We strive to have the best, always! Right? The best shoes, the best outfits, the best “Eat Your Heart Out” walk, the best over the shoulder pout, the best “No! You DO NOT Have Permission” look, the finest man and let’s not forget… the best in food and drinks! I know I’m a sucker for great craft beer and some good grub, consumed like a lady of course! But where – o – where can we go for some earth shattering goodness that will satisfy the palette body and soul? Well, let’s start with one of many grand places for such satisfaction on part 1 of “I don’t know, where do you want to go?”
Let’s get started baby dolls, shall we? On previous posts, I’ve touched on craft beer, what it is and what to order, but now let’s get to where you should go to have some mind blowing beer that will knock your garters off (yes, let it be said that some beer can do more for your libido than some chiquito). If you want to start with the finest off the charts goodness, make your way to The Bruery Provisions. The Bruery Provisions, as stated on their site, is a specialty market and tasting room devoted to serving you the finest in craft beer, wine, cheese, and a wide array of specialty foods. This is a craft brewery specializing in Belgian and experimental style beers. Basically, The Bruery puts your mouth on a different level by offering you flavors that will make you want to close your eyes, savor the flavor, feel the tingle and say, honey…pass that artisan cave aged cheese and move over! Yeah, seriously. The flavors are not subtle, they are a blast of well combined ingredients that will give you consistent flavor from beginning to end. Here’s a well rounded list of some of their beers and what to expect that you can easily find on their site:
The first ever batch brewed by The Bruery, Batch No. 1 is the result of a homebrew contest we held in order to determine our first batch. Loren Miraglia and Mark Graham entered a fantastic Belgian-style Golden Strong Ale that captured the judges attention. Batch No. 1 has a pepper-like spiciness and fruit forward flavors of pear and apricot. It is deceptively potent and will continue improving with age.
ABV: 11%, IBU: 20, SRM: 6, Release: One Time Only
Los Angeles International Beer Competition 2008, Bronze, Wood and Barrel-Aged Strong Ales (“Bourbon Barrel Aged Batch No. 1”)
In January of 2009, a homebrewer and microbiologist named Al Buck won our Batch #50 homebrew contest with his incredibly complex gueuze-style ale. We knew this beer wouldn’t be easy to re-create, but the perfect layers of classic barnyard funk and lactic sourness were impossible to resist. Nearly 3 years later, after brewing the beer once in 2009 and a second batch in 2010, after adding various strains of wild yeasts and bacteria to the barrels and the bottles, after blending multiple batches back together and well beyond our release of Batch #300, we’re finally prepared to release Batch #50 – Grand Funk Aleroad. Brewed in the classic Belgian Gueuze tradition of barrel aging and blending multiple vintages of lambic-style ale, Batch #50 is one of the most rewarding beers we’ve ever had the opportunity to brew.
ABV: 5.8%, Release: One Time Only
Grant Phillips was the winner of our Batch 300 homebrew contest and rightfully so. Grant came down and helped us brew his recipe for an oaked tripel brewed with the ever so popular Citra hops. We had a ton of fun judging this beer and brewing beer and we think it’s a great example of homebrewing ingenuity.
ABV: 8.2%, Release: One Time Only
Papier is our first anniversary ale, loosely brewed in the English-style Old Ale tradition using our house Belgian yeast strain. The traditional first anniversary gift is something made of paper. The Bruery is giving their loyal fans the gift of Papier, their first anniversary ale. Layered with complex flavors of dark fruit,vanilla, oak, and burnt sugar, Papier is a robust ale, surely the perfect beer to mark our first big milestone. Best for sharing, this beer is ideal for cellaring until you have a celebration of your own…if you can wait.
ABV: 14.5%, IBU: 45, SRM: 22, Release: May 2009
2011 Gold Medal GABF Winner for the Old Ale category
Coton is our second anniversary ale. It is the same recipe as Papier, but created using the Solera method. We blended a portion of Papier that had been aging in oak barrels with this new batch of the same beer, adding an additional layer of complexity that will grow over time as we continue to age and blend with each anniversary, creating an older average age to the ale.
ABV: 14.5%, IBU: 45, SRM: 22, Release: May 2010
Cuir is our third anniversary ale. It is the same recipe as Papier, but again created using the Solera method. Each year we will continue to blend old barrels of anniversary ale with a new batch of the same beer, adding an additional layer of complexity that will grow over time as we continue to age and blend with each anniversary, creating an older average age to the ale.
ABV: 14.5%, IBU: 45, SRM: 22, Release: May 2011
Our infamous Black Tuesday is an Imperial Stout aged in Bourbon barrels for over a year. Rich caramel, toasted malt, vanilla, burnt wood, anise are just a few of the many flavors of this rich, decadent imperial stout.
ABV: varies, IBU: 40, SRM: 100+, Release: October (Available at Brewery Only)
Oude Tart is a Flemish-Style Red Ale aged in red wine barrels for 18 months. Pleasantly sour with hints of leather, dark fruit and toasty oak.
ABV: 7.5%, IBU: 15, SRM: 16, Release: Varies (1st Release in January 2010, Available at Brewery Only)
2010 World Beer Cup Gold Medal Winner for the Belgian-Style Flanders Oud Brun or Oud Red category
2012 World Beer Cup Gold Medal Winner for the Belgian-style Flander Oude Brun or Oud Red category
White Oak is a blended beer– 50% wheatwine aged in Bourbon barrels (we call it “White Oak Sap”), and 50% Mischief (our Golden Strong Ale). Vivid caramel, coconut and vanilla flavors blanketed in a crisp yet robust wheat ale, White Oak is an exercise of balance.
ABV: 11.5%, IBU: 20, SRM: 7, Release: Varies (1st Release October 2009)
Brewed with beachwood and cherrywood smoked malt, and aged in rye whiskey barrels, Smoking Wood is a delicious demonstration of what wood has to offer when it comes to beer. This imperial smoked porter is brewed with a hefty amount of rye malt, contributing to a full body and light spiciness. Toasty oak, caramel and vanilla flavors balance the smokiness, contributing to an intense yet refined flavor profile.
ABV: 10%, Release: Varies (1st Release December 2011)
A dry and vinous beer with hints of smokiness and a touch of oak. First running press of Pinot Noir grapes from Santa Barbara County were added to a year old blonde sour ale (called by many names around here, one you may be familiar with is Cuvee Jeune) and fermented together in stainless. The grape beer was then transferred to wine barrels and aged for 10 months. The beer is pleasantly tart, complex and refreshing; it can easily substitute a sparkling wine for any celebration.
ABV: 8.4%, IBU: 12, SRM: 7, Release: Limited
The second beer in our Vitis Series line of beer that have been fermented with grapes. For Oui Oui we used a first running press of Chardonnay grapes from the central coast and added them to our sour blonde ale. The beer was then aged in oak barrels that had originally been used to store wine, imparting even more of that chardonnay-like quality. The final beer has a pleasant funk which compliments the stone fruit and white wine-like character.
ABV: 8.4%, Release: Limited
A delicate blend of our award winning Oude Tart and our infamous Black Tuesday, this is one of the most intriguing beers we’ve created to date. The tangy dark fruit flavors twist themselves with the chocolaty sweetness in a way that fools the palate into thinking you are truly drinking two great, yet widely different beers at the same time.
ABV: 9.5%, IBU: 25, SRM: 30, Release: Limited
2012 Bronze Medal World Beer Cup Winner for the Wood & Barrel Aged Sour Beer category
Melange #3 is a blend of three bourbon barrel aged strong ales. White Oak Sap, a wheat wine, our Anniversary Series old ale and our imperial stout, Black Tuesday, join forces in this luxurious strong ale that links some of the best characteristics of each of the contributing beers. Chocolate, dark fruits, oaky vanilla and rich toffee-like character reach through the bourbon veneer for an intensely satisfying quaff.
ABV: 15.5%, Release: Limited
We brewed this ale with around 40% rye as a base malt and let our sour yeast and bacteria eat away at it in oak barrels for over a year creating a sour ale with a complex character of rye spice, oak and a subtle funk.
ABV: 8.7%,Release: Annual, Limited
Filmishmish, an Arabic term for “when the apricots bloom”, is a barrel aged sour blonde ale to which apricots have been added. The beer’s already fruity esters are enhanced by the hint of fresh apricot jam and wood shavings. Filmishmish is a well balanced beer, keeping the apricot and oak character present, but putting the flavor of the well formed sour ale at the forefront.
ABV: 5.8%, Release: January 2012, Limited
For our third beer in the ‘12 Days of Christmas’ series we decided to take a little creative liberty when approaching the barrel aged version. We were able to acquire an abundance of syrah grapes from the Santa Ynez Valley, which are full of rich, dark berry flavors and a wisp of black pepper which seemed almost too perfect for Three French Hens. The grapes were pressed and the juice was added to the beer which was then aged in wine barrels for one year. The result is a satisfyingly tart, dark ale with hints of oak and dried fruit that finishes with a clean, vinous character typical of a deep red wine.
ABV: 10%, Release: December 2011, Limited
Otiose is an English word (pronounced ‘oh-shus’) which means “without practical purpose.” It was a beer developed by our brewers during a rare space in the brewing schedule simply to satisfy their own cravings for a sour brown ale fermented with guava. Rich with tropical notes and balanced by a mellow roast, this beer brings your mind directly to a decadent Hawaiian luau, complete with the roasted pig.
ABV: 8.2%, Release: January 2012, Limited
Sans Pagaie translates to “without a paddle” and is our take on the Belgian-style kriek, a sour blonde ale aged in barrels with cherries. The base beer has a subtle funk that melds gently with the fruit giving this beer flavors reminiscent of coconut, vanilla yogurt and of course, fresh cherries. A complex beer, perfect for a warm California day in the park with a slice of home made chocolate cake.
ABV: 5.8%, Release: January 2012, Limited
Ok, now that you have been educated on SOME of the amazing beers offered by The Bruery, you can check out their website The Bruery Provisions and sign up for a cheese class and get educated on pairing cheese with the right kinds of beers and wine. The Bruery Provisions does not let you down on the quality or quantity of their food. Next time your beau picks you up and asks, “where do you want to go?” stray away from the I don’t know and tell him to take you to The Bruery Provisions and order yourself a beer equally as experimentally splendid as you!
Check out Beers In Paradise for upcoming events for The Bruery and sign up for any upcoming contests!