Thursday, September 19, 2019

Dirty Birds Takes Flight

I wrote in April about Dirty Birds' liquor license troubles as it prepared to open its Ocean Beach location.  Dirty Birds has now received a license to serve beer and wine and plans to open this weekend.  I don't expect to visit Dirty Birds too often - never say never - but am glad it overcame the license obstacle.  I believe Dirty Birds is a positive addition to Ocean Beach.  This article has more information on the opening.

UPDATE:  I did end up at Dirty Birds Ocean Beach on its opening weekend to order some to go food.  What I thought was going to be a family-friendly restaurant felt like a bar - a bad, awful, miserable bar.  There were families there, but I find it hard to believe they enjoyed their meal.  The music was too loud, which made normal conversation impossible.  I looked at the tap handles and the first tap I saw was an Elysian Brewing tap, so I looked no further.  Beers were served in fake fat-bottomed pint glasses, and guys were drinking White Claw from the can and Michelob Ultra from the bottle.  OK.  Dirty Birds opened with a defiant two-handed bird to Ocean Beach.  Sad.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Local Oktoberfest Beers

Pumpkin beers from national breweries started to arrive early last month, and I am reminded I still have about a half dozen still in my fridge.  The best, or at least my favorite, fresh/wet hop beers won't show up until later this month or early October.  In preparation for the fresh hop onslaught, warm up with two excellent Oktoberfest beers:  Mike Hess Brewing's Oktoberhess Marzen and Eppig Brewing's Festbier.  You can't go wrong with either of these seasonal treasures; so suppress the instinct to order another forgetable hazy IPA and find these two beers.  I tried Marzen at Mike Hess's Ocean Beach tasting room and enjoyed its refreshing malt-focus.  It was not over powering and lighter than it looks.  Eppig's Festbier is clear, crisp, and showcases its lager yeast.  Festbier is available this year in cans, but I think the release is limited, so act fast.  If you visit Eppig's Point Loma waterfront Biergarten to try Festbier you can also order Eppig's lighter, unfiltered lager, Zwickelbier, which is one of the best beers being brewed in San Diego. 

This West Coaster article has a good rundown of the Oktoberfest beers at Burning Beard Brewing Co.

Friday, September 6, 2019

The Magic of Science - Turning a Hazy IPA Clear

I made a hazy beer clear.  I bought a six-pack of Pizza Port/Modern Times' Gentle Reminder collaboration hazy IPA before I went on vacation.  I had my beer fridge set too cold and Gentle Reminder might have started the process of freezing while I was away.   I had had one or two of the beers before I left and they were clearly hazy. (I did not take a per-vacation picture, but a quick Google Image search shows Gentle Reminder is a cloudy beer.)  When I got home and poured an unslushied Gentle Reminder the haze was gone, replaced by a clear beer.  It tasted the same, a soft and sweey hazy IPA, even though it now looked like a West Coast IPA. 

My picture of the re-conditioned beer is crap.  This week's heat and humidity generated instant condensation on the glass and there is carbonation floating up from the bottom.  But trust me the beer is clear.  I have questions to which I don't know the answers:  Did the partial freeze provide the clarity?  or did sitting in the fridge for up to a month cause the haze to go away? or is there another explanation?  When pouring the beer there was no sediment at the bottom.  The taste was not impaired; the color remained a golden yellow; and the foam remained strong.  All that was missing was the cloud.  It's mystery, one I find cool.  Gentle Reminder is not the cloudiest IPA.  It does not look like a glass of pulpy orange juice.  But still, I was surprised to see the beer had turned clear and am not sure why.