On Saturday we drove down to Escondido and had lunch at Stone Brewery and World Bistro, the fourteenth largest craft brewery in America. After our fancy lunch (BBQ duck tacos and chicken tiki marsala), we walked through the beautifully sculpted grounds then got a tour of the facility by Phil and Jim.
I learned that the brewers have a sense of adventure. We saw some beers aging in Heavenly Hills whiskey barrels. They’ve recently experimented with a tobacco brown ale. Don’t worry, I don’t think it’ll go into production… I did taste their smoked porter with chipotle and another with vanilla beans. These two have made it on their tasting menu.
The brewing facility was enormous. Their current annual production is 120,000 barrels. They have a capacity to do 250,000! I really hope they stay successful.
For dinner we drove up to Tustin Brewery and dined among some lively Northwestern fans. Tustin Brewery is a perfect neighborhood pub; it was really enjoyable. Unfortunately, because they are small, their regular beers won’t always be available. I had been looking forward to trying their award winning Golden Spike but went with their seasonal Oktoberfest instead. I also got to sample their coffee blonde which was a light ale infused with coffee beans! Tustin beer is distributed by Stone Brewery but I don’t know if we can get it back East. 😦