Thirsty Thursday: Lagunitas Brewery + The Hop Review
I’m very excited about this post! Today’s Thirsty Thursday is all about Lagunitas and about my newest discovery that’s quickly become my favorite. I want to tell you about The Hop Review, a beer site that I stumbled upon last week! I’ve looked at many a beer site and have yet to be really drawn in but The Hop Review is different. Their interviews and articles are so great and you really get a sense of who the people are behind all kinds of breweries across the country. The guys who write it are based in Chicago so a lot of it is mid-western focused. That’s actually really cool because I get to read and learn about folks that I might never otherwise being that I’m based in NYC. Hello, Against the Grain! I must credit my favorite neighborhood beer spot, Bondurants, with actually introducing me to Against the Grain beers but I got all kinds of excited seeing a Hop Review interview with the owner, Sam Cruz. What a seemingly great guy. One of these days, I’m making my way out to Louisville, KY and meeting him myself. Anyway, the guys behind Hop Review ask smart, relevant questions and they seem to genuinely care about bringing the world of beer into your life. Far too often, you encounter really self-serving individuals in the food and beverage world but I don’t get that feeling at all from these guys. In fact, the more I read, the more I wished I could pop on over to Chicago, sit down with them and chat over a few brews myself.
Back to the real issue at hand. Lagunitas! The brewery is based in beautiful Petaluma, CA and as luck would have it, I was out there myself last weekend for my friend, Camille’s, wedding. I was beyond excited to be staying literally ten minutes down the road from the brewery. Petaluma isn’t a place I’d likely find myself again soon (unless annnnyone wants to take me on an all-expense paid trip to wine country) so I definitely wanted to take advantage of visiting their taproom while I could. I had also just read Hop Review’s interview with Tony Magee, founder of Lagunitas, so I was pretty dang stoked to get there.
It was a gorgeous day out. The kind where you could sit in the sun for hours and accidentally drink too much. There was great music playing, endless pretzels and peanuts if you wanted and damn good beer. In fact, their Pils was so good, it almost made me a pilsner convert instead of the IPA hophead that I really am.
I opted for a flight even though I was tempted to stick with beloved Hop Stoopid only. Yes, I did have to include that in my flight because I wasn’t about to be at the Lagunitas taproom and not. MMM, hops. I genuinely loved all four of my selections: crisp, clean Pils, creamy hopped Equinox oat ale, malty New Dogtown pale ale and punchy, massively hopped Hop Stoopid ale. Hang on a sec, gotta wipe the drool off my chin.
I’m strongly considering doing a Kickstarter campaign for brewery travel. Think anyone would donate? My chances of winning the lottery are probably better so maybe I just stick with that dream instead.