Top Thirst-Quenching, Hot-Weather Beers in San Diego

The heat wave rolls on in San Diego, and I want (read: need) my craft beer to be two things: light-bodied and refreshing. Besides a cold lager, no other beer is better for quenching your thirst after exercise, grilling out and hanging with friends on sunny days, or starting out a perfectly balmy evening in…

An Overlooked Classic: Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale

We beer geeks often get gloriously entwined in the trailblazing new beer of the moment. Collaborations, one-off’s, & the idiosyncratic liquids of our beloved brewers often keep our focus, and we blithely forget some of the classic beers that are the cornerstone of the Craft beer revolution. Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale, 7.2% ABV: One of…

Counterpoint: Malt & Hops with Unibroue & Sierra Nevada

When a couple of brewer friends came to visit at the Lumberyard Tavern last week, I pulled out two beers I’d been holding onto. My mouth watering each time my gaze landed upon them, I kept waiting for the right moment and the right people. I knew homebrew contest winners Steven Strupp and Marty Frank…

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Evil Twin Christmas Eve At A New York City Hotel Room…Now that’s a mouthful. And so in true tradition, upon this Twelfth Day, January 6, I bring you my Twelfth Beer of Christmas! While this long Evil Twin name doesn’t really fit into the rhyme or chime of the…

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Ommegang Adoration! So excited to try this one… Ommegang Adoration, 10% ABV: It was a day of beginnings! Their first Strong Winter Ale was featured at the 1st Annual Holiday Beer Tasting at the Lumberyard Tavern in Encinitas, California (hosted by yours truly!). Lots of caramel, candi sugar, orange…

On the Tenth Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Mikkeller To & From! I am absolutely THRILLED with this beer. Hands down one of my favorite holiday beers so far: Mikkeller To:/From:, 8% ABV: Rich brown-black color with a simply gorgeous thick & fluffy cappuccino head. Aromas of roasted malt, dark chocolate, coffee, blackstrap molasses, mountain spring water,…

On the Ninth Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Scaldis Noel! Heads up, people. This is not your daytime NFL or Bowl game-watchin’ beer. At 12% ABV, you wouldn’t make it to the second half. Scaldis Noel, 12% ABV: Expecting a dark, rich toasted brown color. Nope. Rather, it’s a golden amber color. Little to no head retention,…

On the Eighth Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Hoppin’ Frog Christmas! And a case of Déjà vu. Hoppin’ Frog Frosted Frog Christmas Ale, 8.6% ABV: Seriously, this is uncanny. This beer immediately reminds me of its Ohio beer brethren, Great Lakes Christmas Ale. Subconscious power of suggestion? Maybe. However, this offering presents much more concentrated aromas of malt,…

On the Seventh Day of Christmas…

My true love gave to me… Moylan’s White Christmas! I don’t know how many of you actually received a White Christmas this fine year, but this San Diego/North Carolina beach girl saw nothing of the sort.  So I decided to take my snowflakes in the liquid form with Moylan’s White Christmas Lager. Coupled with the…