last week I managed to spend a good amount of time at popular beer spots in both SF and LA.
- while up in SF for business, my first stop after work was (surprise!) giordano bros, where CB and I knocked down some coppa with egg and enjoyed some proving ground IPAs from magnolia. afterwards, we headed to rogue, where curiosity got the better of me and I tried a pint of mead that they had on draft, which was clean and floral (and must have been on the lighter side since I polished off the entire pint and could still stand up afterwards).
- then it was back to CB’s where the ball really got rolling. more specifically, CB popped a 750 of Oude Gueuze Tilquin à L’Ancienne, a bottle which I had sought unsuccessfully for quite some time. the newest geuze blender to pop up in belgium in quite some time, tilquin piqued my curiosity, and their first release didn’t disappoint. the aroma right after the pour was full of fresh citrus fruit, but evolved into a complex, earthy funk reminiscent of some of the finer geuzes I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying. to top it off, CB served up some fresh wild-starter sourdough he’s been perfecting. it was a great pairing, and made for a killer start to my trip. now I just have to find some more tilquin bottles!
- the next day CB, UD, JC, and I pulled the classic memphis minnie’s/toronado pairing, and finished the night up with a bottle of oud beersel’s Oude Kriek Vieille, which was tasty, but a little tamer than I had hoped. the night ended back at CB’s with a bottle of cascade’s vlad the imp aler, which was more drinkable than I remembered, and had a great balance of smooth sourness and sweet vanilla malt/oak. thanks again for the unbelievable hospitality CB!
- a few days later I was in the LA valley, suited up for a good buddy’s wedding. there was an interim between the wedding and reception, so AP and I took advantage of the situation and let the wedding crew over to tony’s darts away, a somewhat inconveniently-located spot I had been meaning to visit for a while.
- we got there at a good time (around 4 – evidently, the place gets crowded later at night), and ordered up some specialty sausages, sweet potato fries, and some great beers, including bear republic’s mach 10 and lagunitas’ lucky 13. specializing in CA IPAs, tony’s had great service and food, and everyone in our party left satisfied. it’s a shame this place is in burbank…
- after experiencing a taste of what both the north and south have to offer in CA, it’s hard to pick a favorite. I’m just glad I have access to both!