Tag Archives: Rob Monroe

Original Gravity Celebrates 3-Year Anniversary, Plus Q & A with General Manager Rob Monroe

Original Gravity Public House
Original Gravity Public House

The craft beer landscape in San Jose – and throughout the region – has certainly changed for the better ever since word got out over three years ago regarding the impending opening of Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose.

On Sat., July 18 starting at noon, Original Gravity (66 S. 1st St.) will celebrate their third anniversary by tapping approximately 35 kegs – many from their cellar – throughout the day. Limited edition hoodies will be on sale, and DJs will be spinning vinyl on the patio into the evening. Look for food specials as well, including OG! Burger, Chorizo Black Bean Chili (add to your burger or fries) and Duck Fat Tater Tots with Truffle Salt and Rosemary.

The third anniversary celebration is especially sweet for Rob Monroe, general manager and event coordinator, who has been with Original Gravity since the beginning. Rob is a passionate, multi-talented fellow and a local beer expert. I caught up with him recently, and he graciously shared his thoughts related to reaching the three-year mark.

Congrats on reaching the three-year mark! Your thoughts on reaching this milestone?

It is exciting to not only hit three years, but to have grown with a lot of the same people in that time is rewarding as well! Some days it feels as though we just started and others like we have been doing this forever; either way we are still having a lot of fun.

What have been your proudest achievements?

I would say the expansion last year is definitely up there. For me personally, I love the scope of our events program. I feel like it has helped bolster the downtown San Jose craft beer community and put some fun into it as well.

Attention to quality beer and knowledgeable beer servers were priorities from the get-go, and OG continues to help lead the way in the continuing growth of the San Jose – and South Bay – beer scene. Compare the San Jose beer scene now to three years ago. Is it exciting to see the continuing growth?

We are extremely proud to have come out of the gate with such a distinct vision and dedication to craft beer. It is pretty incredible the amount of options you have these days, especially in downtown San Jose. When we first opened there was a major void, but the initial demand has not only been met, it is still growing. There is definitely a lot of support for each other in the community and respect for everybody’s unique take on beer.

Due credit goes to Good Karma for paving the way several years before us with an exceptional artisan beer list.

What is new in the works for the coming year?

We are going to continue evolving the events program into multi-dimensional experiences, adding more brewer interaction, education and food pairings. We are also in the very beginning stages of making some of our sausages in-house as well!

Anything else?

We are all extremely grateful and proud to be here and thriving. It is a testament to our unique and incredibly knowledgeable staff – You are all truly the best in the business.

To all the wonderful, unique and amazing beer drinkers out there, thank you for the great three years of support; we are just getting started. Keep it OG!

Kegs to be tapped throughout the day

  • Allagash – James Bean (Bourbon Barrel aged Tripel with Coffee)
  • Allagash – Currant Affair (Dark Sour Ale with Currants)
  • Altamont – Maui Waui (IPA)
  • Avery – Mephistopheles (Imperial Stout)
  • Ballast Point – Grapefruit Sculpin (NITRO) (IPA with Grapefruit)
  • Ballast Point – Calm Before the Storm (Cream Ale with Coffee & Vanilla)
  • Bear Republic – Racer 5 (IPA)
  • Bear Republic – Tartare Rouge (American Wild Ale)
  • Bruery – Sour in the Rye (2014) (Sour Ale)
  • Cellarmaker – “Something Hoppy, Something Fresh” TBA
  • Deschutes – The Abyss (2013) (Imperial Stout)
  • Evil Twin – James Beer (Berliner Weisse with Olives and Strawberries)
  • Evil Twin – Aún Más A Jesús (Imperial Stout brewed at Companyia Cervesera del Montseny, Spain)
  • Fieldwork – Morning Time Breakfast Stout (NITRO) (Oatmeal Stout with Coffee)
  • Fieldwork – Outdoor Pilsner (Hoppy Pilsner)
  • Fieldwork – Coconut Milk DIPA (Double IPA with Coconut)
  • Firestone Walker – Pivo Pils (Hoppy Pilsner)
  • Firestone Walker – Velvet Merkin (2014) (Barrel Aged Oatmeal Stout)
  • Lagunitas – DayTime (Session IPA)
  • Lagunitas – New Dogtown with Motueka (CASK) (Dry Hopped Pale Ale)
  • Lagunitas – Chicago Fusion XXX (Belgian Style Pale Ale)
  • Lagunitas – Brown Shugga (2013) (American Strong Ale)
  • Lost Abbey – Gift of the Magi (2014) (Bier de Garde with Brett)
  • Lost Abbey – Red Poppy Ale (2014) (Barrel aged Flanders Style Ale with Sour Cherries)
  • New Belgium – Eric’s Ale (Barrel aged Sour Ale with Peaches)
  • North Coast – Old Stock Cellar Reserve (2013) (Brandy Barrel aged Barley Wine)
  • Port Brewing – Wipeout (IPA)
  • Port Brewing – Older Viscosity (2014) (Barrel Aged American Strong Ale)
  • Prairie Artisan Ales – Bomb! (2014) (Imperial Stout with Coffee, Chilies and Spices)
  • Sante Adairius – West Ashley (Barrel aged Saison with Apricots)
  • Sante Adairius – Simpleton (IPA)
  • Santa Clara Valley Brewing – Coyote Creek (Session IPA)
  • Stillwater – The Devil Is People (Sour Smoked Wheat Ale)
  • Stone – Xocoveza (Milk Stout with Coffee and Spices)
  • Stone – 19th Anniversary Thunderstruck IPA (Double IPA)
  • More TBA

Note: Beer list subject to change.

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

Original Gravity Celebrates 2-Year Anniversary this Weekend

Downtown craft beer bar Original Gravity Public House has reached its two-year anniversary, and to commemorate the milestone a celebration of good beer will take place on July 19 starting at noon.

“The two-year mark is exciting and full of nostalgia,” says general manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe, who has been with Original Gravity since its grand opening. “We feel grateful and humbled to be here and thriving.”

There will be special kegs, bottle releases, food specials, limited edition anniversary T-shirts and music in the outdoor patio. Look for Santa Maria-style tri-tip sandwiches with caramelized “Firestone Walker DBA” onions to be offered on a limited first-come, first-served basis, along with house-made chipotle black bean chili.

The celebration also gives customers a first look at the just concluded—and much needed—interior expansion project announced last year, providing Original Gravity a second bar with 10 more taps, additional capacity for 50 indoor seats and a second restroom.

The bigger space will allow for a more robust beer events program, including beer pairing dinners, a beer speaker series, meet-the-brewers events and other educational beer events. There will also be a slightly updated food menu.

The beer lineup for the celebration, yet to be finalized, includes:

21st Amendment – Hop Crisis
Allagash – Midnight Brett
Altamont – Berry White (Raspberries)
Altamont – Hop Wash
Almanac – Brandy Barrel Peche
Ballast Point – Grapefruit Sculpin
Ballast Point – Sextant (Nitro)
Berryessa – House IPA
Berryessa – Double Tap
Bruery – Sucré
Calicraft – Buzzerkeley (Sauvignon Blanc)
Calicraft – Hopothecary
Cellarmaker – “Double Nelson”
Deschutes – Black Butte XXV
Deschutes – Armory XPA (Nitro)
Drake’s – Aroma Flora
Drake’s – Zinful Drakonic
Evil Twin – Bikini Beer
Evil Twin – Imperial Biscotti Break
Evil Twin – Imperial Doughnut Break
Faction – Faction Pilsner
Firestone Walker – Parabola (2014)
Firestone Walker – Pivo Pils
Green Flash – Ristretto Cosmic Black Lager
Lagunitas – New Dogtown
Lagunitas – Brown Shugga (2013)
Logsdon – Seizoen Bretta
Lost Abbey – Red Poppy Ale
Oskar Blues – Dale’s Pale
Oskar Blues – Old Chub (Barrel Aged Four Roses)
Prairie Aritisan Ales – Bomb!
Santa Clara Valley Brewing – Firkin TBA
Sante Adairius – TBA
Stillwater/Westbrook – Gose Gone Wild
Stone – Barrel Aged Arrogant Bastard
Stone – IPA

[This post was shared on SanJose.com.]

The Downtown San Jose Beer Scene

BOTTLED UP - Jake McCluskey, general manager of the Market Beer Co. at San Pedro Square Market, says that the shop stocks larger bottles of craft beer to encourage customers to share
BOTTLED UP – Jake McCluskey, general manager of the Market Beer Co. at San Pedro Square Market, says that the shop stocks larger bottles of craft beer to encourage customers to share

A growing number of folks are seeking out better beer by returning to their favorite spots or trying out new places, eager to enjoy a glass—or more—depending on the occasion. And in a continuing nod to the burgeoning craft beer landscape, respectable beer hubs are taking shape throughout the South Bay.

In downtown San Jose, the number of establishments offering good beer is helping to raise Silicon Valley’s profile among the state’s notable beer regions. There are currently a dozen or so downtown locations that serve better beer, with more places set to open.

The San Pedro Square neighborhood is turning into quite a beer hub on its own, with a block of distinct establishments serving craft beer. We’re talking about San Pedro Square Market Bar, the Garage Bar, Market Beer Co., O’Flaherty’s Irish Pub, Firehouse No. 1 Gastropub, Los Gatos Brewing Company, Britannia Arms, and the recently opened Farmers Union.

Along with the Market and Garage bars inside San Pedro Square Market, there’s also Market Beer Co. which opened this past March, becoming San Jose’s first craft beer bottle shop.

Since then, they have added eight taps and have more than 200 craft beer bottles. Market Beer Co. has quickly gained a following due in large part to the efforts of general manager Jake McCluskey and his knowledgeable and friendly team of beertenders, all of whom help to create a fun and relaxed vibe.

“We stock only bomber-sized (22 oz.) bottles to encourage sharing among our customers. For our taps, we try to get smaller-sized kegs so we can rotate our draft beers quickly,” McCluskey says. “It’s a place where you see seasoned beer connoisseurs talking beer with the greenest newbies. It’s cool to be a beer geek but not a beer snob.”

Of its 50+ beer taps, O’Flaherty’s Irish Pub dedicates 38 of them to craft. General manager David Mulvehill says he values the link between craft breweries and O’Flaherty’s, viewing both as small businesses helping to support one another.

O’Flaherty’s main goal, according to Mulvehill, is to make everyone feel welcome, referring to their motto, “You’re a stranger here but once.” He says, “We need to keep the integrity of an Irish bar – customers can enjoy a Coors Light, Stella, Guinness and feel welcome. We believe everyone is a beer drinker and that we can provide a stepping stone for them, from Stella to a craft beer. And we always have something to offer the beer geeks.”

For beer and food pairings, Firehouse No. 1 Gastropub and Los Gatos Brewing Company fit the bill. Firehouse is currently San Jose’s only gastropub and serves mostly craft beer from its eight taps. Los Gatos Brewing Company has three rotating guest taps, plus five of their own offerings crafted by brewmaster Kent Wheat. Currently, there’s a cask-conditioned porter as well.

Britannia Arms serves more traditional pub fare, along with pints poured from a combined 42 taps—24 inside the bar and 18 more out in the 3,000 square-foot, heated patio. Most of the 42 taps are craft selections.

The Farmers Union, which opened this past Thursday, rounds out the current crop of beer-centric places within San Pedro Square. A large square bar is the focal point of the establishment, and general manager Aaron Williams says that they will have at least 25 of their 60 taps dedicated to craft beer.

Williams says, “We are targeting a diverse clientele that likes great food paired with our great selection of craft beer. We will always have at least 25 taps dedicated to craft beers with flight options available. We want to support the local brewers as well as serve the highest quality craft beers possible.”

Original Gravity Public House became San Jose’s first establishment focused 100 percent on beer from the get go thanks to the efforts of owners Johnny Wang and Dan Phan. They celebrated their one-year anniversary on Saturday and have already made concrete plans for expanding the current location.

“We take craft beer very seriously but always aim to have a fun and informative conversation about it,” bar manager and events coordinator Rob Monroe says. “We hope to teach without the snobbery and find something new and exciting for you each and every time. No question is a dumb one, and we understand everyone’s palate is as diverse as our beer list.”

Original Gravity rotates beers in and out of its 25 taps so often that Monroe says the best way to keep up with what’s on tap is to check the website, where patrons can find live updates of the latest offerings.

Numerous customers throughout the recent decades have enjoyed the food, beers and the outdoor patio of Gordon Biersch. “We offer eight handcrafted traditional German lagers,” head brewer Jeff Liles says. “I would recommend starting off with a sampler of our beers. This way our guests get a chance to try some of our unique styles and flavors.”

Some people are still surprised when first noticing the extensive draft selection at SmokeEaters, which specializes in hot wings. ““SmokeEaters is the place to meet up with friends to eat great food, drink some cold beer and catch a game,” general partner Mike Burke says. “We rotate our craft beers frequently; do not hesitate to ask to sample a style of beer. With the expansion of the craft market, there are some great styles and brewers out there popping up almost every week. We want the customer to love the beer they are drinking.”

When it comes to Good Karma Vegan Café, many people quickly become hooked on not only the beer menu but the place’s carefree vibe. Owner Ryan Summers and the Good Karma staff simply know their beers. Summers embraces the downtown beer scene: “There’s just too much rad beer to be had, and we deserve the awesome beers right here.”

Live music is a wonderful accompaniment to good beer, and this combination is prevalent among several previously mentioned locations. Café Stritch—with nearly ten craft beer taps—and the recently opened Blackbird Tavern—with eight mostly craft beer taps—join the ranks of these establishments that feature live music.

Blackbird co-owners Chris Esparza and Brendan Rawson seek to provide a full sensory experience, matching food and beer to their live music. For example, when New Orleans jazz is playing, don’t be surprised to see featured beers from Louisiana’s Abita Brewing.

Folks passing by ISO: Beers can see that a lot of progress has been made at the yet-to-open beer bar and tasting lounge. The wait is nearly over. According to co-owner Dee Singh, what is left is painting, putting in floors, and installing fixtures. He plans to have 37 taps for beer and hopes for a mid-August opening. Customers will also be able to purchase bottles to go.

Rounding out the members of the downtown San Jose beer hub are longstanding establishments Trials Pub and Teske’s Germania. Trial’s offers an authentic British pub vibe and traditional English ales on tap, on cask, or in bottles. At Teske’s, it’s about experiencing German fare in a rustic Bavarian setting that includes a beer garden.

All of Teske’s beers are from Germany co-owner Greg Baumann says, and he invites visitors to come and enjoy the casual setting with a lager, pilsner, dopplebock or hefeweizen. Their current offerings include Spaten Premium Lager, Höfbrau Dunkel, Franziskaner Hefe Weizen, Bitburger Pilsner, Köstritzer Schwarzbier and Stiegl Lager on tap, with many more bottled German beers.

As Original Gravity’s Monroe put it, everyone’s palate is different. So it’s very fortunate to see the growing diversity reflected in the downtown San Jose beer scene. Ultimately, our personal preferences determine not only which beers we like, but also which places we return to over and over again.

Downtown San Jose Beer Hub

Blackbird Tavern
200 S. First St.

Britannia Arms (The Brit)
173 W. Santa Clara St.

Café Stritch
374 S. First St.

Firehouse No. 1 Gastropub
69 N. San Pedro St.

Good Karma Vegan Café
37 S. First Street

Gordon Biersch
33 East San Fernando St.

ISO: Beers
81 East Santa Clara St.

Los Gatos Brewing Company
163 W. Santa Clara St.

O’Flaherty’s Irish Pub
25 N. San Pedro St.

Original Gravity
66 S. First St.

San Pedro Square Market
87 N. San Pedro St.

SmokeEaters
29 S. Third St.

Teske’s Germania
255 N. First St.

The Farmers Union
151 W. Santa Clara St.

Trials Pub
265 N. First St.

[An abridged version of this post was shared on SanJose.com.]

Original Gravity 1-Year Anniversary

Original Gravity general manager Moonlynn Tsai
Original Gravity general manager Moonlynn Tsai

Owners Dan Phan and Johnny Wang opened Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose last July to much fanfare among local beer fans, and rightfully so. Their 25 rotating taps and bottled beer selections have been focal points since day one, and they have done much to help raise the profile of the South Bay beer scene.

To celebrate their one-year anniversary, Original Gravity is throwing a bash on Saturday, July 20 starting at 12:30pm. An impressive beer lineup and specialty tappings of highly regarded beers—among others, Drake’s Aroma Coma and Aroma Prieta, Sainte Adairius West Ashley, Russian River Supplication and Firestone Walker Parabola—anchor the day’s festivities.

There will be food specials, vinyl records spun on the patio courtesy of On the Corner Music and the chance to meet the original brewmaster of Firestone Walker, Jeffers Richardson. He now heads up Barrelworks, home to Firestone Walker’s wild (also known as sour) and strong ale programs.

Phan and Wang credit general manager Moonlynn Tsai and bar manager/event coordinator Rob Monroe for creating a team both well versed in beer knowledge and passionate about the beer industry. “We’re always happy to talk about beer and answer any questions a customer may have,” Phan says.

In addition to their beer offerings, many customers also enjoy the tidy food lineup that includes gourmet sausages, grilled cheese sandwiches and duck fat fries.

And here’s a piece of great news for Original Gravity fans: They have recently finalized expansion plans to open up an extra 1,000 square feet of much-needed space by tearing down the interior sidewall along the hallway that leads to the patio, and utilizing the area that’s currently behind the wall.

According to Phan, they will install another bar consisting of 10 more taps, carve out a designated area for a beer-aging program, and have enough room to host bands, trivia game nights and private parties. They expect to have the expansion completed within the next 6-8 months.

Be sure to check out their website for the one-year anniversary party details, including the beer menu and the specialty tapping times.

Original Gravity Anniversary
Sat, July 20, starts at 12:30pm, 66 S. First St., San Jose

[This post was shared on SanJose.com.]

Scenes from the 2013 SF Beer Week Opening Celebration

The first San Francisco Beer Week took place in 2009, and was reportedly the first of its kind in the country. Now, there are well over 100 beer weeks taking place in various cities and regions throughout the world.

For this year’s Fifth Annual SF Beer Week, there were over 500 craft beer-related events taking place over ten days throughout the Bay Area, including the South Bay, East Bay, San Francisco, and North Bay regions. These 500+ events were 35% greater than last year’s record numbers.

There was only one event that I attended outside of the South Bay, and that was the amazing Opening Celebration that took place on the first day of SF Beer Week, Friday Feb. 8, 2013, at San Francisco’s Concourse Exhibition Center presented by the San Francisco Brewers Guild and their partners.

Here are some pics from the event.

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When in Rome… Excitedly headed right over to Santa Rosa’s Russian River Brewing Company for some Pliny the Younger.

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Pliny the Younger.

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Russian River Brewing co-owner and president Natalie Cilurzo holding court.

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A pic of Russian River Brewing co-owner and brewmaster Vinnie Cilurzo.

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Jack Van Stone, Eureka’s Lost Coast Brewery Northern CA sales manager.

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Time for some Drake’s Brewing Company of San Leandro.

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And their Hopocalypse Black Label.

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Who’s this funny guy?

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It’s Palo Alto Brewing Company founder and brewer Kasim Syed (middle) with siblings Sikandar (left) and Alia (right).

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San Jose’s Hermitage Brewing Company brand manager Peter Estaniel.

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South Bay’s Strike Brewing Company co-founder and brewmaster Drew Ehrlich (right).

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Morgan Hill’s El Toro Brewing Company and founders Geno and Cindy Acevedo.

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Enjoying El Toro Brewing India Pale Ale.

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Snapped a pic of Pittsburg’s Heretic Brewing Company crew with founder and brewmaster Jamil Zainasheff (second from left).

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Lincoln’s Knee Deep Brewing Company.

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Knee Deep Brewing Hoptologist on cask.

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Trumer Pils.

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Rob Monroe, bar manager and events coordinator for downtown San Jose’s Original Gravity Public House.

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Rosamunde Sausage Grill.

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Berkeley’s Bison Brewing owner and brewer Dan Del Grande.

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Rudy Kuhn, Lagunitas market manager for the Santa Clara County, Central Coast, and Central Valley areas.

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Jake McCluskey, manager of Kelly’s Liquors in San Jose.

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Antoine Riffis – Firestone Walker Silicon Valley and East Bay regional sales manager, Rudy, and Rob.

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High Water Brewing president and brewmaster Steve Altimari.

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A pic of the entrance area with folks continuing to roll in.

Jay Brooks – veteran beer writer and Bay Area guy.

Just checking the line for Russian River Brewing. Not surprisingly, I heard that they had run out of their Pliny the Younger rather quickly.

Chico’s Sierra Nevada Brewing Company.

Sierra Nevada Beer Camp Celebrator Beer News 25th Anniversary Double Pale Ale.

San Jose’s Gordon Biersch Brewing Company.

Gordon Biersch Zwickel Bock.

Half Moon Bay Brewing Company brewmaster James Costa and San Jose’s Hermitage Brewing Company lead brewer Greg Filippi.

Palo Alto Brewing Cool Beanz Coffee Porter.

Alex Slosberg and Will Shelton of Mavericks Beer and brewmaster James of Half Moon Bay Brewing.

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This event marked the public debut of the beers of Mavericks Beer, created in partnership with Half Moon Bay Brewing.

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Pete Slosberg of Mavericks Beer (and of Pete’s Wicked Ales fame) drew a crowd most of the entire time we were there.

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Pete is a craft beer pioneer and Bay Area guy.

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What a “worthy” highlight from that evening!

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There were over 65 Northern California breweries, ranging from new nanobrewers to the craft brewing pioneers. I heard that last year’s Opening Celebration was really great, but I’m sure that this year’s was even better. The dozens of folks I’ve spoken to have had nothing but praise for this year’s event.

Pliny the Younger and Hopocalypse Black Label were certainly memorable, and I had the good fortune of enjoying all the beers I tasted. Catching up with all the South Bay folks was fun as usual. Experiencing the debut of Mavericks beers and hanging a bit with the premier Bay Area beer scribes (can’t believe I forgot to take a picture with Celebrator’s Mike Pitzker – got too caught up in talking with him) were also treats. But without a doubt, the highlight of the evening was the chance to spend some quality time with wifey – a big thanks to my bro’ for childsitting that evening.

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Always Grateful,

~Andy

January 2013 Beer Events at Original Gravity Public House

Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe
Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe

The number of planned beer events keeps growing for Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose. Here’s a round up of 3 such events for January per Original Gravity bar manager/event coordinator Rob Monroe and their Facebook event pages:

Saturday, 1/12/13, 1 p.m. – 11:45 p.m.: Boulder Beer Company

Founded in 1979, Boulder Beer Company is Colorado’s first microbrewery. The very knowledgeable brewery representative Andy Rattner will be in the house to answer questions and hang. It will also be a chance to meet some fellow beer heads as Bay Area Beer Socials will be here for one of their meetups – a great chance to meet some fantastic people. The details on what is pouring TBA.

  • Honey of a Saison: Saison brewed with Colorado honey and honey malt. 10% abv.
  • Hoopla Pale Ale: Collaboration with Kyle Hollingsworth of the String Cheese Incident. No crystal malt, uses melinoidin malt and glacier hops. 5.9% abv.
  • Never Summer Ale: Award winning American Strong Ale. Fun take on a winter warmer. Both malty and hoppy. 6.5% abv.
  • Freshtracks: 100% wet hopped Rye Pale Ale using all centennial hops. Draught only. 4.9% abv.

Thursday, 1/17/13, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.: Ballast Point/Meet the Brewer

Come and meet the award winning brewer from Ballast Point Brewery, Alex Tweet. He will be in house from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. to meet and answer any questions about Ballast Point and their amazing lineup of beers. We will be pouring some really excellent selections for this, definitely note to be missed. Pouring:

  • Sculpin
  • Habanero Sculpin
  • Long Fin Lager
  • Victory at Sea

Thursday, 1/24/13, 5 p.m. – 11:45 p.m.: Hermitage Pint Night/Meet the Brewer

Come get some local flavor from the excellent Hermitage Brewing Company! Established in 2009 right smack downtown this is as San Jose as it gets for beer. We will have the very personable and excellent Peter Estaniel from Hermitage as well as one of their brewers in the house, and we will be giving away some Hermitage pint glasses and swag to boot! This will be a great one so come on out!

As events and beer lineups may sometimes change, please check directly if you are extra excited about a particular event and/or beer.

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

Upcoming Mikkeller Tap Takeover at Original Gravity Public House

Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe
Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe

The beers brewed by Mikkeller continue to generate buzz among the craft beer community, and now folks can try up to 7 Mikkeller beers on tap in downtown San Jose at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012 at the Mikkeller Tap Takeover event at Original Gravity Public House.

Here is the info. from Original Gravity bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe:

Come join us for an incredible tap take over from the amazing Mikkeller! If you were unaware, Mikkeller is a “gypsy” brewer out of Denmark who travels around the world to collaborate and make incredible beers at different breweries.

With a rate of around 80 beers produced a year it is hard to keep up, but we have you covered for at least 7. Taste the incredible variety and talent. Not to be missed!

Mikkeller – I Beat yoU (DIPA)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-i-beat-you/118987/

Mikkeller – Draft Bear (Imperial Pilsner)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-draft-bear/72912/

Mikkeller – It’s Alive! (Belgian Strong Ale)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-its-alive/85835/

Mikkeller – Black Hole (Imperial Stout)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-black-hole/63226/

Mikkeller – Hop Burn High (Imperial IPA)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-hop-burn-high/161167/

Mikkeller – Sort Gul (Black IPA)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-sort-gul/177362/

Mikkeller – Jackie Brown (Brown Ale)
http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/mikkeller-jackie-brown/62660/

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

Original Gravity Public House Celebrates Memorable Official Grand Opening

Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose celebrates grand opening
Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose celebrates grand opening

Congratulations to Original Gravity Public House, which hosted their official grand opening last Saturday, Sep. 15, 2012. Beer fans turned out in droves to celebrate this notable South Bay craft beer establishment in downtown San Jose.

Original Gravity Public House celebrates their grand opening
Original Gravity Public House celebrates their grand opening

With plenty of sunshine and special access to neighboring outdoor patio space, Original Gravity owners Dan Phan and Johnny Wang were excited to be able to present their full food menu, featuring gourmet grilled cheeses and poutine to accompany the already well-received sausages and duck fat fries.

Original Gravity owners Dan Phan and Johnny Wang at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Original Gravity owners Dan Phan and Johnny Wang at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration

And, of course, there was the beer menu for the festive day that included hourly tappings of specialty and limited kegs and excellent offerings from the likes of Firestone Walker, Lagunitas, The Bruery, Drake’s, Evil Twin, Ninkasi, Calicraft, Alesmith, Uncommon Brewers, New Belgium, Port Brewing, Heretic, Stillwater, Midnight Sun, Deschutes, Flying Dog, Gouden  Carolus, Dogfish Head, and Sierra Nevada.

Outdoors at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration

Earlier this year, there was quite the anticipation for Original Gravity’s opening among South Bay beer fans, especially after learning about the Original Gravity owners and their plans. The wait has been worth it.

More pics from the grand opening:

Moonlynn Tsai of Original Gravity at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Moonlynn Tsai of Original Gravity at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Original Gravity's Rob Monroe at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Original Gravity’s Rob Monroe at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Tony Riffis of Firestone Walker and Rudy Kuhn of Lagunitas at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Tony Riffis of Firestone Walker and Rudy Kuhn of Lagunitas at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Jenny Merit of San Jose's Wine Affairs at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Jenny Merit of San Jose’s Wine Affairs at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
San Jose beer fans Stef and Andrea enjoying the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
San Jose beer fans Stef and Andrea enjoying the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration
Peter Estaniel of BetterBeerBlog_Hermitage Brewing, Tony Riffis of Firestone Walker, and yours truly at the Original Gravity grand opening celebration
Peter Estaniel of BetterBeerBlog_Hermitage Brewing, Tony Riffis of Firestone Walker, and yours truly at the Original Gravity grand opening celebration

Indoors at the Original Gravity Public House grand opening celebration

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San Jose Beer Events this Weekend: Sep. 15-16, 2012

San Jose's Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe pouring beer. Photo taken last month. Original Gravity's official grand opening takes place Sep. 15, 2012
San Jose’s Original Gravity Public House bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe pouring beer. Photo taken last month. Original Gravity’s official grand opening takes place Sep. 15, 2012

There are a number of exciting beer events taking place in San Jose this weekend, reflecting the burgeoning craft beer scene in San Jose and the South Bay.

Original Gravity Public House official grand opening

Sat., Sep. 15, 2012, starting at 11 a.m.: Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose celebrates their official grand opening. Check out the Original Gravity Grand Opening event page on Facebook for the latest details. 66 South 1st St. From bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe on the finalized beer schedule and info.:

11 a.m. – 1 p.m.: Open for business as usual

1 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Lagunitas and Firestone Walker pouring 2 taps each on the patio (cash only)

4:20 p.m.: Tapping Lagunitas Fusion 10!!! This is the kick off to the main event so do not miss this one, because when it is gone, it is gone for good!!!

5:20 p.m.: Tapping Drake’s – Aroma Prieta (American IPA, Coma’s Sister Beer) and Moscow’s Burning (Imperial Smoked Stout)

6:20 p.m.: Tapping The Bruery – Berliner Weisse (Tart Wheat Ale) and Humulus Lager (Double Pilsner)

7:20 p.m.: Tapping Firestone Walker – Oaktoberfest (Märzen/Oktoberfest)

Original Gravity Grand Opening Tap Line Up

Evil Twin – Ron and The Beast Ryan (Saison w/ Brett)
New Belgium – Lips of Faith – Peach Porch Lounger (Saison)
Port Brewing – Hop 15 (DIPA w/ 15 Hop Varieties)
Lagunitas – A Little Sumpin’ Wild (Belgian IPA)
Drake’s – Aroma Coma (IPA)
Ninkasi – Lady Avalon (Pilsner)
Ninkasi – Tricerahops (DIPA)
Heretic – Evil Cousin (DIPA)
Heretic – Shallow Grave (Porter)
Calicraft – Panisse Pale (Pale Ale)
Firestone Walker – Wookey Jack (Black Rye IPA)
Alesmith – Speedway Stout (Imperial Stout)
Port Brewing – Hop 15 (DIPA)
Gouden Carolus – Hopsinjoor (Beligian Strong)
Uncommon Brewers – Double Siamese (Belgian Strong/Quad)
Dogfish Head – 120 Minute IPA (QIPA)
Sierra Nevada – Hoptimum (DIPA)
Stillwater Artisianal Ales – As Follows (Belgian Strong)
Stillwater Artisianal Ales – Existent (Black Saison)
Midnight Sun – Panty Peeler (Tripel)
Deschutes – Black Butte XXIV Anniversary (Imperial Stout)
Deschutes – Obsidian Stout (Nitro Stout)
Flying Dog – Double Dog (Nitro Double IPA)

Jockey Box #1 Lagunitas
1. IPA (IPA)
2. Daytime (Session Ale) or Hop Stoopid (DIPA)

Jockey Box #2 Firestone Walker
1. Double Jack (DIPA)
2. Solace (Unfiltered Wheat Ale) or Union Jack (IPA)

The Los Gatos Brewing Company 20th Anniversary/Oktoberfest celebration

Sat., Sep. 15, 2012, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.: The Los Gatos Brewing Company 20th Anniversary/Oktoberfest celebration takes place. 130G North Santa Cruz Ave., 408-395-9929. “Los Gatos Brewing Company is having a 20th Anniversary/Oktoberfest celebration!!! Join us for tasty German food, cold beer, live music and tons of fun!!! This is an outdoor event. Our restaurant will also be open with a special Oktoberfest menu!” For complete details, visit their Facebook public event page.

2012 ZERO1 Biennial Urban Screen beer garden featuring Gordon Biersch Brewing Company

Fri.-Sun., Sep. 14-16, 2012: From the ZERO1 and Gordon Biersch Facebook event page: “Zero in on ZERO1 this weekend in San Jose. Gordon Biersch will be pouring unfiltered Festbier, Pilsner, Märzen and Blonde Bock from gravity-fed wooden kegs at the Zero 1 Urban Screen Beer Garden at 300 South 1st St. in San Jose. Gordon Biersch will also be pouring its limited-release Imperial Pilsner Brau (IPB) and the yet-to-be released Weizeneisbock, a 10% abv. which will be officially available on shelves in October 2012.”

Left Bank in Santana Row hosts a prix fix meal featuring beer from Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company

Sat.-Sun., Sep. 15-16, 2012, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Left Bank Brasserie Santana Row hosts a prix fixe meal paired with beers from Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company as part of their Left Bank Santana Row Summer Beer Pairing Series, La Fête de la Bière. 377 Santana Row, Suite 1100, 408-984-3500. $40 per person (price excludes tax and gratuity). Reservations are recommended.

Four-course tasting menu and beer pairings

Petit croque madame
Parisian ham, emmental cheese, Mornay sauce, sunny side up quail egg
Served with Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company Lager Diabla

Canard a l’orange
sous-vide duck breast, caramelized orange honey sauce, baby frisée, orange supremes, pickled red onions, raspberry vinaigrette
Served with Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company Deadicated Amber Ale

Confit de porc à la Bière et graisse de canard
pork confit in duck fat caramelized with raw cane sugar, polenta
Served with Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company Full Boar Scotch Ale

Panna Cotta aux fruits de la passion
passion fruit panna cotta, raspberry crème Chantilly, palmier cookie
Served with Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company Silicon Blonde Ale

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

San Jose Area Beer News and Events: Sep. 10-16, 2012

Good beer enjoyed at San Jose's Original Gravity Public House. They celebrate their official grand opening Sat., Sep. 15, 2012
Good beer enjoyed at San Jose’s Original Gravity Public House. They celebrate their official grand opening Sat., Sep. 15, 2012

The following is a collection of craft beer news and events in San Jose and the greater South Bay for the upcoming week and beyond. As events may change from time to time, please do check with the establishment directly, especially if you are extra excited about a particular event.

Recent beer news

Check out the recent video review of Hermitage Brewing Company’s Single Hop IPA: Sorachi Ace by South Bay beertubers The Beer Heads.

Speaking of Hermitage Brewing Company, premier South Bay beer blogger Peter Estaniel of BetterBeerBlog has joined the team at Hermitage Brewing Company as brand manager. Check out his recent post where he shares this exciting news.

Beer events this upcoming week

Mon., Sep. 10, 2012: San Jose’s Wine Affairs hosts a Firestone Walker event. 1435 The Alameda, 408-977-0111. “If you make it to ONE beer tasting this year – let it be this one! FIRESTONE WALKER will be here THIS MONDAY, Sept 10th with a crazy “Double Double” takeover. Featuring their flagship Double Barrel Ale, our first ever CASK with unfiltered DBA, and a keg of Limited Release Double DBA. And yes, Double Jack Double IPA will be here too. Kegs will be tapped at 5pm so hurry in! (Note: Have no fear – Football games WILL be on our tvs!).”

Tuesday, Sep. 11, 2012, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.: There is a Festbier (amber ale) wooden barrel tapping event at Gordon Biersch San Jose. 33 East San Fernando St., 408-294-6785.

Tues., Sep. 11, 2012, 4 p.m. – closing: The Counter Santana Row, offers a “Mix-It-Up” 4 mini burger & beer pairings, including Devil’s Canyon Full Boar Scotch Ale and Lagunitas IPA. 3055 Olin Ave., 408-423-9200.

Wed., Sep. 12, 2012, starting at 7 p.m.: Restaurant James Randall in Los Gatos hosts a beer dinner event featuring Firestone Walker Brewing Company. To read yesterday’s article about this beer pairing dinner, click here.

Wed., Sep 12, 2012, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.: Catch live music and good beer at Poor House Bistro with “Blues & $2 Brews” featuring Ninkasi Brewing Co. 91 South Autumn Street, 408-292-5837.

Thurs., Sep. 13, 2012, starting at 6:00 p.m.: Harry’s Hofbrau in San Jose hosts their weekly Pint Night. Check the Harry’s Hofbrau Facebook page for updates. 390 Saratoga Ave., 408-243-0434.

Thurs., Sep. 13, 2012, starting at 6 p.m.: Jack’s Bar & Lounge in Japantown offers up their weekly $2 Pint Night. Check the Jack’s Bar & Lounge Facebook page for updates. 167 East Taylor St., 408-287-5225.

Fri., Sep. 14, 2012: BevMo! stores host weekly Beer Tasting events on Fridays. Check your local BevMo! store for details.

Fri., Sep. 14, 2012, starting at 7 p.m.: Palace Cafe in Sunnyvale hosts a 5-course beer pairing dinner featuring beers from Strike Brewing Company. 139 South Murphy Ave., 408-774-6111. The current cover photo of the Strike Brewing Facebook page lists the 5-course menu and beers. RSVP to (408) 774-6111; only 30 tickets available.

Sat., Sep. 15, 2012, starting at 11 a.m.: Original Gravity Public House in downtown San Jose celebrates their official grand opening. Check out the Original Gravity Grand Opening event page on Facebook for the stellar details. 66 South 1st St. From bar manager and event coordinator Rob Monroe: “Original Gravity is having it’s official grand opening and we will be going off all day and night with brewery reps in the house and some insanely cool kegs to make you giddy with joy. Lagunitas and Firestone Walker will also be repping hard pouring 2 of their beers from jockey box taps on our back patio and we will be doing an hourly tapping of some seriously specialty and limited kegs. In addition to all of that, we will also be rolling out our full food menu including our gourmet grilled cheeses, poutine and other surprises as well. There will have OG and Brewery swag handouts all day long as well. You literally have zero excuses to not be in attendance with all of your friends and in fact after reading this lineup, you may need to excuse yourself from any previously made plans.”

Sat., Sep. 15, 2012, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.: The Los Gatos Brewing Company 20th Anniversary/Oktoberfest celebration takes place. 130G North Santa Cruz Ave., 408-395-9929. “Los Gatos Brewing Company is having a 20th Anniversary/Oktoberfest celebration!!! Join us for tasty German food, cold beer, live music and tons of fun!!! This is an outdoor event. Our restaurant will also be open with a special Oktoberfest menu!” For complete details, visit their Facebook public event page.

Sat.-Sun., Sep. 15-16, 2012: Left Bank Brasserie Santana Row hosts a prix fixe meal paired with beers from Devil’s Canyon Brewing Company as part of their Left Bank Santana Row Summer Beer Pairing Series, La Fête de la Bière. 377 Santana Row, Suite 1100, 408-984-3500.

Looking ahead: Save the date

Sat., Sep. 22, 2012, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.: Peter B’s Brewpub hosts the 2nd Annual Monterey Beer Garden, which will feature a number of South Bay breweries.

Thurs., Sep. 27, 2012: California Cafe in Palo Alto hosts a Strike Brewing Co. brewmasters dinner.

Sat.-Sun., Oct. 20-21, 2012: Left Bank Brasserie Santana Row hosts a prix fixe meal paired with beers from Gordon Biersch Brewing Company as part of their Left Bank Santana Row Summer Beer Pairing Series, La Fête de la Bière. 377 Santana Row, Suite 1100, 408-984-3500.

Sun., Oct. 21, 2012: Morocco’s Restaurant in Mountain View hosts a beer dinner featuring Strike Brewing Company.

Thurs., Oct. 25, 2012: California Cafe in Palo Alto hosts a Lost Coast Brewery brewmasters dinner.

Sat., Nov. 17, 2012: Save the date – the next SJ Beerwalk takes place in downtown Willow Glen.

Sat.-Sun., Nov. 17-18, 2012: Left Bank Brasserie Santana Row hosts a prix fixe meal paired with beers from Drake’s Brewing Company as part of their Left Bank Santana Row Summer Beer Pairing Series, La Fête de la Bière. 377 Santana Row, Suite 1100, 408-984-3500.

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]