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Sneak Peak Inside Karl Strauss Brewery

  • Karl Strauss Red Trolley Ale
  • Karl Strauss Endless Summer Light
  • Karl Strauss Sampler
  • Karl Strauss Restaurant
  • Karl Strauss Sampler
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So, where’s that beer you’re drinking from?  If you’re one of the lucky people who have been blessed with good taste and fortunate enough to live in San Diego, it’s likely the beer in your hand is a bottle of Karl Strauss. The brewing company has been providing handcrafted brews to the southern California region since the mid 1980s.  Since its inception, Karl Strauss has continually expanded in ways the founders Chris Cramer and Matt Rattner couldn’t have imagined. Today the brewery produces about 2,000 cases of beer a day with Master Brewer Paul Segura at the helm.

Karl Strauss is a pretty big deal in the microbrew industry. Even though the brewery keeps expanding, all production is still done in a single building located near La Jolla; each beer is created, brewed, bottled and packaged in-house. The fermentation farm room has just added two new fermenters. The bottling line, which was moved in-house just a couple years ago, is a two story maze that can bottle 250 bottles a minute.

“Every day we’re testing the beer all the way from fermentation through packaging,” said Megan Daversa, public relations director for Karl Strauss. Testing happens in the lab, which Karl Strauss is especially proud of because not too many craft breweries their size have full size labs.  “Each beer, when it leaves here, has gone through 24 tests.  We want to make sure that the beer that you’re drinking tastes how it should.”

So with all the beer being put out, what’s on tap?  Since the beginning of the company, Karl Strauss has always been about San Diego. Brews like Red Trolley Ale (a medium beer with heavy malts), Endless Summer Light (Karl’s golden light beer), and four other beers are always on tap.  Special releases like the Boardwalk Black Rye, a spicy black ale with a hop profile and created with scenes of Pacific Beach in mind, keep beer connoisseurs ecstatically on their toes.  Seasonal releases, like the beloved Oktoberfest (Karl’s fall release) also provide fans with something to look forward to.

Something Karl Strauss fans can look forward to is brewery tours. The brewery is hoping to open up tours to the general public in Spring 2012. If you can’t wait until then for the inside look, Karl Strauss will be offering exclusive beer and food pairings as they host the “Wall Street Brewdown” on September 28 at its’ La Jolla restaurant location to commemorate its reopening.

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