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The Brewer's Cut

08 | 19 | 19

Pale Ale Bratwurst

Posted in Food & Beer

When the sun seems angry—your car’s a furnace, your clothes feel like Scotch tape—sometimes you’re desperate for relief. Just give me a body of water, stat. And if you skip town to find your oasis, you might leave some essentials behind. Like your next meal. Dang! Dan Grice, our head chef in Chico, has an easy fix: Pale Ale-poached bratwurst. “If I’m going to the river or going to the...

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07 | 24 | 19

Trails Day Recap

Posted in Beyond the Brewhouse, Sustainability

American Hiking Society (AHS) had an ambitious goal: set a world record on National Trails Day® for the most people participating in trail restoration in a single day. We rallied our employees and community, and on Saturday, June 1, we were part of history! Our efforts wrapped into the record-setting numbers nationwide: 41,424 = people who improved trails in a single day, National Trails Day® 1,164 = registered National Trails...

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06 | 3 | 19

Pouring from the Garden

Posted in Sustainability

Jim Belles surveys the brewery garden, walking a groomed pathway. The sun is still groggy, rising slowly. Jim pivots left, takes a few steps into a row and crouches down. He pops up and holds out a gift. “Give this a try,” he says. It’s an alpine strawberry. A tiny thing—the size of a fingernail—with a curious off-white color. By looks alone, it doesn’t seem that promising. But why would...

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05 | 15 | 19

Way Back with the Wildflower

Posted in Beyond the Brewhouse

The 38th annual Chico Wildflower Century, one of California’s top cycling events, saw 3,300 people in the saddle. They sign up for various reasons: tradition, camaraderie, or crossing one off the bucket list. “I just ride so I can eat pizza for the rest of my life,” says Ben, a 33-year-old from San Francisco who’s made the trek to Chico for the past five years. Ben’s taking a breather at...

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07 | 28 | 15

A Different Kind Of Collaboration

Posted in Beyond the Brewhouse

It all started on a bus. Somewhere between the deserts of Arizona and the rocky shores of Maine, a plot was hatched and promises were made, and finally a new craft brewer collaboration is coming together. But this isn't a beer. We've done that. This is something different. Last summer, on the epic cross-country bus trip during Beer Camp Across America, Jamie Floyd, the owner/brewer of Eugene, Oregon's Ninkasi Brewing...

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11 | 10 | 14

Four Years of Super Composting

Posted in Sustainability, Food & Beer

HOT. ROT. Sounds sexy, doesn't it? No? Well, how about 99.8% of trash diverted from landfill and heaps of it being composted and put to good use? We just celebrated the four-year milestone of super-composting in Chico with our HotRot system. We say "super-composting" because what can take Mother Nature nine months to break down, that baby can plow through in a mere 10 days. Our founder Ken Grossman certainly...

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09 | 13 | 13

Drying Hops Is A Careful Dance

Posted in Our Beer

A sea of hop popcorn, that's what it looks like. A beer lover's ball pit, perhaps. For a place that's oppressively hot, a hop-drying facility, or kiln, manages to be rather beautiful. Often football fields in length, the room brims with a beer ingredient we craft brewers cherish, and if there are skylights, majestic sunshine cascades in to make one big hop halo. It's a delicate beauty, though. A misstep...

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09 | 17 | 13

Wild Hops in Whitmore

Posted in Our Beer

With empty onion sacks tied to our belts, we dove into the thicket and thorns. We'd have to wrestle nature for these wild hops. Our team was in Whitmore, a town about two hours north of our Chico home. A gentleman from Whitmore, Randy—the former postmaster— had recently taken a tour of our brewery. Before leaving, he handed over a note. The gist: There's a hop haul to be had....

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09 | 27 | 13

Hop Selection 2013

Posted in Our Beer

"Should we start with Cascade?" It's fitting that our founder, Ken Grossman, would make that suggestion while in Yakima, Washington, earlier this month for hop selection. He's been smitten with whole-cone Cascade hops since first taking in their grapefruit and pine aromas in the late '70s. (They're the staple of our flagship Pale Ale.) Back then, when Sierra Nevada was but a young idea in his mind, Ken couldn't afford...

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12 | 17 | 12

Holiday IPA Popcorn

Posted in Food & Beer

Cooking with beer is familiar to some and uncharted territory for others. Beer imparts special character, aroma and taste to recipes, and lends adventure to culinary exploration. While eggnog, cocoa, pies and other dessert favorites may dominate your holiday gatherings, here's a fresh idea for a sweet and savory snack: Celebration IPA popcorn. Someone might physically have to take this bowl away from you. Caramel Popcorn with Celebration® IPA 2...

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