Book Review: Brewing Local by Stan Hieronymus

Brewing Local by Hieronymus.jpgFirst off, thank you to the Brewers Association for sending me a copy of this great publication to review; I truly appreciate it! Secondly, breaking news, I do read actual books! I know in this day and age people think that publications are obsolete, however, I still completely enjoy the advantages of having a physical book, namely, you don’t have to worry about a battery running out, the flight attendant can’t make you turn it off, you can bend the corner of pages you want to review in the future, and you can add notes in the margins if you want. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, here’s the official info for this book:

Brewing Local: American-grown beer by Stan Hieronymus
Published by the Brewers Publications (a division of the Brewers Association)
Continue reading “Book Review: Brewing Local by Stan Hieronymus”

Green Flash to Release Super Rare Ochre Frumento Saturday at Cellar 3

wp-1473713961596.jpgWhat? Super rare you say? That’s all us beer geeks need to get ourselves worked into an “I’m entitled to this” frenzy of epic proportions. Everything is relative, right? So Brian, what do you mean by super rare? Cellar 3 will be releasing only 600 bottles of this unique beer, Ochre Frumento, that has spent just over 6 years in its oaky home (first brandy barrels and then bourbon barrels). To put that into perspective, this beer is older than more than 100 San Diego breweries, think about that for a minute, ok, don’t, it’ll hurt your head. For a brewery like Green Flash, this amount of bottles is like me offering a one bottle release of my home brew.

barrelmastersreserve_0-2_052No Brown Paper Tickets, no Eventbrite, no proxies, and no reservations for this two bottle per person beer. You can send your friends though, well, I’m assuming they are humans. To get this fine product, the second release in the Cellar 3 Barrelmaster’s Reserve Series, you must (gasp) actually go to Cellar 3 on Saturday, September 17th! See how I expertly conveyed all the information in this (^) graphic!? With an ABV of 17.5% do you really need 2? Uhh, hell yes you do! Continue reading “Green Flash to Release Super Rare Ochre Frumento Saturday at Cellar 3”

San Diego Brewers Discuss Labor, Wages, and Valuing Employees

I attended this awesome discussion put together by Omar when it happened during Start Up Week. I truly enjoy these type of industry discussion panels and with SD BeerTalk we hope to foster some of our own in the future. Information is powerful; hearing what motivates these amazing brewery owners only deepens my appreciation and admiration for the visionary efforts put forth. There were several accounts of the discussion when it happened, but now you get to see it for yourself!

Here is the official press release:

– The San Diego region is home to over 120 professional brewhouses – the most for any county in the nation. According to the Brewers Association, California craft brewers had a net economic impact of $6.9 Billion in 2014.  In San Diego, a 2016 National University Institute for Policy Research study revealed more than 4,500 jobs have been created by San Diego brewers. With many changes in the labor market, four San Diego brewers came together to offer insights into their thinking about labor, wages, and valuing employees in the context of independent craft breweries.

“I noticed that San Diego craft brewers weren’t just leading in beer innovation, but also in how they thought about valuing the workforce,” said Omar Passons, a local economic development professional and craft beer enthusiast who organized the panel. “This panel was first and foremost about sharing ways that craft breweries across the country can build profitable businesses while valuing their employees, respecting the dignity of their work and offering self-sustaining wages.”

Panelists included veteran brewer and scientist Jim Crute of Lightning Brewery, former investment banker turned brewer and owner Douglas Constantiner of Societe Brewing Company, one of San Diego’s newest breweries, Second Chance Beer Co. represented by its Chief Operating Officer Curtis Hawes, and former Stone Brewing Company employee and current Modern Times Beer CEO Jacob McKean. “I’m excited to share the philosophy behind our humane business model, which has given us the benefit of minimal turn-over, high productivity, and deep commitment from staff,”  said Jacob McKean of his reasons for participating in this panel.

The panel, co-sponsored by San Diego State University’s Business of Craft Beer Certificate program, has helped highlight the importance of the business side of the nation’s craft beer craze.  “We created the Business of Beer Certificate with local craft beer industry experts so that we could help elevate quality and education in the industry, and to support this important part of growth in the San Diego region,” said Giana Rodriguez, program director. “SDSU is proud to foster entrepreneurism and innovation through hands-on learning for craft beer enthusiasts, hospitality employees, and future brewery owners. San Diego’s craft breweries are leading the way as forward-thinking businesses, and our students reap the rewards of learning from the best in the business.” –



Tabula Rasa is the 4th Annual Sore Eye Cup Champion!

20160806_152358In a crowded, world renown, craft beer bar last Saturday the Sore Eye Cup champion was announced to zealous, sweaty, San Diego, indie beer fans. This year, Tabula Rasa, from Second Chance Beer Co. , is that victor! They reign for a full year as the Sore Eye Cup winner, and with that comes all the glory and prestige a local blog can bestow upon an amazing brewery. 2nd Chance’s motto is Seize. Sip. Enjoy. and boy did they ever seize the cup, sip from its mighty depths and enjoy the spoils of triumph with us on Saturday.

tabula RasaLook at the can on the left. Second Chance self distributes Tabula Rasa in pint cans so you can easily get your hands on some, something that you should certainly do very soon! I also suggest you visit their awesome tasting room/brewery in Carmel Mountain Ranch. Plenty of space to enjoy their offerings, play an intense game of darts, or lounge around. I’ve enjoyed both of my visits their and think you would dig hanging out there too!

SoreEyeCupSecondChanceTo review, more than seventy people nominated 82 beers for the contest. We had 14,111 legitimate votes to get us to the top ten beers. Both of those statistics exceeded previous contest records. The beers were picked up the day before judging, during something I call the Sore Eye Tour. The top ten beers were judged by people ranging from craft beer fanatic to Advanced Cicerone. Those judges chose Tabula Rasa as San Diego’s best, regularly produced, indie beer for 2016!

Thank you to our host, Toronado, and our sponsor,, I couldn’t have done it without you!


The Statements of San Diego Craft – 2015 – #9

SDCraftgraphicFinalIf you haven’t read my article, The State of San Diego Craft – 2015, you should. This will be a series of posts where I share the complete and full statements from 20+ amazing individuals that contributed to my work. This is it! The final post of statements that were shared with me while authoring my biggest article to date. I truly appreciate each and every person that took the time to write me and contribute to my work. When I started this process, I had no idea I would still be publishing these when it was time to start voting for the Sore Eye Cup (that happens tomorrow, by the way!), but there’s no way I would leave these amazing individuals out! Let’s jump in with one of my good friends, Tom for  Continue reading “The Statements of San Diego Craft – 2015 – #9”