8179 Center Street, La Mesa
The answer: Two months with any luck. The question (which has been burning in the minds of many a craft beer fan and La Mesa resident): When will Bolt Brewery (8179 Center Street, La Mesa) open to the public? (Apologies to Alex Trebek. On second thought, he’s one annoying, self-righteous blowhard, so scratch that remorse.) Back in March, I shared news that an ambitious trio was working to revive the first craft brewery to open in San Diego post-prohibition. In doing so, Bolt will accomplish another first—being La Mesa’s first brewing company.
Big progress on that effort was made last week when brewmaster Clint Stromberg, a founder of the original Bolt Brewery in Fallbrook back in 1987, brewed Bolt 2.0’s first batch of beer. An India pale ale, Stromberg started with that style to dial in the recipe to suit the hoppy tastes of local drinkers. The rest of Bolt’s opening line-up will include a session stout, double IPA, and pilsner. The latter is a long-time recipe of Stromberg’s that takes a whopping 21 days to ferment, thus his decision to get going on that it early in the game.
Originally, Bolt was scheduled to open in April, but that proved too ambitious. The autumn debut Stromberg and company are gunning for is much more realistic. Once open, co-founder Molly Rust says to expect a very welcoming vibe coupled with lots of communal seating in a nicely landscaped outdoor setting. The tap station will be constructed from a cargo container set against a refrigeration unit for a direct draw. This should prove a good environment for a “spectacular” grand opening fete, which will be planned roughly a month from Bolt’s soft launch.