From the Beer Writer: There’s a lot to be considered when devising a brewpub’s tap list. This is especially true when a venue draws diverse demographics and a clientele that, by and large, isn’t heavy on beer nerds. Such is the case at My Yard Live, a San Marcos restaurant with a family-friendly vibe that is picking up steam among its residential neighbors as a fun spot to bring the kids for a weekend hang session behind indoor and outdoor games, live entertainment, BBQ and, oh yeah…really good beer. More than 15 styles are available at a time. They are the work of a veteran brewer who knows what he’s doing, so everything’s not only sound from a quality perspective, but exceptional from a flavor standpoint. The IPAs are tight studies in West Coast hoppiness, and the Belgian-style beers are floral and fruity. Patrons enjoy them, but are just as likely to order an amber, brown, or light-golden number more akin to the beer they usually drink. My Yard Live is prepared for just such a situation. Head brewer Ben “Shaggy” Blaney challenged himself to create My Yard Lite, a simple, goes-down-easy beer crafted in the style of low-cal, 24-pack offerings from Big Beer conglomerates. In most every way, he succeeded, though, My Yard Lite doesn’t quite come through when it comes to flavor in that, this beer actually has some. Blaney contends that the hardest part of the brewing process was holding back from adding more hops to the beer. Still, it will come across as familiar to fans of light lagers and scratch the refreshment itch for visitors taking in either of My Yard Live’s outdoor patios, and cleanse palates in between forkfuls of house-smoked not-at-all “Lite” barbecue.
From the Brewers: “When it comes to the San Diego beer scene, for a long time it’s been about the biggest and most palate-wrecking beers. But one of the things that I noticed when hanging out with other brewers was that, by the end of the night, we almost all gravitate towards ‘macro-Lagers’, mostly because there has rarely been a craft counterpart available. I was driven to create My Yard Lite, not only because we are in a lager desert—luckily that’s starting to change—but also because it’s one of the most challenging styles to make. These beers can’t be covered up with ridiculous amounts of hops, lactose, or fruit. It’s all about the fermentation, and every brewer I know will give credit to the big guys for their ability to produce a consistent product. That’s my favorite challenge of this beer: trying to get it right every time I brew it. And, of course, it’s brewed the hard way.”—Ben “Shaggy” Blaney, Head Brewer, My Yard Live