I recently wrote a long article in California Beer and Pizza online magazine all about Orange County Breweries. In the interest of making the highlights of the article, the brewery spotlights, easier to read and more focused I am going to post the excerpt about each brewery and all the photos. One photo per brewery can hardly do it justice, especially when each one has so much character and charm!


Excerpt from the article: Bootlegger’s Brewery began as nothing more than a class assignment for Aaron Barkenhagen, who came up with the business plan while enrolled at Cal State Fullerton. Bootlegger’s emerged in April 2008 with a mission to supply the local community with unique, handcrafted beer. Located in Fullerton, right on the outskirts of the downtown area, it sits as a gem of creativity. To me, Bootlegger’s is making some of the most interesting, eclectic and innovative beers in all of Southern California. Their tap room is small but personable. It’s a place to hang out and drink artisan beer out of mason jars and chat with the locals. If you are stuck-up and want to cry about not having enough places to sit, or how maybe their tables and chairs “don’t match”, then Bootlegger’s is not for you. You don’t deserve the amazingness that is Bootlegger’s beer. To me, it matters less what the tap room looks like, and more what the beer tastes like, and Bootleggers has great-tasting beer , period. Among some of the most notable beers is their ‘Black Phoenix’, which is a coffee-chipotle stout with subtle chocolate flavors to compliment the roasted coffee and spicy chipotle peppers. This complex beer is 6.7% ABV and changes the more it warms to room temperature. Also, their special-release ‘Knuckle Sandwich’ is a 10% ABV Double/Imperial IPA that creates lines out the door just to get a taste of it. One of my personal favorites on tap right now is their ‘Plum Riot’, which is a Belgian style at 7.8% ABV. ‘Plum Riot’ has a nice light and fruity aftertaste, and all the subtleties that one would expect from a Belgian style, and a unique flavor of plum. Bootlegger’s continues to push the envelope and make interesting beer that is ever rotating, which makes it easy to keep coming back again and again.