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

Beers, bats, and axes

Sharpen your aim before trying the stout

A beer flight: hoppy, fruity, tart, and stout.
A beer flight: hoppy, fruity, tart, and stout.

Keeping the recreational beer drinker in mind, a number of local breweries offer games for customers to play in and around their tasting rooms. The beanbag toss game cornhole is a common sight. So is Giant Jenga. At the Carmel Mountain Ranch brewery of Second Chance Beer Co. there’s a basketball hoop. And at the Urge Gastropub in San Marcos, home to the production brewery of Mason Ale Works, there’s an entire bowling alley.

Place

Wild Barrel Brewing

692 Rancheros Drive, San Marcos

But, arguably the best pairing of beer and play may be found across the freeway in San Marcos. Wild Barrel Brewing opened last fall, in a building it shares with SoCal Batting Center, a business whose batting cage offerings include a pro-style pitching simulator: a video pitcher winds up and delivers a pitch in sync with the pitching machine, mimicking game action.

Axe throwing and pints: the new date night?

I’d have loved that in my baseball heyday, but it’s another activity, found behind the batting cages, that caught my attention. That would be adjunct business, SoCal Axe. As in axe throwing. Yes, for 40 bucks, you and friends may try your hand hurling hatchets at large wooden bullseyes, in between beers.

That last part’s the stickler. Any beer must remain inside the tasting room, so while the businesses are connected by an open hallway, there will be no pint in one hand, axe in the other calamities.

Nevertheless, it does inform the character of Wild Barrel’s large tasting room. In addition to the usual crew of beer enthusiasts, I spotted young couples sipping beers before or after axe-tossing dates.

The batting cages drummed up casual beer drinkers too. Not the batters per se; most of those taking swings this early evening were kids and teens partaking in practice sessions with their youth baseball or softball teams. I wound up drinking beer with those kids’ parents.

It turns out, several have settled into a happy, hoppy routine, dropping off sons and daughters at the batting cages, then grabbing a pint of IPA while they wait for practice to finish.

Most were drinking Wild Barrel’s flagship Prince of Dankness, a potent double IPA made with New Zealand hops; or Space Juice, a slightly juicy, hazy IPA boasting orange and tangerine flavors of the Mandarina Bavaria hop, an aromatic varietal that’s been trending with local breweries in the past year.

I enjoyed that one myself, but devoted a couple of my two-dollar tasters to actual juice: selections from Wild Barrel’s San Diego Vice series. The same tart Berliner weisse gets blended with various fruit juices to elicit differing results. Building on the same sour toast-like base, the black currant version adopts the feel of a jammy red wine, for example, while a crushable guava take resembles an effervescent tropical punch. This round, I opted for the fruit nectar-like Mango, and Mixed Berry Bomb flavor, where boysenberry and strawberry combine to evoke a cranberry cocktail.

My preference so far is the currant, but my top beer of the session didn't lean on fruit. The Hipster imperial stout hit bold and boozy, with rich and pleasing roasted chocolate and coffee flavors. I want to go back for a full pint, plus an alternate version featuring coffee with maple syrup and vanilla. But at a hefty 11.5-percent alcohol, I will not be throwing axes after drinking them.

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

Previous article

The Truth: no better suited than Catherine Deneuve

Hers truly is an imitation of life.
Next Article

Matthew Stewart’s protest song earns heavy spins online

“Alternative Facts” uses the catchphrase coined by presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway
A beer flight: hoppy, fruity, tart, and stout.
A beer flight: hoppy, fruity, tart, and stout.

Keeping the recreational beer drinker in mind, a number of local breweries offer games for customers to play in and around their tasting rooms. The beanbag toss game cornhole is a common sight. So is Giant Jenga. At the Carmel Mountain Ranch brewery of Second Chance Beer Co. there’s a basketball hoop. And at the Urge Gastropub in San Marcos, home to the production brewery of Mason Ale Works, there’s an entire bowling alley.

Place

Wild Barrel Brewing

692 Rancheros Drive, San Marcos

But, arguably the best pairing of beer and play may be found across the freeway in San Marcos. Wild Barrel Brewing opened last fall, in a building it shares with SoCal Batting Center, a business whose batting cage offerings include a pro-style pitching simulator: a video pitcher winds up and delivers a pitch in sync with the pitching machine, mimicking game action.

Axe throwing and pints: the new date night?

I’d have loved that in my baseball heyday, but it’s another activity, found behind the batting cages, that caught my attention. That would be adjunct business, SoCal Axe. As in axe throwing. Yes, for 40 bucks, you and friends may try your hand hurling hatchets at large wooden bullseyes, in between beers.

That last part’s the stickler. Any beer must remain inside the tasting room, so while the businesses are connected by an open hallway, there will be no pint in one hand, axe in the other calamities.

Nevertheless, it does inform the character of Wild Barrel’s large tasting room. In addition to the usual crew of beer enthusiasts, I spotted young couples sipping beers before or after axe-tossing dates.

The batting cages drummed up casual beer drinkers too. Not the batters per se; most of those taking swings this early evening were kids and teens partaking in practice sessions with their youth baseball or softball teams. I wound up drinking beer with those kids’ parents.

It turns out, several have settled into a happy, hoppy routine, dropping off sons and daughters at the batting cages, then grabbing a pint of IPA while they wait for practice to finish.

Most were drinking Wild Barrel’s flagship Prince of Dankness, a potent double IPA made with New Zealand hops; or Space Juice, a slightly juicy, hazy IPA boasting orange and tangerine flavors of the Mandarina Bavaria hop, an aromatic varietal that’s been trending with local breweries in the past year.

I enjoyed that one myself, but devoted a couple of my two-dollar tasters to actual juice: selections from Wild Barrel’s San Diego Vice series. The same tart Berliner weisse gets blended with various fruit juices to elicit differing results. Building on the same sour toast-like base, the black currant version adopts the feel of a jammy red wine, for example, while a crushable guava take resembles an effervescent tropical punch. This round, I opted for the fruit nectar-like Mango, and Mixed Berry Bomb flavor, where boysenberry and strawberry combine to evoke a cranberry cocktail.

My preference so far is the currant, but my top beer of the session didn't lean on fruit. The Hipster imperial stout hit bold and boozy, with rich and pleasing roasted chocolate and coffee flavors. I want to go back for a full pint, plus an alternate version featuring coffee with maple syrup and vanilla. But at a hefty 11.5-percent alcohol, I will not be throwing axes after drinking them.

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

Legacy International Center: the inverted cathedral

“Just as folks go to Sea World or the Zoo, it’s just another interesting item that they can come to.”
Next Article

Dead Cross cover Black Flag’s “Rise Above” in solidarity with Black Lives Matter

Jonny Tarr, Dead Cross, Electric Mud, Howard Blank’s Outsiders, Trees
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

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