Oregon has one of the most vibrant and exciting craft beer scenes in the country, and one of the largest breweries in the state will again be sending their beloved beer to Southern California.
Ninkasi Brewing Co., based in Eugene, Ore., started in the back of a German restaurant in 2007, and is named after the ancient Sumerian goddess of beer and brewing. The brews are well-known throughout their home state and limited-distribution territories, but were rarely available in Southern California.
But after recent production expansions, Ninkasi has become the third-largest producer of craft beer in Oregon after Deschutes Brewery and the Craft Beer Alliance -- a conglomeration that encompasses the Widmer, Kona, Red Hook, and Omission brands -- and the largest not available in Southern California.
Beginning this month, though, the brewery will send 22-ounce bottles and kegs of its flagship beers to Los Angeles, Orange, and San Diego counties. Total Domination IPA, Tricerahops Double IPA, and Believer Double Red showcase the classic hoppy flavors that the Pacific Northwest is known for with citrus, pine and floral hop flavors and aromas taking center stage.
In addition to the hop-bombs, Ninkasi will be sending two versions of its smooth and creamy oatmeal stout, Oatis and Vanilla Oatis, to SoCal. A limited amount of the brewery’s special and seasonal releases will also make it to the Southland. Keep an eye out for the brewery’s winter seasonal Sleigh’r -- a dark and rich “Double Alt Bier” that proves that Ninkasi’s brewing prowess extends beyond the hoppy beers.
Ninkasi has seen explosive growth since its opening, and the return to the Southern California market is another sign of craft beer’s increasing popularity across the Southland.