California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - 29

10
Craft Beer
Trail

Taste your way from the pine-scented
mountains outside San Diego to the
ocean breezes of Orange County

P E R H A P S N OW H E R E I N A M E R I C A I S T H E PA S S I O N F O R C RA F T B E E R more concentrated
than in Southern California, thanks to brewers who were some of the earliest visionaries. Today, more
than 150 breweries clamor for attention in San Diego County alone, and touring them is a delicious way
to better understand the craft and appreciate the ever-evolving innovations.
Start surrounded by the mountains of Alpine and jump right into sampling the hops-forward beers
that have made the Alpine Beer Company famous. Sit out on the patio and soak up the sun as you
sample its much-celebrated "Keene Idea" double IPA or the popular "Hoppy Birthday" session IPA.
Drive a scenic 31 miles to where San Diego craft brewing originated, at Karl Strauss. It was the city's first
craft brewery since Prohibition when it opened in 1989, an idea hatched at a lifeguard tower in Mission
Beach. Celebrate that era with its "Tower 10" IPA, or try the multiple gold-medal-winning Red Trolley Ale.
Now that you've looked back, look forward with a craft beer innovator. Pariah Brewing Company in
North Park opened in 2017 and has been attracting attention by creating unique beers flavored with
everything from the simple (locally roasted coffee) to the more unusual (kiwi and green tea). For dinner,
combine old and new at the Kettle Room. While it's run by one of the most famous area brewers, Ballast
Point, this Little Italy outlet features a brewhouse dedicated to small-batch innovation. Order the prix
fixe rotating menu with (of course) expert beer pairings.
Stay at the Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, where there's a beer concierge on staff. Get
suggestions or just stroll 30th Street, a.k.a. "Beer Street." Hankering for something sweet? Head to ice
cream shop Salt & Straw, where the peanut butter stout ice cream is made with peanut butter milk stout
from local craft brewer Belching Beaver.
The next day, head north for Route 78-an area so full of breweries it's been designated the "Hops
Highway." Start at the home of an early innovator that went on to become a national household
name, Stone Brewing. See how the magic is made on a tour of its sprawling World Bistro & Gardens

S TA R T
Alpine

in Escondido. Then sit in the one-acre beer garden and taste some of their many tap beers while you
order up the Stone Tacos, made with pork brined in (what else?) Stone IPA. If Stone's story inspires you
to make your own beer, stop by Smokin Beaver, just a few miles away, for supplies and expert advice.

3

days

182
miles

Then drive the 13 miles to Oceanside to sample various styles (from American to Belgian), and watch the
sunset from the roof of Bagby Beer Company.
In the morning, zoom up I-5 to Orange County and spend a half day in the passenger seat. Go with
Craft Brew Tours, and you'll travel by limo bus, enjoying 45-minute stopovers at three of the area's top

FINISH
Seal Beach

breweries, located in Anaheim and elsewhere. Refuel at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach with some slowsmoked brisket and a rotating list of unique beers, including the brewery's "Pie Fidelity," with strong

PHOTOGRAPHS: RYAN DONNELL

hints of lemon meringue pie. Walk it all off on the 1.5-mile-long beach, just a couple blocks away.

B AG BY BE ER CO.

STON E B R EWI N G WOR LD B I STR O & GA RDEN S

29



California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures

Contents
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Cover1
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Cover2
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - 1
California Road Trips - 50 Life-Changing Adventures - Contents
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