There is also a lot of local beverage news, and so much gets missed every week. Here is your monthly round-up of updates from around the region.
But first, a thought: After my seasonal creep rant a few weeks ago (and despite the popsicle melting heat), we’re very nearly into Oktoberfest season.
I’m already seeing them on the shelves and letting myself feel the tingle of excitement. Fingers crossed, the weather cools off enough that we can all enjoy a Märzenbier with a hint of crispness in the air. The first official day of Oktoberfest is September 17th. There is a good chance a brewery near you will be celebrating with schnitzel, polka, lederhosen, and of course, beer.
- San Diego Beer Week is once again kicking off with the San Diego Brewers Guild Fest on November 5th. After an extended hiatus due to the constraints of Covid-19 (maybe you’ve heard of it), the festival is returning to celebrate local craft beer brewers and offer an opportunity for beer lovers to celebrate the SD Craft Beer community. Tickets start at $55 and are already on sale here.
- The Camp Store (at Carlsbad State Beach Campground) has requested letters of support from the community. Per the Camp Store, they were recently subjected to a performance review by the State of California, which did not go well. They scored a 51/100. The operators of the Camp Store take issue with nearly all of the reviews calling the state reviewers “out of touch with reality” and taking issue with the lack of support from the State. You can read Anthony Marcotti’s full request for letters and see his extensive breakdown of and disagreements with the performance review report on the Camp Store website.
- It’s official. Per Brewbound’s Justin Kendall, the documents have been signed, and as of August 31st, Japan’s Sapporo Brewing Ltd. now owns Stone Brewing. After years of aggressively defending their status as indie trailblazers, this transition feels like a bit of a whimper. In addition to continuing to brew Stone brand beers, Sapporo will begin brewing their own beers at the Stone facilities in Escondido, CA, and Richmond, VA.
- Meadiocrity Mead partnered with Escondido’s Mia Marie Vineyards to release a special mead sangria featuring local Tempranillo grapes pomace. Pomace is the pulpy skin left over after a grape has been pressed for wine or juice. In this case, Mia Marie Vineyards were making rosé, and the resulting sangria has a rich, deep purple color.
- Black Plague Brewing’s new Escondido taproom and kitchen, the Purgatory Lounge, is open. The brewery’s Labor Day weekend grand opening included limited edition Purgatory Lounge swag, the new Tony Hawps “Nirvana” IPA, and a mobile tattoo bus (which I did not know was a thing).
- Helia Brewing Company (Vista) celebrated its fourth birthday over the long holiday weekend with lots of live music and lots of beer. Congrats to the HBC Team for reaching the milestone! I’ll be celebrating belatedly with a Pescadito Mexican Lager.
- Tall boys of Eppig Brewing’s Special Lager and 10:45 To Denver IPA are now available at Petco Park at the “On Deck” craft beer bar between sections 227 & 231.
- Welcome to the hops harvesting season. Keep your eyes out for wet hop beers on draft at your favorite local breweries. Wet hop beers are brewed within 24-48 hours of the hops being harvested when they are still wet and sticky.