Ahoy there, mateys. Three doubloons to the scurvy pirate who … ugh. I’ll not continue with that for your sake, and mine, too. Maybe after a few brews at the recently launched Poseidon Brewing Company in Ventura I could return to the pirate-speak, but until then I’ll leave it to your quirky Facebook friend.
Poseidon Brewing Company is the latest in the county’s brewery lineup, and it has made a splash by starting out on a good note: the IPA’s are fantastic. Specifically the grapefruit IPA, which we were given a preview of at this year’s Ventura County Fair.
First, let’s talk the tasting room itself. Owners Brian Oliver and Vinita Anand went to extreme lengths to scavenge up the wood that makes up the tables, traveling to the Pacific Northwest in search of a particular wood known as wormwood. Pillaged from the hulls of early-20th-century barges, the wood looks as though a toddler took a drill press to it, but in fact the holes that give the tabletops their unique look were bored by sea worms. Interesting! And a little creepy, but it looks fantastic.
The beer is above average for a start-up, and a part of the reason why would be brewmaster Reno King, a transfer from Santa Barbara’s Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company. King worked with Oliver and Anand on four of the recipes, while the owners brought three of their own.
Of the six or so we tasted on the day before the grand opening, the two standouts were the Hueneme Wit, brewed with both Belgian and German malts plus three different hops from England, and an interesting blend of spices, including coriander and whole chamomile flowers. The Wit is as aromatic as the briny sea but, you know, in a good way.
The two IPAs on tap, the Grapefruit India Pale Ale and the Dirty Diver Double IPA, were both exceptional, with the grapefruit really popping. The double IPA was a bit reminiscent of the Lizard’s Mouth double IPA from Figueroa Mountain, which isn’t a bad thing.
Grand opening week saw the Dirty Diver and the Shallow Water Black Stout on nitrogen. The nitro brought out the chocolate goodness of the stout without accentuating the malty bitterness. Keep this one in mind for a dessert pairing.
Welcome, Poseidon, king of the sea, to the VC beer scene. There is no such thing as too many breweries, just ask San Diego. Keep ’em coming.
Chris O’Neal is going to need a bigger boat. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter @agentoneal.