A community as unique as Ocean Beach deserves its own beer. This was the thinking of the OB Town Council, and it was shared whole-heartedly by the brewers in the beachy berg when they were invited to collaborate on Crooked Tree, a red West Coast IPA brewed to raise money to offset the costs of a pair of local holiday initiatives.
“The OB Town Council organizes many of the holiday events in Ocean Beach, including the placement of our 30-foot tall Christmas tree at the foot of Newport Avenue and the annual holiday parade, which is on its fortieth year in 2019,” says the Council’s corresponding secretary Jon Carr. “The cost for the parade is upwards of $20,000 and the tree alone is upwards of $3,000 to get done, so we’re always looking for ways to raise funds while at the same time involving community and having a good time.”
As anybody who has spent a fun Friday night in the town in question can attest, a good time can easily be had hopping from one OB establishment to the next. This is especially true of its numerous brewpubs, brewery-owned tasting rooms, bars and restaurants. This was not lost on Carr and company, who were impressed by the “serious bench strength” of its hometown brewers, and sought to leverage their expertise.
“The idea started out as an attempt to get our local bars to do a specialty cocktail or one of the local breweries to do a specialty beer. Once word got out that we were planning a parade brew, everyone wanted in. So, it turned into, if you are a brewer who brews in OB or lives in OB, you’re in the collab,” says Carr.
The team at Pizza Port’s OB brewpub volunteered to host the collaboration and brew the beer. With the site of the teaming determined, representatives from the participating breweries got together to brainstorm about what to brew. That team included locals from OB Brewery, Amplified Ale Works, Bolt Brewery, California Wild Ales, Chula Vista Brewery, Karl Strauss Brewing, Kilowatt Brewing, Modern Times Beer, Pure Project Brewing, Rincon Reservation Road Brewery, The Stalking Horse Brewery, Stone Brewing and Thr3e Punk Ales Brewing. In the end, they went with a classically clear, amber-hued IPA hopped with Cascade, Amarillo and Chinook. Some breweries went so far as to donate ingredients for the collaboration, as did BSG Craft Brewing (hops) and White Labs (yeast).
The finished beer comes in at 6.8% alcohol-by-volume and will be available starting Saturday, December 7 at the parade as well as Pizza Port OB and select retailers within the community.
“We settled on the playful name of Crooked Tree since our local Christmas tree infamously leans left every year,” says Carr. “It really became a beer brewed by Ocean Beach for Ocean Beach.”