Take it From the Tap
DO ME A FLAVOR
New beers to cheers & brews to peruse
STONE XOCOVEZA FOR THE HOLIDAYSIn 19 years, the return of no Stone beer has been so fervently requested as this take on Mexican hot chocolate... and the recipe came from a local homebrewer! Now, this chocolate, coffee, cinnamon and nutmeg-infused imperial milk stout will be an annual offering gifted to beer enthusiasts in six-packs
Stone Brewing Co.
1999 Citracado Pkwy., Escondidostonebrewing.com
KARL STRAUSS SIX SUITS A-HANGIN’
The sixth of 12 beers following the theme of the iconic tune “The 12 Days of Christmas” is an imperial Belgian-style brown ale aged in French Oak. The brewery describes it as having graham cracker-like flavors with a touch of wood-borne vanilla, plus peppery, yeast-infused spice.
Karl Strauss Brewing Co.
985 Santa Fe St., Pacific Beach
The last of more than two dozen specialty ales brewed for the Beer to the Rescue lupus campaign is a spiced take on AleSmith’s elegant, dark, fruit-packed Belgian strong ale, Grand Cru. The addition of wintry, holiday-friendly spices (think mulled wine and baked goods) transforms a year-round classic into a Christmas-ready instant tradition.
AleSmith Brewing Company
9990 AleSmith Ct., Miramaralesmith.com
MISSION HOLIDAY ALE
Belgian yeast esters bring forth deep flavors of caramelized figs, raisins and even sugarplums to build the quintessential European-style yuletide delight. Dark in color and rich in its caramely, spicy complexity, it remains smooth on the palate, rendering it the perfect quaff for prolonged enjoyment from a comfy seat in front of a roaring fire.
1441 L St., East Villagemissionbrewery.com
MONKEY PAW SANTA’S PET MONKEY
In this case, Saint Nick’s faithful companion is a palate-and belly-warming imperial stout. Onyx in complexion and decadent in its rich chocolatiness, it abounds with roasted barley appeal and nuances of espresso. Forego the milk - leave Kris Kringle a glass of this instead and wait for the top-shelf gifts to come rolling in.
Monkey Paw Brewing
805 16th St., East Villagemonkeypawbrewing.com
BENCHMARK FEISTY FLEUR
The feisty family behind this young standout brewery has elevated its Belgian-style tripel to Christmas-beer status, releasing it during the winter season as the perfect complement to family gatherings, traditional holiday feasting and nights spent caroling. Citrusy in its fruitiness, it’s a splendid alternative to traditional dark winter ales.
Benchmark Brewing Co.
6190 Fairmount Ave., Grantvillebenchmarkbrewing.com
SOUTH PARK WINTER WARMER
Beer fans of the British bent looking to replicate the experience of nursing a proper holiday ale in a warm, inviting English pub need look no further than this traditional UK-style “Winter Warmer.” Dry and drinkable with flavors akin to toffee, currants and dark spirits, it’s deliciously evocative of English Christmas puddings.
South Park Brewing Co.
1517 30th St., South Parksouthparkbrewing.com