Highlights of the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown

Lining up for the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Lining up for the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown

The first ever SJ Beerwalk hosted by Jack’s Bar & Lounge and Dishcrawl took place in Japantown earlier this month on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Japantown Banner at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Japantown Banner at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown

On a crisp yet sunny afternoon, 18 Japantown small businesses served as location points for beer pourings from over 15 breweries and brewing companies, including Lagunitas, Stone, New Belgium, Firestone Walker, Sapporo, Blue Moon, Kirin, Shipyard, Anchor Steam, Primo, Lost Coast, and South Bay locals Tied House/Hermitage, Strike, Rock Bottom, and Gordon Biersch.

Tied House/Hermitage offered pourings of their New World Wheat (American Style Wheat Ale, 4.7% ABV), Flemish Style Sour Ale (7% ABV), Hoptopia (Double IPA, 8% ABV), and Single Hop Series H (Admiral Hops). Rock Bottom offered their Kolsch (5% ABV) and Winter Ale (6.2% ABV). And Gordon Biersch offered pourings of their Hefeweizen, Czech Style Pilsner, and Marzen.

Rock Bottom Brewery pourings by brewer Larry Hoang at the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Rock Bottom Brewery pourings by brewer Larry Hoang at the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown

Those hoping to purchase tickets on the day of the event received news at the door of Jack’s Bar & Lounge that the beerwalk was sold out; there would be well over 500 strolling the Japantown neighborhood with beer glasses in hand.

Besides the more well-known Japantown restaurants, there were opportunities for both first-timers and those already familiar with Japantown to explore the myriad of shops along Taylor, Jackson, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th Streets. For some requiring coffee fixes, Roy’s Station provided just that.

It was apparent that the organizers had experience in planning events involving the Japantown community, as the beerwalk looked to be an overwhelming success. The presence of police officers was subtle and did not hinder the fun and lively atmosphere of the revelers strolling from one shop to the next.

There were long lines for the beer tastings, and some locations ran out of beer before the ending time of 5 p.m. For instance, the well regarded Double IPA from Firestone Walker, Double Jack, ran out at 4 p.m. These occurrences simply underscored the popularity of this first inaugural SJ beerwalk.

Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown hosted by Jack's Bar & Lounge and Dishcrawl
Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown hosted by Jack’s Bar & Lounge and Dishcrawl
Checking in with Jack's Bar & Lounge Jordan Trigg at the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Checking in with Jack’s Bar & Lounge Jordan Trigg at the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Dishcrawl team members Julie Ako (second from left) and Tracy Lee (right) and others enjoying the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Dishcrawl team members Julie Ako (second from left) and Tracy Lee (right) and others enjoying the inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Great Turnout at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Great Turnout at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Great Crowd at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Great Crowd at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Event Poster at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown
Event Poster at the Inaugural San Jose Beerwalk in Japantown

For more information

The next SJ Beerwalk in Japantown is scheduled to take place on Saturday, April 28, 2012 from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. For more information, visit their Facebook page. Tickets can be purchased via the Dishcrawl website.

A previous article introduced the hosts of this inaugural San Jose beerwalk and included a Q & A with Jack’s co-owner Jordan Trigg.

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]