(Thanks to DCBeer contributor Bruce Webster for writing this profile.)
Name: Left Coast Brewing Company
Location: San Clemente, CA
Type: Production brewery
Available in DC Market: Yes (only in Maryland)
What you need to know: Opened in 2004 to brew beer for the Oggi’s pizza/brewpub chain, the brewery expanded and started brewing beer under the Left Coast label. Oggi's has been around since 1995. Today, Left Coast ships to 23 states (including an expansion into MD since their last SAVOR visit), and are known for American-style IPAs and stouts.
Beer #1: Trestles (IPA / 6.8% ABV)
Beer Description: An American IPA, Trestles gets it color and finish from two-row and light crystal malts. The bitterness in the palate comes from CTZ and Chinook hops, with a dry hop of Simcoe and Centennial giving the beer a citrus aroma. At 92 IBUs, Trestles IPA has a light body with plenty of hop flavor.
Food Pairing: Pecan Hushpuppies (Finely textured cornmeal studded with pecans and lightly fried.)
Our Thoughts: I find Trestles to be a good, but not great, West Coast IPA, with good hop aromas, but it is a little lacking in body. I probably would have planned to skip it at SAVOR, but the pairing does intrigue me. I’m interested to see how the pecans will play off of the malts.
Beer #2: Voo Doo (Stout / 8.5% ABV)
In Their Own Words: Voo Doo is a full-bodied, rich stout, with plenty of roast character. It has flavors of roasted barley, chocolate and coffee, and has a creamy head to round out the taste. It has won multiple awards including a bronze medal at the 2012 World Beer Cup.
Food Pairing: Cheddar Wafers with Stilton and Red Currant (Light wafers baked with cheddar cheese and topped with Stilton mousse and a red currant relish.)
Our Thoughts: Their description says it all – this beer has plenty of roast malt, chocolate and coffee flavors. There’s a nice malty sweetness that doesn’t overpower, as the roast and bitterness brings it into balance. It’s not an overly complex beer, but it is very tasty, and the pairing should only accentuate the positives.
This profile is a part of the DCBeer.com SAVOR Brewery Profile series. For more information, follow the link to see profiles of all 2014 SAVOR participants.