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“Innovation” is a beer-world buzzword, as more and more drinkers seek out new breweries, beers, experiences, and flavors. But for Southern California brewing stalwart Jeff Bagby of Bagby Beer, that constant focus on the new is more dangerous than his traditional approach.
“I’m more scared of… making beers that are flash-in-the-pan styles,” Bagby says. “These things can leave just as fast as they came, and if you don’t have something to fall back on—you can’t make a core beer, you can’t make something that someone wants to come into your place and have three glasses of—what are you going to do? There are only so many flashy new toys that you’re going to be able to come up with.”
Bagby's long and award-filled journey took him from Stone to Pizza Port to Oggi's before he launched his own brewery. After two decades of brewing professionally he took the plunge, launching his eponymous brewpub in 2014 in Oceanside. In this episode, Bagby recounts lessons learned during that storied career—engaging in the brewing feedback loop, the importance of experience on brewing expression, learning the ins and outs of the brewhouse, evaluating inspirational beers, and more. Along the way, he discusses everything from brewing Czech-style dark lager, to pilsner, to the beers he’s most well-known for—West coast IPAs.
This episode is brought to you by:
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Out of the west a storm surprised, swept down on Captain Pabst,
That mariner and gentleman, his actions swift and fast,
He sailed the seabird against the throes, routing twain wind and fear,
He took haste to protect his kin, but the port was far from near,
Pabst’s intuition proved him right, and bore a friendly coast,
The mighty seabird crashed aground, and to that we raise a toast,
For while the seabird indeed was lost, safe were kin and crew,
And without this mighty ship to steer, Captain Pabst... began to brew.
CAPTAIN PABST SEABIRD IPA. EXCLUSIVELY AVAILABLE IN WISCONSIN & CHICAGO.