If it seems like I gush over many breweries, Congregants, it’s because we have so many awesome choices when it comes to craftbeer in California. There are so many breweries who make fantastic craft brews, and to sell one short simply because I prefer another seems to do a disservice to the hard work these people put in and the fine products they put out. That being said, Lodi Beer Company is certainly one of my favorite places to grab a craft beer in the Central Valley, not the least reason of which, it’s only an hour drive from my house. What’s so great about it? Please read on…
“Dude, the beers there are uber. UBER! And the food is amazing. I had a veggie sandwich there which not only was the best veggie sandwich I’ve ever had, it was the best SANDWICH I’ve ever had. And the beers are uber, did I mention that?”
He was right on all counts, though when there’s meat in the offing, I don’t tend to go for veggie sandwiches so I’ve not tried their veggie sandwich. Their Bleu Burger is superb, though!My first brew of the day was the Belgian Brown ale. This is an excellent example of a fusion-style belgian, where we take a traditional style from another place, in this case the British Isles, and turn belgian yeast upon it and see what shakes out. The aroma to this beer is initially all tart belgian, but toward the end of the smell, a distinct maltiness sneaks in. To anyone who thinks yeast doesn’t make a big difference, you’re wrong. The flavor is all tangy belgian from start to finish, with a nice body of malt throughout. If I had to complain about anything, and I don’t REALLY have to, I’d say I would have preferred a little more residual sweetness on this beer. Maybe the addition of another 2-3% caramel malt, or a higher mash temp. Still, it’s a nice, refreshing beer on this sunny day in California. The mouthfeel is substantial, though not too thick, which helps the unique and tasty flavor carry through the finish, as that tang sticks around for quite awhile!
The other reason I love this place is the fantastic food. I was too busy enjoying my burger to take a picture, but let me tell you, this is a GREAT burger, and I’ve never had anything less than awesome to eat here.Finally, instead of getting another beer to drink here at the brewery, I got a growler pour of the Plowshare Porter, which I have had before. It’s a fantastic porter, and I’ll write about it in another post. Suffice to say here, that if you find yourself anywhere need Lodi, you NEED to stop here and have a beer and some food. It’s a great place, and I’d love to see it stick around.