Thirsty Bear Brews 1st 100% Local Organic Beer in CA

Thirsty Bear Brewing Company is the first Californian brewery in 75 years to brew beer with 100% local, organically grown ingredients. As San Francisco’s only brewery making CCOF certified organic beers, Thirsty Bear is also a San Francisco certified Green Business.

Thirsty Bear invites you to join them for a special press tour and tasting of Locavore Ale at 5 pm on August 24, 2010.  This is their first 100% Bay Area beer made from Eatwell Farm’s malted barley (Dixon, CA) and Hops-Meister Farm hops (Clear Lake, CA).  Eatwell Farm will also provide its organic heirloom tomatoes for the event prepared by Thirsty Bear’s chef Jessica Gorin.  You may arrange a tour and tasting the week prior to the release up to and including the release date by contacting brewmaster Brenden Dobel at or founding brewmaster and owner Ron Silberstein at

With a renewed emphasis on local, sustainable food, why should beer be any different?  This is the thought behind Thirsty Bear, Eatwell Farm’s and Hops-Meister farms  joint effort to make beer from commercially available, locally grown malted barley. “It’s a model for brewing beer with commercially available and locally sourced ingredients,” says   Ron Silberstein.

“We’ve made beers with locally grown organic hops, but our organic malt comes from Canada, England, or Germany,” explains ThirstyBear head brewer Brenden Dobel.  “Moving California brewing forward requires us to start using organic malts that are locally grown.”

The brewery-restaurant serves Spanish cuisine sourcing its products locally and using a contemporary, seasonal approach to traditional Spanish tapas and paellas.  It is located at 661 Howard Street, San Francisco, California adjacent to the SF MOMA, Yerba Buena Center for the Performing Arts and Moscone Center.

Seventy-five years ago Prohibition destroyed California’s small malt houses and barley production.  Since then, local breweries have had to rely on malted barley grown in the Midwestern plains states, Canada, or Europe.  Barely is trucked to giant, industrial malting facilities and then trucked to the brewery.  This industrial system creates a big disconnect between a local craft brewery and its ingredients.  A few pioneers are trying to restore the local malt house to American craft brewing.  “Our friends at Colorado Malting Company are hand malting small batches for us while we develop a malt house on the farm,” explains Goldsmith.

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