Every year Stone Brewing commemorates another year of exceptional beer brewing with a celebration held on my campus, California State University San Marcos. My dear friend, Luci, and I have volunteered for the VIP Brewers Reception the past five years with all the event proceeds donated to four non-profit organizations: San Marcos Boys & Girls Club, Fight ALD, Palomar Family YMCA and Surfrider Foundation. If you should know anything about Stone Brewing outside of brewing strong, hoppy beer, it is that they are charitable. They make significant contributions to support the local community. Since the first Stone Anniversary Celebration, Stone has raised over $1,000,000 for charity.
All volunteers undergo a mandatory Responsible Beverage Server training by the department of Alcohol Beverage Control. We are instructed on the consequences on serving underaged or intoxicated patrons. To some degree, it is pretty serious, but the warning signs of underaged guests are things like wearing tacky jewelery, attempting to speak with a deeper voice, and having acne. So I may have turned away some age appropriate adults for these afflictions. There is absolutely NO drinking for the volunteers. If you are caught, you are immediately removed from the event. Refraining from taking sips from the tap pays off in the end as we have an entire volunteer appreciation event hosted at Stone's World Bistro in Escondido the following month. They basically create another celebration with food and beer tasting just for the volunteers; well worth one night of volunteering. Like I alluded to, Stone is exceptionally generous.
These are brews we poured in years past. This year we poured Mikkeller American Dream Pilsner, which rates well as a pilsner, but this wasn't much of a pilsner drinking crowd. A top favored beer of the evening was definitely our other tap, Maui Imperial Coconut Porter. We had many frequent flyers return for refills as the tasty glasses only allow for 2 ounces at a time, but tastes are unlimited. This is not to be confused with Maui's regular coconut porter. The imperial is not canned or bottled, but you can find it on tap at Urge Gastropub in Oceanside. We learned this from the brewers who attended the event and frequented our tent to drink their own brew.
If you'd like to volunteer at next year's celebration, get in touch with any of the benefiting non-profits, as they recruit all the volunteers. Luci and I have volunteered on behalf of the San Marcos Boys & Girls Club and look forward to this annual tradition.
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Anna Fleming, the Curly Vagabond, roams like a local, searching for adventure, tasty cuisine and the best craft beer; all with a sense of humor and a budget any working stiff could appreciate. Home base is Oceanside, CA in North San Diego County.