|Alpine Beer Company (Pub)
1347 Tavern Rd. | Alpine, CA 91901
619-445-2337 ext 1
Alpine Beer Company was founded in 1999 by Pat and Val McIlhenney as a small brewery with humble aspirations. In the beginning, Alpine contracted with AleSmith Brewing Company for their award winning McIlhenny’s Irish Red. Both Mandarin Nectar and Pure Hoppiness were released soon after.
In the fall of 2002, Alpine opened their family owned brewery in their hometown of Alpine in the eastern part of San Diego County. By late 2008, the brewery began expanding, adding four double sized fermenters, a cold box, and a bottling machine.
Alpine’s 36 seat pub opened in 2010 at the opposite end of the same building. In June 2015, the pub moved to the Alpine Creek Shopping Center offering 180 seats with a dog friendly patio, two bars (one inside and one outside), and a barbeque themed menu.
|Alpine Beer Company (Brewery)
2351 Alpine Blvd. | Alpine CA 91901
In 2014, Alpine Beer Company and Green Flash Brewing Company announced a partnership. The official agreement was signed in November 2014, and the two breweries called the relationship “mutually beneficial.”
Each brewery continues to operate independently with two distinct brands. Pat McIlhenney continues to work as Alpine’s President and Brewmaster, and Alpine beers are brewed at both the Alpine and Green Flash brewery locations.
Green Flash began brewing Alpine beers in November 2013 after a “handshake agreement,” allowing Alpine to expanded availability of their beers. Alpine’s brewery is capable of producing only 1,500 barrels annually, and most of that beer is served at Alpine’s pub. With the partnership, Alpine was able to double their production to 3,000 barrels in 2014.
This year, Green Flash began botting some Alpine beers in 22-ounce bottles, and hopefully some epic Alpine/Green Flash collaboration beers are in the works.
We visited Alpine’s pub during our California trip and enjoyed samples of several Alpine brews.
The beers on tap during our visit included…
- Irish Red – 6% ABV Irish Red; Alpine’s most versatile beer. Light and thirst-quenching. Caramel malty sweet fades to a chocolate roasty finish and dry from a touch of rye.
- Mandarin Nectar – 6.5% ABV Orange Blossom Honey Ale; Fresh organic orange zest and cracked coriander complement the orange blossom honey used in this ale.
- Alpine Ale – 5.5% ABV Pale Ale; This namesake ale represents everything a good, well balanced pale ale should be: malty but not too sweet, refreshing but not too bitter, full-bodied but not too heavy, lively but not over carbonated.
- Hoppy Birthday – 5.25% ABV Session IPA; Light enough to enjoy again and again.
- Nelson – 7% ABV Golden Rye IPA; Brewed with Nelson Sauvin, a hop from New Zealand used throughout the brewing and dry-hopping of this beer. European rye is added for a smooth, malty addition to flavor.
- Duet – 7% ABV West Coast IPA; Alpine’s original single IPA made with Simcoe and Amarillo hops.
- Pure Hoppiness – 8% ABV West Coast IPA; This mega-hopped ale was brewed with hops in the boil, more hops in the giant hopback, and an incredible amount of dry-hopping for that cutting-edge “hop bite.”
- Captain Stout – 6% ABV Chocolate Oatmeal Dry Stout; Roasty malt character with hints of chocolate and coffee and a smooth, velvety finish.
- Handshake – 7.5% ABV American IPA brewed with Green Flash Brewing Company
Alpine has a reputation for their hoppy beers, and I can see why. On ratebeer.com, Duet, Nelson, and Pure Hoppiness are all rated 100, and Hoppy Birthday is rated 99. All of these beers are superbly made and insanely delicious.
Beers at the pub can be purchased in 16-ounce pints, 10-ounce tulips, or 5-ounce tasters for $1.50 or $2. A 4 sample platter is $8, and a 6 sample platter is $10. Half gallon growlers can be purchased to go, as well as many Alpine beers in 22-ounce bottles.
Be sure to enjoy the delicious food during your visit to Alpine. Appetizers include smoked wings, BBQ Nachos (with a vegetarian option), and Crispy Fried Pickles. There are also several salad and sandwich options.
Dinner plates include Pork Spare Ribs, ½ Smoked Chicken, Pork Shoulder, Beef Brisket, and Sausages. Dinners include your choice of two sides, and combo meat plates are available upon request.
The pub is open Monday to Thursday 11 AM to 10 PM, Friday and Saturday 11 AM to midnight, and Sunday 11 AM to 9 PM. Note that the kitchen does close early. The brewery is open Tuesday to Sunday noon to 7 PM for growler fills, shirts, hats, and glasses.
Alpine beers can also be found in bottles and on draft in San Diego County, Orange County, and Los Angeles County. Alpine beers are on tap at the Green Flash Brewery in San Diego.