Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Beer Touring: Saint Archer Brewery

A look into my pick for San Diego’s most improved brewing company

Place

Saint Archer Brewing Co.

9550 Distribution Avenue, San Diego

Few, if any, breweries have been as polarizing among local beer fans and industry members as Saint Archer Brewery (9550 Distribution Avenue, Miramar). Some see the business — partially owned by, and marketed by, action sports stars — as one that may introduce craft beer to individuals who might not otherwise try it. Others perceive it as an operation headed by businessmen more interested in turning a profit than the craft of creating exceptional beer.

Truth is, the majority of people who stumble upon Saint Archer’s wares will have zero back story or reason to care about it. Hence, the only thing that will matter to them is how good — or bad — the beer is. Early on, it was a mixed bag. While Saint Archer Blonde Ale, a refreshing kölsch, was good enough to make it to San Diego Beer News Beer of the Week status, the company’s Pale Ale and IPA were plain at best, and subpar by San Diego standards. All three still serve as Saint Archer’s core offerings, but a number of new brews have been introduced by new brewmaster Yiga Miyashiro over the past few months and a comprehensive revisit was merited.

Place

Pizza Port OB

1956 Bacon Street, San Diego

The current list of newcomers includes a double India pale ale, Scottish export ale, American-style stout, and new pale ale made from experimental hops procured through Hopunion. Coming from Pizza Port, where he helped earn the chain’s Ocean Beach location Best Small Brewpub of the Year honors at the Great American Beer Festival in 2011, Miyashiro has been able to refine his processes on a wide breadth of styles, but he has been most successful with stouts and hop-forward beers. So, it comes as no surprise that the double IPA and stout are his biggest hits at his new stomping grounds.

The 8.3% ABV Double IPA bursts with citrus and tropical fruit, bringing on everything those familiar with Miyashiro’s work would hope for. It’s a real game changer for Saint Archer. Ditto the American Stout, 6.8% ABV with a deep roasted coffee character but such exemplary balance, every sip feels like the first. With each taste, you feel snug and secure in Miyashiro’s obsidian wheelhouse. The Scottish export was tasty, but a bit too dry and devoid of this style’s trademark mild sweetness, and the experimental pale ale, while better than Saint Archer Pale Ale, tasted like it needed some fine-tuning.

It was a treat to try these beers, but wanting more, I wondered aloud when these beers would be packaged and available outside the tasting room. Fortunately, the right person heard me behind the bar and offered an answer. Twenty-two-ounce bottles of the Double IPA are scheduled to debut in February of next year. Also on the horizon for Saint Archer is canned beer. When that happens, expect a wheat beer based on another of Saint Archer’s brewers’ most lauded creations— La Peruse, an award-winning witbier lead brewer Kim Lutz developed while at Maui Brewing Company.

Upgrading to Miyashiro, and reuniting him with a long-time conspirator in Lutz, figured a good way to increase the beer quality and overall craftiness at Saint Archer, and it has. Thus far, this brewing company wins my vote for most improved after a somewhat clunky start.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Customer complaint chases bullying Starbucks barista from corona-crazed coffee collective

Star-BUCKS
Next Article

Praga: Italian at a Czech restaurant in Mexico

Not many pedestrians. No mariachis. And definitely no striped zebra-donkeys.
Place

Saint Archer Brewing Co.

9550 Distribution Avenue, San Diego

Few, if any, breweries have been as polarizing among local beer fans and industry members as Saint Archer Brewery (9550 Distribution Avenue, Miramar). Some see the business — partially owned by, and marketed by, action sports stars — as one that may introduce craft beer to individuals who might not otherwise try it. Others perceive it as an operation headed by businessmen more interested in turning a profit than the craft of creating exceptional beer.

Truth is, the majority of people who stumble upon Saint Archer’s wares will have zero back story or reason to care about it. Hence, the only thing that will matter to them is how good — or bad — the beer is. Early on, it was a mixed bag. While Saint Archer Blonde Ale, a refreshing kölsch, was good enough to make it to San Diego Beer News Beer of the Week status, the company’s Pale Ale and IPA were plain at best, and subpar by San Diego standards. All three still serve as Saint Archer’s core offerings, but a number of new brews have been introduced by new brewmaster Yiga Miyashiro over the past few months and a comprehensive revisit was merited.

Place

Pizza Port OB

1956 Bacon Street, San Diego

The current list of newcomers includes a double India pale ale, Scottish export ale, American-style stout, and new pale ale made from experimental hops procured through Hopunion. Coming from Pizza Port, where he helped earn the chain’s Ocean Beach location Best Small Brewpub of the Year honors at the Great American Beer Festival in 2011, Miyashiro has been able to refine his processes on a wide breadth of styles, but he has been most successful with stouts and hop-forward beers. So, it comes as no surprise that the double IPA and stout are his biggest hits at his new stomping grounds.

The 8.3% ABV Double IPA bursts with citrus and tropical fruit, bringing on everything those familiar with Miyashiro’s work would hope for. It’s a real game changer for Saint Archer. Ditto the American Stout, 6.8% ABV with a deep roasted coffee character but such exemplary balance, every sip feels like the first. With each taste, you feel snug and secure in Miyashiro’s obsidian wheelhouse. The Scottish export was tasty, but a bit too dry and devoid of this style’s trademark mild sweetness, and the experimental pale ale, while better than Saint Archer Pale Ale, tasted like it needed some fine-tuning.

It was a treat to try these beers, but wanting more, I wondered aloud when these beers would be packaged and available outside the tasting room. Fortunately, the right person heard me behind the bar and offered an answer. Twenty-two-ounce bottles of the Double IPA are scheduled to debut in February of next year. Also on the horizon for Saint Archer is canned beer. When that happens, expect a wheat beer based on another of Saint Archer’s brewers’ most lauded creations— La Peruse, an award-winning witbier lead brewer Kim Lutz developed while at Maui Brewing Company.

Upgrading to Miyashiro, and reuniting him with a long-time conspirator in Lutz, figured a good way to increase the beer quality and overall craftiness at Saint Archer, and it has. Thus far, this brewing company wins my vote for most improved after a somewhat clunky start.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Building paradise in San Diego

Mission Valley, Tijuana gardens, Otay Mesa, downtown skyscrapers, One Paseo, Rancho Santa Fe mansion
Next Article

Is Midway the new Soccer City?

Fresh chapter unfolds in San Diego's well-lobbied Sports Arena muddle
Comments
2

Isn't Saint Archer distributed by Stone? Doesn't the author work for them as well?

Dec. 9, 2013

Yes, I do. It's in my bio here and all over social media, actually. Feel free to read previous pieces about Saint Archer, which set the stage for the need for improvements. Cheers.

Dec. 14, 2013

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close