Manifest Destiny gave us California, and it gave us back beer. Literally, the entire state makes the stuff, from Weed Alehouse & Bistro in a city called Weed (seriously) about 40 minutes from the Oregon border, all the way down to San Diego, which we’re gonna go ahead and deem the most dominating beer city in world history -- thanks to Stone and Green Flash of course, but also Port, Coronado, Lost Abbey, Ballast Point, AleSmith (find their Wee Heavy), and the other 70+ operations brewing flawless beer with abandon.
God, there’s just so much to talk about here. Without hoppy vanguard Sierra Nevada, 99% of the beers we’re lauding (and... this story!) probably wouldn’t exist. Lagunitas’ commitment to growing national distribution while maintaining quality is second to none. 21st Amendment has a Watermelon Wheat to lure the beer-scared in, plus a perfectly portioned canned Lower De Boom barley wine to finish them off. Anchor’s been making whatever the hell steam beer is for almost 120 years. Firestone Walker’s Double Jack is probably the most deceptive 9.5-percenter you’ll ever accidentally drink too much of. And then, of course, there’s Pliny. Pliny, Pliny, Pliny! Pliny. And no, it’s not overrated.