2009 Reflections of a Craft Beer Newbie

by Beer Answers on January 1, 2010

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This post is created for Beer for Chicks’s roundup of blog posts for the 35th installment of The Session. Which is a group writing project where beer writers and bloggers from around the globe write on a single beer-related topic on the same day.

2009 was my first year as a Spanish/California red-wine-lover turned beer-o-phile.  Now I’m hooked.  I frequent the San Diego-land retailers with the best beer choices (Whole Foods, BevMo and Texas Wine & Spirits) and the best brew pubs (O’Brien’s, Karl Strauss, Breakwater Brewing).

My best beer moments: The many memorable pairings at San Diego Beer Week 09’s finale event, Chef Celebration of San Diego Beer.  My overall favorite—Molasses  Braised Short Rib with parsnip puree, from Chef Danny Bannister of Red Marlin restaurant paired with a Lost Abbey, Gift of the Magi.  Pure heaven.

Most enlightened beer moments: Discovering AleSmith’s  (San Diego) wonderful offerings especially their Nut Brown Ale, Yulesmith Ale…. Tasting Skinny Dip on tap for first time in Santa Barbara and realizing that you can get a good tasting Light Beer.

Most embarrassing beer moment (for Jim, my husband):  at SD Beer Week’s opening event our friends at Breakwater Brewing (Oceanside, North San Diego County) offered Krieg as a tasting.  I said sure!  Jim said, ”You hated that a few weeks ago at their restaurant.” However, I loved it on second taste.  Jim said to Breakwater guys, “Don’t you love it when your wife makes a liar out of you?”  They said, “Happens all the time.”  So I realized that in a few short weeks as a new craft beer fan, my taste buds had dramatically changed.

Beer Resolutions for 2010:

  1. Taste and cook with a wonderful new beer every week.
  2. Secure a year-long supply of Dogfish Head Punkin Ale next fall. (That’s a 4-pack a week, 52 weeks…)
  3. Motor north to Santa Monica on my inaugural visit to Father’s Office Gastropub to imbibe in their divine beers and pairings.

What were your best, worst, most fun beer moments of 2009?

–Cheers to a wonderful New Year’s!


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