I’ll come right out and say it. I feel like I was spoiled by starting my brewing adventure with the Bearded Brewer. Sure, it was the only home brew store in the Antelope Valley, but that didn’t diminish it’s value and service. I wouldn’t be the brewer I am today if not for them.
But alas – my work took me to San Diego. Arguably the craft beer capital of California. It was such a shame I had to up and relocate my family from the dry desert of Lancaster, CA…
Once I got settled, it was time to brew. I wrote a post on it earlier in the year. It wasn’t a success… let’s just leave it at that. When I bought my ingredients, I went to one of the more renowned home brew stores in the area. It was actually the store my beginner kit came from. I was expecting a brewers Graceland – a mecca of friendly brewers and an endless list of supplies. What I got was a store that had the basics, but little else. Customer service was lacking, and they were out of the yeast I needed, and both of my preferred hop varieties.
So for my next San Diego brewday, I ventured to the home brew shop closest to my house in Scripps Ranch. It was a neat and quaint affair. The shopkeeper seemed stuck in another era, and there was a limited grain selection. Plus, they only had a hand mill that could handle 3 pounds at a time. There was a decent selection of equipment and extras, but everything was slightly pricey and I wasn’t at all comfortable there.
So for my most recent brew, I decided to finally do a standard IPA and give in to the San Diego hop head scene. When it was time to buy ingredients, Tom suggested I go with him to his preferred brew shop. It is literally 5 minuted from my office, and has a tasting room attached. Why the heck not?
When I arrived, I was immediately greeted by the shop manager. He asked me what I was brewing, and even looked at my hop schedule for me. There was an ample selection of grains, hops, and yeast, plus a wide selection of equipment. The whole staff was friendly and helpful, and everyone chatted with me and Tom while we sampled some of their brews. I’ll write about their tasting room in another article.
All in all, the extra 15 minute drive from my house will be well worth it moving forward. Going to the LHBS will be an enjoyable San Diego experience, and I am confident my brewing will continue to improve.
The Homebrewer is located at:
2911 El Cajon Blvd Space #2
San Diego, CA 92104
Hours of operation are:
Visit them online: http://www.thehomebrewersd.com