Yesterday we had a little barbecue and Dean brought by one of my favorite beers, Bear Republic's Red Rocket Ale. Someday I'll get around to a top 10 beer list, like Max, but this ale would certainly be on it. (Off the top of my head, I would also include Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale, Avery Salvation Golden Ale, Delirium Tremens, Alpine Ale, Shiner Bock and Highway 78 Scotch Ale.) Bear Republic also makes an excellent IPA, Racer 5.
As you can see from the picture, Red Rocket pours a dark amber-brown, with a head that is full but disappears quickly. But don't let that fool you, it's full of flavor. It has just a hint of sweetness to balance much more hoppiness than expected from an amber ale. Red Rocket is fairly complex, and always takes me a few sips to absorb all of the different flavors embedded. At 6.8% ABV, its not too boozy so its a nice companion to a bbq meal especially steak. Although not a San Diego beer, it is from California, Healdsburg to be specific. Craft beer is one of the few growing industries in our state, and also the least regulated, figure that.