Pizza Port Strong Ale Fest Pre-Party on Thurs @ O’Briens Pub
Hello Beer Lovers!
I hope that you had an excellent Thanksgiving weekend filled with food, fun, friends and family (and of course beer). It is hard to believe that it is already December and that soon it will be 2009. It has been a year of great beer at the pub and luckily for you we have saved some of the best for last.
We have some fantastic events coming up in the next week. And this weekend is the 12th San Diego Strong Ale Festival at Pizza Port Carlsbad. It is also the 75th Anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition on Friday, December 5th.
The fun starts Thursday the 4th as we host our annual pre-party for the Strong Ale Festival. And what better way to kick it off than to have two strong ale casks – AleSmith YuleSmith and Ballast Point Three Sheets. We only get two YuleSmith casks a year and they are always fantastic. The Three Sheets is a 9% barleywine that is very nicely balanced with hops. Both casks will tap at 5 pm. In addition to the great cask beers, I have selected some great beers to have on tap including: Bear Republic Racer X, Green Flash West Coast IPA, Port Brewing High Tide IPA, St. Bernardus Christmas, Alaskan Smoked Porter, Rodenbach Grand Cru, Stone 11th Anniversary, Ballast Point Three Sheets aged in Syrah and Bourbon barrels, AleSmith YuleSmith and of course all of the pub favorites – Blind Pig, Pure Hoppiness, Pliny the Elder, Racer 5 and Russian River IPA. The kitchen will be serving up some great specials as well – look for Jerk Chicken, Chicken and Sausage Gumbo and Lindsey’s legendary Duvel Mac n’ Cheese on the specials board. We will also have our new merchandise in on Thursday – look for new T shirts and sweatshirts. For sour beer fans, the Cantillon Rose de Gambrinus is back in stock – it is a blend of cherry and raspberry sour beer.
And for the sadists among us, you can watch the Chargers play the Raiders and yet again rip out our hearts on national television at 5 pm on Thursday as well.
The fun continues up at Pizza Port Carlsbad at the 12th San Diego Strong Ale Festival on Friday and Saturday, the 5th and the 6th. The festival will feature more than 75 beers over 8% alcohol from all over the United States. This is our most diverse beer list ever. There is beer from Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware, Colorado, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, Hawaii and California. All strong styles of beer will be represented inlcuding Double IPA, Imperial Stout, Barleywine, Imperial Red, Belgian-style ales, Old Ale and we will even have several cask conditioned strong ales. There is a ton of beer and the beer list will be the same both days. To celebrate the 75th anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition on December 5th, we are tapping 75 beers for 75 years. There will be a new T shirt design with that slogan as well. And as always, Vince Marsaglia will be cooking up the legendary Festival pizza with smoked bratwurst.
The festival runs from 4 pm to 11 pm on Friday the 5th and from 11 am to 11 pm on Saturday the 6th. Admission to the fest is $25 which includes a commemorative tasting glass and 8 taster tickets each good for a 4 ounce pour. Additional taster tickets are just $1 each. Tickets are only available at the door, there are no advance ticket sales. The Friday VIP session is completely sold out. Pizza Port Carlsbad is at 571 Carlsbad Village Drive just a few blocks west of I-5. The Coaster is a great way to get up there if you are spending the night on Friday in one of the nearby motels or if you are going up on Saturday. The Saturday morning Coaster at 9:45 am gets you there at 10:48 am and the last train south is at 4:30 pm. For a complete Coaster schedule, visit: http://www.gonctd.com/coaster_schedules.htm. Don’t miss one of the country’s great beer festivals, right here in our own backyard.
No matter where you find yourself on December 5th, please raise a toast to celebrate 75 years of beer in America!
Next week we have even more great events for you. The first is on Tuesday, December 9th. We will have the pleasure of hosting Tonya Cornett from Bend Brewing in Oregon. Tonya was named the Small Brewing Company Brewmaster of the Year at the 2008 World Beer Cup Awards in San Diego earlier this year. She will be at the pub along with four of her fantastic beers – Hop Head Imperial IPA (just won a GABF bronze medal), Scarlett Imperial Red, Dopplebock and Elk Lake IPA. This is a very rare chance to taste these award winning beers from Bend. It is also the first time that we have hosted an event with an American female head brewer. Tonya will be at the pub around 5 – 8 pm to answer questions and talk about her great beers. Please stop by and say hi and enjoy a new beer. For more info on the brewery, visit: www.bendbrewing.com.
Our second event is on Thursday night, the 11th with New Belgium Brewing. We will have the brewery’s fantastic Abbey Grand Cru on tap along with the annual winter ale, 2 Below. NBB glassware will be for sale – we will have a new beuatiful etched goblet glass. And as if that was not enough. We will also have a cask of Lagunitas Hop Stoopid double IPA on tap. Our last Lagunitas cask kind of exploded in the cold box due to overcarbonation and we were only able to serve out a small portion of it. However, that will not happen again and the brewery has filled up this special cask for us to make up for it. So while it may not last all night, at least we will be serving all of it. So stop by for some great rare beer from New Belgium and Lagunitas. Over the weekend on Saturday and Sunday we will be featuring domestic winter beers including Alaskan Winter Ale, Sam Adams Chocolate Bock and Anchor Christmas among others. The Chargers have an early game on Sunday the 14th at 10 am and we will open early and serve breakfast. This is the last early game of the season, and therefore our last breakfast of the season. So come in for a mimosa and some great food on Sunday.
With the holidays, come great holiday beers. We have lots of special bottles in stock right now to help bring some much needed cheer. We have Belgian Christmas beers from Affligem, Achilles, Gouden Carolous, Delirium, Fantome, St. Bernardus, St. Feuiliien, La Chouffe and Scaldis. We have more winter beers including Lost Abbey Gift of the Magi, Fuller’s Vintage Ale, Alpine Ichabod, Kulmbacher EKU 28, Dansk Old Danish Braggot and the new Stone/Jolly Pumpkin/Nogne O collaboration spiced Holiday Ale. And there are plenty of other great beers with which to celebrate including several great champagne-style beers – Deus Brut des Flanders, Malheur Brut, Eisenbahn Lust (from Brazil of all places), Malheur Dark Brut (fromerly called Malheur Black Chocolate) and though not truly Champagne-like the incredible Scaldis Prestige is back in stock. If you like after dinner drinks like port, you will love the Danish meads from Dansk. We have two in stock right now – Klapojster (made with caraway seed) and GI Dansk (made with ginger and hops). Both are very strong and have the sweet finish of a tawny port. If you are coming in with a group, we have lots of big bottles to pop. We have magnums (1.5 litres) of Chimay Blue Grand Reserve, Gouden Carolous Cuvee van der Keizer and Anchor Christmas. We have 3 litre bottles of Chimay Blue Grand Reserve, Samichlaus 2007, Duvel and St. Feuillien Tripel. And if that isn’t big enough, we have 3 different 6 litre bottles (that is 1.6 gallons of beer): Duvel, 2006 Val Dieu Grand Cru and the brand new St. Bernardus Abt 12 which comes in a large wooden box. Our 10% off all bottles special on Saturday and Sunday applies to all bottles, even the big ones. And any import bottle may be purchased to go (limit one per customer per day).
For soccer fans, the US men’s national team will play Sweden on Saturday, January 24th at the Home Depot Center. Tickets are on sale now. This will be the last warm up game before the USA starts the final round of World Cup Qualifying on February 11th against Mexico. This should be a great chance to see some of the US stars on the field. UEFA Champions League group play will finish up on Tuesday and Wednesday, December 9th and 10th and we will have live games on both days at 11:30 am. If you would like to get on our soccer specific email list, just reply to this email with a note about joining the soccer list.
And finally I have one off topic thing to mention. One of mine and Lindsey’s favorite muscians is coming to San Diego in January – John Jorgenson. He is a gypsy jazz guitarist in the tradition of Django Reinhardt and he plays guitar and clarinet. He is playing at Acoustic Music San Diego which hosts it’s concerts in a church in Normal Heights. It is a nice venue with great sound and it is very intimate. If you have never been to one of their shows, check out the website at www.acousticmusicsandiego.com. They have some very unique shows. John Jorgenson is also playing a house concert in Vista on January 17th for those that live in the north county. For more information about John Jorgenson, visit: www.johnjorgenson.com.
That is your good beer update for now. Look for more Belgian Christmas beers to be on tap on Friday the 19th. The pub will be closed on December 24th, 25th and 26th for Christmas as well as December 31st and January 1st for New Year’s. We will be open normal hours all other days. We will see you soon for a great strong ale! Cheers, Tom
20 Taps – Tons of Hops
4646 Convoy Street