Local Craft Beer gets the feature treatment; Eureka pours Trumer Pils in a stange, Flights and Bites pays tribute to Kern County breweries at Moo, and more On Tap This Week.
Monday 2/13 – Steal the Pint this week at Bootleggers Craft Pub starts at 6 pm. No word yet on the featured beer.
Wednesday 2/15 – The weekly Steal the Glass event over at Eureka Burger starts at 6 pm. This week features Trumer Pils by Trumer Brewery in Berkley, CA. This is a world-renowned Pilsner that originates from the 600-year-old Sigl Private Brauerei in Austria that has won tons of awards. They choose to open their US Brauerei in Berkeley because of the clean, soft water of the Sierras, almost identical to the Alpine waters in Salzburg. Trumer Pils is the only beer they brew. Check out the history of this brewery at the link above. The glass offered for this event is a stange and looks stunning; a must have for your collection.
Wednesday 2/15 – Wednesday is Flights and Bites night at Moo Creamery. The pairing starts at 4 pm and goes until 9 pm. This week is all about locally brewed beer with each course being paired with a beer from one of our excellent local breweries. The beers haven’t been finalized yet. Keep an eye on social media for the pairings early this week.
Saturday 2/18 – This Saturday is the Tater Tots and Beer Festival at the Park at River Walk. The festival goes from 1 – 4 pm. This is part of a touring event series that started in 2015 with plans to hit 70 cities. No word on what beers will be available for our local version but there is a list of participating breweries from past events on their website. Tickets are only available online and you can get more information on their website as well.
Feature - Local Craft Beer
I talked a friend into heading up the mountain to Local Craft Beer in Tehachapi with me (it didn’t take much convincing). With 75% of their beer distributed, it’s easy to get your hands on lots of their beers without ever making it up the mountain. Marketing guru, Tyler Easterling does an excellent job of promoting and putting LCB beers on taps all over Southern California and Tyson Southworth, brewer and master recipe formulator is consistently brewing amazing beers worth seeking out. We were certainly glad we made the trip up. The brewery is tucked away behind a Home Depot in an unassuming, slightly hard to find industrial complex next to a recycling center. Inside you’ll find a good size L shaped bar facing the bank of tap handles with names like Hop Drizzle, Gose the Blueberrian, 93561 (a nod to their zip code and other beers with similar references) and Grab Them by the Pineapple scrawled in chalk above. Along the east wall of the tasting room is a row of tables for socializing and board games. There’s a beer pong table, merchandise rack, and a high-top bar with stools against the roll up doors for extra seating.
Don't Forget Your Pallet Jack
On the night we visited, the bar and most of the tables were full. A group was casually engaging in beer pong off and on. The beer garden outside complete with picnic tables, space heaters, and corn hole was empty, probably due to the fact that there was enough room for everyone inside and Tehachapi is decidedly colder outside this time of year than Bakersfield is. The storage area was so full of grains, glassware, and barrels in different stages of the aging process that pallets seemed to be slowly encroaching on the tasting area. They certainly need more room for their brewing operation. The brew area is tight but clean and organized. The current system is capable of brewing just over 3 barrels per batch with two 3 barrel fermenters and two 10 barrel fermenters. On the night we visited Tyson had a couple new beers in the fermenters, the Haze is Real DIPA and Cali Cloud IPA. These should demonstrate a nice side by side of a New England style haziness and a West Coast style cloudiness. Both beers use the same recipe but differ in the process.
I Believe I Can Flight
We did what everyone should do when visiting a brewery for the first time; order flights. This ensured we would get the full experience of Tehachapi’s only brewery. Really, flights should be your policy for your first visit or if it’s been a while since your last visit to any brewery. This is especially true in the case of a place like Local Craft Beer that’s always rotating their taps. Our first flight consisted of: Make Love in Red Bottoms DIPA, The Mosaic is Real DIPA, Hop Drizzle IPA, and Blue Oak Coffee Stout. There wasn’t a bad beer in the bunch as I assumed would be the case. I loved the extreme coffee forward taste of the stout which uses locally roasted coffee beans from Blue Oak Coffee Roasting in Tehachapi and The Mosaic is Real, which I’ve had before but couldn’t resist, does a great job of featuring the Mosaic hop flavor.
Turn Your Head and Cough
With our first flight so hop heavy we went in a different direction for the second. Grab Them by the Pineapple Belgian Strong Ale, Gose the Bluebarrian, Barrel Aged Bob Barley Wine and the Barrel Aged version of the above mentioned Coffee Stout filled out the second tasting. My buddy is a big fan of the barrel aged beers so naturally his favorite of the night was the BBA Bob Barley Wine. I really enjoyed the Gose the Blueberrian which is a collaboration Gose with Dionysus Brewing and Walter Craft Beer Salt (Superfunkadelic infused Walter Salt was used in the brewing process). I’m normally not a big Belgian fan (The beers, not the people. The people are lovely.) but the Pineapple flavor in Grab Them by the Pineapple was the most pronounced true pineapple flavor I’ve ever tasted in a beer. In the end, my buddy walked away with a growler of BBA Bob Barley Wine and I went conservative with a growler of Lager Down Now IPL and a bottle of Hop Drizzle IPA.
The Pied Piper and the Undiscerning Drinker
Local Craft Beer’s future is bright even as they run out of space and kegs. Their location is certainly restricting in both visibility and working space and the local following in Tehachapi is what can be expected. With a small town on the verge of being a medium size town comes a small craft beer following and multiple options for the undiscerning drinker. We witnessed that first hand when at a point in the night a noticeable portion of patrons decided it was time to find some place to take shots chased by an adjunct lager and go line dancing or whatever that faction of drinkers does. The good news is people from all over the state and beyond seek out these beers. On the weekends a large portion of their clientele is not local. This bodes well for LCB and speaks volumes for the quality of the product coming out of that little 3 barrel system. If you haven’t been up or it’s been awhile, take the 45-minute drive up the mountain from Bakersfield and see what’s on tap at Local Craft Beer. You won’t regret it.
For Your Ears
Mash Time – A Brewing Podcast – A local station for discussing home brewing and craft beer, hosted by Stuart Hoetker and John Agee out of Bakersfield CA. Episode 14 with guest home brewer Tracy Burns-Lusich is set to be released today. The episode starts out extremely professional and loaded with good home brewing insights until about the 30-minute mark with the arrival of Kenny and Uncle Frank from IPA Today. Full disclosure, I was there too.
IPA Today Podcast – A local podcast critiquing beers and wasting time. Hosted by Kenny and Richie with frequent appearances by Uncle Frank and Joey. The Next episode of IPA Today is part one of the guys visit with Temblor’s head brewer, Mike Lahti and should be released on Monday the 13th.
Bakersfield Craft Beer Blogging
Things to Click
Click the links; you know you want to…
The Full Pint hits the nail on the head with this article from last year that will always be relevant: That Not So Fresh Feeling – Too Much Old Hoppy Beer On Shelves
Short and Sweet (or Sour)
Tickets for the 3rd Annual Country and Craft Beer Festival are now available at all three Lengthwise locations (cash only) and online. The event will be held April 1st at Central Park at Mill Creek. You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram for a chance to win tickets. Just like the Bacon and Craft Beer Festival, there will be a homebrew tent at this year’s Country and Craft Beer Festival. I’ll post more on the who and what in the coming weeks.
Barrel House Brewing out of Paso Robles is planning to open a tap room and beer garden in downtown Visalia. I’ll post more info on this in the coming weeks. Available this month from Barrel House is their newest IPA from their Forager Series, billed as Central Coast Style; Juicy IPA is their take on the New England style IPA. Expect to see this beer on shelves soon.
Imbibe Wine and Spirits has super fresh Level 1 DIPA in bombers. This collaboration between El Segundo Brewing and Grains of Wrath Brewing (Mike Hunsaker, the former brewer for Fat Heads Brewing) is the first in the Beer Bros. Day One series.
Temblor Brewing will have Pierce Road Oatmeal Stout back on nitro sometime this week. I normally don’t talk about non-beer related stuff but Temblor is bringing so much good live entertainment to town it’s worth mentioning. With nationally touring comedy acts, lots of local and big name musicians, and other weekly events they always seem to have something going on. This week features Pub Trivia with prizes at 6 pm on Tuesday put on by the KC Library; Wednesday is Comedy Open Mic Night at 7 pm and on Friday the 17th the music of Brenton Wood (“The Oogum Boogum Song” and “Gimme Little Sign”) with special guest Steve Salas the original voice of Tierra starts at 7 pm. Check out Temblor’s Facebook page for more info on these events and other happenings such as Brewery Tours on Saturdays, Line Dancing, Tip-A-Condor Charity Dinner on the 21st, and comedian Louie Anderson on March 2nd.