San Diego Beer Week 2012 – O’Brien’s Pub Lineup Including SPEEDWAY LIST
The 10 day madness that is San Diego Beer Week is almost upon us. As usual we have a ton of events going on featuring some of the best beer in the country. If you are like me and you get emails from some of the other local beer bars, you already know that this year’s edition is going to set new standards for SDBW. How we all top this year for SDBW’s 5th Anniversary next year is beyond me. There is lots to update you on, so I will get right into it.
Once you knock out the cobwebs from Halloween, we have a double whammy for you on Thursday the 1st. As a little preview for San Diego Beer Week we will tap a cask of Alpine Duet IPA at 5 pm. And we get the Chargers v. Chiefs at 5:20 pm. So you can drown your sorrows or toast to victory with great beer. If we lose and AJ and Norv are still Chargers employees on Friday, I will be beside myself.
SAN DIEGO BEER WEEK!
Here are the latest updates to our Beer Week schedule. I have updates on just about every event, so read on for all of the sudsy goodness.
Friday, Nov 2 – 10 Tasty Treats from Alpine. We kick off San Diego Beer Week with a very special night of beers from our good friends at Alpine Beer Company. We will have the new Ichabod in bottles (porter with pumpkin) and then the following NINE BEERS on tap: O’Brien’s IPA, Alpine Ale, Whale, Pure Hoppiness, Nelson, Duet, New Millenium, Firing sQuad and a full keg of Exponential Hoppiness. We’ll be making up a special batch of beer cheese in the kitchen for beer cheese plates and burgers and Lindsey will be making chicken pot pies topped with beer gravy.
Saturday, Nov 3 – Mother Pucker Sour Day. We will be serving up a wide selection of draft and bottled sour ales from all over the world. There should be dozens of beers from which to choose including lambics, geuze, Flemish ale, wild ales and lots of great domestic sour beer. Tyson has been saving beers and bottles all year just for this day. On draft look for vintage kegs of Russian River Supplication, Temptation and Concecration, Bear Republic Tartar, Lost Abbey Cuvee De Tomme, Drie Fonteinen Sour Stout, Cuvee De Jacobins, New Belgium Tart Lychee and a few other treats.
In the bottle we will release a limited amount of our Cantillon collection of beers to be consumed at the pub as well as Cuvee De Ranke, Rodenbach, Bruery Tart of Darkness, New Belgium Kick, Lindemans Cuvee Rene, Drie Fonteinen Schaerneekse Kriek, Timmermans Oude Gueze, Oude Beersel Oude Gueze, Drie Fonteinen Oude Gueze and Kriek, Duchesse de Bourgogne, Lost Abbey Red Poppy and Framboise de Amarossa and many others. To pair with the great sour beers, we will have Flemish Stew on special from the kitchen made with Monk’s Cafe Sour Brown.
Sunday, Nov 4 – High Societe Beer Dinner. O’Brien’s will be hosting a dinner with our closest brewery friends – the good folks just down the street at Societe Brewing. Doug and Travis have made a huge splash from the very first keg of beer they released (which was poured at O’Brien’s). We are stoked to be collaborating with Societe to create an amazing evening of beer and food. We’ll have 7 Societe beers inlcuding Apprientice, Pupil and the Butcher Imperial Stout paired up with exquisite food. Look for Birthday Bacon, Curried Lamb and Lindsey’s Mac n’ Cheese made with Harlot all on the menu. The tasting is sold out at the moment, but there might well be some cancellations, so if you are interested in coming, please put your name and phone number on the waiting list at the pub (feel free to call the pub to do this).
Monday, Nov 5 – High Societe Night and Pop Up Taste Cheese Market. The day after our Societe beer dinner we will be loading up the taps with everything they have available from the brewery. Expect lots of great hoppy and Belgian-inspired beers from one of the county’s best breweries. We should have Dandy, Pupil, Apprentice, Debutante, Widow, Harlot and Butcher Imperial Stout. We will also be hosting our friend Mary Palmer of Taste Cheese for a special pop up cheese market in front of the pub. Mary will have a special beer-friendly selection of cheeses, some of which specifically will pair perfectly with the Societe beers. From the kitchen look for Lindsey’s Harlot Mac n’ Cheese, Mac n’ Cheese Bites (you have to try them) and a special Societe Cheese plate with Shopshire Blue, Marco Polo (peppercorn Cheddar) and Ewephoria (sheep’s milk Gouda) to pair with the beers.
Tuesday, Nov 6 – Night of a Million Zillion Speedways. Our most popular SDBW event is back for another year. FIFTEEN versions of AleSmith Speedway Stout on tap! It is pure insanity. Here is the list of beers:
Coconut and vanilla
Peanut Butter & cocao nibs
Cocao nibs and vanilla bean
Single variety coffee – Kauai Reserve home roasted by AleSmith brewer Bill Batten
Dried sour cherries
Fresh cherries w/Jack Daniels oakchips
Ginger, nutmeg, allspice
Cocao nibs, vanilla, oak, & Irish whiskey
And of course, the Kopi Luwak, aka Weasal Poo Speedway
We will be pouring the beers in 2 flights with a 2 oz pour of each beer – which is 30 oz of speedway, so please be careful. If you have a 12 cup muffin tin, please bring it as it will make transporting your beers from the counter to the table so much easier. There will be a line, but last two years we have been able to serve everyone who showed up before 8 pm a full taster flight – that is not a guarantee for this year, just a guideline. So please be patient as we attempt to pour nearly 3000 beer glasses as fast as humanly possible. Look for a great dessert pairing and lots of beer bratwurst specials including one with our house Francisco Sauce (sauteed onions and hot peppers in mustard sauce).
And for those thinking that perhaps 15 is a little shy of however big a million zillion is, I am not really that bad at math. The name is an homage to my comic book loving adolescence and The Tick. If you are truly curious, visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Tick_%28comic_book%29 where there is also a link to the site where you can see and buy the comics. I will most likely bring in some of my Tick comics that night as well. Had only Edward Gorey used a large number in the title of any of his books, perhaps I would have used that instead (again for the curious – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Gorey).
Wednesday, Nov 7 – Kern River Floods O’Brien’s. Our friends at Kern River will be bringing down a keg of everything they have at the brewery for our SDBW event. The beer list includes a CASK of JO IPA, and then on draft – JO IPA, Class V Stout, Class X Boubron Barrel Stout and Citra Double IPA. I expect the Class X, Citra and both JO IPAs to not last the night, so if you want to try all of the beers, don’t show up at 10 pm. The folks at Kern River are just great people to hang out and have a beer with. Stop by and say hi to them while enjoying one of their amazing beers at the fist pub in San Diego to ever serve Kern River beer (just ask Fix It Paul about it). We’ll be doing delicious Chicken Sopes and Tacos on special as combo plates with rice and beans.
Thursday, Nov 8, Part I – Cascading Cask Night. We will be tapping a series of amazing casks all night long on Thursday for SDBW. Most will be in just a 5 gallon cask (called a pin) so don’t expect any of them to last that long. We are tapping casks from Alpine, Ballast Point, Port Brewing and Green Flash throughout the night. The cask line up is: Alpine O’Brien’s IPA, Ballast Point Dorado Double IPA, Habanero Sculpin and Victory at Sea, Port Brewing High Tide IPA and Green Flash/Cigar City Candela Rye Barleywine aged with Spanish Cedar (pairs great with a cigar)!
We will have at least 3 on tap at a time all night long. The plan is to tap 3 casks at 5 pm and then the other 3 casks no later than 8 pm. If one of the 5 pm-tapped casks blows then we will tap a new cask. The 5 pm Schedule is: Victory at Sea, O’Brien’s IPA and Candela Rye Barleywine. Then no later than 8 pm we will tap Dorado, Habanero Sculpin and High Tide IPA. So anytime you stop by throughout the night, there will be fresh, tasty cask beer for you to enjoy. It will be curry night in the kitchen so look for some spicy specials along with sweet potato fries. If you are a cask beer fan, this will be one of the best nights of SDBW for you.
Thursday, Nov 8, Part II – Attack of the Avery. One event just wasn’t enough for us on Thursday Night (well, it was, but we just couldn’t say no to the boys from Avery). So in addition to our cask beer night, we will have 8 Avery drafts and some rare bottles. Look for Avery 16, 18 and 19th Anniversary beers all on tap with 15 in the bottle. We’ll have draft of Rumpkin, 2010 Mephistopheles, Dugana, Double Dry Hopped Dugana and IPA. It is going to be an awesome line up of beers that you will not want to miss if you are an Avery fan (and what beer lover isn’t?). Many of the drafts are just in 5 gallon kegs, so be sure to get them while you can. Did I mention Double Dry Hopped Dugana?
Friday, Nov 9 – Tyson’s Big Barrel Aged Beer Night. All year long Tyson sneaks away some amazing kegs and cases of barrel aged beer to tap and serve. With bottles and drafts we should have dozens of barrel aged beers for your drinking pleasure. The expected draft list includes: Firestone Parabola, Deschutes Abyss, Lost Abbey Deliverance, Angel’s Share, 3 Russian River Sours, Stone Smoked Porter on Highland Scotch Barrels, Drakes The Shizzle, Black Diamond Brandy Barrel Quad, Flying Dog Imperial Gonzo in Stranahan Whiskey Barrels, Dogfish Head Burton Baton + more! There will also be plenty of bottled barrel aged beer. Just know that this is going to be awesome and you will want to be here. It will be comfort food night in the kitchen with cottage pie and bangers and mash on special.
Saturday, Nov 10 – Maui Brewing Big Kahuna Day. Our buddies at Maui Brewing Co. will be sending out a ton of specialty beer for this great day including Imperial Coconut Porter. Other beers on tap will include: Drip Dry Coffee Stout, Ginger Saison, Mac Nut Brown, Kula Country Pumpkin Ale, Maka Koa Strong Pale, Wee Heavy (2012 GABF Gold Scottish Style Ale), La Petite Blanca (La Perouse White aged in Chardonnay Barrels), Pau Hana Pilsner and Red Cock Doppel Bock!!!! It is a kick ass list of great Maui beers and you can bet that MOM (Mainland Operations Manager) Anita will be there. It will be West Coast Barbecue Night in the kitchen with some very tasty BBQ treats from our sister pub. Look for the Southern Pulled Pork Torta (with a mustard bbq sauce) and BBQ Nachos.
Sunday, Nov 11, Part I – Brunch with Coral and Friends. So Bob Marley may be broadcast from an Indian Reservation now, but we can still enjoy brunch with friends for a Chargers game. We’ll be opening up early for breakfast burritos and mimosas on the 11th for the Chargers v. Tampa Bay game. We’ll have some great Maui Brewing Company beers on tap as well from our Saturday promo. No matter what the Chargers do, it will be a great way to start your day.
Sunday, Nov 11, Part II – Lost Abbey Ultimate Box Set Tasting with Tomme Arthur. I have already punished you enough just by writing down the name of this now sold-out event. And yes we really will be tasting through the whole box set. We have finished all 4 SDBWs with a Lost Abbey tasting and this is a tradition that I look forward to continuing next year as SDBW turns 5.
Information on all SDBW events including the newly moved downtown Brewers Guild Fest on the 3rd and the Brewers Guild/Chef Celebration Beer Garden at The Lodge on the 11th can be found at www.sdbw.org. Tyson will be doing a food snack for the VIP session of the Guild festival with shrimp smoked over at West Coast BBQ. The new Chef’s Press book Brew Food will be released on the first Friday of Beer Week featuring recipes by Tyson and Lindsey as well as a section on pairing beer and cheese with yours truly and Mary Palmer of Taste Cheese. We will have copies for sale at the pub at some point in November.
You will also find all of our events at West Coast Barbecue & Brew in La Mesa listed at the SDBW website – just click on “events” and then again on “events by location” and finally on “East County”. Larry has some nice stuff lined up including a cask of Evil Dead Red (Thurs, 11/8), a keg of Lost Abbey Cuvee de Tomme (Weds, 11/7) and whole bunch of wonderful Societe (11/3 and 11/4) and Sierra Nevada beers (11/9-11/11). Get more info on West Coast at www.westcoastbbqandbrew.com or like them on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WestCoastBarbecueBrew.
So hopefully you found something fun to come out and enjoy. The Tuesday night Speedway night is the only night I expect to be totally crazy, and then really only from 5 to 8 pm or so. After that it will calm down. And while the other nights might be busier than usual, the pub will be full of good, beer loving folk that you likely have more in common with than you realize.
I think that there are still a few spots left for our Great British and Belgian Christmas Beer Tour put on in conjunction with our good friend Bill Snider of Ciao! Travel. I am really excited to hit the Essen Christmas Beer Festival with 150 different Belgian Christmas beers and strong ales. And I am hoping to find some willing participants for our 20th anniversary celebrations in 2014 while in Belgium. I am hoping to either blend or brew something up in 2013 to be released for the pubs 20th anniversary. For this coming 19th anniversary, which is also mine and Lindsey’s 10th year of owning O’Brien’s, both Alpine and Societe will be creating some special hoppy beers for us to enjoy.
For complete information on the pub trip to Europe visit www.ciaotravel.com or contact Bill Snider at [email protected]. These trips are always a blast and a great way to experience British and Belgian beer culture – and I hear Europe has some museums that are worth seeing too.
That is your good beer news for now. We’ll see you soon for a great San Diego Beer Week celebration! Cheers, Tom