Stone Brewing Company’s 3rd Annual Pour It Black – The Black Sheep of Beer

Posted: October 24, 2013 in Bacon, Beer, Dessert, Events, Food, San Diego
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In the region that defined the West Coast IPA, craft beer lovers find it refreshing to see another style highlighted in the spotlight. Leave it to one of the west coast’s largest breweries, Stone Brewing Company, to handle the role of celebrating another beer style other than something hoppy. This past Sunday morning, Stone Brewing hosted the 3rd Annual Pour It Black, a beer tasting event that focuses on dark beers from around the world. Usually taking place within a few weeks prior to San Diego Beer Week, Stone Brewing featured over a hundred different dark beers to choose from, and placed them at stations spread throughout their botanical garden. For an event lasting five hours, guests could easily take their time sipping and enjoying their beer tasters. Admission cost $45, which included 15 3oz tasters that guests could individually select on their own, and souvenir glass used to sample the brews.

Eight different stations served beers for this event, spread out in a counter-clockwise circle around the botanical garden. The first five stations utilized taps, while the last three stations poured from bottles. A few beers never made it to the event due to issues with the suppliers.

In typical fashion, I started at the back of the event and worked my way to the front. Most people will start at the front and work towards the back, so I opt to move in the opposite direction to minimize queue times. The 15 beers I tried:

  1. Ken Schmidt/Maui/Stone Kona Coffee, Macadamia, Coconut Porter
  2. Jason Fields & Kevin Sheppard/Tröegs/Stone Cherry Chocolate Stout aged in Rye Whisky Barrels
  3. Deschutes The Abyss 2012
  4. Anchorage Darkest Hour Belgian-Style Imperial Stout
  5. Avery Odio Equum – Barrel-Aged Series No. 13
  6. Nøgne Ø Dark Horizon 4th Edition
  7. North Coast Barrel-Aged Old Rasputin XV
  8. Port Brewing Bourbon Barrel Aged Santa’s Little Helper
  9. AleSmith Speedway Stout 2010
  10. Oskar Blues Barrel-Aged Ten FIDY Imperial Stout
  11. Stone Suitable for Cave Aging – An Imperial Smoked Porter Tribute to Danny Williams aged in Red Wine Barrels
  12. Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Liberty Station Cimmerian Portal
  13. Ken Schmidt/Iron Fist/Stone Mint Chocolate Imperial Stout
  14. Evil Twin/Stillwater/Stone “The Perfect Crime” Black Smoked Saison aged in Red Wine Barrels
  15. Rip Current Vanilla Storm Coffee/Vanilla Imperial Porter

In addition to all the wonderful beers brewed here, Stone Bistro makes excellent food on a brand new level that one would typically not expect to see at a normal brewery. However, Stone does not follow norms – they set norms. At Stone Bistro, guests receive amazing eats with top-shelf ingredients. For this event, they served a more convenient menu:

  • Stone Hemp Pretzel – served with Stone India Pale Ale whole grain mustard
  • Pancetta, Bleu Cheese, and Basil Arancini – served with Stone Smoked Porter arrabbiata sauce
  • Short Rib Wellington Empanadas – served with mushroom duxelles
  • Pretzel-wrapped Bratwurst – with grilled Arrogant Bastard Ale & smoked cheddar brats and onions
  • Bag of Chips – house-made and dusted with roasted garlic pepper
  • Bacon Super Brownie – with pecans, chocolate ganache, and chocolate mousse

As one of the nation’s top craft beer companies, one would expect no less from Stone Brewing. Their never-ending mission to break people out of common molds will transcend many boundaries, which will change the way people think about food and beer. Pour It Black exhibited a mere preview of the capabilities that Stone Brewing possesses. Pay close attention to Stone Brewing during San Diego Beer Week, which starts next weekend, as Stone will run events on every day of the nine-day period. In fact, pay attention to them at all times to discover what Stone has going on, which they always have going on.


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