There are semblances of normalcy, but things are still evolving. For the past year following local breweries to see who was even open, or when they were open, so we could support them felt a little bit like going on a treasure hunt. It inspired this series to check in to see how our favorite breweries are doing, and what the future looks like to them as we start to see an end to the pandemic madness (hopefully).
This week, we’re in the moment with Burgeon Beer’s president and co-owner Matthew Zirpolo and Mackenzie Graham, the team’s marketing director.
Despite the pandemic, Burgeon Beer is growing. A lot. They recently opened The Oasis in Escondido in the home of the former Escondido Brewing Company, and just last week the doors at The Arbor in Little Italy opened. Plus, they have an event space called The Greenhouse coming soon, and so many new beers coming out of their original brewery in Carlsbad it can be hard to keep track of them all. Personally, I’m thrilled about all the new pale ales on the menu.
Cheers: Hey Burgeon-ites. Thanks for catching me up on what’s going on at Burgeon Beer Company. More than a year into this wild pandemic, what is the physical and emotional status of the company and your team?
Burgeon: We are so happy that our team members are all healthy, feeling positive, and excited to be pouring beers again for our guests at all three of our locations. This has been a challenging year for everyone, but we are humbled by and grateful to our wonderful community for showing us tremendous support over the last year. Now that restrictions have lifted and vaccines are available to our entire crew, we are thrilled to be back in action doing what we do best: pouring our beer for the wonderful people of San Diego!
Cheers: Burgeon — more than most — has been in the news this past year because of the continued push to grow, with The Arbor in Little Italy just launching, and the recent opening at The Oasis location in Escondido. What motivated that effort in the middle of a pandemic, and how did you manage it all?
Burgeon: When we could not be open for on-site consumption due to the pandemic, we pivoted to offer our beer through pickup, as well as online ordering for beer to-go, next-day home delivery to San Diego County, and through shipping to California.
We’ve been fortunate to continue brewing fresh releases, and now that restrictions have been lifted to allow for outdoor enjoyment and on-site consumption at reduced capacity, we are able to offer our fans beers in-person, while continuing the new direct-to-community methods.
We’re also grateful for the growth we’ve experienced over the last year: first, The Oasis, our completely outdoor beer garden in Escondido that opened in November 2020; and next, The Arbor, our taproom and scratch kitchen in downtown San Diego that opened April 17.
Cheers: What does the near future for Burgeon look like?
Burgeon: We are thrilled to reach a new audience of craft beer drinkers through our recent expansion to Escondido and Little Italy, and the future holds an abundance of fresh releases from our brewery HQ in Carlsbad!
Cheers: Let’s talk beer. Besides the consistently good core beers, will there be unique beers, in each location? Why or why not?
Burgeon: Thank you for that comment on our beer — it’s central to our mission to produce beer that is consistently and predictably of the highest quality, so we appreciate that awesome feedback. We brewed a beer especially for each of our new locations, “Burgeon in Escondido IPA” and “Burgeon in Little Italy Hazy IPA.” There is a pilot brewing system in our Escondido location where we plan to experiment with small batches and limited releases.
Cheers: What is the best way for North County residents to get their hands on Burgeon’s beer, and any particular ways customers can support you as we phase out of the tiered system?
Burgeon: For folks who are continuing to enjoy beer from home, you can order our beer at BurgeonBeer.com for pickup at all three of our locations, as well as for next-day home delivery if you live in San Diego County. We’re also open daily at all three locations for on-site consumption.
Cheers: Anything else you want readers to know about Burgeon right now?
Burgeon: Not only would we love to welcome you for a beer at any of our locations, we’re also excited to officially open (at a reduced capacity) and begin booking our new private events space in Carlsbad, The Greenhouse, in the coming weeks now that pandemic-related regulations are lifting. For more information, and to inquire about future events in The Greenhouse, please contact us via BurgeonBeer.com.
Check out @BurgeonBeer on Instagram for updates on beer releases, hours and updated coronavirus protocols.
If you like craft beer, you probably also love a good cup of coffee. Pour a mug and check out most recent episodes of the Roast! West Coast coffee podcast featuring interviews and coffee education with great local coffee professionals. Stream it now on The Coast News online or search for it on your favorite podcast platforms including Apple Podcasts and Spotify. Thanks for listening, and for following Cheers! North County on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.