Somewhere around Leisure World in Laguna Woods, there’s a confused couple on a golf cart reading about Modern Times Beer’s newly-announced project in Anaheim dubbed “Leisuretown.” I say confused, as the press-release uses some fairly contemporary wording which might befuddle a certain age group. Rest assured, my leisurely friends, brightly-colored terrycloth suits are welcome at both, but instead of three fingers of Chivas Regal, Leisuretown is all about the beer.
I asked CEO and founder of Modern Times Jacob McKean about Leisuretown, which will have a tasting room, food stalls, a café, beer blendery, and a “giant frickin’ swimming pool” complete with a pool-side bar and movie screen, opening late 2017. Modern Times is San Diego’s fastest-growing independent brewery, and McKean knows a thing or two about all of the above.
We have loads of fans in Orange County, and they have asked us again and again for a tasting room in O.C.. We also have a significant number of League (beer club) members who live in Orange County, and we want to give them a home base. We chose Anaheim specifically because of the super impressive work The Lab has been doing. I looked at a bunch of different options, and nothing excited me as much as The Lab’s properties. So one year ago, I called them and said, “If there’s ever an opportunity to work together on something, let’s do it.” Lo and behold, they were big Modern Times fans, and they had a slew of interesting stuff in the works. And this was the property we felt had the most potential to become something truly spectacular and unique.
Will Lab Holding own the property and do the buildout?
Yes. The Lab is currently working on their portion of the build-out, and they’ve already made a ton of progress. It’s been extremely rad to work with them so far.
Will wort (unfermented beer) be made in San Diego and trucked up to be fermented in Anaheim?
Initially, they we will install a 3-vessel, 15 barrel brewhouse. The lead time on (quality) brewhouses right now is ridiculous.
Will the tasting room only have sour/funk or will there be core beer and limited-release beer?
No, the tasting room will feature the Full-Spectrum Modern Times Experience. Core beers, special releases brewed in both S.D. and L.A., bottle/can pick-ups for our online sales, etc. Everything. Likewise, the beer made in Anaheim will be served at all of our other tasting rooms, along with everything bottled there.
Will the food stalls rotate outside vendors?
No, we’re currently talking to a bunch of folks about the food potential at Leisuretown, and we’re only looking for long-term options. There’s still a lot to be figured out there, including how many vendors there will be depending on how much space they need. Rest assured, whoever we pick will bring something new and amazing to Anaheim.