Beers I drink, Breweries

The Black Cock Chronicles

Who is to blame when a Groupon goes wrong?  The merchant?  Groupon themselves?  God?  Lets find out together.

It’s no secret that I’m cheap.  I learned it from the head cheap-o himself, The Old Man.  Together, we love a bargain.  Keep that in mind as you read my review.  So there was a Groupon for Black Cock Brewing Company in Orange, California and of course we pounced on it.  Black Cock used to be the Old Orange Brewing Company.  (Click the link to check out my previous review.)  OOB was not that great of a place to begin with.  Then, for reasons unknown to myself, they changed to Black Cock Brewing Co.  I was anxious to get to the newly named brewery and see what changes had come.

In some ways, @BlackCockBrewCo was just like @OldOrangeBrewCo.  Maybe they had the same decorator?  But the walls were hung with art work of their flagship beers.

With the Groupon in hand and my best drinking buddies behind me, we ventured into the Black Cock one Sunday.DSC09632 (2) - Copy  Immediately, we found out we couldn’t use our Groupon that day.  In the small print, which I had neglected to read (my bad), the terms were that you needed to make a reservation at least 24 hours in advance.  There was a sign too with the bad news.  I was bummed.

I got a shot of the menu board…

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As I checked out the menu, I kinda smiled to myself at the name of one of the beers: Dumb Bitch Denise.  What else would you expect from a brewery named Black Cock?  I decided to have the Dumb Bitch pale ale with a 6.6% ABV.  When I went to order it, I found myself having a hard time saying “dumb bitch” to the female brewtender.  Normally, “bitch” will come out of my mouth for the littlest reason, it’s one of my favorite words in fact and I love using it….around people who know me.  I didn’t know this lady and here I am asking her for a “Dumb Bitch Denise” and just hoping that she wasn’t Denise.  I found the name of the beer a little insensitive to say the least but the Old Man thought it was downright misogynist.  I know that it is probably coming across as too PC, I’m sure Black Cock’s patrons love the flippant manner and I just have a stick up my ass.  Whatever.

So the Dumb Bitch Denise was really tasty.  It was just a bit hoppy but not overwhelming.  When I was finished with my first pint, I tried a Kemeron which is a 7.2% American Pale Ale.  It was so delicious, the first sip was like drinking a Sprite.  The key lime is very prevalent but again, not overwhelming.  It wasn’t too citrusy, just crisp and refreshing.

Remember when I said I was cheap?  Well, here it comes.  Beers at Black Cock are $8.00 a pint.  That is way overpriced.  I went to Karl Strauss later in the day and paid $6.50 for beers that were better tasting with higher ABV’s.  I realize small breweries are the latest thing but that’s no reason to bend me over the barrel on the cost of a pint.

We hung around and drank pints for a couple of hours.  Black Cock has lots of games to play like Jenga, shuffleboard, and board games in a corner.

They even have a popcorn machine that is always full of hot buttery popcorn.  So good for my low sodium diet!  DSC09590

And a giant Connect Four game.  DSC09627 - Copy

There is definitely no shortage of things to do at Black Cock.

And they offer something no other brewery does: the option to add 200 mgs of cannabis oil to your beer.  It’s an expensive treat at an additional $15 per “Splash” and $30 per pint but some people are really into the whole CBD thing so it could be worth it just for that option.   Me? DSC09611 (3)I prefer to go around the corner and toke a preroll.  It’s cheaper and I like THC more than CBD’s.

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This guy!

Black Cock also offers 32 ounce versions of their beers all “Super Size Me!” style.  I didn’t see it on the menu but my friend visiting from North Carolina got one.  He’d be pissed if I used his name so lets just call him “Brian.”

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From Hawaii…

We had a good time that Sunday despite not being able to use the Groupon.  We scored some cool gifts from the Eichels who had just returned from their vacation in Maui.  The Old Man wanted to eat and continue drinking so we headed over to Karl Strauss in Anaheim near the Angels Stadium.  Totally different experience.  Cheaper beers, good tofu appetizer…. Karl Strauss has it all.  I even took a couple of shots to commemorate the difference.

Flash forward one week later after we had made our reservations…

The brewtender remembered us and so did the guy I assume is the owner and/or manager of Black Cock Brewing Company.  They explained that because of unseasonal weather, some of their beers weren’t available.  They only had numbers 4 through 8 on the menu board.  This was back when I still thought we would get to choose what beers we wanted for our 4 bombers that were included in the Groupon.  They said if we wanted to come back when they had more beer selection to redeem our Groupon, that would be okay.

 

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A murder of growlers

We were kinda annoyed at that news.  We didn’t feel like hanging out again with the limited selection of brews.  The guy behind the bar said if we stayed he would give us official Black Cock undies for girls and boys.  Tempting but it wasn’t enough to keep us there and we ended up going to Chapman Crafted Brewery in Orange, just down the street a couple miles.

The next Sunday after that we went camping so we skipped that weekend.  We came back the Sunday after camping and were happy to hear that all the brews were available.  Ck & Carie got their 2 flights and we got the first 2 of the 4 flights coming to us.  The flights consist of 4 beers at 4 (maybe 5) oz. each.  There are 8 beers on the menu and we tried one of each.

I liked the selection and every beer was tasty.  Some I had tried 3 weekends before and I got to try others that I normally wouldn’t have.  The top 2 beers that stood out were the Chocolate Persuasion and one that wasn’t on the menu last time called Cock-a-something.  The picture I took on the third visit turned out blurry so I don’t know the full name.  The Cock-a-whatever was brewed with a chile pepper and had a spicy taste.  The Chocolate Persuasion was a 7.2% ale with a distinct yet mellow chocolate taste with some creaminess.

The Old Man and I traded our final 2 flights in for pints.  Being creatures of habit, we had the Dumb Bitch Denise.  When we finished those, we had two more pints, I went with the Kemeron since I had liked it so much before and Sean had the Cock-a-something beer.  We talked about what beers we wanted for our bombers and came up with a list of 4 starting with the highest percentages.

But when it came time to get our bombers and go, we found out that they were prefilled 22 oz bottles of Back Door Blonde.  We were like, “Wha?”  Back Door Blonde would’ve been my last choice for what I wanted to take home because it is only a 4.0% ABV.  The tender didn’t even tell us what beer it was.  She told Carie a few minutes before when she picked up their 2 bottles.  Plus the bombers had Cannonball Imperial IPA labels and upon closer inspection were revealed to be left-over stock from the Old Orange Brewing Company.  We felt like we had been scammed.  So that happened.

I posed the question in the beginning, who is to blame?  I put all the confusing small print, deceptive take-home bombers, and the annoyance of having to come back 3 times square in the lap of Black Cock.  And a little bit of God’s fault because the weather was not hot enough to put the beers in the bright tank or whatever.

I went there to check it out and I did.  I liked Old Orange better because they didn’t have names that were offensive to this stuck-up old biddie.

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Fancy a flight?

Their beers are pretty good, if not great, tasting but I noticed as I was going through the flights that there was an underlying similarity to all the brews.  Like you could just tell they were all from the same brewery.  But I really don’t care about those things because I’m not going back to Black Cock.  My whole experience with this brewery should’ve happened in one day.  Instead it took 3 weeks to finally get to redeem the Groupon.  And then, the 22 ouncers sucked.

The best part about Black Cock, the one thing that would make me reconsider returning, is the friendly, helpful attitude of the brewtender behind the bar.  Every time we were there, she had a smile and bought drinks to our table and made our experience a little better.  I feel really bad about trash-talking Black Cock because of her.  The guy I assume is the owner was nice also but he is probably the “brains” behind the Groupon scam so I will leave it at that.

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Costume party? Sorry, I’ll be at Bottle Logic.

 

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Breweries, Game Night Drunk

Rules Is Rules @BackstreetBrew

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So…just a heads up.  Monday $3.00 Pint Night at BackStreet Brewery in Anaheim has gone up.  Not for all of them, but for the ones with an ABV of 7% or higher expect to pay the premium.  I ordered a Tomahawk IPA and then I got informed of the new standards.  A Blood Orange Animation IPA with a 6.5% ABV ended up being my drink of the night.

So take a look at the menu before you go ordering.  Don’t get a Tomahawk DIPA, Holy Shizz, or a Straight Stoutta Anaheim or you will pay full price.

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We had a fun night of drinking and hanging out playing Quiddler.  DSC09482  You can get it on Amazon and it is totally worth it.  Hours of fun are to be had making words.  It’s like Scrabble but with cards.

On the tenth and last round, we combined our words to make a funny statement:

 

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The word “Clue” was just a leftover.  It has nothing to do with she binding thine fine sex.  The final score of the night was The Old Man with 294 and me with 249.

 

 

But really, what is up with the 4 drink limit?  When the Old Man was ordering our 4th beer, the brewtender asked if we would be okay to drive home.  WTF?  I guess there’s a first time for everything.  And here’s a new sign in the boys bathroom:  DSC09508

I have a feeling they got busted for letting people do bad stuff like smoke joints in their patio and get really wasted on over 7% beer.

Last time I was here, smoking a bowl or joint on the premises was not unheard of.  Rules, right?

The food truck of the night was Monster Burgers….

….and they didn’t have veggie burgers.  They had a few non-meat items but I didn’t end up ordering anything.  The loaded fries looked appetizing but I had pigged out at Souplantation earlier so food was not in my forecast.

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There was a monthly schedule posted for all the upcoming events and happs.  I was glad to hear that Wednesday Night Bingo will be back.  It’s a lot of fun without any old ladies stealing the wins.  The different food trucks that come during the week are listed too.  I’m trying to get my man’s band, Chuy Poluka & The Bar Room Junkies, to play in September or October because they have bands playing on some days.

There were quite a few precious puppies who came to BSB tonight but I think the award for the best beggar of fries goes to Kelsey, some kind of wonderful golden lab shepard mix.

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Look how she zeroes in on those loaded fries.  Expert level begging, I say.

There were at least 2 other doggies and I was impressed.  I think it’s great to bring your fur babies to a brewery.  Not so much with the fleshy babies.

 

So there’s the update for BackStreet Brewery in Anaheim.  A few changes since last time but nothing that I can’t deal with.  I will continue to show up for $3 Pint Night on Mondays with the knowledge that a 7% or higher beer is full-priced.  It’s not a bad rule, just new.  I just have to get used to it.

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Beers I drink, Breweries, Out on the town drunk

Checking up on All-American Ale Works

I had the unfortunate occasion to be at the Kaiser Permanente mega-complex in #Anaheim one night.  A sick mother-in-law is no good.  The Old Man and I hung out for a while bedside in the ER and then, hands wringing, left for the night hoping for the best within the next couple of days.

Since we were so far down on La Palma, we decided to hit up All-American Ale Works.  It is one of the newer breweries in Anaheim and one that I hadn’t been to since I wrote this review of them in the summer of 2017.

All-American Ale Works is the furthest brewery east on Lager Palma Brewlouvard.  It’s maybe 3 miles from Bottle Logic, Asylym, & Hoparazzi.  We were pleased when we pulled DSC08869 up and there was a sign letting patrons know that they had $3 Founding Father Pints on this night.  With a special like that going on, we were shocked when we walked inside and there was no one in there, except for the brewer Travis.  When I came in July, it was so packed that I was lucky to get a seat.  That was right after they opened so word was on the street about a new brewery in Anaheim.  This time, I had my choice so I picked the table with the best All-American Ale Works brand.  Hardcore.

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We asked Travis what the “Founding Father’s” pint special was all about and he told us it was all the “Year Round” beers on the menu, there were 5 choices with varying tastes and ABV’s.

Here’s a pretty focused shot of the menu.  The growler prices are cut off so you will just have to go there to find out the prices.

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Normally I would’ve gone for the Old School Mix Tape Session IPA but it was only a 4.7%.  I know it’s more about the taste of the beer but I happen to be an ABV nerd and it’s something I look for in a brew.  So I went with the Barefoot Blonde Lager which measured 5% and the Old Man had a Storm The Beach which is a red ale with coconut with an awesome 7% ABV.

DSC08854 We both really enjoyed our selections in the first round.  So much that we stayed for a second round and both had the Storm The Beach this time.  Again, the color was dark red with a good head and the coconut in the mix adds such a sweet, mellow flavor to the finish.  Here’s the Old Man hisself posing with his first 7%er:

 

 

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For about 10 minutes after we ordered our first round, no one was in there so we just talked to Travis.  He was personable and really on top of things coming up for All-American.  They are looking ahead to having distribution in local places and getting their name out on the craft brew festival circuit.  I mentioned the lack of crowds and Travis said the $3 pint on Monday night thing was new but let me know that they have a bunch of events going on throughout the week.  Here’s a pick of the weeklies:

 

 

Eventually, a group of 4 came in and sat at the bar so Travis turned his attention to them.  Now it was my chance to start snapping pictures and writing down the facts!  Another couple came in a little while later and then finally a lone guy but it got a little more crowded without being annoying.

 

There has been a hole in my heart since Backstreet Brewery quit hosting trivia night.  My interest was definitely piqued when I saw that All-American teams up with

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Geeks Who Drink for trivia on Tuesdays at 7:00pm.  Travis said the top prize is a $20 gift card.  I know a couple of Lag-A-Lots who could use a $20 gift card to pay for the $50 worth of beer we would all drink that night.  One of these nights I’m gonna get down Lager Palma east and play some trivia with my smart friends.  Can’t hardly wait!

 

 

 

Travis told us about some upcoming charity thing they are doing in conjunction with a local cat rescue.  For the life of me, I cannot remember the name but I wish I could give them a plug here.  Remember to spay and neuter your pets!

All-American Ale Works has improved and seem to be getting better than when I first tried them out.  Everything about the place is mostly the same as it was when they opened last year.  For example, they’ve got the Patch Wall and merchandise for sale still.

The art on the walls is still the same as well as the big screen tele’s on every wall broadcasting whatever game catches the fancy of the brewery patrons on any given night.

But they have a lot more beers on tap than they used to though and that’s great.  Travis said when they first opened they only had 9 or so choices on the menu and now the menu is extensive.  He said they have made over 35 different brews since they opened until now.

I got a few shots of the back area:

If you’ve never been to All-American Ale Works, I recommend checking it out.  If you’ve been once or twice last year, like I had, do yourself a favor and head back there.  Just don’t come on Tuesdays for trivia night because my team will devour you.

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Below the glowing neon sign (also lets you know you have arrived)

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This is their suite number, in case you miss the glowing neon sign

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Beers I drink, Breweries, Uncategorized

Out on the Towne (Park Brewery)

September saw the opening of the newest brewery to join the other 13 breweries in Anaheim.  Towne Park Brewery & Taproom is located off Lincoln Avenue, right by the 5 freeway.  The only way they could be in a better location is if they popped up on Katella & Harbor or somewhere along “Lager Palma Brewlouvard” with their crowds.

I’ve been waiting a while for @TowneParkBrew to open.  I heard about their impending arrival onto Anaheim’s craft beer scene sometime around July.  I signed up for their newsletter and at that time their tentative opening was going to be in late August.  I never got one damned email from them and I wouldn’t have known they were in business except that I went to see a friend’s band at the Holiday Lounge in Costa Mesa and the Towne Park IPA was available on tap.  I tried it and I was impressed.  The hops provided a bitter shock to my palette that I have come to love in IPAs.

So one night, I happened to be in Towne Park’s neighborhood at the Doll Hut Studios

and needed a place to continue drinking after Chuy practice.  The Old Man and I headed over to Towne Park and were surprised to find that it was packed.  It was a Wednesday night around 9:30 and the only parking available was handicap.  Luckily I was the only handicap person there so I took that parking faster than Blac Chyna got knocked up by the only male heir to the Kardashian name.

DSC07833Their HQ is huge!  It’s the center of the Towne Park universe where all the brewing, canning, bottling, aging, and tasting happens.  Out in front they’ve got what appears to be a “company car” with this fun license plate.  It’s probably the owners.

 

I got a few pics of what it looks like behind the scenes in their production area.

Look at all those cans of delicious beer!  Of course, it was dark so the pics could be better but they can give you an idea of just how large their operation is.

Follow the next sign for a good time…

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There is a spacious outside seating area that is all lit up and inviting-looking to the outside world.  Inside is a bright, open tasting room with a bar against one wall and tables with chairs spread throughout.

The Menu Board…

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Towne Park offers 8 different beers as well as non-alcoholic beverages.  They also have apparel and glassware merchandise for sale.  They have pretty average prices for everything on the menu with the exception of the $8 IPA.  It only comes in at a 6.7% ABV and the going rate at most breweries for that level of alcohol is $6 ($7 if they’re bougie).

Since I had already tasted the IPA, I took the “doublemint” challenge and went with the Double IPA  DSC07847 that measures a whopping 9%.  I expected it to pack a hoppy punch but I was let down in the worse way.  It didn’t even taste like an IPA, much less a DIPA; it was much too sweet and malty.  I tried to drink it fast to get it over with and that left me feeling like I shouldn’t have another beer that night.  Damn 9%er’s!

So that’s a score of one to one with my Towne Park Brewery experiences.  I’m not sure how to think about them and they definitely deserve a third try.  I will taste their lighter content brews next time.

It could’ve been a bad night but I had such a good time on the outside patio watching all the pugs and pits play and demand attention from their millennial owners that it made up for the overly sweet brew.

There’s a brightly lit marquee sign that advertises the goings-on of the upcoming week.

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I like that they’ve got a Trivia night on Wednesday’s.  Wednesday is my traditional day for trivia competitions.  We used to play all the time at BackStreet Brewery until they just didn’t have it anymore.  Sometime I’ll check out Towne Park’s game.  And taco’s on Tuesday?  Who woulda’ thunk?  Wonder if there are veggie selections on the menu?

Overall, I am happy with this new brewery.  I just had a bad experience with the taste of one of their concoctions and I won’t let that stop me from going back and tasting what else they have to offer.  Welcome to Anaheim, #TowneParkBrew!

Cheers!

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The self-promoting selfie box (not free btw)

 

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New kid in Towne

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Beers I drink, Breweries, Out on the town drunk

Bingo Wednesdays at Backstreet Brewery

It was just like putting on a familiar pair of jeans; getting back to Backstreet Brewery in Anaheim for game night.  It used to be trivia on Wednesday nights.  But times change.  The game changes.  Now it’s bingo.  DSC06735

 

 

The Old Man and I arrived at about 7:45 and we were the first group among many that had parked right after we did and walked up right after us.  Luckily we knew what we DSC06734  wanted so we just went right up and ordered at the bar.  The menu board was the same as Monday’s $3 pint night and our selections changed only slightly.

On our first round, I tried the Los Angeles IPA of Anaheim that had an ABV of 6.4% and a measurement of 55 on the IBU scale.  It was a dark IPA in such contrast to the golden color of the Old Man’s Set Sail IPA but not even close to being as dark as their Imperial Red Ale.  DSC06754  It had a smoky taste and the slightest of bitter notes.  I liked it a lot even though it has a kinda low ABV.

Before “last call” we ordered a last round of Tomahawk Double IPA’s.  We both had pints of this on Monday and we were glad to revisit.  The color is light but the taste is full.

We played 3 rounds of bingo.

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The caller, the man in charge, told us they usually do 4 rounds.  They also usually start at 7:00 but on this night, they waited until more people showed up and they didn’t get started until about 7:30.  Since we got there a little late, we missed the first round.  A mistake we will never make again.

 

 

Bingo night is so stress-free at @BackstreetBrew.  I have gone to the church bingo nights with the serious old ladies and it is not fun.  The old ladies are aiming for complicated bingo patterns that make no sense.  Image result for old ladies playing bingo  At bingo night at Backstreet, we just played regular, not serious, bingo.  The kind where you win if you get five in a row.  The last game’s goal was to get the 4 corners to win.  But these are easy to understand.  The old ladies play shapes like the Confederate flag and shit like that.  When I went, I had to constantly ask the old lady next to me if I had a bingo yet.  As expected, she became annoyed and quit talking to me.

 

 

You get one card per round and a dabber.  DSC06752

It’s free to play and the guy provides everything.  Prizes are awarded after each successful round.  The table next to us was super lucky and the one lady, among four men, won twice.  The first time, she got a card valid for a growler.  Yeah, I was jealous but I was sure I could win one myself…ha!  God laughs at the plans I make.  She also won the grand prize at the end which was 2 Angels tickets.  I would’ve preferred another growler if I was her, but she was nice and gave her tix to her friend for his birthday.  Damn winning bitch.  I hope she burns in beer hell for her luck.

Our favorite brewtender, Renee, was serving tonight and we were so glad to see her smiling face.  She remembered us from trivia night and helped us right away with great service.

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There was a food truck called MexItUp but they were shut down for the night.  I don’t know if they sold out of their wares or if they were too into bingo to serve food.  But the menu was on the outside and I noticed they had veggie tacos for $8.00.  DSC06747

Don’t veggies cost less than meat?  Shouldn’t veggie tacos be cheaper than meat tacos?  Just one vegetarian’s opinion.  I guess if you are eating off a food truck, you expect to pay a premium for the service and options.  I was just excited to know they had veggie tacos in the first place, never mind the price.

 

The crowd for bingo night was overwhelming.  The two tables inside were completely taken up.  By the time bingo had started, there were only two empty picnic tables left on the patio.

 

After bingo, the crowd dispersed somewhat.  The twice-winning woman got the heck out of there before we could strong arm her for her growler prize.  But we will be back again.  Maybe not every week but it is a great break in the middle of the work week.  You should try to make it to #Anaheim for bingo night at Backstreet Brewery.  It’s fun and drinks flow the whole night.

Get your drunk on and always remember to tip your brewtender!

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Beers I drink, Breweries, Out on the town drunk

$3 Pint Night @BackstreetBrew

Monday is a day much maligned in our working-class culture.  But if you think about it, Monday’s not that bad.  I mean, you’ve got Preacher (spoiler alert) on AMC.  And then, to prep for Preacher,  you’ve got $3 pints at @BackStreetBrew.  Those two things alone are like the silver lining of Monday’s grey cloud.

I noticed a few things had changed right off the bat.  They have a giant new BSB sign on the front.  DSC06729  There was a note on the front door that welcomed and invited you to use the entrance on the left side.  Oh yeah, and to remind you to #drinklocalDSC06730

In the front window, on the floor, was also a wooden sign.  Maybe they don’t know it’s on the floor.  Someone should hang it back up.  It’s cool.

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It was very crowded when we showed up around 8:00.                                                       DSC06743  Almost all the street parking was taken.  Which can also be said about all the outside seating.  There was one left for me & the Old Man in both instances.  The city has painted blocked out parking spots on Santa Cruz St..  I’m sure it’s in preparation for the shit-ton of crowds that are going to be coming here once all the condo’s go up in the vicinity.  You can see the gigantic eyesore of a parking structure in the background.  Yay.  Crowds.

I love how consistent Backstreet is with their menu but how they also always have something new to try.  DSC06734

This time, I noticed the Los Angeles IPA of Anaheim and I giggled to myself at the play on words for the Angels baseball team.  But…I ended up going with the Set Sail IPA.               DSC06737 It was stronger and I needed that.  Set Sail is a 7% with 70 IBU’s.  It’s a beautiful golden color and tastes so refreshing and with a hoppyness to last for days.  It’s delicious so I could not resist.  Neither could Sean, we both ended up drinking the same brews the whole night.  Once we killed our first round, we decided to hit hard and go for the Tomahawk Double IPA.  Tomahawk is a whopping 9.2% ABV with a score of 105 on the IBU scale.  I love it because it is so strong.  It’s bitter as hell at first but your palette adjusts accordingly and it goes down smooth after that.

There was a food truck there last Monday.   DSC06742It was called Bobup and people seemed to really like it.  I have friends who would be interested in bringing their food truck, HeadHunter, to Backstreet so it is good to know that they are having trucks come on a regular basis.

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Bobup featured Korean food and put their menu’s on the tables.  I thought that was a brilliant move to show the folks what you have to offer without them having to awkwardly go up to the truck to look at the menu and think about what they want and then kinda slink off back to their seat to stew over which kind of protein they want.  Unfortunately there was nothing of substance that was vegetarian.  And they spelled steak wrong.

The Old Man and I caught up on trivia with the pages I totally missed from my trivia calendar.  The pages started on June 1st. and we got all the way to June 23rd.  We thought it was appropriate considering we used to come here for trivia on Wednesdays.  But they don’t have trivia anymore.

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They’ve got bingo on Wednesday nights now but other than that, their Daily Specials are still the same as they were since the last time I was at BSB.  Again, I love the consistency.  Here’s a pic of their specials:

 

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So that’s about it.  I’m getting back to Backstreet.  Tonight, I’m stopping by for a game of bingo and a Los Angeles IPA of Anaheim.  If you find that Monday has given you the blues, turn your frown upside down and get drunk with $3 pints at BackStreet Brewing.

Drink up & always remember to tip your brewtender!

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Breweries, Out on the town drunk

Asylum Brewing

It was hot as balls in Anaheim.  The Old Man informed me that it’s not even considered a “heat wave” because the temps have to get past 100f.  So while the fake forecasters tell you it’s technically not a heat wave even though you are melting, you can rest assured that it is indeed, as hot as balls.  I consider hot as balls to be 90 and above.  On the Friday night I went to Asylum Brewing Company it was a good 93 at 8:00 at night.  Disgusting.

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There is a tent outside the entrance and meaty tacos were cooking underneath it so it was even hotter going in.  But once you get inside, the air conditioning is magic.  It improved my whole mood.  All of a sudden I didn’t care about the crowd and the childrens running around or the wanna-be heat wave.  I was just elated to be comfortable.

We checked out the menu board and this is what we saw:

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So many taps, so little selection

Only 4 out of 5 beers were available.  Fair Weather Friend, a West Coast Pale Ale with a 4.7% ABV, was sold out.  That was great for them.  But it reduced the selection by 20%.  Don’t check my math or anything but the cold hard fact is that there were only 4 beers to choose from.  This seems like it would be typical of a newly-opened, small brewery but I have seen smaller breweries with more choices.  But they are a very tiny operation in their infancy.  Brewing and tasting out of the same small space makes for close company.  Hopefully they will expand into a larger building.

It’s a good thing they weren’t sold out of Monsters We Breed, which was billed as a dank IPA with a 7.5% ABV.  I saw “dank” and I had to have it.  It was tasty and cold but not very “danky.”  I figured they meant “especially hoppy” when they described it as “dank” but it wasn’t really too bitter.  It had a kick though and I drank mine right up.  The Old Man decided on a 6.5% Harlequin Honey Blonde.

There is cool wall art in the entrance hall and in the tasting room area.  I saw on Asylum Brewing Company that the artist of these 3 beautiful paintings is a local named Nathan Houtz.  Not sure where credit goes for the 4 geometric prints but they’re outstanding.

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Like all smart breweries, Asylum is trying to brand you with their selection of merchandise.  They have shirts for $15, hats for $25, and pint glasses at $7 for sale.

 

@AsylumBrewing is in a great location.  Steps away from Hoparazzi Brewing and sharing a parking lot that is across the street from Bottle Logic, this place is in the center of the action on Lager Palma Brewlouvard.  That would explain why they were so crowded.  And I’m sure their excellent a/c system kept it crowded.

There is a shelf full of games and it seemed like every table had one going on.  We chose to play Spot It!  A game meant for 4th graders and drunks.  It was a blast because we didn’t keep score.  That ended up being in my inebriated favor.

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What is the matching symbol in common?  Wrong!

I wished I could’ve spent all night inside the cold cave of Asylum.  I was ready to check myself in.  They are open until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.  Those are some of the latest hours I’ve seen a brewery open until.  I’m sure they get people coming and going all night.

But we had already tried the two beers on the menu that seemed best suited for our tastes.  Neither of us really likes an Imperial Stout that much and the Rorschach was too…coffee for me, at least.  So our #datenight came to an end.

I’m gonna keep my eye on Asylum Brewing because I liked what little of their menu selections I tried.  If they can add some more options, I will definitely be back in.  It would be great to see them expand and add more space to the brewing and tasting room areas.  I wish them the best of luck.  Drink well & remember to tip your bartender.

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Breweries, Out on the town drunk

All-American Ale Works

Meet #Anaheim’s newest brewery, All-American Ale Works.  I guess it’s technically in Anaheim Hills but I can forgive that, we’ll call it Anaheim for argument’s sake.  All-American is located in a business center off of what I have drunkenly dubbed Lager Palma Brewlouvard (although the cool kids are calling it the La Palma Beer Trail).

Keep your peepers open for the CRAFT BEER banner and you will know you have arrived when you see this:

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Patriotic AF

 

In case you haven’t noticed, Anaheim is becoming known for it’s wide selection of breweries.  “Aleaheim.” “Brew City.”  These words have been tossed around in people’s brains just long enough to give my city something to be proud of.  There are currently 14 up & running breweries in Anaheim alone.

 

 

It was crowded with almost every table taken when I arrived with the Old Man.  We checked out the menu board, ordered and grabbed seats against the wall.

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16 available taps means room for more!

There were 10 or so brews to choose from on the menu above the taps.  I started off with a strong one, the Renegade Warrior.  It’s an American IPA with a 6.8% ABV and measuring in at 65 on the IBU scale.  It was a hoppy dream come true.  The Old Man tried the Red Ale called Storm The Beach that had an alcohol content of 6.9% but a mild 28 IBU’s.  It was floral with a light hoppiness and deep reddish color that the light could barely penetrate.

Here is a postmodern picture that the Old Man shot of me, taking a shot of our beers to post on this here blog.  It’s awesome.  DSC06616 Notice the cool logo glasses.

#BeersOfInstagram #tweetingaboutblogging #research #postmodern

 

 

There is paper menu with all of the 12 brews that are offered.  I grabbed a pic of this one:

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I spoke with one of the brewtenders about how excited I was to have another brewery in town.  Travis was really friendly and talked about how they had started out brewing in a hot garage in Riverside & now they were brewing in a hot warehouse in Anaheim.  All-American is fairly new having only opened up within the last 2 months.  They are veteran owned and operated and their love for our country shows in the decor.

 

Well, nothing goes better with patriotism than beer and pretzels.  The Old Man wanted to goof off so he tried on a pair of pretzel specs, lol!

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Pretzels…the veggie option

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Shirts & tanks $15.00

All-American has t-shirts for sale but with a limited selection at the right price of $15.  Sean wanted to buy one so badly because they were cheap & they had 2XL but they were the “slim fit” kind.  Sean wonders what kind of person, whom was large enough to be a 2XL, would want to wear a slim fit.  Perplexing.

 

 

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Go long, bro

There are several big screen tellies against the walls and about 8 wooden tables with chairs to hang out at.  This is what All-American Ale Works looks like from the front corner:

 

 

Down a hallway in the back is The Taco Bar to satisfy your munchies.  Here’s a pic of their menu.  Not many choices and nothing vegetarian so…meh.

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And then there was that strange smell of flesh that lingered in the air

Feel free to bring your 4-legged friends to All-American as they are welcomed by everyone.  I assume you can also bring your little munchkins but give them a teaspoon of whisky before you arrive.  It’s rude to drink in front of your kids without including them.

The Friday night that I visited, there was a princess named Daisy who was friendly and curious and adorable as hell.  She could melt your heart.

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Brew Dog Daisy

I stealthily listened in on the conversation between Daisy’s papa & his friends.  They were looking for a brewery to hit up next and they looked up something online and then decided on Bottle Logic.  A good choice in my opinion and just 3 miles up #LagerPalmaBrewlouvard.  Daisy’s dad had also said that he sometimes goes to Backstreet Brewing on Monday nights for the $3 pints.  Next time I’m at Backstreet, I hope to run into her again.

Since it was #datenight as well as a covert information gathering job, I decided to try another brew before we left.  The Patriot Pale Ale was a delicious choice with a light 5.7% ABV.  Patriot was crisp and refreshing.  There are a few more that I would’ve sampled but another brewery was calling softly.  The Old School Mix Tape is a session IPA that I would be interested in and I have a curiosity about the Blue Manchu, a fruit beer.  These will have to wait another day.  I will definitely come back for another sudsy round of brews from All-American Ale Works.  It’s a great starting or stopping point on Lager Palma Brewlouvard and where you go from there is totally up to you!  Drink well & remember to tip your brewtender.

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Beers I drink, Breweries, road trip

Oceanside Brewing Company

I had a family event looming on my horizon in #Oceanside so I wanted to check out some local breweries while I was there.  I had more than an hour to kill before I had to be somewhere and the closest brewery was also the one that would’ve been my first choice: Oceanside Brewing Company.  I like when the town is in the name.

DSC06293    A little sign above the door and a  “BEER HERE” sandwich chalk board  DSC06288  let you know you have arrived at the Oceanside Brewing Company.  There isn’t much parking but we got a place up front.  TGFHP.  That’s Thank God For Handicap Parking.

DSC06289  A couple with two kids walked in as we were getting out of the car so I knew OBC was kid-friendly right off the bat (you should see the disgusted look on my face as I type that).  I could also see the wagging tail and rear end of a dog so I knew they were dog-friendly as well.  DSC06306

Here’s a pic of the awesome fur baby I got to meet.  I will take dogs over kids any day of the week, lol.

 

@oceansidebrewingco has an extensive menu board with no less than 22 brews on tap.  There is literally something for everyone.

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There were a couple of beers I wanted to try but I was drawn to the New England style Desert Storm IPA which measured 6.7% ABV.  It was delicious with a citrus, grapefruit taste and stuffed with hops.  The Old Man tried a Corps IPA that came in at 6.8%.  It was interesting.  The Corps tasted more like a brown ale when we first sipped it but then the mellow hoppyness came forward and it tasted more like the American IPA it was billed as.

I complemented the brewtender/brewer on the Desert Storm and he told me a funny anecdote.  As regular readers will remember in my review of House of Pendragon, the New England or hazy style IPA is a fairly new type of craft beer to hit the market.  He said that the NE IPA is kind of a little joke among brewers who usually work very hard on getting clear, filtered beer.  And then some guy from Maine comes out with this “hazy,” unfiltered beer and it’s all the rage.  The brewer liked it because it shaved a couple of weeks off the brewing process by not having to filter out all the remnants.  And he said it was a popular choice so the general public seems to approve.

We wanted to go drink al fresco because the breeze was so nice & cooling but both entrances to the back patio were chained off.  As we stood there, contemplating the chain, the brewtender told us beers weren’t allowed out back and hadn’t been for six months as they battled with the ABC about the zoning.  The ABC are a bunch of dicks.  They were on the verge of having it all worked out and he said the back would be open for drinking in just a week.

OBC has a few games to play as well as some brew-crafting reading material.  The large wooden chess set was attractive and looked inviting if you are smart enough to know the game.  I’m not.

There are t-shirts for sale but I think they’re a bit overpriced at $25.  DSC06308

 

 

 

 

 

I left the Oceanside Brew Co. wanting more.  It’s a #roadtrip there but not too far from #Anaheim so I am sure I will be back.  There are more brews to sample and some outback patio fresh air & sunshine to soak up.  I love California.

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Beers I drink, Breweries, Out on the town drunk

A Noble Redux

We started with Noble Ale Works a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.

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It was long before BrewBroadBlog, long before we acquired a taste for the IPA’s.  One time, we were the only ones present in the tasting room, this was before they opened the tasting room up to the warehouse section next door.  They had a bunch of Angles and Ducks memorabilia and a huge map where visitors placed pins to mark where they were from.

Image result for anaheim angles logo parking lot crisisThis Noble Ale Works died long ago.  They died when a shit ton of folks started parking at Noble for Angles games and crowding the very little space Noble has for “schmoozing.”  We stopped going there because we were sick of the crowds.  We might be beer snobs but, fuck you, hipsters, we were there first.

 

Tonight, we were on a hunt for a brewery.

Image result for old orange brewing company We hit up the Old Orange Brewing Company on Batavia in Orange but they were closed.  They should think about turning off their lights and putting the picnic table back inside if they are not serving beer.  Whatever.

So Noble was the next closest brewery to our house.  If they were crowded we were going to try the Legends Brewery on Lewis.  But the Noble crowd was manageable so we ended our night there.  The best taco truck in OC was there, hawking their meat-filled creations but also offering one with grilled veggies.  Smart choice.

The menu was new and familiar to us at the same time.

Image result for noble ale works menuThey featured the Pistol Whip’d which I used to drink all the time.  It comes in at a 4.5% ABV so I left it alone for the night.  I ventured out to try something stronger and I decided on a Big Whig IPA that was a 6.8%, it was Noble’s attempt at a West Coast IPA.  Whatever that means, right?  It was damn tasty.  It was hoppy but the IBU’s were not overwhelming.  I guess a West Coast IPA is kinda light.

They offered more “light-ish” brews like the Swoll Patrol and the Tank Top but neither appealed to me.  Noble presented several “hoppy-ish” choices, like the Big Whig, and the Tongue Tickles that registered a whopping 8% on the ABV.  Some stouts, like the Man’s Milk, which I think is a hilarious name for beer, came in with a 6.1% and the Double Bam Bam that is an Imperial Red Ale and will get you quite fucked up with an ABV of 8.88%.

Noble has some experimental brews on tap like the Life Is Pitless,

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which is a sour beer that features hints of sour cherry balls from the Most Magical Kingdom in all of Anaheim, Disneyland for you tourists.  The Naughty Sauce is a stout with coffee notes on  nitro to give a certain creaminess to the mouthful you will gulp.

It took about 5 minutes from the time we got our beer to the time we were able to commandeer a table from some losers who couldn’t hack drinking for the rest of the night.  As we sat and drank, we talked about how the Noble Ale Works has changed.  They started out sporty and took on a following they couldn’t keep up with.

Luckily, Noble is expanding.

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We saw the very proof of it tonight in the “Expansion Observation Deck.”  It’s a hallway that leads to closed glass doors that you can peek into.  What you will find is just darkness and maybe some vats.  But they are growing and I couldn’t be happier.

 

Our Big Whig IPA’s lasted a little while but soon we needed to medicate.  So out to the parking lot we went and sparked up a completely legal bowl of weed.  Things are changing.  There are new things on the horizon and I like the way the future looks.  If Noble can expand, so can I.

I just have to remember to stay the hell away from Noble during the baseball season.  It’s packed with lowlifes and trouble makers.  Visit Noble in the off-hours for a great time.  Try an experimental IPA or a light American Lager.  Noble’s got the best of them and it’s totally worth it.  You’ll see.

 

 

 

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