Sister City Brewery # 2 – Strange Fellows Brewing

The next Sister City of Los Angeles is Vancouver, Canada and the brewery I chose is Strange Fellows Brewing.

Time to check out some more Canadian beer…

Beldame Old World Pilsner – “Crossing paths with a crone is believed unlucky by some. Stooped and toothless, she’s a frightful specter of mortality. Those who can meet her gaze and see wisdom there have nothing to fear, but beware to those who scorn or overlook her. As Mother of Creation, she can wield her power in wicked ways, by nightmare, illness or a failed harvest. So next time you happen upon an old woman, pour her a glass of this bright and refreshing beer, look her in the eye, and toast to her good health.”

Rei’s Dark Lager – “This dark Lager balances the use of roasted malts and premium German pilsner malt. It delivers a clean character of a lager and offers a complex grain bill that blends aromas of chocolate, roast and has a crisp and clean lager finish.  “

Blackmail Northwest Stout – “Originally advertised as a nutritional supplement for new mothers, milk stouts contain Lactose sugar which gives this beer a rich round and slightly sweet character. Blackmail is only 4.5%abv and has a soft roast and chocolate character.”

Sister City Brewery Tour # 1 – Tap B Brewpub

Los Angles has a few sister cities all over the world, less than I thought, so this month for L.A. Beer Week, I thought it is time to visit some and our first Sister City to visit is Split, Croatia and the Tap B Brewpub.


Split, is the second largest city in Croatia and is a seaport/ resort city in southern Croatia. Located on a peninsula in the Adriatic Sea and best known for the ruins of the Palace of Diocletian.

You can start here with Trapula, an American styled Pale Ale and then move on to then dial back to their GAD Pilsner or their Lito Blonde Ale before hitting the hops again with Mirakul IPA.

Central Coast Stop # 3 – Re:Find Distillery

Even though I will not be in lovely Paso Robles this year for the Firestone Walker Invitational, it doesn’t mean that you (or I) should not hit up some California Central Coast breweries, or a distillery..

Here is my last pick of the month…Re:Find Distillery. It is not far from downtown Paso Robles or, for that matter from the many other distilleries that dot the area. You head up an minor incline and park at the homey little tasting room for both the distillery and the winery as well.

Normally I would skip quickly over the vodkas to the gin and the whiskeys and bourbons but there are some interesting twists such as cucumber vodka, barrel finished vodka, kumquat vodka. You can also find cocktail kits and mixers so, plan some time to visit.

Central Coast Brewery # 2 -Oak and Otter Brewing Co.

Our next stop combines a tree and a lovable critter. Oak and Otter Brewing is in SLO. Let’s jump right into a possible taster tray…

Vitamin Sea Wit – “Belgian wit made with fresh orange zest, a great balance of fruit and yeasty characteristics.”

Islay Peak IPA – “The House Standard. West Coast IPA with a great balance of malt and hops.”

Midnight Mallory – “a classic black IPA that has a hop bite and roasty undertones from special roast, midnight wheat.”

Romauldo Red Ale – “A dark, rich Irish red ale with a unique malty taste and bursting with caramel notes.”

San Diego Area Brewery Tour # 3 – Barley & Sword Brewing

Our last stop in the San Diego area is at Barley & Sword Brewing. They are located on El Cajon Boulevard just north of the North Park area and have a refreshing change of style pace in their beers on tap.

Let’s order up a taster flight..

Fiddler’s Green Mild“A sessionable pub ale that will keep you coming back for more.”

Orkney Ale – “San Diego International beer competition Silver medal winning. Referencing the Orkney Islands, a remote Scottish archipelago where the brewing of strong, malty ales has a long history. A malty beer with light caramel, toast, toffee, and even light stonefruit flavors. The sweetness is offset by roasted malt characters balance the bitterness and provide a dynamic and lasting experience. Toast, roast, bread, and caramel-toffee notes full this medium bodied beer, finishing with a slightly roasty dryness.”

Edwin Fox English IPA – “A clear departure from the abundant West Coast IPA style. This English IPA is intended to be a window into the genisis of the IPA style. Broad and bold malt characters are well balanced with a trio of English Hops to give a unique and delightful experience in aroma and taste. While not as bitter forward, this traditional IPA is enjoyable to both hop heads and less hoppy beer drinkers.”

Wheeler’s Patent Irish Dry Stout – “Everything you look for in an Irish Stout. This pint of black is dark, creamy, and full of malty and roasted flavors. Do not miss this when it’s on cask!”

1st Visit – Audio Graph Brewing

Yes, this is a bit of a cheat since Audio Graph Beer Co. is the same brewery just with a new name but I thought I would re-1st visit anyway.

I started with a flight comprised of the fairly new Ambient Amber Lager, Flathead Hazy Pale, Noise Violation DIPA, finishing with Bass Clef Barrel-Aged Barleywine at a whopping 15.45% ABV.  The last was rich and boozy and I am glad I savored that at the end.  

Of that group the amber, a throwback to microbreweries past was my pick.  Malty and filling and just great for a cloudy day.

I also got small tastes of the pils, the berry sour and the fermented michelada which was super savory and spicy (for a wuss like me) and really tasty.

And despite the LAFC contingent offending my Timbers vibe, it is still the same cool DTLA space that many don’t know about but should.

San Diego Area Brewery Tour # 2 – Jacked Up Brewery

Heading north now to Escondido and the Jacked Up Brewery. Where we will start with two of their core (and canned beers) before adding a few others to fill out the taster tray.

El Gato Lager – “El Gato Lager is our newest addition to our core four beers. This light and airy lager is an easy drinking, but still unique in taste.”

Hazy Talk – “The juiciest hazy IPA that you’ll find. This beer is crafted to perfection, giving an orange juice like appearance.”

Then try the Seven Accusations Pale Ale, the Dragon Fruit IPA and then finish with Gallus Scottish Red Ale.

San Diego Area Brewery Tour # 1 – Hoponymous Brewing

Cribbing from the Winners column from the recent San Diego Beer News Awards, let’s travel to the greater San Diego area and sample some award winning beer, starting with Hoponymous Brewing.

Hoppin’ Pils NZ Pilsner – “a NZ Dry-Hopped Pilsner that leaps with lively hop character, blending New Zealand’s unique hop varieties into a crisp, refreshing pilsner with a twist of bold aromatics and a clean finish.”

Leaving Without Saying Goodbye – “an Irish Red Ale, combines a smooth, malty flavor with a hint of caramel for a quietly complex farewell.”

Gal Fawkes NZ West Coast IPA – “by the Hop Girls, is a revolutionary brew that ignites with vibrant New Zealand hops, offering a spark of tropical and citrus flavors against a backdrop of crisp, clean bitterness.”

What You Need West Coast IPA – “delivers a crisp, hop-forward journey, balancing piney bitterness with a clean, dry finish—the quintessential brew for those seeking the essence of the coast.”