In October of 2017, local homebrewer Miguel Loza’s middle daughter Sarah was diagnosed with Stage 4 lymphoma cancer at nine years old. Compounding that, it was after witnessed her grandma passing at their home in March of 2017 from leiomyosarcoma. Miguel said it made their household stronger going through the heartbreak once again with their daughter battling cancer.
Sarah underwent aggressive treatments, and in January of 2018 doctors found no evidence of disease (NED), but Sarah still had to finish her treatments through June of that year.
Sarah’s parents Maribel and Miguel decided to help other children going through cancer by starting a charity called Chat With Champs.
The concept began with Sarah being in isolation most of the time that she was receiving treatment, which was anywhere from two to three weeks at a time. Meanwhile, the hospital was also in moratorium for the flu season (October through April or even May). During the moratorium, only parents, not siblings or other family members, are permitted in the oncology unit.
The hospital has games and videos that kids can check out while they are hospitalized, and they also have a Friday morning game of Bingo that they play using walkie-talkies for kids in isolation. Sarah and Maribel decided to see if the walkie-talkies could be used for the children to get to know each other. As one of the children expressed, “I won’t feel alone anymore.” This statement resonated among the kids that have been introduced to using the walkie-talkies outside of Bingo games.
Since then, Chat With Champs was able to get approval from Rady Children’s in San Diego to outfit every hospital room, 40 in total, with a walkie-talkie and a base.
“We also outfitted every room in the children’s oncology department at the Naval Hospital,” said Miguel Loza. “Chat With Champs has also helped other families with care packages as they start chemo treatments. Last year, we helped QUAFF gather and deliver 65 toys and $1295 in gift cards for children staying at the hospital to have a Christmas at Rady’s.”
QUAFF (Quality Ale and Fermentation Fraternity) homebrewing club recently paid it forward by brewing a Hazy IPA at Sorrento Mesa brewpub Gravity Heights. QUAFF members Corey Magers, Doug Drown, Nick Corona, and Chris Conaway developed the recipe with the help of Gravity Heights brewers Skip Virgilio, Tommy Kreamer, and Mike Williams.
#Cheers4Sarah arrives at 6.8% ABV and features El Dorado, Mosaic, Simcoe, and Amarillo hops at six pounds per barrel, which were donated by Ballast Point.
The beer will be released at Gravity Heights this Saturday, June 22 and distributed to approximately 30 venues, along with two locations in Japan!
Judge’s Tasting Notes
Satisfying and drinkable juicy Hazy IPA with notes of fresh navel orange zest, honeydew, ripe tangerine, and mango. The sweet malt adds a silky smooth, pillowy mouthfeel to go with the modest bitterness and clean finish.
Drinking Hazy IPA with a Clear Goal
The idea is of this beer is simple: rally everyone to have a pint or more to help these kids and their families.
“We hope it helps them pay their bills, or pay for the deposit of an apartment, and take a bit of worry off their shoulders to keep helping their children go through such a horrible situation. These families selected are going through a lot, let alone the problems they already have outside of dealing with cancer,” said Miguel.
Chat With Champs Recipients This Year, Via Miguel:
“A beautiful champ and this year’s recipient of #Cheers4Sarah fundraiser, Mikayla! She is four years old and despite her daily struggles with chemotherapy treatments — she’s partially blind in one eye and her family is living in a shelter — her smile brightens the room. She was diagnosed in 2017 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. She was so excited to show them how she uses the walkie-talkie in her room to chat with other kids on the same floor.”
Our second recipients/champs for this year’s #Cheers4Sarah fundraiser are brother and sister Valerie and Christian. On September 2018, six year old Valerie was diagnosed with mesenchymal chondrosarcoma, which is an aggressive form of cancer that starts in cartilage or other soft tissue, but not in bone, and may spread to other parts of the body. It may come back many years after treatment. On March 2019, four year old Christian was recently diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a cancerous tumor that starts in the brain and usually spreads to other parts of the body. These two brave little warriors deserve a better life. Please pray for complete healing over their bodies.
Locations where you can drink #Cheers4Sarah Hazy IPA are listed below. Help out by sharing, pouring, and posting the hashtag. If you run a bar or brewpub, contact Gravity Heights to purchase a keg at 858-283-8206 (9920 Pacific Heights Boulevard, San Diego CA 92129).
- Amplified Ale Works East Village: 1429 Island Ave. San Diego CA 92101
- Amplified Ale Works Pacific Beach: 4150 Mission Blvd. #208 San Diego CA 92109
- Bar Sin Nombre: 253 3rd Ave. #100 Chula Vista CA 91910
- Beer Cats Fine Craft Imports (Japan)
- Bottlecraft Little Italy: 2252 India St. San Diego CA 92101
- Bottlecraft: 437 Highway 101 Ste. 107 Solana Beach CA 92075
- Brazil by the Bay Sports Arena: 3676 Kurtz St. San Diego, CA 92110
- Corbins BBQ Rolando: 6548 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego CA 92115
- Cork and Craft Rancho Bernardo: 16990 Via Tazon San Diego CA 92127
- Deli Stop Rancho Penasquitos: 13173 Black Mountain Rd. San Diego CA 92129
- Draft Republic La Jolla: 4282 Esplanade Ct. San Diego, CA 92122
- Fourpenny House Brewery: 8323 La Mesa Blvd. La Mesa CA 91942
- Grind House Ale Barrio Logan: 2163 Logan Ave. San Diego CA 92113
- Hamilton’s Tavern South Park: 1521 30th St. San Diego, CA 92101
- Hoboken Pizza & Beer Joint Pacific Beach: 1459 Garnet Ave. San Diego, CA 92109
- Hoffer’s Cigar Bar: 8282 La Mesa Blvd. La Mesa CA 91942
- Iron Pig Alehouse Pacific Beach: 1520 Garnet Ave. San Diego CA 92109
- Machete Beer House: 2325 Highland Ave. National City CA 91950
- Miss B’s Coconut Club Mission Beach: 3704 Mission Blvd. San Diego CA 92109
- North Park Brewing: 3038 University Ave. San Diego CA 92104)
- Notorious Burgers Carlsbad: 6955 El Camino Real Ste. 107 Carlsbad, CA 92008
- O’Brien’s Pub Kearny Mesa: 4646 Convoy St. San Diego, CA 92111_
- Rip Current Brewing North Park: 4101 30th St. San Diego CA 92104
- Small Bar & Grill University Heights: 4628 Park Blvd. San Diego CA 92116
- The Ugly Dog Pub College Area: 6344 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego CA 92115
- Titans Craft Beer Taproom & Bottle Shop: Japan
- Urge Rancho Bernardo: 16761 Bernardo Center Dr. San Diego CA 92128
- WhipHand Downtown: 935 J St. San Diego CA 92101
- Woodstock Pizza College: 6145 El Cajon Blvd. Ste. 3P San Diego CA 92115