Craft Beer

Exploring Monterey County Gets Tastier

MONTEREY, Calif., – Long known for producing leading coastal California wines, Monterey County is now emerging as one of the Golden State’s most compelling destinations to discover locally inspired independent breweries and Monterey craft beers.

A staple of the Pacific Northwest, craft beer is currently drawing large numbers of travelers to the West Coast as beer enthusiasts plan trips to visit craft breweries for limited-production, hard-to-find creations only available in the regions where they are brewed. Monterey County’s independent breweries are currently each producing as much as 40 to 50 new beers a year, turning the region into a bucket-list destination for beer enthusiasts year-round.

Monterey County’s breweries draw inspiration from the history and terroir of the region, including the newest addition, Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Yeast of Eden, which opened in January 2019. From Monterey, local brewer JC Hill and his team at Yeast of Eden produce locally inspired, terroir-driven beers. The popular Saison Apothēca has notes of floral hops, citrus and a stony minerality, a trait that is often celebrated in Monterey County wines and attributed to the region’s coastal locale.

“Monterey County is the ultimate destination for travelers looking to experience some of the best craft beers on the West Coast and sample them in cool, relaxed settings,” said Tammy Blount-Canavan, President and CEO of the Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Beer lovers are joining wine enthusiasts as loyal visitors to Monterey and discovering the vast diversity in flavor, style and fermentations of Monterey craft beer.”

The next opening is the much-anticipated Other Brother Brewery, set to open in Seaside later this year, from Evan Loewy, Michael Nevares and Kevin Brown. Loewy is a Monterey native, currently managing Other Brother Olive Oil in San Francisco. The opening of the brewery is leading the renaissance of Seaside, as other businesses and retail ventures plan to open throughout 2019.

The breweries and brewpubs below are establishing Monterey County’s identity as a prime destination for constantly evolving local, creative and flavorful beers.

Explore Monterey and Carmel Craft Brews

Alvarado Street Brewery

After less than five years in operation, Alvarado Street Brewery’s beers have become some of the most sought-after in all of Northern California. Alvarado’s flagship Mai Tai IPA is a three-time Great American Beer Festival medal winner, including a 2018 gold medal. Their popular hoppy beers are packaged in cans with bright, splashy labels depicting flamingos and nods to ’90s pop culture. At festivals, their beers, with playful names like Sur Real, a nod to Monterey’s Big Sur, and Biggie’s Bon Bon Bonanza, are poured from taps on a converted jet ski. In another play on names, this time paying homage to one of Monterey’s most famous residents, John Steinbeck, the company’s new Yeast of Eden brewery & taproom recently opened in Carmel-by-the-Sea, and serves only locally inspired, terroir-driven beers.

Carmel Craft Brewing Company

Carmel Craft Brewing Company operates on a one-barrel brewing system. This style of small production means the team is constantly brewing new and fresh beers, often releasing as many as three new flavors a week. This changing rotation of beer allows for Carmel Craft Brewery to experiment with untraditional flavors such as Espress Yo-Self, a coffee oatmeal stout featuring espresso from Carmel Valley Roasting Company, and Love Potion #42, a pink-colored fruit wheat beer featuring cherries and raspberries. With a recently expanded tasting room and a new outdoor patio scheduled to open in summer of 2019, this spot never disappoints beer lovers.

Peter B’s Brewpub

The original craft brewery in Monterey, Peter B’s has been serving locally brewed beer for over 20 years. Guests can watch their favorite sports games on any one of the 18 big screens, but unlike a traditional sports bar, diners sip on a variety of award-winning craft beers brewed on-site such as their signature Peter B’s IPA, brewed with Columbus and Citra hops and awarded the silver medal at the Great American Beer Festival. Led by Head Brewer Justin Rivard, Peter B’s brews a variety of styles that anyone from a novice to a craft beer enthusiast will appreciate.

English Ales

Founded almost 20 years ago by English born Peter and Rosemary Blackwell, English Ales in Marina is known for serving fresh English-style ales. Today, English Ales has expanded upon their original mission to include brews with a hoppier flavor, such as the Big Sur Golden and Monterey Bay Wheat beers. Happy hour runs every weekday from 4:00-7:00pm, and on the last Tuesday of every month join English Ales for Firkin Night, where guests are invited to taste from 10.2 gallon containers (“Firkins”) in which the beer has been fermented twice, resulting in a smoother and more delicate finish and available for just $3.50 per pint.

Cannery Row Brewing Company

Cannery Row Brewing Company is a family-friendly restaurant/tap house featuring the largest selection of draft beers available in Monterey County. In addition to the 70+ draft beers, guests can enjoy award-winning cuisine featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives,” hosted by Guy Fieri, while surrounded by vintage beer paraphernalia décor and a view of the 75-plus kegs behind the glass bar, or while enjoying the cozy fire pits on the outdoor patio overlooking Cannery Row and the Monterey Bay. It’s a must for the beer enthusiast!

Grab life by the moments with a visit to Monterey County. For more information on all that Monterey County has to offer, please visit SeeMonterey.com.

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