Show 276, June 2, 2018: Shawn O’Shaughnessy, GM, Ola Brew, Kailu-Kona, HI

Shawn O'ShaugnessyThe newest craft brewery on the Big Island of Hawaii is the community focused, Ola Brew. Unusually it was partially crowd-funded to launch and also just completed its 2nd round of crowd-funding to expand brewing capacity and build an on-site kitchen. Ola Brew’s world class beers and ciders are made from island-sourced ingredients.

Think Watermelon IPA and local favorite, White Pineapple Cider.

“Did you know that a) More than half of the tropical fruit grown in Hawai’i falls to the ground and never makes it to market; b) U.S. demand for craft alcohols has doubled in the last 5 years, and c) Most beer and cider consumed in Hawai’i is imported? Our conclusion: it’s time Hawai’i County had its own brewery designed to turn the state’s abundance of produce into revenue for local farmers. And as the experienced beverage entrepreneurs who started Hawaiian Ola, we are the best team to do it.”

Brett Jacobson
CEO, OLA BREW CO.

General Manager Shawn O’Shaughnessy taps the keg for us.

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Show 275, May 26, 2018: Robert Carter, Brewmaster, The Mason Jar Brewing Co., Menifee, CA

Mason Jar Brewing CompanyCraft beers, gourmet chili and entertainment take center stage at the upcoming 10th Annual Pechanga Microbrew Fest & Chili Cookoff on Saturday, June 9th from Noon to 5 p.m. at Pechanga’s new Summit Event Center. Event proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity Inland Valley Senior & Disabled Person Programs.

The “Toast of Menifee,” The Mason Jar Brewing Company (a discovery of ours from two years ago), is back in the Fest for the 3rd time. Brewmaster & Proprietor Robert Carter is our guest.

One of the smallest craft breweries participating in the Pechanga Microbrew Festival, Mason Jar Brewing, was founded in 2014. It’s the creation of the determined husband and wife team of Robert Carter and Grace Santiago. They transitioned into becoming a production brewery from their hobby as passionate and award-winning home-brewers.

The newest style that has gone year-round due to its popularity was originally created for Cinco De Mayo. It’s “They Call Me Roberto.” It’s a Baja-style lager with roasted jalapenos and lime zest. It’s crisp, light, and, of course, refreshing.

Husband and wife team, Robert Carter and Grace Santiago, are active and participating residents of Menifee, California. Robert, a home inspector/youth football coach and Grace a local Real Estate agent, have both found their true creative calling in brewing beer.

Cheers…

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Show 270, April 21, 2018: Robert Durant, Owner & Brewer, Inland Wharf Brewing Co.

Commander Robert Durant of Inland Wharf BrewingOne of the newest craft breweries in the Inland Empire is Inland Wharf Brewing Co. in Murrieta. Their specialty is cask conditioned ales. We introduced them to our audience last year at Pechanga’s 9th Annual Microbrew Fest & Chili Cookoff. It’s been a year of great progress. Now their craft beer is on the beverage menu at The Cove.

They are also encoring at Pechanga’s upcoming 10th Annual Pechanga Microbrew Fest & Chili Cookoff on Saturday afternoon, June 9th.

“The calling card for Inland Wharf Brewing Co. is the unique and labor intensive Cask Conditioned Ales served via Beer Engines. In addition, Inland Wharf serves other beers on regular carbon dioxide and nitrogen regulated draft beer taps. Even though our Cask Conditioned Ales and Draft Beers use the same ingredients and recipes, their processing techniques vary widely.”

“The time-honored brewing and serving methods followed by Inland Wharf Brewing Co. ensures the development of exceptional appearance, aroma, and flavors in both its Cask Conditioned Ales and it’s Draft Beers.”

Only three breweries in all of Southern California produce Cask Conditioned Ales.

Owner & Brewer Commander (Retired) Robert Durant is our guest.

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Show 269, April 14, 2018: Joe Manzella, TAPS Fish House & Brewery, Brea

Joe Manzella of Taps Fish House and Brewery and the CatchAlmost 20 years ago restaurateur Joe Manzella (and his Family) debuted TAPS Fish House & Brewery in Downtown Brea. It was an expensive undertaking and a major risk at the time.

The popular locals’ favorite establishment recently reopened after a $1.5 -million remodeling. The comprehensive refresh comes as TAPS, one of the region’s most decorated breweries and a standout for its high-quality seafood, fine steaks, oyster bar and famous Las Vegas-style Sunday brunch, readies for its 20th anniversary next year.

“It’s a big-picture renovation that simply says that after close to 20 years of high-volume business, we’re ready for a major refresh,” said Manzella, who opened the original TAPS with his sister, Michele, and their late father, Fred.

“The basic bones of the building remain,” said Manzella, referring to the iconic building’s 85,000 bricks, bow-string trusses and cherry wood. “It’s a classic architectural beauty and will always be a welcome decor aesthetic.”

“This business is about intriguing the guests, be it with innovative food, spirits or ambiance,” Manzella said. “You can’t stand still. Our loyal following and new guests deserve the best, and our job is to be constantly reviewing everything and doing it better.”

The newest enterprise for the Manzella Restaurant GroupTAPS Brewery & Barrel Room, will open in Tustin by the Legacy development in late spring 2018.

Joe is with us in-studio.

 

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Show 262, February 24, 2018: Laurie Porter, Smog City Brewing Co. & President, L.A. County Brewers Guild

Laurie Porter“In October 2011, Smog City Brewing Co. began brewing beer at the Tustin Brewing Co. (TBC) brewpub. By utilizing TBC’s excess fermentation capacity, Smog City was able to brew well-crafted beers, and personally distribute to restaurants and bars throughout Los Angeles County. We worked to create a presence in the craft brewing community and brewed and distributed 240 barrels in the first year.”

“By 2012, we’d grown faster than ever expected. After the purchase of our own full-scale brewing equipment, we formalized plans for our new brewery and taproom in Torrance, CA. In 2013, we received final building and license approvals and began brewing and opened our brewery taproom in May of 2013. Our Taproom in Torrance has become an amazing home for locals and visitors alike.”

“In January of 2017, we had an opportunity to join a unique and progressive project called SteelCraft in Long Beach. SteelCraft is a re-purposed outdoor food hall made entirely out of recycled shipping containers. This gorgeous outdoor beer garden has plenty of flavorful food options to choose from while you drink a delicious Smog City Beer.”

“Stop in and see us for a taste of our proven and experimental beers in Long Beach or a tour of our brewery & taproom in Torrance.”

Co-founder Laurie Porter taps the keg for us. She is also the President of the Los Angeles County Brewers Guild.

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Show 257, January 20, 2018: Home-Brewers Jonathan Billings and Mike Flinn, Winners of Season 2 of Viceland’s “Beerland”

Michael Flinn and Jonathan Billing at the Beerland viewing party at Golden Road BrewingEvery dedicated home-brewers’ dream is to create a craft beer that is appealing enough to go into commercial production. Viceland’s Beerland” with host Meg Gill of Golden Road Brewing makes that dream a reality. For Season 2 Meg traveled to four US cities/regions and sought out the best home-brewers. Season 2’s travels included field trips to home-brewers in Portland, Alabama, Detroit and Florida.

Each finalist in those cities then competed at Los Angeles’ Golden Road Brewery in the Finale to decide the winner of “Beerland” Season 2. This was based on a panel of judges’ decision as well as a popular vote of attending craft beer enthusiasts. Meg Gill then made the final call.

The winning team of home-brewers and professional lifeguards from Sebastian, Florida, Michael Flinn and Jonathan Billings, join us.

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Show 257, January 20, 2018: Home-Brewers Jonathan Billings and Mike Flinn, Winners of Season 2 of Viceland’s “Beerland” Continue…

Michael Flinn and Jonathan Billing at the Beerland viewing party at Golden Road BrewingEvery dedicated home-brewers’ dream is to create a craft beer that is appealing enough to go into commercial production. Viceland’s Beerland” with host Meg Gill of Golden Road Brewing makes that dream a reality. For Season 2 Meg traveled to four US cities/regions and sought out the best home-brewers. Season 2’s travels included field trips to home-brewers in Portland, Alabama, Detroit and Florida.

The winning creation, Man-Go-War, was then brewed on Golden Road’s 50-barrel system and is now available at retail in cans. The original recipe actually uses a dash of ocean water from the Atlantic Ocean. (It’s a blueberry-flavored Wheat Ale with a hint of Spicy Mango.) The winning team of home-brewers and professional lifeguards from Sebastian, Florida, Michael Flinn and Jonathan Billings, join us.

Mike and Jonathan were most recently VIP guests in Southern California on January 4th for the Grand Finale Viewing Party of “Beerland” held at Golden Road Brewing’s new Anaheim Taproom and Restaurant across from Angel Stadium. All the guests in attendance were hosted to a 12 oz. can of Man-Go-War served at the conclusion of the finale viewing. This was Mike’s & Jonathan’s first opportunity to taste the finished production batch of Man-Go-War.

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Show 256, January 13, 2018: Conner Watts, Founder, Los Muertos Brewery, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Conner WattsSurprisingly craft beer is still a bit of a novelty in Mexico due to some odd distribution regulations. Fortunately (due to very hard work among dedicated & patient beer aficionados) these archaic regulations have been relaxed in the last few years and local craft beers can now reach restaurants and bars. In Sunny Puerto Vallarta the first craft brewery and brewpub to gain traction is the growing Los Muertos Brewery.

“For years during the proliferation of tourism in Mexican beach destinations like Puerto Vallarta the beer scene was completely dominated by smooth drinking Mexican lagers. As demonstrated by every Corona commercial ever this is great for sitting on a beach. To this day many tourists think of a “local” Mexican beers as Corona, Pacifico, or Dos Equis XX. But as a growing number of beer drinkers are pushing craft tastes into the mainstream these standard macro beers definitely leave many connoisseurs wanting more. Upon relocating full time to Puerto Vallarta, the founders of Los Muertos could not have agreed more. Driven by the thirst for flavorful varieties of beer, bringing Vallarta its first craft brewery became their dream.”

Los Muertos Brewery has become a popular destination for locals, visitors from other parts of Mexico, South America and the US, as well as American ex-pats now living in Vallarta.

Expansion is on the way. A new building a few doors away from the existing brewery restaurant has been secured. It will be expanded brewing capacity alongside a different food concept. Stay tuned…

We’ll enjoy a cold one with founder & restaurateur Conner Watts.

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Show 233, July 22, 2017: Otto Radtke, Great Society Cider & Mead, DINE LBC – Long Beach Restaurant Week

Ottto RadtkeDINE LBC Long Beach Restaurant Week is set for August 5th through August 13th, 2017. More than 60 diverse Long Beach restaurants spanning 12 neighborhoods will offer special multi-course menus at affordable prices. New to DINE LBC is Great Society Cider & Mead, Southern California’s first all-cider pub located on Broadway at the edge of Downtown. They serve an unusual selection of draft ciders and meads in addition to the expected craft beers.

“A social house where fine food, craft cider and mead set the stage for conversations between old and new friends alike, Great Society has the largest selection of craft cider and meads in all of Southern California. Featuring 20 draughts and more in bottles, our extensive cider and mead list showcases craft producers from nearly every corner of the world. You’ll find flavors and profiles ranging from sweet to sour, still to sparkling, barrel-aged to hopped, rare to near-impossible to find.”

“Complementing this incredible list, our food menu fuses seasonal offerings with unexpected spicing to create dishes that don’t just taste great, but pair well with whatever profile you choose. Try our signature burger with an unfiltered whiskey barrel-aged cider from Michigan; or an artisanal cheese plate with a tart, lightly sparkling Sidra from the Basque region of Spain. There’s a variety of pairings to tantalize your taste buds.”

“With its origins lost in history, cider remains the most noble of beverages, having played a role in Old and New World alike. These ancient elixirs, fermented mainly from apples, have been the drink of kings and presidents, farmers and the working class. Though its fortunes have occasionally wavered, cider’s incredible diversity, and close connection with the land, has led to an amazing renaissance. Cider is a beverage that deserves homage and we are the first restaurant and taphouse in Southern California to feature it!”

We’ll meet the proprietor, Otto Radtke.

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Show 228, June 17, 2017: Brandon Hernandez, Food, Wine & Craft Beer Journalist, San Diego

Brandon HernandezBrandon Hernandez is a savvy local beer, food & wine journalist based in San Diego. He contributes to a bevy of publications including Celebrator Beer News, USA Today, San Diego Union Tribune and San Diego Magazine. Brandon joins us with an expert’s overview of the dynamic and evolving San Diego craft beer scene.

We’ll tap the keg on the new Urge Common House in San Marcos, San Diego’s first organic brewery, the best beers to pair with chili and lots more.

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