I am truly the king of transportation. Case in point: this past Saturday morning, my carpoleptic train snooze on the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner abruptly ended at the historic Sante Fe train station in San Diego, where a Bird electric scooter was then ridden to the harbor, only to set sail on a yacht filled with beer…all this to start the first leg of my epic San Diego Beer Week.
The SD Guild Festival is sort of my one-stop shop to check in on what’s happening in the 150+ brewery-jammed county, and I’m not alone. A gal wearing a Where’s the Beef shirt next to me in line flew in from Houston for the weekend. Others nearby mentioned they’re from the bay area for the weekend. I feel instantly dethroned.
Beers from 120 breweries were poured aboard the boat and the ensuing the bay side festival, but the big surprise was tasting beers from various guilds throughout California, including Baja. If you don’t get down to San Diego often, there’s a handful of newer breweries that don’t make it past San Clemente worth checking out. Fans of Lager? Check out Eppig Brewing. Love hazy IPA? Check out Burgeon, Pure Project, Abnormal, and Wild Barrel. Love big-bold styles you don’t seem to see a lot of? Check out Burning Beard and Second Chance. Start out at one, then ask the beertenders where you should go next. Societe Brewing is one of my all-time favorites with the Pupil; one of the best examples of a west-coast IPA I’ve ever had.
San Diego Beer Week runs through November 11 and is packed with daily events. Download their handy phone app or check out their website and train hop down there like I did. Those electric scooters are half the fun.
Greg Nagel has been writing about beer since 2011, is an avid homebrewer of wine, cider, and beer, is a certified Cicerone Beer Server, a podcaster with the Four Brewers Show, and runs a yearly beer festival called Firkfest. When not writing about, photographing or filming beer, cocktails, and food, he can be found talking trash while playing Battlefield V under the name “OCBeer.”