Story by the lifestyle team
cross the country, local microbreweries are emerging as space for culture, community and artfully crafted beer.
The craft beer scene in Visalia and the surrounding region is burgeoning and bringing much more than beer to our area. While great beer is the draw, it’s the community that makes the taproom an important piece of our social fabric. Much like the proliferation of coffee shops that sprouted up on every street corner during the ’90s, today, taprooms and microbreweries are quickly becoming an important gathering place for our communities. Each brewery or taproom expresses its personality, culture and beer lineup uniquely, and that is what makes this industry an important and unique expression of local pride.
As we’ve interviewed and spoken to brewmasters and owners, it is evident that they are incredibly proud of their craft. Highlighting key elements of our region through their recipes has given us a variety of tastes to choose from. Most microbreweries have local ownership, people who are invested in the community and have become the perfect business to revitalize forgotten downtowns and give new life to old buildings. They act as catalysts for community involvement.
In celebration of Oktoberfest, Lifestyle Magazine reached out to several new breweries to learn more about great beer and the future of craft microbreweries in our region.
What’s your hope for the future of the craft brewery scene in Tulare County?
What’s your favorite brewery or beer on tap?
What can guests expect from a visit to your brewery?
Brewmaster, Long Shot Brewery, Visalia
I hope to see ourselves past the uncertainty we faced during the pandemic. It would be great to see thriving local breweries that people can visit rotationally.
My favorite brewery would be Rocky Hill Brewing. I was fortunate enough to acquire the brand and recipes recently, and will have three taps dedicated to the brand. Ben Litwack, the previous brewmaster, will be brewing with me to make sure I nail the favorites. His wealth of knowledge will give Long Shot a great start.
Our guests will experience a compact brewery when they visit Long Shot with a max capacity of 50 people. Getting to Know Your Neighbors is a beer name I’m thinking about. With 12 beers on tap, we’ll have variety to keep everyone interested.
Owner, BellCraft Brewing Company, Exeter
I hope that the local beer scene will continue to grow, expand people’s pallets and bring happiness when they gather. The growth of kindness, friendship and new relationships found through beer is what we’re here for.
My personal favorite at BellCraft is the Uncle Tuffy Amber Ale.
Every night is a great time to visit here at BellCraft! Make sure to follow us on Instagram
@bell_craft_brewco to see what food vendors we’ll have throughout the week.
Brian Alves & AJ Soares
Owners, Hop Forged Brewing Company, Hanford
We’re excited to be the first and only brewery in downtown Hanford. We have an opportunity to educate the community and see the love of craft beer grow. We hope the craft beer scene continues to expand while supporting each other, local artists and businesses around the area.
Our house favorites would be a tie between the Main Street Blonde and Tropical IPA. Those two beers are part of our core series and are fan favorites!
Join us on Fridays and Saturdays for live music from local artists, or stop by on Mondays for an all-day happy hour.
Brewmaster, 1852 Brew Co
My hope is to educate people about craft beer. San Diego, the capital of craft beer, is where I learned the trade. I’m hoping to bring that excellence back to Visalia and show people what great beer is all about.
To ask a brewer about their favorite is a difficult question! If I had to choose locally, it would be BellCraft Brew Co in Exeter. I like their atmosphere, and Brent does a really good job with his brews.
At 1852 Visalia, you can expect clean, light, crushable beers across the board, with an atmosphere that’s inviting to all — even if you’re not a soccer player! Come watch soccer, drink good beer, listen to live music and enjoy each other’s company. We’re projected to open January 2022.