Brewery + Distillery # 2 – New Holland

The second distilling stop is New Holland. Much like the first stop, Rogue, they are an old school longtime craft brewer. Let’s dive into a pair of spirits matched with a pair of beers.

Barrel Aged Knickerbocker Gin – “Knickerbocker Gin, conditioned in spent New Holland Spirits barrels, makes a delicious barrel-aged gin. Toasty notes from the spirit-soaked wood accentuate the vibrant juniper character and provide a deep and smooth contrast to the lively aromatics.”

Cabin Fever Brown Ale – “Cabin Fever is a roasty brown ale and a hearty, comforting companion for long, mind-bending winters.”

Beer Barrel Rye – “Putting our bourbon in Dragon’s Milk barrels worked so well, that we wanted to see what it would do to rye whiskey. Beer Barrel Rye takes a similar journey through new American oak barrels before getting the Dragon’s Milk barrel treatment. Aromas of vanilla and allspice lead to flavors of honey and almond, before a lingering, spicy finish.”

Fear Cognac Barrel Aged Baltic Porter – “The base beer for Fear is a baltic porter, brewed with figs and aged in hand-selected Cognac barrels for one full year before being finished with vanilla to provide a complex assortment of decadent flavors. This release represents the self-doubt and fear of failure that accompanies a pursuit of change.”

A New Shadow

San Fernando has a new brewery. The Gaiman-esque logo’d Shadow Grove Brewing. Currently they have only growler-to-go as well as pre-order special releases. The main beers are a pale ale, nut brown ale and a Czech pils which is nicely off-kilter style wise.

Look forward to a 1st visit in the weeks to come.

Brewery + Distillery # 1 – Rogue Ales

As you can see from their website banner, long time Oregon brewery, Rogue does beer, spirits and dabbles in the CBD too.

I am going to highlight two beers and two spirits that I would like to taste. I will do the same with the other brewery/distillery combos later this month.

Colossal Claude – “It’s been a few decades since a Colossal Claude sighting has been reported, but we’re fairly certain the massive sea monster has been laying low off the coast of his favorite brewery. Word has it that after years of terrifying sailors and feasting on salmon he acquired a taste for hops. So we brewed this Imperial IPA with a colossal dose of Cascade, Chinook, Citro and Strata hops in hope of coaxing Claude out to join us for a pint.

Pinot Barrel Farmhouse Gin – “With an abundance of freshly drained Oregon Pinot noir barrels, it only makes sense to capitalize on the flavors locked within them. For this unique gin, we fill Pinot noir barrels with our Farmhouse Gin and let it rest for six months. The result is a complexly layered gin that tastes great on its own and mixed in cocktails.

Shakespeare Stout Nitro – “Rogue Ales was originally founded in Ashland, a Southern Oregon college town home to the world-renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Inspired by this festival, we introduced this English-style oatmeal stout as one of our three original beers when our first pub opened in Ashland in 1988. It has remained in our product line ever since, earning the most awards and highest ratings of any of our beers.

Oregon Rye Malt Whiskey – “One of few malted rye whiskeys, the malting process in Rogue’s hand-crafted Oregon Rye Malt softens the spice notes typical of rye whiskeys and makes for a more approachable whiskey that builds in flavor. The barley in the mash bill (52% rye, 48% barley) further rounds out the taste and mouthfeel creating an easy sipping experience. Complex nuttiness is softened by light caramel and a hint of citrus leading to cinnamon, nutmeg and black pepper.

Sweet Sixteen Brewery # 3 – Monnik Beer Company

Our last Women’s Sweet Sixteen stop is in the Schnitzelburg neighborhood of Louisville, the home of Monnik Beer Company.

Let’s dive into what might be in that first taster tray…

Italian Disco Pilsner to start off on the light yside the new onto Birds Can’t Row Boats “Single hopped pale ale with Sultana hops.” Then going darker to King George Brown Ale “A big English brown ale with pear ester aroma, toasty caramel flavor, and a dry finish.” Then finish it off with His Dark Materials “A lactose-sweetened stout, with aromas of roast and tobacco and rich flavors of dark fruits, and bittersweet chocolate; finishing with a rich and silky body.”

Sweet Sixteen Brewery # 2 – Freewheel Brewing

Next up in the Women’s Sweet Sixteen Brewery tour is the new national champion, Stanford. Nearby in Redwood City is Freewheel Brewing

Mind the Gap IPA – “Our “English-American” keg IPA. More hops and ABV than the English version. It starts off with the bitterness of an American-style IPA, but finishes smooth, and a little sweet like an English-style IPA. We use different hops to dry-hop in each batch!”

Dark Mild – “A little known style in the US, this great session beer is based on an award winning ale from Bank Top Brewery, Bolton. This dark mild is stuffed full of malt and roast aroma, to tempt the taste-buds with chocolate and liquorice. A pint to share in the company of your well groomed whippet.”

London Calling Bitter – “Think not “Bitter”, think a better session beer, bang on in flavor and body. Crystal malt adds bang to the buck, with American grown classic Goldings and Styrian Goldings for a traditional British brew. So if you’re contemplating whether to stay or go, this beer should give you a good reason to order another.”

Gold – “Our mate Dave, brewer at Ironbridge, passed us the recipe for this cracking brew, a permanent fixture at his pub, the “Fighting Cocks” in Shropshire. Start with an inviting creamy head lacing down behind a light and golden nectar, with Centennial hops giving thirst cutting bitterness and aroma. Just a great beer and a keeper.”

Sweet Sixteen Brewery # 1 – 1912 Brewing

The quick among you will be able to guess the mis-direction once I say that 1912 Brewing is based on Tucson, Arizona. No, not talking about the Men’s Sweet Sixteen but rather the Women’s being played in San Antonio. We start with the Arizona Wildcats and a surprising run from the PAC 12 to the title game.

Let’s take a look at the beers…

1730 Lager – “1730 is an artisanal lager made with American hops, a touch of rye malt, and heaps of pilsner malt. Aromas of a traditional German pilsner and tasting notes of tropical and citrus fruits, a touch of rye spiciness, and a subtle hop finish. Brewed with our friends at the JW Marriott Starr Pass…”

Adapt IPA – “The second of 3 newly formulated Hazy IPA’s based upon the fighting spirit and training of the United States Marine. Adapt uses Cashmere, Mosaic, and Idaho 7.”

Este Way Gose – “A Gose with a pleasant tangerine and orange zest aroma. Reminisce your favorite Margarita’s with this one, Este Way has a tart lime flavor, that finishes nice and dry.”

The Clurichaun Stout – “Enticing you with a sweet creamy aroma. As you take your first sip, you’re tricked with immense dark chocolate and coffee, smoothing into mouth-watering Irish Whiskey”

Nitro Brewery #3 – Modern Times

We end our March survey of Nitro with Modern Times who only entered this style when they could nitrogenate their beers in the brite tank. They started with their Black House beer and they also do their City of the Dead stout. Vanilla latte, coconut and coffee are all variants you could try and they also do Nitro canned coffee to start your day.

Here are some other beers from MT that caught my eye…

Bobcat Danger – “This preposterously tasty Berliner is a collab between our Portland brewing ninjas and the excellent people at Bottle Logic. Stuffed to the gills with rhubarb, black raspberries, blackberries, coconut, and vanilla, this tart, funky fruit-fest sports intense tartness from the rhubarb, followed by delicious berry notes and creamy coconut & vanilla. It’s like a liquid slice of blackberry pie with a dollop of whipped cream on top.”

Foeder Ice – “Our year-round pilsner spent two and a half glorious months in our heavy-toast American oak foeders before a generous dry-hopping with Motueka & Hallertauer Blanc. The resulting beverage is a deliciously complex 4.8% bundle of citrusy joy with delicate notes of lemongrass chamomile and vanilla.”

Green Futures – “This transcendently refreshing hazy IPA started with a base of pilsner malt and some flaked & malted oats. Then, we hopped the bejeezus out of it with Nelson, Strata, Centennial, & Simcoe hops, yielding a ridiculously tasty straw-colored beverage with notes of pineapple candied berries, and a touch of honeydew.”

Nitro Brewery # 2 – Vault Brewing Co.

Our next stop in Nitroville is in Pennsylvania and Vault Brewing. Let’s dive in to some currently offered beers before heading to a couple nitro examples.

EVERNACHT – “this black lager greets the nose with herbal hops and hints of baker’s chocolate. flavors of toasted crackers and juniper sap waltz across the tongue and are tied together with a crisp and distinctively noble hop bitterness.”

IRISH POTATO STOUT – “our bear hug oatmeal stout conditioned on coconut & cinnamon.”

Now on to nitro, there is the Nitro Can Coffee Stout ( experiment no. 003), Sweet Potato Ale and a Rye Pale Ale All In widget-less cans.

Nitro Brewery # 1 – Left Hand Brewing

The theme for the brewery tour this month is meant as a starting off point. Which breweries have a well known nitro offering and from there talk all of their beers. So we start with the most known in my book, Left Hand Brewing.

Perusing their tap list, I see quite a few Nitro options such as Galactic Cowboy Imperial Stout, Milk Stout and Flamingo Dreams Berry Blonde but let’s have the following in a taster tray…

1265 Pilsner – “Crisp & lively with delicate citrus hops and light bready malts.”

Fade to Black Foreign Stout – “3x Gold Medal winner a time the Greatest American Beer Festival in the Foreighn-style Stout category”

Pint of Paradise Sour NE IPA – “From the Brewer, Tanner: The heart of this beer is the experimental yeast, Lallemand’s Philly Sour, which naturally produces lactic acid during fermentation. Light body, slight haze, Citra & Galaxy hop aromas of tropical fruit & a tart, juicy mouthfeel.”

Found Fortune DIPA – “A treasure trove of tropical fruit & citrus from El Dorado, Galaxy, Citra, Comet & Cascade hops.”

CA Craft Beer Week Brewery # 3 + Black History Month

Now I don’t normally feature more than one brewery in my themed brewery tours for each month, but I am making an exception here…

For Black History Month, three black-owned breweries — Hunters Point Brewery in San Francisco (aka Speakeasy Ales & Lagers), Oak Park Brewing Co. (Sacramento) and Full Circle Brewing Co. (Fresno) — and another in planning, Hella Coastal Brewing in Oakland, collaborated and developed a mixed IPA 4-pack celebrating champions of American history: 


James Baldwin / America’s Native Son Black IPA – Hunters Point

Ella Josephine Baker / All We Want Is What You Promised Red IPA – Oak Park

Fred Allen Hampton / Eye Am a Revolutionary Hazy IPA – Full Circle

Fannie Lou Hamer / Everybody Is Free West Coast IPA – Hella Coastal

Please check out these breweries when you visit the North of California.