Karl Strauss Brewing Co.

Living in San Diego, I’ve been turned on to the world of craft beers. From Stone to Ballast Point to Green Flash, our beer selections are neverending! So last night when deciding what to have for dinner, my best friend Abby and I decided that we had to get our hands on a local favorite: Karl Strauss.

Karl Strauss

Yum! For beer selections I went with the Off The Rails. Like it’s popular counterpart, Red Trolley, Off The Rails is a red ale with rich toffee, caramel-like flavors. The difference between the two is that Off The Rails has a little more hops at 8.5% ABV vs. Red Trolley’s 5.8%.

We also had samplings of the Tower 10 IPA and the Wreck Alley (at $12 a beer, a bargain hunter like me is going to have all the free samples I can get).

IPA is the new black in the beer world – most people order it because it’s an IPA and have no idea what it means. But still, the Tower 10 is a great beer and  a great “first IPA” (7% ABV) for people adjusting to beers with more hops. It’s got a citrus undertone and for some reason always reminds me of apricots (as do the Endless Summer Light and Pintail).

If you’re a dark cocoa or coffee lover like me then Wreck Alley may be the beer for you. I was skeptical when our server told me that it was brewed with cocoa nibs and coffee beans, but one sip and I was sold! The Wreck Alley has a great roast flavor without tasting too burnt and goes down smooth. At 9.5% ABV, I have to say it makes the perfect dessert pairing if you’re looking for things to get a little interesting after dinner.

Not only does Karl Strauss serve up good beer, they’ve also got great eats! Their menu offers a wide selection from pasta to steak to tacos. I went for nachos because, well, beer and nachos? Prime.

For my fellow Karl Strauss fans, what are your favorite picks?

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