Craft ~ brews and reviews
By Greg Richardson
It is December! Many churches are in a
liturgical season called Advent, a time of preparation for
There are several strategic ways to plan the
ways we prepare for Christmas. One of my favorites when I was a
child was having an Advent calendar. Advent calendars generally have
a space or a window for each day. Each day during Advent we get to
open the window for that day.
Opening the window reveals a piece of
chocolate or other candy, a small treat for each day of Advent.
A couple years ago I decided to put
together my own Craft
Beer Advent Calendar. My
thinking was Advent is an excellent opportunity to spend some time
in the darker end of the pool which is full of porters and stouts.
It might be time for a refresh. I have
visited quite a few breweries and tasting rooms over the last couple
of years, and there are plenty of new choices.
Some of our selections are available in
bottles or cans, while others will require us to visit the brewery
or tasting room.
1. Letís begin Advent with a Smoked
Black Lager from Craftsman
Brewing Company in Pasadena, California.
2. Advent continues with a velvety
Porter brewed seasonally with
licorice root by Angel City Brewing in Los Angeles.
3. Our third day is dedicated to a California
Black Beer, an American dark
lager brewed by Last Name Brewing Company in Upland, California.
4. The fourth day of Advent takes
us to Montebello, California for an East
Side Bitter from Angry Horse
5. Today we head up to Agoura
Hills, California for a robust Picture
City Porter at Ladyface Ale
6. Today may be the perfect opportunity
to taste a Horchata
Stout from Pacific Plate
Brewing Company in Monrovia, California.
7. Completing the first week of
Advent, we turn to a Solidarity
Black Mild Ale from Eagle Rock
Brewery in Los Angeles. Nitro?
8. After the first week, I reward
myself with one of my favorites, a Mint
Chocolate Porter from Bootleggerís
Brewery in Fullerton, California.
9. We begin the second week of Advent
with a Black
Coral Stout from Ohana Brewing
Company. Ohana brews its beer in Los Angeles and serves in a tasting
room in Alhambra, California.
10. It is a beautiful day to head to the
Eastern Frontier and explore a Night
Mother milk stout from Wicks
Brewing Company in Riverside, California.
11. Today would be a great day for a Speedway
Stout from Alesmith Brewing
Company in San Diego, California.
12. As long as we are in San Diego
County, letís stop in for a Velvet
Glove Imperial Oatmeal Stout
at Iron Fist Brewing Company in Vista, California.
13. We are deep into Advent, and I will
celebrate with a Noche
de los Muertos Imperial Stout with Cinnamon from Aztec
Brewery in Vista, California.
14. This could be the perfect day for a
drive to Redlands, California for a Chocolate
Porter at Hangar 24 Brewery,
at the Redlands Airport.
15. As we complete the second week of
Advent, letís stop for a Net
Positive chocolate stout at
the Highland Park Brewery in Highland Park, California.
16. We make the turn and head down the
homestretch of Advent with a Thaddeus milk
stout at Mount Lowe Brewing in Arcadia, California.
17. I think we will head up the
California coast to Ventura to sample an Oil
Piers Porter at Surf Brewery.
18. Past Ventura, and headed toward to
culmination of Advent, letís keep going for a Velvet
Merlin oatmeal stout
at Firestone Walker Brewing Company in Buellton, California.
19. If we were driving up the California
coast, I would push on to Cambria, California for an Old
#23 Robust Porter at the 927
20. This would be a great day for a Mrs.
Adams Oatmeal Stout from Alosta
Brewing Company in Covina, California.
21. Today is the day. We head to Rescue
Brewing Company in Upland, California for a 10-4
Russian Imperial Stout. It is
there, down at the Dark/Roasty bottom of the beer list.
22. Not only are almost entirely
through Advent, but today is my birthday. I reward myself with an Xocoveza
Charred Milk Stout from Stone
Brewing Company in Escondido, California. Be sure not to miss
combining it with the Zocorosa ice cream. It will transform your
23. We complete our Advent Calendar
at REV Brewing Company in Covina, California. REV is a great place
for both beer lovers and those who prefer wine. We are here for a REV
Shot in the Dark, a coffee
24. Today is Christmas Eve. If you have
prepared well, you are ready for Christmas tomorrow. Stay home,
relax, and try some of the beer you bought in anticipation of the
Greg Richardson is a leadership and
organizational coach, and a spiritual life mentor, in Pasadena,
California. He is passionate about craft brewing, listening, and
monks and monastic life. Greg is a recovering attorney, executive,
and university professor. Gregís website is StrategicMonk.com and
he is on Twitter @StrategicMonk.
You can email Greg at StrategicMonk@gmail.com.