This past weekend marked and closed out one of the best birthdays of my life....with two previous weekends of raucous celebrating, I have worn myself out. But damn it was a good 3 weekend stint... This past weekend, I flew to San Diego and visited several craft breweries and attended a beer festival. And I tell you, I tasted some incredible brews.....SATURDAY: First stop was Green Flash Brewery, home of one of my favorite beers, Double Stout. And they didn't have it on tap. Damn. But I was not disappointed as I tasted through 8 other noteworthy and tasty ones: -SUMMER SAISON: An unfiltered golden farmhouse ale; nice fruit on the nose, particularly apricot, with notes of yeast. I like this beer. A great out on the porch on a sunny day beer. I could go through some of these on a hot day! ABV 4.3% -30TH STREET PALE ALE: always a favorite in bars in San Diego. Good hoppy notes but gentle. ABV 6% -NUT BROWN (ON CASK): On the nose a little pine tree/tree resin. A bit too mild and dies on the palate. Needs more personality. -NUT BROWN (ON CO2): Let me begin with this caveat, I normally prefer beers on cask, particularly thick, viscous stouts and porters. But for this NUT BROWN, it performed MUCH better on tap. Way more aromatics, showed some brown sugar and pecan. But still pretty mild on finish. Would like to see a little more here. ABV 4.8% -HOPHEAD RED: I like this beer! Alot! Great nose of pine and fern. Delicious full palate with flavors all over the place. Good hoppy attitude. A truly interesting beer. ABV 6% -IMPERIAL IPA: Dried apricot and fig mingled with fresh tree fruit. But a weird aspect on the finish I can't identify. Being a wine person, my guess is a fermentation thing, but a smarter beer expert would be able to call it. ABV 9% -TRIPPEL: Tons of bubblegum with raspberry notes on the nose and palate. Hmmm. ABV 9.7% -BELGIAN STOUT: Dark, roasted coffee colored head. Roasted wood, nuts, and bacon (YES, bacon!) on the nose. Whoa. Tons of tobacco on the palate. A dark rich, beer to be sipped and sipped as every time I stuck my nose in the glass I got more out of it....ABV 8.8% AND FINALLY...... -PALATE WRECKER: Well, I love the name. And what a delicious beer to be savored. Lots and lots of papaya on the nose with notes of mango and tropical fruits. The mango really comes out on the palate. Good finish with a spike of bitterness at the very end. Glad I tasted this one last. Good way to leave Green Flash! ABV 10+% PS. THANKS TO MJ AND KELLY WHO MADE MY VISIT SO MUCH FUN!!!!