Monthly Archives: July 2012

Pantless Prom?

My second morning in San Diego was devoured after an hour scouring Yelp for the best review. By “best” I don’t mean the top rated. I mean the most interesting, awkward review available.Four stars after a Pantless Prom? Okay, Mitch. You’ve hooked me.
An adorable little cottage on the sea transformed into a delicious restaurant. I’m seeing a theme in La Jolla…
With a view to die for. Already this place was a winner in my mind. Now on to the most important part – the food!
When I go for breakfast, I will almost always order either the corned beef hash or the eggs benedict. The Brockton Villa had a beer braised corned beef hash. Immediate yes. Strangely enough, I prefer the hash that comes out of a can, but for housemade, this ale-marinated, shredded deliciousness topped with yet another perfectly poached egg did the job.
COAST TOAST. I have no idea what wizard came up with this recipe, but it is To. Die. For. More like a heavenly souffle/custard spiked with orange zest, this french toast is absolutely out of this world. Unfortunately I’m not talented enough to describe what this is like. If anyone is in La Jolla and wants to invite me here to enjoy this dish, I will sing you a serenade at the table to explain my true feelings about Coast Toast. It’s that awesome.
After your exquisite brunch, you can waddle across the street and gaze at the La Jolla Cave. The cliff is adorned with pelicans, and the smell is quite potent. (Side note: This odor is completely unnoticeable from the Brockton Villa, at least in my experience, contrary to many Yelpers reviews.)
The view more than makes up for the aroma.

After yet another delicious breakfast, we made our way back to the hotel and stumbled across another wedding.
Okey, Jenn and Dan, I’m really happy for you, but where was your elephant??
All of the brunch and elephants got us thirsty, so we wandered over to Iron Fist for the grand opening of their new tasting room. They recently busted through the wall to the unit next door and expanded the size of both the brewery and the brewery-imbing-enjoyment center.
The space was beyond packed. Doe-eyes were given in order to obtain a third stool for our group.
Luckily everyone had plenty of beer and were in wonderfully joyful moods.
The amazing offerings of food may have had something to do with it. Brisket and fries from Mr. Pig’s BBQ. Tender, perfectly seasoned, wonderfully soft bun and perfect for an afternoon with beer.
Sushi Bus was also there. I honestly have no idea what this roll was called. I asked for painfully spicy and the two awesomely tatted guys running the place surprised me with this nose-running, eye-watering roll of perfection. Whatever sauce on top of the spicy tuna is God-given and needs to be used even more liberally for an even more intense and wonderful spicy pain.
And now I’m just showing off with another gift I got in exchange for beer. I give you (minus the brew chief) the Enegren Brewing Company, Keeping Calm and Chiving On.
We keep it real.

And then we ran caustic and phosphoric acid through the entire system after this picture. Totally worth it.


Filed under brewery, Travel

Visiting the Chive!

I sent John from the Chive an email the other day telling him I had lots of free beer and wondering if the guys at the office wanted any. Shockingly enough, I got an immediate response with an invite to the Chive offices.
I headed to Venice loaded down with six liters of beer.
I brought Captain’s Summer Session, Captain’s Dry-Hopped Summer Session and Valkyrie California Alt from Enegren Brewing as well as Midnight Howl from Wolf Creek Brewery. Valkyrie was the clear favorite of the group – partly because of the heavy-duty awesomeness of the growler, I’m sure.
That thing is a deadly weapon filled with happiness.
Luckily their work day was winding down around the time I arrived, so everyone was able to partake.
I filled up a glass myself and John took me for a tour of the offices.
One of the original/first Banksy street art.
Everyone’s (now abandoned for beer) work stations looking out over Venice beach.
The mediocre, front-seat view of the ocean.
The necessities of life.
A tragically empty beer fridge (they made up for that with a kegerator next door) and the new golf video game they smartly combined with beer to de-stress after the long day.
BFM boards! The office to the left in the picture is where The Berry works out of. I got to yell a quick hello to Emily as we passed.
Cornhole boards handcrafted by John and Leo Resig’s dad.
Patrick was setting up for the KCCO Canadian shirt shoot.
John had to mentally prepare for his time as a model. I think the Midnight Howl helped him relax into his photogenic state.
Yep, that did it.
You guys saw the finished version of the shoot this afternoon, followed by all the shirts selling out in a few minutes per usual.
Another monotonous view from Chive Drive. I have a feeling they’ll be going through that beer rather quickly if they haven’t finished it already. And I recall that the keg in the kegerator was half empty as well… I may need to head back and help remedy that in the near future.
Especially if I get one of these in exchange!

On another note, the Chive is helping to raise money for one of those wounded in shooting in Aurora. Click here and here to donate to two of the victims! Spread the love to all the others who suffered as well!


Filed under Travel

White Wedding

My parentals moved to Colorado in April. I got the chance to visit them in May, and last weekend they came out to San Diego to attend the wedding of their best friends’ daughter! I moseyed on down to visit with them and attend the wedding as well.

My mumsie and I went out for a nice lazy breakfast on our first morning.
We visited The Cottage in La Jolla – a cute little house with a large patio and white picket fence.
The most important meal of the day – COFFEE.
My mumsie ordered the chicken hash over warm corn tortillas.
I went for my typical greasy diner/breakfast out meal – Eggs Benedict! Nothing too special about this one…
Except for the perfectly poached egg and fresh avocado slices. It’s quite a feat to poach an egg just right. It’s the little things in life that matter.
It definitely made it a lot harder to squeeze into that dress for the wedding, but totally worth it!
I also purchased my very first pair of flats ever. I hate shopping. This was a big deal for me.
My beautiful parental unit.
Parents of the bride.
Such a beautiful, happy couple! Now time for celebrating!
Champagne mojito? Yes, please!
And the feasting and dancing begins.
Steak, shrimp and mac ‘n cheese! Best wedding food I’ve eaten to date.
Build your own dessert.
Father-daughter dance being beautifully interrupted by grandpa.

It was an absolutely perfect wedding. The recap of the rest of the trip coming soon!


Filed under Travel

Ladies at Ladyface: 14

Last night was our fourteenth meeting of Ladies at Ladyface: The Fermentables and Comestibles Education and Tippling Society! Time really flies! Meetings ten, eleven, twelve and thirteen on the links!
My craft beer girl Janelle (picture from our first visit ever to Enegren Brewing Company) brought something extra special to last night’s meeting.
World, meet little Avery – Janelle and Andrew’s five day old, perfectly adorable creation.
Everyone else just brought food for the potluck. Not as adorable, but quite delicious. Our meeting was a field trip to Enegren Brewing Company to try all the beers, get a brewery tour and do the usual socializing and eating. Enegren’s four taster limit was recently lifted, so we took full advantage (everyone had designated drivers). I love these meetings!
One liter growlers gracing the shelves.
Taps in the sunset. Such a beautiful sight.
We had a great showing and demolished almost all of the comestibles. I failed at food blogging and consumed everything before I remembered that pictures would’ve been a nice addition… Yum. Oops.
Cyrena brought dessert – Blue Belly Barleywine! Wonderfully rich, sweet and full of subtle vanilla notes from the whiskey barrels it’s aged in. There was some leftover at the end of the night. I may or may not have snuck it home with me and polished it off last night (I did).

Next meeting we’ll be going “back to the basics”. Our group has come quite a long way in the year and two months we’ve been up and running, and unfortunately that has become intimidating to potential new craft beer lovers. No need to be scared, ladies! Come drink wonderful craft beer, learn about why it’s so delectable, eat delicious foods and socialize! That’s what the root of the group is truly about.

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Filed under beer, beer tasting, brewery


Last weekend Commander Matt and I went up to Kern Valley for a weekend of camping and mountain biking. It was a much needed getaway. The disposable camera decided to join us instead of my fancy camera. Old school!
We decided to camp at Alder Creek –  a primitive campsite set three miles down a windy road with an elevation drop of 1,000 feet. It was secluded and FREE! It would have been quiet if there hadn’t been a huge family who brought their 30ft long trailer down and left the generator on the entire time.
We set up the campsite before the trailer arrived, then lifted my awesome lightweight tent and walked it down a ways to a site where we couldn’t hear the generator purring nonstop.
Ahhh, much better. As soon as the site was set up, we hopped on our mountain bikes and got to exploring.
We went from fire road to trail and got lost quite a few times.
We stumbled across the skeleton of either a deer or a cow. The national forest was stuffed with cows and steer. Afraid of bears? Nah, no big deal. Come across a herd of cattle? Um, let’s turn around and bike the other way… Seriously, those steer will STARE YOU DOWN! And after seeing/hearing/feeling a stampede, I wouldn’t want to take them on.
We rode for about two hours, uphill, with places so steep we had to hike with the bikes. It was wonderful and painful.
The views made all the pain worth it.
It was quite a dusty ride. That shoe tan is absolutely horrendous.
We grabbed some brews from the back of the truck, hiked down a ways and found a wide section of the creek where we washed the trail from our legs and enjoyed the last rays of sun.
Commander Matt decided to build a fire. We tried to go au natural before resorting to our purchased wood supply. Matt decided on a small tree…
Which he promptly “chopped” with a rock. Au natural.
I went gourmet and cooked up some sundried tomato chicken sausages and boiled some sundried tomato and goat cheese ravioli a la Trader Joe’s. The joys of being able to drive the truck directly to the campsite. We were prepared to trek the cooler all 3 miles in!
Quality disposable camera food shot. Lovely.
The next day after having coffee and breakfast by the creek, we headed out for another bike ride. Remember that 3 mile long drive in with the 1,000 foot elevation drop I told you about? We biked up it. The entire road.
Complete and utter stupidity. But man, did it feel good to get to the top and be able to cruise all the way back down!
We passed out quite early that evening, in extreme amounts of awesome pain.
Once we got back to real life, we decided that another bike ride would be a good idea.
We explored some more. We found an abandoned oil rig.
The end.


Filed under vacation

Bravery Brewing

Bravery Brewing had its grand opening in Lancaster on Independence Day. After working the taproom at Enegren, we all headed over to check it out.
I was able to see the space a few months ago before they’d even begun brewing. It’s come quite a long way.
They’re a 3bbl system with two 3bbl fermentors and two 7bbls.
Instead of being hardpiped, the entire system is run with removable hoses for transferring and easy cleanup.
In the middle of the paint job back in April…
And during the grand opening. It’s too bad the turnout was so small…
The line for beer wrapped around the room, outside and around to the end of the building. Every single table was packed, as was the bar.
Luckily there were some cool hop plants to look at as we waited outside at the very end of the line.
And luckily since Enegren helped out with a lot of consulting with Bravery while they prepped to open, the owners brought some brews to tide us over during the long wait in line. Brighton ESB – a nice malty ESB, dry finish with just a hint of chocolate and toffee.
Randall: Citrus Bitter – their flagship bitter is run through a type of filter that contains freshly grated orange zest. This one was light and sweet with a heavy perfume of orange and a nice touch of sour rounding out the end.
Once we finally made it indoors, we got to enjoy the view of Gunnery SGT. R. Lee Ermey’s chopper. R. Lee Ermey is a co-owner of Bravery Brewing.
I also found a Chiver in the midst of the chaos! Bill Effin Murray! (Whoever can score me one of these would be the love of my life. Just sayin’)…
Once we finally made it to the bar (conveniently we had also just finished our “waiting in line” beers), Brewmaster Brian Avery served us up an array of tasters.
Ginger Witbier – thick wheat beer with a soft ginger aroma but a spicy kick of it at the end. Korova Sweet Stout – chocolatey stout that’s rich, but very light in ABV (5.6%). Honey Saison – a dry, crisp Saison brewed with honey, and Pineapple Boo (not pictured) – a wheat beer brewed with pineapple that has a surprisingly pleasant tropical aroma and flavor that ends with a noticeable pineapple zing.
No one was enjoying themselves at all. Especially while being encompassed by the soft leather couches with a perfect view of the brewery and tasting room in the “Brave Cave”. Try to sit on one of these couches and then try to get up. It’s nearly impossible except for the necessity of needing to refill your beer.
With 5,000 square feet, this place is spacious and airy, even with the masses of people that showed up for the opening.
The lights came on over the beer lists that were slowly dwindling as each beer was gulped into oblivion by the thirsty patrons.
And then R. Lee Ermey showed up. I was just trying to get a picture of the chalkboards but he kept getting in the way. Oh well. Creeper photo it is!
It was a perfect day for the opening and we had a delicious time! We grabbed a growler to go and headed back to Moorpark to enjoy the festivities.
I hope you all had a wonderful Independence Day! God bless America and craft beer!


Filed under brewery