Thursday, November 18, 2010

A New Brew in Yuba City!

There’s a new brew in town, boys and girls, and I’m proud to say that I enjoyed a pint of the very first day’s offering.

Sutter Buttes Brewing Company in Yuba City, CA had what they called a “soft opening” today. I’ve had my eye on the place ever since I heard that a new brewpub in Yuba City was actually getting ready to open. Getting a handcrafted ale from a local brewer is the best way to enjoy beer. But the Yuba-Sutter area has had, up till now, nothing to offer like that.

So I picked my daughter up from school and spirited her over the bridge to Center Street, just off Plumas to the attractive little storefront with the big street view windows and marked with the logo sign of Sutter Buttes Brewing. No one familiar with the area could miss the iconic Yuba City water tower highlighting the sign artwork. Standing just inside the door, a young woman in black greeted us. “Welcome!”

About ten wooden four-seater tables were arranged in the floor space, and a long bar filled with customers faced the gleaming stainless steel tanks along the wall. Several other black-clad staff were moving around behind the bar taking orders, figuring out the cash register, drawing beer and trying to answer questions.

On tap today was a bold Irish Red ale, the first Sutter Buttes-made beverage for sale. I inquired about any other beers available, and found a taster of pale ale in front of me on the copper-clad section of the low bar where I chose to sit. I found out that, to ensure more visitors could find something to their liking, they were carrying another brewery’s pale ale, “Bent Knife,” and a hard cider. But I was here to taste the local, so my daughter and I asked for a pint each of the red.

I was hoping enough to like it that I knew I would be very forgiving if it wasn’t quite up to my usual standards. But with great pleasure, I found that I didn’t have to make any excuses for this beer. It was excellent! Deep red, the flavor was as rich as the color, but hopped up enough to please any IPA fan. It had a good medium body, thirst quenching, but not thin. I also liked the level of carbonation. Nice and sparkly without being gassy. I took a long time over this pint; we ordered a plate of the fries to enjoy with the last half of the glass.
The final test for me is always in the last inch. As the ale warms and goes flat, does the flavor go flat also? That’s important to me, since I always linger over my drink. This one didn’t disappoint, I’m happy to say. If anything, the complexity of the brew became more pronounced and interesting as it warmed.

I’m looking forward to see what’s new as this business gets going into full swing. The fries were great, and if the rest of the food is like them, I’m sure I’ll be eating some meals there too. They serve lunch and dinner. The brewer told me they expect their growler program to be up and running in about a month and a half.

Of course, the hard part was coming home and telling my husband that we has gone and checked the place out without him. But I'm sure I’ll be bringing him with me when they get their IPA ready!