Over the last week we visited the Lost Abbey, Aztec Brewing, Stone Brewing, and Relm wine bar in North County San Diego.
The Lost Abbey specializes in abbey and saison style beers that are fermented with Brettanomyces yeast. A Latin sign over the door translates to “In Brettanomyces we trust.” Most of the beers are fermented in oak casks to transmit the yeast cultures.
En Illa Brettanomyces Nos Fides
The tap room is a mellow, amber-lit, and features and impressive draft beer selection from both Lost Abbey and Port Brewing. $1 mini-tasters are available for all beers, so it’s easy to try a lot while still drinking moderately.
Mini Taster Glasses
A rotating group of food carts keep drinkers well fueled. We enjoyed a pierogi and a polish sausage from Pierogi Truck of San Diego. There’s abundant seating on beer casks that are topped with 40# bags of dextrose.
Pierogis from Pierogi Truck of San Diego
Aztec Brewing is the new fermenter on the block, having just opened in August. The founders were at the bar pouring drinks and checking in with a multigenerational crowd of happy drinkers. We ordered a 2 flights of 4 beer tasters for $5 per flight. The beers included a jalapeno wheat, ESB bitter, IPA, British ale, chocolate porter, red ale, and imperial stout. It’s really fun to try small sips of such a wide variety of beers. The ESB was Katherine’s favorite. Peter liked the IPA, though Katherine thought it tasted musty. The jalapeno wheat tasted like nachos. We both enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere and the taster portions.
We returned to Stone Brewing to explore their hiking trail. A roughly 5 mile trail winds through the Coronado Hills, conveniently starting and ending at Stone Brewery. The trail has some great views of the hills surrounding Escondido and Fallbrook, and a built in fitness course helps us earn our lunch. We finished off the day with a smoky porter and a game of Settlers of Catan in the Stone garden.
Relm in Carlsbad is one of our favorite places to unwind. It’s got cushy sofas, mellow music, and delicious wines by the glass. The business name is an acronym for Relax Enjoy Laugh More, which seems quite appropriate. Now that’s a New Year’s resolution!