Tag Archives: Santa Clara Valley Brewing

San Jose Breweries Announce New, Limited Release Offerings

Below is a quick roundup of the latest beer releases from several San Jose breweries, including Santa Clara Valley Brewing, Hermitage Brewing and Strike Brewing Co.

Santa Clara Valley Brewing

In part from a recent Facebook update: Cheers to our Assistant Brewer Adam Nanni for another sensational brew in our Beta Test series. Come on down to have a pint of Centennial SMASH – Beta Test #2.

Pilsner malt and Centennial hops make up this light-bodied session IPA that is bursting with intense citrus aroma, hints of melon and mild bitterness.

Enjoy SMASH in an SCVB pint glass (yours to keep) for $8, otherwise $6. This beer is very limited so don’t wait too long or you will miss out on something special.

SCV Brewing Centennial SMASH

Hermitage Brewing Company

The latest release from Hermitage Brewing Company’s Single Hop Series is Jester Single Hop IPA, now pouring in their Tap Room.

Coming from England, the Jester hop has characteristics of juicy grapefruit and tropical fruit notes.

The Jester Single Hop IPA promises to be a juicy, tropical offering.

Hermitage Jester Single Hop IPA

Strike Brewing Company

Strike Brewing Company will tap their latest Bullpen Series beer – Stone Finger Tart Saison – this Friday at their taproom.

Stone Finger Tart Saison has been aging in a wine barrel for the last 9 months and represents Strike’s first wine barrel-aged sour.

Per brewer Ryan Bridge, the various microbes have done wonders, producing a beer that’s “nicely tart with an awesome funk to it.”

Strike Brewing Stone Finger Tart Saison



South Bay Craft Beer Benefit for San Jose Flood Victims

South Bay Craft Beer Benefit

A number of San Jose breweries will participate this Saturday, March 4, in a benefit to help the recent flood victims of San Jose.

Below are their respective Facebook updates.

Strike Brewing Company

Join us as we raise money to help our South Bay neighbors affected by the recent flooding. 10% percent of all taproom sales and all of the proceeds from the silent auction will be donated to the San Jose Flood Relief Fund.

Come enjoy:

  • Cochi BBQ
  • Silent Auction
  • KFOX live broadcast from the brewery

Hapa’s Brewing Company

Join us (and/or other participating San Jose breweries) this Saturday for a special benefit to raise money for the victims of San Jose’s recent flooding. We’ll be donating a portion of beer sales to flood relief funds. 333 Truck will be serving food and we’ll have a basketball shoot contest!

Santa Clara Valley Brewing

We are proud to be participating in Saturday’s fundraiser for the victims of San Jose’s recent flooding. Portions of the entire day’s sales will be donated to the San Jose Flood Victims Relief Fund, plus we’ll have great food on site and hourly giveaways of SCVB swag!

Hermitage Brewing Company

It’s San Jose Flood Relief this Saturday!

Join us at Hermitage, Strike Brewing Co., Santa Clara Valley Brewing and Hapa’s Brewing Company this Saturday for great local craft beer and good times. We’ll be donating a portion of beer sales to the San Jose Flood Victims Relief Fund! #dotherightthing #sanjosecraftbeer #drinklocal



Scenes from ‘For Pete’s Sake’ Brewfest at CEFCU Stadium, Nov. 2016

Many in the local brewing community came together this past November to support a good person and a good cause – Peter Cogan and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

‘For Pete’s Sake’ Brewfest – which took place at San Jose State University’s CEFCU Stadium – produced plenty of good times as well.

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Peter Cogan.

Peter Cogan

Mark Fazzio of Hermitage Brewing Company.

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Steve Altimari of High Water Brewing and Drew Ehrlich of Strike Brewing Co.

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Strike Brewing Co.’s Tyler Rusten and a pour of Strike’s tasty Winter Camp (Winter Warmer Olde Ale). Tyler later shared that he had accepted a brewer position at Fearless Brewing Company in Oregon. Best wishes, Tyler!

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Santa Clara Valley Brewing’s Coleen Clark.

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Michael Barker of Sactown Union Brewery and Peter Licht of Hermitage Brewing Company share a laugh.

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El Toro Brewing Company’s Geno Acevedo.

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Almanac Beer Co.’s Brian Sneed, Fernando Tovar and Fernando’s wife Sandra.

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Hermitage Brewing Company’s Mark Fazzio, Nicole Marquez and Joel Wind.

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Enjoying a pour of Luponic Distortion No. 004 from Firestone Walker Brewing Company’s Mark and Corey.

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FireHouse Grill & Brewery’s Larry Hoang.

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Beer enthusiasts Anita Arguello and Mike Condie.

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Santa Clara Valley Brewing’s Coleen Clark and Hermitage Brewing’s Carolyn Hopkins-Vasquez. Carolyn later shared that the end of the year would be her last day as marketing director of Hermitage Brewing Company and Tied House. With her family moving to Sacramento, her departure (which I’ve mentioned previously) is a big blow to the local beer scene (for instance, Carolyn coordinated this event). We’ll miss you, Carolyn!

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Jon Siddoway and Siobhan Faul of Red Branch Cider Company and Rabbit’s Foot Meadery.

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Rabbit’s Foot Meadery’s exquisite sipper Sweet Mead.

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Peter Cogan with his mum.

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Palo Alto Brewing Company’s Sikandar Syed and Kasim Syed with Santa Clara Valley Brewing’s Steve Donohue.

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Golden State Brewery’s Cinnabrown (Nut Brown Ale).

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High Water Brewing’s Steve and Barri Altimari and Mike Peasley.

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Palo Alto Brewing’s Kasim Syed and Tied House’s Ron Manabe.

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Palo Alto Brewing’s Sikandar Syed.

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Local stalwarts Jake McCluskey and Jim Helvie.

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Selfie with Jim.

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Codi Salazar, JD Stager, Peter Licht and Hermitage Brewing’s Greg Filippi. Codi also later shared that she was leaving Santa Clara Valley Brewing and moving to the Central Coast. Best wishes, Codi!

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Selfie with Steve.

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Beer fan Tim Haggerty.

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Campbell Brewing Company’s John Paine and Dan Doherty.

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Peter and Dan.

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My last tastes of the evening – Almanac Beer Co. Grand Cru Red: 2016 Vintage (Imperial Sour Red Ale) and Grand Cru White: 2016 Vintage (Imperial Sour Blonde Ale).

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Performance by the Spartan Marching Band.

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Great to hear that you’re doing better, Peter.

Cheers,

~Andy



Santa Clara Valley Brewing Hosts San Jose Founding Party, Plus Upcoming Loma Prieta Imperial Stout Release

San Jose is turning 239 years old on Tuesday, Nov. 29, and the fine folks at Santa Clara Valley Brewing (101 E. Alma Ave., San Jose) are celebrating with a San Jose Founding Party.

San Jose Founding Party

Currently closed on Tuesdays, Santa Clara Valley Brewing will make an exception for this event and open their doors on Nov. 29 starting at 3pm. From their event page:

“239 years ago the beautiful city of San Jose was founded, and we are going to celebrate that birthday in the traditional way – with beer! With the help of History San Jose, we are going to bring you a unique night at the brewery.

“We are going to have an historical demonstration on brewing and leather working, a brief lecture on the history of beer in the city, historical artifacts, and photos to check out. Also Beer! Don’t miss out on this night at Santa Clara Valley Brewing!”

During a recent visit to the brewery, I got word that Santa Clara Valley Brewing will be releasing their first-ever imperial stout – Loma Prieta Imperial Stout – next month. Look below for additional release information as well as some photos from recent visits.

Co-founder and CEO Tom Clark.

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Co-founder and brewmaster Steve Donohue.

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Sales manager Peter Estaniel.

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The brewery.

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Assistant brewer Adam Nanni filling kegs with Alviso Mills Hefeweizen.

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New taproom manager Gavin Goodman.

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About to sample soon-to-be-released Loma Prieta Imperial Stout.

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Loma Prieta Imperial Stout

Loma Prieta Imperial Stout – coming in at 10.2% ABV – is set to be released in mid-December.

Look for special flights of the beer and its variants to be available then – straight-up Loma Prieta, Loma Prieta on nitro, barrel-aged Loma Prieta in bourbon barrels and barrel-aged Loma Prieta in rye barrels.

Additional photos from a prior visit below:

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Steve voguing to the music and with taproom employee Christian.

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Dairy Hill Milk Stout on nitro.

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Peter and COO Coleen Clark.

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Peter, Peter’s wife Sammy and fellow beer enthusiast Steve.

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Beers in Hell Fest 2016

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Heavy San Jose recently reached out regarding their upcoming Beers in Hell Fest taking place on Saturday, September 24, 5pm to 2am in downtown San Jose at Johnny V’s Bar (31 E. Santa Clara St.).

Beers in Hell Fest is presented by Heavy San Jose, Ripple Music and Doomed and Stoned, with participating breweries Firestone Walker, Lagunitas, Ballast Point and Santa Clara Valley Brewing.

As Heavy San Jose’s JD Norton puts it, Beers in Hell Fest is the “first event of its kind in the Bay Area, at least according to [their] not-so-exhaustive research.” :)

The event combines craft beer and heavy music. A 12-tap takeover features the aforementioned breweries – brewery representatives will be on hand – along with 11 underground bands that all fall in the genre of metal and heavy rock.

The band lineup features: Blackwülf (Oakland), Zed (San Jose), Crimson Eye (Sacramento), Great Electric Quest (Oceanside), KOOK (San Jose), Mesmer (Oakland), Red Wizard (San Diego), Smoke (Santa Cruz), Supernaut (Santa Cruz), TVSK (Oakland), and War Cloud (Oakland).

Tickets ($20) can be purchased at the event, but presale tickets purchased via the Beers in Hell Heavy Music Fest Indiegogo campaign – which ends Friday, Sep. 16 – include tickets plus a variety of special merchandise options and add-on perks to enhance the festival experience.

These Indiegogo presale ticket and merchandise campaign deals are only available on the website, and 100% of the proceeds will go directly to the bands.

At last check, the Dark Lord’s Cellar presale package was still available at the Indiegogo page. That package ($150) is good for tickets, event poster, shirt, pint glass and the following 6 beers:

  • 2002 Rogue XS Old Crustacean Barleywine (are you brave enough to drink a 14 year old beer?)
  • 2009 Alaskan Barley Wine Ale (one of the best ever made)
  • 2012 Deschutes The Abyss Imperial Stout (the standard by which all are measured)
  • 2013 Fifty Fifty Eclipse Black Wax (Evan Williams Bourbon Barrel aged… made by one of the pioneers of modern barrel-aged beer)
  • 2014 The Bruery Black Tuesday Imperial Stout (at almost 20% alcohol, this is the gnarliest of the bunch)
  • 2015 The Bruery/Three Floyds Collaboration-Floyd D’Rue Imperial Porter (Three Floyds is the original heavy metal brewery… and originator of Dark Lord Day)

The beers listed above, including the parenthetical beer notes, are courtesy of Jeff Wilson, the other half of Heavy San Jose. In addition to being the bass player for the band KOOK, he’s a craft beer enthusiast. Jeff’s the craft beer buyer at Kukar’s House of Pizza and for a few of Johnny V’s taps as well. He’s the reason Kukar’s started getting 5-6 rotating taps of great craft choices in the past couple years.

Look for the “Hell Brew” firkin from Santa Clara Valley Brewing – 10 gallons of their Electric Tower IPA with blood orange, mixed with locally grown hot peppers and dry hopped with citra and cascade hops.

JD adds: “Our hope is that this first event will be a huge success and will turn into something we continue to do right here in San Jose year after year going forward.”



Cocina Central in Mountain View Hosts 7-Course Beer Dinner Featuring Santa Clara Valley Brewing

SCV Brewing beer dinner at Cocina Central

I’ve heard of 4-course beer-pairing dinners for sure, as well as 5-course dinners and even 6-courses. But I’m pretty sure that 7-course beer-pairing dinners are a rarity.

Cocina Central in Mountain View (2590 W. El Camino Real, Ste. 13) will host just such a beer dinner July 9, 5:30pm-8pm with paired beers – including new releases Alviso Mills Hefeweizen and Dairy Hill Milk Stout – from San Jose’s Santa Clara Valley Brewing.

This beer dinner is a result of meetings – and tastings – between SCV Brewing’s sales manager Peter Estaniel and Cocina Central’s executive chef Elias Cisneros, who recently announced the menu (updated below) – featuring regional Mexican dishes – for the evening.

Tostadas de Aguachile
Sinaloa-Style Shrimp Ceviche
Pairing: Dry Creek Blonde Ale

Poc Chuc
Pre-Hispanic Barbecued Pork Marinated in Sour Orange
Pairing: Alviso Mills Hefeweizen

Tikin Xic
Traditional Yucatan Fish Marinated in Achiote
Pairing: Umunhum Pale Ale

Sopes de Nopales Asados y Chicharron
Pairing: Big Moody Barleywine Ale

Carne Asada
Marinated Skirt Steak
Pairing: New Almaden Imperial Red Ale

Capirotada
Mexican Bread Pudding with Dried Fruits
Pairing: St. Isidore Belgium Strong Ale

Paletas de Banana Horchata
Cinnamon-Rice Ice Cream
Pairing: Dairy Hill Milk Stout

Tickets are $45 – reasonably priced for any beer dinner let alone a 7-course beer-pairing dinner – and available through the dinner’s Eventbrite page. With 60 spots available for the event, guests are encouraged to make reservations as soon as possible.

Below is a sneak peek to the 7 courses courtesy of Peter:

SCV Brewing Beer Dinner

Santa Clara Valley Brewing Releases New Summer Seasonal Beer: Alviso Mills Hefeweizen

Photo courtesy of SCV Brewing
Photo courtesy of SCV Brewing

Santa Clara Valley Brewing is celebrating the release of their latest offering – Alviso Mills Hefeweizen (5.6% ABV) – with what looks to be a mini-Sommerfest on Thursday, June 23 from 3pm-9pm at their tap room (101 E. Alma Ave.).

The summer seasonal beer – which sales manager Peter Estaniel tells me will be available draft only – promises to evoke the aromas and flavors of a classic Bavarian-style Hefeweizen – cloves, bananas and a hint of bubble gum on the finish. For me – and I suspect many others – it’ll be a perfect tonic for the current summer heat.

Handheld Catering will be on hand (naturally) to provide a German-themed menu to complement the beer.

  • Sauerbraten, $12.00
  • Schnitzel, $12.00
  • Wurst with Sauerkraut, $10.00
  • Pretzel with House Made Mustard, $6.00
  • Apple Streudel, $9.00

I’m really looking forward to tasting this beer; it’ll be a great prelude to the other Hefeweizens I’ll be enjoying during a visit to my wife’s Bavarian hometown later this summer.

Lastly, as with a number of previous Santa Clara Valley Brewing beers, I looked up “Alviso Mills” and was pleased to come away with more local historical knowledge. Prost to that!

Introducing the San Jose Small Brewers Association, Plus Brewery Crawl

Image courtesy of SJSBA
Image courtesy of SJSBA

Local breweries Hermitage Brewing Company, Santa Clara Valley Brewing and Strike Brewing Company announced last week the formation of the San Jose Small Brewers Association (SJSBA). The three founding brewery members are all located about a mile from each other and just south of downtown San Jose, next to Spartan Stadium, Sharks Ice and Municipal Stadium, home of the San Jose Giants.

There are other breweries in the works nearby, and the hope is to grow the association as other small San Jose breweries open. According to Carolyn Hopkins-Vasquez, director of marketing for Hermitage Brewing, the SJSBA was formed to promote the neighborhood as a brewery district and destination.

Brewery Crawl

To celebrate the formation of the association, the three breweries have teamed up for their inaugural event – Super Bowl Brewery Crawl. Through Sunday, Feb. 14, visitors to any of the brewery taprooms can purchase a $20 ticket, good for one beer flight at each brewery. Once your ticket has been stamped by each brewery, guests will receive a commemorative tulip beer glass.

Brewery Taproom Hours

Hermitage Brewing Company
1627 South 7th St.
Wednesday-Friday: 4pm-9pm
Saturday-Sunday: 1pm-6pm

Santa Clara Valley Brewing
101 E. Alma Ave.
Wednesday-Friday: 1pm-9pm
Saturday-Sunday: 12pm-8pm

Strike Brewing Company
2099 S. 10th St., #30
Wednesday-Thursday: 4pm-8pm
Friday: 3pm-9pm
Saturday: 1pm-9pm
Sunday: 1pm-7pm

Carolyn adds, “There’s no need to look beyond the city limits to find great, locally made beer, and that’s what we want people to know.”

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

Santa Clara Valley Brewing Hosts Inaugural Beer Dinner

Santa Clara Valley Brewing to host inaugural beer dinner Jan. 27, 2016
Santa Clara Valley Brewing to host inaugural beer dinner Jan. 27, 2016

Santa Clara Valley Brewing will host their first ever beer-and-food pairing dinner at their brewery (101 East Alma Ave., San Jose) on Wed., Jan. 27, 6:30pm-9:30pm.

Guests will dine inside the brewery area, next to the stainless steel tanks, kegs and barrels. In addition to the views inside the brewery, co-founder Tom Clark adds that the brewery aroma will be amazing thanks to a fresh brewed batch of the popular Electric Tower IPA.

Brewmaster Steve Donohue shares that the idea for the dinner – an official SF Beer Week event – came about on a whim during a visit from friend Ryan McTighe, chef and owner of Handheld Catering. Ensuing discussions eventually led to the carefully constructed dinner menu.

The Menu

Appetizer
Beef Slider with Caramelized Onions and Sauteed Mushrooms
Paired with Dry Creek Blonde Ale

First Course
Electric Tower Beer Cheese Soup
Paired with Electric Tower IPA

Second Course
Seared Local Halibut with Cardamom and Coriander Scents, Wilted Spinach, Butter Braised Baby Carrots, Meyer Lemon Oil
Paired with Saison

Third Course
Pot De Creme
Paired with Peralta Porter

Tickets are $70 and limited to 40 guests. Tickets are available for purchase at the beer dinner’s Eventbrite page. Event sponsor Maps & Taps will also be on hand to discuss their new social media platform for beer enthusiasts.

According to Clark, the dinner will be the first of many to take place at the brewery: “We have a great space, and we fully anticipate doing more of these.”

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]

Scenes from Santa Clara Valley Brewing Inaugural Brew Day

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Friday, April 17, 2015 marked a significant milestone in the South Bay beer scene. Santa Clara Valley Brewing – founded in 2012 by co-founders Steve Donohue (brewmaster) and Tom Clark (CEO) – held their inaugural brew day at their new brewery and soon-to-open taproom (101 E. Alma Ave., San Jose) located inside the Spartan Business Center within two blocks of Municipal Stadium and Spartan Stadium.

“It’s been a very long road,” Donohue said on the inaugural brew day. His subsequent focus and actions made it clear that he did not want to lose another single minute.

The inaugural beer is a pale ale, a style that Donohue is brewing professionally for the first time. The second batch – brewed the next day – is a West Coast style IPA followed by an imperial red ale.

As congratulatory notes have come pouring in throughout social media, many now eagerly await for the opportunity to enjoy the first offerings to come out of the brewery.

Another important development took place just a couple of days ago for SCV Brewing. Sales and marketing manager Stephanie Santolo shared with me that the city approved their taproom plans, assuring that the taproom will open sooner rather than later in the coming weeks.

Cheers to the Santa Clara Valley Brewing team!

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Some pictures from the inaugural brew day by Arie Litman and yours truly below. Thanks, Arie!

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For video of a chat with Steve Donohue during a visit to SCV Brewing earlier this year in January, click here.

Jan. 16, 2015: Visit to Soon-to-Open Santa Clara Valley Brewing Brewery and Taproom

[This post was shared on Examiner.com.]