From Vets to Sours, Two Don’t Miss Beer Events

Rounding out my 200th post here on this incredible BoozeBlog O.C. is a double banger of events that I think every beer lover can get excited about. One happens every other year, and the other supports true American heroes with a special release: first is Beachwood’s Sour Fest, and the other is Taps Silent Warrior barrel-aged beer release.

My best sour beer face at Beachwood Blendery, Long Beach. Photo courtesy John Holzer @fourbrewersshow

Beachwood is sort of a hoarder when it comes to sour beers. “We do Sourfest every two years in order to make an event that showcases both fresh and vintage beer,” says Beachwood co-owner Gabe Gorden. Some of the beers have been aged in a climate-controlled cellar for more than four years. Perhaps the most exciting part about this year’s festival is the Beachwood gang is able to collaborate via Beachwood Blendery. “The beers came out great and the brewers we collaborated with are all attending on release days,” says Gabe. The entire event spans Nov.  7 to 12 with a complimentary shuttle that goes between the three participating Beachwood locations. The full beer list is here, and live cameras on what is currently on tap is located on the Beachwood website. 

Collab nights:

  • 11/7: Beachwood Blendery – Highland Park Brewery – Why We’re Here (two versions—one with black lime and one with bay leaf). Bob Kunz and the Highland Park crew will be at the Blendery on Tuesday (11/7) night.
  • 11/9: Beachwood Blendery – Garage Project – Pinky Promises. Garage Project co-founder, Jos Ruffell, will be at the Blendery on Thursday night, coming in all the way from New Zealand to chat about the beer.
  • 11/10: (ticketed event) Crooked Stave / Beachwood Blendery – From Denver, With Love.  Crooked Stave Owner-Brewmaster, Chad Yakobson will also be bringing a ton of other beers, so he’ll be doing two sessions of guided tasting at the Blendery as a ticketed event.
Taps Silent Warrior, on sale Veterans Day, Photo courtesy Taps

When Taps Fish House & Brewery puts beer in a bourbon barrel, what comes out is always magical.  Starting a Veteran’s Day tradition, the brewery will release its award-winning Silent Warrior American strong ale on Veterans Day (Nov. 11), with a large portion of profits benefitting a military retreat in Virginia that helps combat veterans reintegrate into civilian life.

Silent Warrior saw success at the 2016 Great American Beer Festival in the Wood and Barrel-Aged Strong Beer category, winning gold. On Saturday, Nov. 11, the beer will be available on draft ($10 for a 10-ounce glass) and in 750-ml bottles ($39.99) at Taps’ locations in Brea, Irvine, and Corona, where 800 bottles and a handful of kegs will be made available. I had the beer at a recent Taps beer dinner and could see what the GABF judges did; it’s rich, decadent, and chock-full of figgy-dates layered with bourbon-barrel, vanilla-oaky goodness. “The intent was to tie the beer to the theater of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, where both dates and figs are cultivated, reflecting the authenticity of the region,” says Taps owner-founder Joe Manzella.

Find Beachwood online at beachwoodbbq.com / Find Taps online at tapsfishhouse.com

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