What's old is new again

We canned up a batch of Siamese Twin Ale this morning that represents a bit of a throwback. There's an evolutionary process in play with any product like craft beer. Materials and equipment change over time. Our skill set and taste preferences change, too. With the Twin we'd seen some drift that took the beer closer to a traditional Belgian-style Dubbel, using some darker European caramel malts and downplaying our southeast Asian spice profile. The beer has been darker and showing more deep notes of dried fruit in the body than what we used to make.

It was a beer from Against the Grain that swung us into throwback mode. Their Galangal Action used galangal and kaffir lime to produce a delicious and bright southeast Asian character. It was a reminder of where our Twin used to be.

We upped the dose of kaffir lime leaf and lemongrass and dropped most of the Special B from our grain bill. This throwback Siamese Twin Ale is a few shades lighter in color than what we've been brewing for the last few years. It's also brighter in body, with clearer citrus notes in the nose and a more refreshing finish. It’s a continuation of the process, a slow evolution towards an impossible perfection.

Last week's re-release of the Golden State Ale was also a sign of where the brewery is going with our label design. The wrap labels have been hugely popular, for good reason. After eight years on shelves our labels finally look the way they were supposed to in 2008. The first beer with our new label layout was the Steamers Lane Lager. We started using that same basic design for all of our new releases immediately afterwards.

The goal with those labels was to simplify our overall design and make the beer names. In that it was a success, a bit too much of a success. The old main-line labels ended up looking cluttered in comparison. The new Golden labels mark the beginning of our transition to a unified can format that hopefully makes all of the beers easier to find and identify on the shelf.

New Leaf, 41st Ave Liquors, and Shoppers Corner have always been great places to find our beers on Santa Cruz County shelves. Those shelves now include Safeway stores as well. Keep an eye out for our core lineup and seasonal releases in the locals area of Safeway stores in the area.

There will be Long Form Tripple coming back to join the Flamenco Roja for our Spring releases. Look for Tripple to start shipping later this week.

March Brewery Update

It’s a lovely rainy March day in Santa Cruz. We need a lot more of these! The brewery rolls onward. We’ll be getting more active again over the hill with a new Bay Area distributor starting (most likely) in April. There’ll be a big push into our old accounts and a new major retailer happening then. If you’re a buyer, keep an eye out for Mindful Distribution’s reps in the coming weeks.

The first local permit submittals for the tasting room happened two days ago. We have a plan set into the county’s Environmental Health Services for plan check and review. This also means that we have a final plan set for construction.

Fortunately while we’re waiting for that building permit to happen we’re not stalled out. The collection of redwood slabs we’ve collected is getting sanded down, revealing the grain so that we can select which pieces will be tables or bar top.

They're looking really lovely. This section is destined to be part of the bar.

We'll have a limited release of 60 cases of Tramp getting canned up this week, too. Our annual collaboration with High Water and Bison is tasting lovely with a few extra weeks of conditioning time. Look for those cans to start hitting local shelves, and maybe an appearance at the High Water taproom, starting next week.

January 2016 update

Check it out! A brewery blog post! It’s been literally ages!  

We’ve been keeping busy heading into the start of 2016. The long-anticipated tasting room will finally, after eight years, be opening later this year.


The Oasis is a partnership between Uncommon Brewers and Santa Cruz’s favorite butcher shop, el Salchichiero. Their Matambre kitchen will be serving up sausages and other culinary delights behind our 34’ foot redwood bar.


While we don’t have a scheduled opening date for the tasting room, please join us for a preview event on the 29th of January on the deck at 415 River St in Santa Cruz from 4-8pm. There will be six of our beers on tap and freshly grilled sausages.


And as for what’ll be on tap, we have some some fun new beers coming out this week.


Our newest canned beer is the Japonica Pils. It’s a Czech-style pilsner brewed with ginger and fresh wasabi root. We hit a delicious balance between the pilsner malt body, grassy Bohemian hops, and the subtle mustard heat of wasabi on the finish. Look for it in local stores starting next week.


And with tomorrow marking the start to SF Beer Week, we’re happy to announce the release of this year’s collaboration with The Band of Gypsies. Our friends from High Water and Bison Brewing joined us for a redux of the 2014 Tramp. This year’s version is a Belgian-style Trippel like the original, but with double the dose of sticky ripe persimmons and a blend of macadamia and spring wildflower honeys for conditioning. It’ll be headed out on tap in Santa Cruz county starting next week.


Both of those beers will be available for sampling tomorrow at the SF Beer Week Opening Gala at Pier 35 in San Francisco, at our Oasis preview event on the 29th, and at the Twisted Tasting on January 30th.


Keep an eye out for more updates on our social media feeds @uncommonbeer


Uncommon Brewers