New Years is a human holiday where lots of beer is consumed. This sounded ideal to me so I went to seek out beer to consume that night. I happened to be in the Del Mar area and discovered Culture Brewing Co., in the nearby neighborhood of Solana Beach. For those of you unfamiliar with the area, it’s located in the Cedros Avenue Design District, just a few doors from the famous music venue, The Belly Up Tavern.
Inside the Culture Brewing Co. tasting room, you see the rustic, bare wood decor featuring stencils of pint and tulip glasses as well as rubber boots and other beer and brewing related shapes. The wall also displays their variety of branded apparel. To the left of the entrance, you will notice 4 oak barrels, aging some of their fine strong beers for future tastings. To the left of the counter is a chalk board displaying their available beers, their ABV, IBUs, hops used and a description of the beer. Behind the counter you will see 3 large, stainless steel fermentation tanks. You may also walk up the small ramp on the left and enjoy your Culture Brewing beer on their back porch and have a nice view of the rest of the brewing area.
I first ordered the imperial stout and was very pleased. It was roasty, smooth and sweet. I was excited to try more so I had the MC Barleywine. This is a strong beer aged in port wine barrels and aged with sour cherries. This beer was exceptional! Owner and Brew Master Steve Ragan explained to me that this beer was especially brewed in tribute to Matthew Courtright, who was a brewer at Stone Brewing Co. and was killed in a forklift accident in April 2013. All sales of this beer go to benefit his family and expenses.
The warm, rustic look, friendly service and complex and well rounded beers makes Culture Brewing Co. a destination for anyone in the area. They did not have food but there are many food options within a block of the tasting room. I bought a growler and filled it with their dunkel weizen (German dark ale) and shared it with some happy humans for New Years Eve.