Beer in the Conejo Valley Corridor


Written by Tom Becham

figThe recent birthday of a long-time friend was the occasion of a nice beer field trip this past Martin Luther King holiday.

Our first stop was Figueroa Mountain’s new brewpub in Westlake Village, California. Figueroa Mountain’s main production facility is in Buellton, about 100 miles away. But Fig Mountain has been aggressively expanding, despite only recently celebrating their 4th Anniversary in business. They have other brewpubs and taprooms from San Luis Obispo down to Los Angeles.

Fig Mountain’s success is not an accident. They produce very good, commercially successful DIPAs like Lizard’s Mouth and Hurricane Deck, as well as the more standard American brewpub offerings like Brown and Pale Ales, IPA (Hoppy Poppy is likely the best IPA I know to please both hopheads and malt guys alike), Porters, Stouts, etc. While they share the same small town with Firestone Walker, they have taken a markedly different approach to growing their business.
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Nicole Dies of Dysentery on the Finger Lakes Beer Trail


Nicole thought she could make it to the end of the Finger Lakes Beer Trail, but she never made it out of Penn Yan. Just another in the thousands of cases where a long-thought-dead, mid-19th century illness claims the life of a craft beer enthusiast.

“We assumed we would encounter hardships along the way.” said Nicole’s traveling companion, Steve. “Snow, pot holes, the occasional Amish buggy slowing down traffic, but dysentery? We did not see that one coming.”

Steve himself suffered snakebite while “breaking the seal” in Burdett, a town known for “Don’t Tread on Me” serpent flags, but not actual serpents.

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