Left Coast Is the Best Coast

Left Coast Brewery is a new brewery that is finally available in Minnesota.  Based in San Clemente California, you may have had the pleasure of buying their beers at Oggi’s Pizzeria.  From humble beginnings of supplying beer for Oggi’s and supplying a few other bars in the area in 2004, they are slowly growing to be a powerhouse in the Orange County beer scene. Now available in about 15 states plus as far out as Japan and New Zealand. I count Minnesota lucky to be among the 15 states.

Right now there are four full time beers available and one seasonal with hopefully more coming down the pipeline.

Their flagship beer is the Left Hand Hop Juice. Hoppy beers are all the rage now, and this one stands up to the better beers on the market.  Left Hand considers themselves among the pioneers of Double IPA’s and I think their experience has paid off in a big way. Weighing in at 9.7% alcohol, it is a big beer, with loads of hops yet still well balanced. They use 5 different hop varieties and also spends two weeks dry-hopping in the fermenter. This gives it a great hops aroma and impressive complexity. 

Another great year round beer is the Trestles IPA.  This is an American IPA.  Consider this Hop Juices little brother. Crisp and clean with assertive hops, it is toned down to 6.8% alcohol. This light and crisp brew is ideal for a summer day and is very versatile with food.

The last year rounder is a completely different style.  The Left Hand Voodoo is a deep dark stout. The first thing you notice is the creamy, thick head suggesting a hearty brew is coming your way. Heavily roasted this stout attacks you with rich coffee and chocolate flavors. A great beer with hearty meals or on one of our “beautiful” 60 degree summer days we have been having lately.

Two seasonals to keep an eye out for is Una Mas and Boardwalk Saison.  Una Mas’ rotation is just ending and will be making way for the Boardwalk Saison this summer. The Una Mas is a classic copper lager that is full of flavor yet light in body. They shoot for a Mexican beer style and do it admirably.  Hopefully the Boardwalk Saison will be blessing Minnesota soon.  A special yeast strain gives this beer a unique citrus aroma and adding orange peel to the end of the boil gives this beer a slight bitterness and adds to the citrus flavors.  Ideal on a hot summer day.

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