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Kudos to Brandon for shining the light on Ballast Point Brewing Company’s achievements. I’ve been looking at the San Diego brewing scene too, and what a scene.

The long shadow of Prohibition kept small, local brewing possibilities down at zero for fifty years or more. Then Karl Strauss, then Stone Brewing of Escondido (and their Arrogant Bastard ale, and what a whale of an ale that is), then just about every home brewer and his dog got in on the act. Which is beautiful.

Like, Pat Mcilhenney was a home-brewing firefighter who started his own little Alpine brewery (and it still is little, right up there in a low-slung hacienda on Alpine Boulevard. The fermenters are in the old garage behind), and proceeded to win two Great American Beer Festival medals and two World Beer Cup medals. The county’s exploding!

Watch for a cover story on this. Where to start in on this scene? O’Brien’s pub at 4646 Convoy is a true San Diego beer pioneer; Hamilton’s does pretty-much all the San Diego beers, plus interesting craft beers from all over…the world (1521 30th); then there’s Blind Lady Alehouse (3416 Adams); Toronado (4026 30th), and in Hillcrest, The Wit’s End (420 Robinson), to name but a few.

Pictures below: The Alpine Beer Company brewery; and Danielle, the brew-pub’s encyclopedic server ImageImage

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