Our Day of Tasting | Alesmith Brewing Co.

Brew Babes at Alesmith

San Diego Beer Week continues and we continue to not follow the schedule and do our own thing. We made our first visit to Alesmith, which like many San Diego breweries, is in an industrial area. We arrived at 1, and since they did not open until 2, went to have lunch and then came back. We liked the $1 tasting option but be careful as the alcohol content of most of the beers if 5.8% and above (of course CJ liked the 11% the most, just sayin’). We met Abby, who runs Alesmith’s social media, and who knows her craft beer. She was so helpful while we were tasting, explaining what to look for and talking about brewing techniques for Belgian Strong Ales. Somehow we got on the subject of distribution and how small breweries survive with the help of their larger counterparts. Quite a different business model than most industries and heart-warming to know the camaraderie in San Diego. Abby used some technical terms that we looked up so that you can learn with us about what to look for when you are tasting craft beer. Here is one:

Diacetyl (Die-ASS-eh-tuhl):   A chemical compound produced during fermentation recognized by a buttery or butterscotch aroma.  Perceptible diacetyl aroma is considered a fault in most beer styles and in excessive amounts in beers such as pale ale, where it is appropriate. 

Abby says one of her strengths is the ability to detect diacetyl in almost any beer.

So here is our run-down of the beers. CJ, true to form, liked the Horny Devil and the Lil Devil because of the low carbonation and minimal hops taste. Marisa liked Winter Yule Smith due to its red hue and just the right blend of flavor (toffee and caramel notes) balanced with good, mellow hoppiness. Nautical Nut Brown was by far her favorite with a distinctive “home made bread” on the nose, and a hearty coffee and biscuit in the taste. Though it was very complex, it was so smooth, she could drink it all night.

Abby recommended that we also try Hess Brewing Co. since it was around the corner, so we bid her farewell and headed out in search of Hess.

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