Brewery Spotlight: Deschutes

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Oregon is a big player in the craft beer scene. You can find beer from several of their breweries in bars and stores in other states, making odds pretty high you’ve come across their beers before. Easily one of the most recognizable and widely distributed of these beers from Oregon is Deschutes Brewery. Robbie and I went to their Public House for lunch during a whirlwind weekend trip to Portland (their main brewery is in Bend). And OMG. The food was ridiculously delicious, and so was the beer. We were short on time so I was only able to try one beer while we were there, but I picked up several to try back at home! And goodness, it was challenging figuring out how to stuff them into my suitcase for the flight back to LA.

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Deschutes is a family and employee owned company based in Bend, OR since 1988. They are on a mission to deliver the finest beers in the world, build a healthier society, make every visit to their pubs and breweries an awesome experience, and celebrate the culture of beer. Seems to me like they are living up to and exceeding their goals. Yay Deschutes!

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Portland Public House

The distinctly Northwestern Portland Public House features 26 beers on tap, including the Deschutes mainstays, seasonal beers, and some brewed onsite exclusively for the Portland location.

The restaurant serves up classic pub food made from local ingredients, bringing a taste of Central Oregon to downtown Portland. The dishes were created by Chef Jill Ramseier and were made to pair perfectly with their beer (some of the dishes even use Deschutes beer). This isn’t your standard pub fare. Even non beer drinkers will love coming to Deschutes for the food alone. And on top of that, the Public House is located in a great area surrounded by tons of shopping. Definitely a must-see on any Portland visit.

For additional information on the Portland Public House, visit their website.

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Of the 26 beers on tap at the Portland Public House, six of them are currently brewed onsite and are available only at this location. Click here for a list of all the beers on tap. I think it goes without saying that if you visit the Portland location, you should probably try the beer you can’t get anywhere else. Buuuuuut since it was my first experience with Deschutes (and having a boyfriend from Oregon, I know we’ll be back), I went with one of their year-round mainstays: the Pacific Wonderland Lager.

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Pacific Wonderland Lager, pilsner, ABV 5.5%. Citrus, floral and herbal hop flavors, with a delicate malt body and crisp, clean lager finish.

From the Deschutes website: “We’ve always believed the best way to respect tradition is to brew the unexpected. So when we set out to create a sessionable lager befitting of the Pacific Northwest, our sense of exploration led us to this dry-hopped wonder befitting of everyday adventure. Citrusy Tettnang Mandarina hops combine with the crisp, bright character of a traditional lager to deliver a beer that is truly refreshing, and undoubtedly worth sharing.”

I loved the Pacific Wonderland Lager! Very light, crisp, and refreshing, it was the perfect companion for a warm Portland afternoon. And it paired beautifully with my dungeness crab lunch.

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On our lunch menu:

  • Dungeness Crab Roll
    Pacific crab tossed with onion, celery, lemon and mayonnaise in a seared East Coast-style bun
  • Brewery Pretzel
    Creamy white cheese, Black Butte Porter stone ground mustard
  • House Salad
    Sweet field greens with seasonal garnishes, candied malt, choice of Fresh Squeezed IPA vinaigrette, smoked blue cheese or hopped buttermilk dressing

And they were all AH-MAZE-ING!!! Just writing this post is making me hungry and wanting to eat that meal again.

Click here to see their full menu.

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PORTLAND PUBLIC HOUSE LOCATION:

210 NW 11th Ave.
Portland, OR 97209

(503) 296-4906


HOURS:

Sunday – Thursday: 11am – 11pm

Friday – Saturday: 11am – 12am


There is a small gift shop onsite selling Deschutes merch, gift cards, bottled beer, growler fills, and kegs.

 

Have you tried Deschutes beer? Tell me what are your favorites!

 

Brewery Spotlight: Angel City Brewery

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As a born and raised Los Angeleno (a rare specimen in this town), this brewery holds a special place in my heart. I get so weirdly proud when I see Angel City beers on supermarket shelves, and am so glad I finally found a day to check out their brewery and public house. I dragged my boyfriend Robbie over there for an Earth Day festival last month, and it was everything I could’ve hoped for!

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The brewery is located in a weird industrial section on the outskirts of downtown LA, right on the edge of Little Tokyo and the Arts District. You would never expect to find a brewery here. I’ve driven through this area hundreds of times over the years and had no idea it was here until a couple months ago. The area seems a little sketchy, but this part of town is actually ok. It’s just a little dirty and rundown.

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Angel City Brewing was founded in 1997. It started out modestly, operating out of a German-made brewery in Alpine Village (near LA) until moving to its current location in the historic John A. Roebling building in LA’s Downtown Arts District in 2010. In 2012, Angel City Brewing was bought by craft beer collaboration Alchemy & Science and began undergoing massive renovations. They started brewing onsite in April of 2012, and opened the doors to the brewery and public house in 2013. Their goal was to give Los Angeles a great brewery, and they were absolutely successful.

The brewery offers a rotating selection of Angel City beers on tap, including ones available exclusively at the brewery. They also offer tours, events, a shop, and bottled beers and growlers to take home. Plus it’s just overall a really cool place to hang out.

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The building itself is super cool. It looks like it could’ve been an old factory or warehouse (which makes sense, based on the area it’s in). It’s very wide and open, with tons of seating. The bar can get pretty busy and it may take awhile to get a drink though.

There is almost always something happening at Angel City, so it’s worth checking out their event calendar before heading over. Craft vendors, live music, yoga, karaoke… no two weeks are the same here. And there are always games such as darts or corn hole available to play at the brewery regardless of what else is going on.

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Since we were there for an Earth Day event, we wanted to walk around and check everything out before settling in to drink. So we each grabbed a pint to sip on as we strolled through the festival. I tried the Saaz-berry, which was fruity and refreshing and wonderful, brewed with raspberries, blueberries, elderberries, and noble hops.

SAAZ-BERRY, fruit beer, 4.8% ABV

There are around 14 beers on tap to choose from, so definitely try more than one.

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After we were hot and tired from walking around (I am fairly certain the brewery doesn’t have air conditioning), it was time to get our drink on! We ordered a flight and sat down to drink it while watching one of the bands performing at the festival.

Our beer flight:

WHITE NITE, nitrogenated ale, 4.3% ABV

ANGEL CITY LAger, honey grapefruit lager, 4.8% ABV

BERLINER WEISSE, berliner weisse, 3.3% ABV

BLACK DAY DRY STOUT, dry Irish stout, 4.6% ABV

RAUCHBIER, rauchbier, 5.5% ABV

My top pick: the White Nite. While listed as a nitrogenated ale on the website, the menu in the brewery called it a white stout, which is what intrigued me. This is one of the trippiest beers I’ve ever had. The flavor was just like a stout, except the beer was less heavy. It was so weird getting a stout flavor from a light beer. All the flavor, way less filling. Super cool.

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My boyfriend is a total stud ❤

The brewery itself doesn’t serve food, but there is always a food truck or two parked outside, and you are totally welcome to bring your food into the brewery. We got these awesome veggie nachos. Yum. Click here for their food truck schedule!

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On the way out we stopped by the gift shop, which has tons of cool merch and bottled beers to take home (and also a smaller, secondary bar/tasting area). We picked up a bottle of their Srirachelada, and when we brought it up to pay, the bartender offered us a sample.

O.M.G. it was so good! Basically a pre-mixed michelada in a bottle. Served with lime and some tajin on the rim…perfection.

SRIRACHELADA, ale, 4.0% ABV

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LOCATION

216 Alameda St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: (213) 622-1261

HOURS

Mon-Thurs: 4pm – 1am
Fri: 4pm – 2am
Sat: 12pm – 2am
Sun: 12pm – 1am
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I ❤ photo booths!

I think this quote from Robbie as we were driving back home best sums up our time at Angel City Brewery: “We drank a lot of good beers today.”

For more information, check out their website!


Have you been to Angel City Brewery or tried any of their beers from the store? Share your thoughts!

Brewery Spotlight: OB Brewery

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One of the delightful perks of dating a professional musician is the wide variety of places our weekends take us. When Robbie’s band booked a gig in Ocean Beach, I immediately started searching for a cool place we could grab dinner before his show. And so we discovered OB Brewery. His band, Green ToDay (Southern CA’s most awesome Green Day tribute band), was playing directly across the street from the brewery at The Holding Co, so the location couldn’t have been more perfect for our evening. Though our time at the brewery was brief, we quickly fell in love with this place.

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View of the pier from the rooftop seating area

San Diego is the epicenter of California’s craft beer scene. Boasting dozens upon dozens of craft breweries, it takes something special to set one brewery apart from the next. Up against brewery giants like Karl Strauss and Stone Brewing, it is easy for smaller ones to get lost. But OB Brewery has managed to make itself stand out in the crowd.

Located in the heart of Ocean Beach (an artsy, laid back enclave of San Diego), OB Brewery opened its doors just steps from the beach in 2008. The goal was to craft a distinctly local beer inspired by the culture of Ocean Beach, putting Ocean Beach on the map of the So Cal craft beer scene.

It has since grown into a place loved by both locals and visitors, and is a perfect destination for happy hour, date night, or just grabbing a beer after hanging out at the beach. It seriously doesn’t get much more southern CA than this.

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Robbie and me enjoying the sunset from the roof

Since we were pressed for time and couldn’t allow ourselves to get buzzed, we opted to split a flight. We chose our flight from the beers OB Brewery brews onsite (listed below).

Beer Menu at Ocean Beach Brewery

Photo: OB Brewery website

We selected the Hop On Board IPA, Long Time Coming agave cream ale, Roll Wit’ It Belgian wit, Elevator red IPA, and the Dunkelweizen.

While they were all tasty, we particularly LOVED the agave cream ale and the dunkelweizen. They were very unique beers with an interesting taste, and would be our recommendation to anyone who comes here.

They also have a huge selection of other beers served on tap or by the bottle as well, but it seems kinda silly to visit a brewery and order a beer you could get anywhere.

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The brewery is divided into three floors, and as Robbie noted, each has it’s own atmosphere, creating the the effect of being three places combined into one. The ground level feels like a traditional brewery, containing a bar with bar seating. The second floor is like a fun gaming area on an open balcony with multiple game tables available for customers to use, including foosball and shuffleboard. The third level is the roof, which features the bulk of the brewery seating area with tables and a small bar. It is completely open, and offers fantastic panoramic views of the pier and the ocean. We were there right at sunset, and it was absolutely perfect and beautiful.

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The food here at OB Brewery is absolutely incredible. Each bite was packed with flavor and full of fresh ingredients. The cod was particularly delicious- it’s hard to beat fresh seafood when you’re right there on the waterfront.

I ordered the beer batter cod pita taco, which was grilled garlic pita bread, house slaw, and spicy aioli. I added an order of house fries on the side, but honestly just the one taco was plenty to fill me up. Robbie had the fish and chips, which came with pickled slaw and gremolata fries. The portions were huge, and I thought they were beautifully plated (especially Robbie’s fish and chips).

The menu features appetizers, entrees, and a rotating “dessert of the day.” Even if you’re not into beer, the food is reason enough to come here. The whole restaurant is open seating. We were lucky to find a spot on the roof… it’s a small place, and very popular and crowded.

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OB Brewery is located at:

5041 Newport Ave, San Diego, CA 92107, just half a block from the pier

619-955-8053


 Restaurant Hours:

Sunday – Thursday   11am – 9pm

Friday – Saturday     11am – 10pm

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Ocean Beach Brewery Happy Hour Specials

Photo: OB Brewery website

While most people breeze right past Ocean Beach and continue heading straight into downtown San Diego, it is definitely worth taking the time to stop here. It’s places like this where you truly get to experience the real southern CA. For additional information, visit the OB Brewery website.

Have you been to OB Brewery? Tell me which beers you loved!

Brewery Spotlight: Pelican Brewing Company

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When my boyfriend invited me to travel up to Oregon with him this fall to attend his mom’s wedding, of course I said yes. I would’ve said yes no matter where it was held, but this particular wedding destination had me really excited. They were getting married on the coast of Oregon in the town of Pacific City, which is located near Cape Kiwanda (of Goonies fame). And the best part? The after party (held in lieu of a formal reception) was taking place on the beach next to Pelican Brewing Company.

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The view from the back patio of Pelican Brewery

Pelican Brewing Company was created by three beer enthusiasts back in 1996 in this small coastal town in Oregon. Since then, their beers have gone on to receive numerous awards and can be found throughout the Northwest and all over the world. This brewery and its founders embody the true spirit of Oregon, combining rugged outdoor charm and impeccable beer.

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This brewery serves six beers on tap year-round, as well as a seasonal selection, their Lone Pelican Series, and their Barrel-Aged Collection.

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My boyfriend and his sister enjoying the back patio.

During our visit, I tried:

Kiwanda, a Pre-Prohibition Cream Ale, ABV 5.4%. Brewed using locally sourced hops and water, this beer is light, refreshing, and an excellent choice to enjoy while watching the sunset behind Haystack Rock.

Udder Tugger, Milk Stout, ABV 7%. Creamy, dark, and full-bodied, just like a perfectly brewed espresso.

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Pelican Brewing Company has a restaurant-style atmosphere, complete with a full food menu and indoor and outdoor seating areas. While the indoor area is nice, I recommend sitting outdoors. How many other breweries are located right on the sand like this? So you’ve gotta take advantage of this unique opportunity.

Pub is open: Sunday – Thursday: 8 am – 10 pm
Friday – Saturday: 8 am – 11 pm

Beer can also be purchased in to-go 22oz bottles, 6-packs and growlers. So I also recommend grabbing some to-go and enjoying them down by the water.

Pelican Brewing Company is located at 33180 Cape Kiwanda Dr, Pacific City, OR 97135, (503)965-7007.

Have you been to Pelican Brewing Company? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the beers! Share your opinions in the comments.

 

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