Belly Up to East Bay’s Craft Beer Scene
The East Bay is hops-friendly, pro-hops, hoppy to see you! The craft beer and taproom scene is buzzing on the bright side of the Bay, and whether you like your beer heavy, sour, malty, grassy, creamy or fruity, you can find it all here.
Beside being home to some of the best-known established West Coast breweries, including 21st Amendment in San Leandro and Trumer Pils in Berkeley, the East Bay hosts an astonishing number of up-and-comers. They are part of a statewide trend in craft brewery growth. More than 700 craft breweries operate across the state, with more than 100 of those opening just last year, according to the California Craft Brewers Association.
Oakland alone boasts 12 breweries, nine tasting rooms and an additional four tasting rooms set to open in 2017, according to the Oakland visitors center. The East Bay scene is so robust that there’s a dedicated blog for brew geeks called www.eastbaybeer.com.
So, in honor of the recent SF Beer Week (Feb. 10-19), we offer you the following tasting tour guide to the Oakland Ale Trail and beyond:
Alameda Island Brewing Co. recently celebrated its second anniversary as a 20-barrel microbrewery. Sample beers like Cavanaugh Kolsch, Alameda’s IPA and Sea Haggis Scotch Ale at the industrial-style tasting room with a patio. Kids and dogs welcome. 1716 Park St., Alameda
Faction Brewing is the place to be on a beautiful day. Beer lovers come for pales, IPAs, Belgians, porters and stouts and stay for the San Francisco views. Kid and dog friendly. 2501 Monarch St., Alameda
Fieldwork Brewing Co. is known for its varied and creative brews, including Party Cove Tropical Sour and Coconut Milk Double IPA. Fresh this month is the Terrace IPA, described poetically as having a “body like a down blanket.” Fieldwork added a splash of politics to another new beer, “March On,” which was brewed with the Pink Boots Society in response to disparaging remarks made about Fieldwork folks and others who participated in the Women’s March on Washington. Proceeds from March On went to Planned Parenthood. Fieldwork also has taprooms in Napa and Sacramento, and will open two more in Monterey and San Mateo this spring. 1160 Sixth St., Berkeley
Hoi Polloi Brewpub and Beat Lounge is a casual mini-micro-brewery, which serves its handful of home brews and lots of other labels. All of which should be enjoyed with Hoi Polloi’s truffle popcorn, according to reviewers. 1763 Alcatraz Ave., Berkeley
Pacific Standard by Half Moon Brewing Co. is coming soon as a taproom and growler station for Half Moon’s award-winning beers. Pacific Standard also will serve small bites. Stay tuned. 2055D Center St., Berkeley
Black Diamond Brewing Co. is named for the old coal mines located eight miles east of the brewery. The brewery is producing a “15 Barrel” series, with different limited releases each month. February’s 15-barrel brew is Carnage triple IPA. Get to the taproom before it’s all gone! 470 Bates Ave., Concord
E.J. Phair Brewing Co. serves its ales and lagers, including the medal-winning Shorty’s Revenge and the popular Ditzy Blonde, in Concord and Pittsburg. Both locations offer pub grub. The Pittsburg location is also a pizzeria. Concord: 2151 Salvio St., Suite L. Pittsburg: 300 Cumberland St.
Epidemic Ales opened its taproom a year ago so you could sample its beers with post-apocalyptic names like Zombie Brew, Lager at Worlds End and Patient Zero Double IPA . February’s release was Seismic Saison. Try a taster flight or fill your growler at 150 Mason Cir., Ste J, Concord.
Hop Heavy Brewing Co. is joining the scene soon with a brewery and taproom in downtown Concord. Just like the name says, Hop Heavy specializes in IPAs and other hoppy beers. 2115 Pacheco St., Concord
Danville Brewing Co. has a full bar and restaurant located in historic downtown. Besides serving its IPAs, lagers and stouts, DBC has seasonal brews like the intriguing Oatmeal Raisin Cookie. Don’t miss the DBC beer cheese with house-made pretzel bites. 200 Railroad Ave., Danville
Eight Bridges Brewing, Inc. brews core beers (pilsner, ales, kolsch, stout, lager, and IPAs ) and seasonals. New on tap: OneBox IPA – Mosaic. Visit the tasting room at 332 Earhart Way, Livermore.
Working Man Brewing Co. opened in 2013 as a partnership between Mt. Diablo Brewing and Working Man Brewing Company, and has produced more than 20 beers since then. Old Jabberwokki and Barrel-Aged Strong Ale go quickly, according to the brewery. The tasting room is kid and pooch friendly. 5542 Brisa St., Livermore
Altamont Beer Works is billed as Livermore’s first craft brewery since prohibition. The beers are draft only from the taproom, with 10 rotating taps. Winter brews includes Salty Rita Kettle Sour. 2402 Research Dr., Livermore
Aisle 5 This isn’t a brewery, but they serve local craft brews. We have to mention Aisle 5 because we’re excited to have it open so close to our Abio offices! Aisle 5 is serving beer, wood-fired pizza and smoked foods. 3320 Grand Ave., Oakland
Ale Industries claims to be the oldest and largest brewery in Oakland. It usually has about 14 brews available on draft at the taproom. AI is especially known for its Cherry Kush and East Bay IPA. 3096 E. 10th St., Oakland
Diving Dog Brewhouse is a beer bar, brewery and brew-on-premises venue for customers who want to brew their own beer on professional equipment. 1802 Telegraph Ave., Oakland
Drake’s Dealership is the new offshoot of Drake’s Brewing Co., which has been around since 1989. Drake’s Barrel House in San Leandro is the original on-site, no-frills brewery tasting room with indoor and outdoor seating and up to 24 beers on tap. At the newer Drake’s Dealership in Oakland, you can get wood-fired pizza to go with all that beer. Both are kid and dog friendly. San Leandro: 1933 Davis St. #177. Oakland: 2325 Broadway Auto Row.
Federation Brewing Coming soon. According to Federation’s website, the company is raising money to build its own brewery in Oakland, and in the meantime is brewing at EJ Phair in Pittsburg.
Ghost Town Brewing, recognizable for its eerie labels, is scheduled to open a tasting room later this year.
Independent Brewing Company’s tasting room is located at 444 Harrison St., Oakland.
Line 51 No tasting room, so check out their “Tap Map” to see where Line 51 is being poured.
Lucky Devil Brewery No tasting room. Use this website map to find their brew.
Novel Brewing has a tasting room at 6510 San Pablo Ave., Oakland.
Oakland United Beerworks is preparing to move into a new taproom and brewery space across the street from the Amtrak Station in the fall.
Old Kan Beer & Co. will be opening on site of old Linden Street Brewery. The name is an anagram of Oakland. Get it? 95 Linden St., Oakland
Pacific Coast Brewing Company is a longtime Oakland establishment, with brew, food and a backyard beer garden. 906 Washington St., Oakland
Roses’ Taproom is billed as a boutique brewery coming in March to a space adjacent to Temescal Alley. 4930 Telegraph Ave., Oakland
Temescal Brewing stands out with its artful logo in ‘80s pastel pinks, blues and greens. The tasting room and beer garden are located at 4115 Telegraph Ave., Oakland.
Woods Bar & Brewery serves house-made Woods beers, guest taps and El Porteño empanadas in its indoor-outdoor beer garden. 1701 Telegraph Ave., Oakland
Benoit Casper Brewing Co. is a small batch brewery specializing in Belgian, hoppy-American and traditional German styles. Open on Saturday afternoons for tours, tastings and growler fills. 1201 Pennsylvania Ave., Richmond
East Brother Beer Co. recently opened its 3,000-square-foot, indoor-outdoor taproom and brewery at 1001 Canal Blvd., Richmond. They started with Pale Wheat, Red Lager, Bo Pils, Red IPA and Oatmeal Stout.
Clephus Quealy Beer Co. brews an eclectic mix of beers, from barrel aged Belgians to fruit fermented sours to dry-hopped American styles, according to CQ’s website. The dog and kid friendly tasting room is located at 448 Hester St., San Leandro.
Drake’s Brewing Co. Barrel House (See Drake’s Dealership above) 1933 Davis St. #177, San Leandro.
Farm Creek Brewing Co. focuses on traditional European ales like English pale ales and IPAs, available in their taproom. 1415 Pine St., Walnut Creek
Did we forget your favorite brewer? Let us know. The agents at Abio Properties would be happy to chat about your real estate needs over a beer! Call us at 888-400-ABIO (2246) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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