16 beers will be available, including one brewed specifically to celebrate the Biergarten’s launch—Buoyancy Control, a 7.4% alcohol-by-volume IPA with peach and pear notes brought about by Citra and El Dorado hops. Food will also be available on-site by the end of February once ownership has finalized details of that service aspect. Punching up the interior design is inclusion of the recipe for Eppig’s San Diego summer ale, Civility, which is penned in its entirety on the inside walls for any homebrewers who care to try their hand at it.

Eppig Brewing Waterfront Biergarten is located at 2817 Dickens Street and will be open daily from noon to 8 p.m. Parking is available in a large lot south of the venue next to The Brigantine restaurant. That lot gives way to a waterfront walkway leading directly to the tasting room. An official grand-opening event is planned for early March, right around the time patio construction is scheduled for completion.

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