Ten Breweries You Need To Try at The Bruery’s 14th Anniversary Invitational

The Bruery is one of the great breweries in America. You can find their bottles in many places across America, but we’re incredibly fortunate that they call Orange County home– roughly an hour from The Beer Travel Guide’s home base. So when we heard about the lineup at their 14th Anniversary Invitational, coming this August, we jumped at the chance to attend. (And we’re additionally fortunate to be covering the event for our local craft-beer-focused newspaper, Beer Paper LA.)

This isn’t just an anniversary party– it’s a full-blown beer festival. With 72 craft breweries pouring in addition to the host brewery, there will be more incredible craft beer available than you’ll be able to drink. So we thought we’d help guide those in attendance toward a few breweries in hopes of maximizing your experience. Obviously the list of great breweries from California is extensive, and many of these breweries are more accessible for Orange County residents than ones from several states away– so we left most of the best well-established California breweries off this list (with a couple of exceptions) in hopes of giving you the most diverse tasting experience possible.

It’s also impossible to narrow down a list like this without invariably leaving off some of the best breweries across America. Adroit Theory, Aslin, Barreled Souls, Cascade, Cerebral, Hidden Springs, Parish, Pinthouse, Southern Grist, The Veil, Triple Crossing, Voodoo, and so many more– these are places we’ve enjoyed for years, visited in person, and loved. So the below list should not be the entirety of your anniversary invitational itinerary, but just the beginning. But oh, what a beginning it is.

First off, it should go without saying that you should try The Bruery’s selection. They will have several event-exclusive beers, ranging from a unique German Hefeweizen wheat all the way to the big, bold, and barrel-aged. If you’re making your way to their party, it’s because you know how great their beer is. So make sure to say hello to the birthday crew, enjoy some of their birthday brew, and let them know how happy you are that they’ve made it through fourteen fantastic years. Now, onto the others…

Casey Brewing & Blending

We’ve been obsessed with Casey since our visit to their Glenwood Springs taproom. From their lagers to their IPAs to their series of sours, every single beer they make is absolutely world-class– it’s genuinely, unquestionably, one of the best breweries in the country. Unless you find yourself driving down the I-70 in Colorado, this is your best chance to snag some.

Cellador Ales

Okay, we have to include *one* well-established LA/OC area brewery. One of the most heartbreaking pieces of news to hit the brewery world in 2022 was the pending closing of Cellador Ales at the end of the year. Since they’ve opened, Cellador has been making some of the best barrel-aged sours in America. You owe it to yourself to revel in their amazing sours while you still can.

de Garde Brewing

Tilamook is known for two things: outstanding cheese and outstanding spontaneous fermentation beer. de Garde Brewing has made our Best Sours of the Year list on multiple occasions, and since their bottles don’t make their way down to Southern California often, we’ll be hitting this line very early into the anniversary party.

Everywhere Beer Company

Bruery fanatics know Jeremy Grinkey, the former director of production (and “Sour Jesus” on Instagram). Grinkey and three other Bruery alums have founded Everywhere Beer Co., opening next month in Orange– it’s one of our most anticipated brewery openings of the year, and for those unable to attend their opening before the party, this is a great opportunity to acquaint yourself with this brand-spanking-new venture.

Mikerphone Brewing and Phase Three Brewing

We took a road trip through the Chicago suburbs in 2021. Of the well-over-a-dozen breweries we visited, two of the very best places were Mikerphone and Phase Three. They definitely run in the hazy/stout/fruited sour world, but we’ll be damned if they aren’t some of the best out there at those respective styles. And if you’re a smoothie seltzer fan, keep your fingers crossed that Phase Three brings LULZ, their seltzer line that makes easily some of the best smoothie seltzers on the planet.

Orpheus Brewing

At GABF in 2019, Orpheus’s selection of barrel-aged wonders absolutely blew us away. So there’s no doubt that they’ll fit right in at the anniversary party for one of the best barrel-aged breweries in the country. It’s very rare this Atlanta brewery makes their way to the West Coast, so we’ll be some of the first in line to make sure we get to try their pours.

Primitive Beer

Confession: we’ve never had Primitive Beer. It’s been our white whale in the greater Denver area– between its limited hours and the infrequency with which we make it to Longmont when visiting Denver, we’ve never had the chance to try their spontaneously fermented beer, even though we’ve heard amazing things and have been dying to try. So this is one of the names that excites us the most: beer festivals are all about trying new breweries, and this is at the top of our list to try.

The Lost Abbey and Pure Project

I realize this is another infraction of my “don’t include well-known California breweries” parameter, but how often do you get to go to a festival and have the two best breweries from one of the craft beer capitals of the world *both* pouring? The Lost Abbey is a legendary destination for craft beer lovers just outside San Diego, and Pure Project boasts both a series of terrific taprooms *and* great direct-to-consumer delivery in California. Those who haven’t made the trip should make sure to sample the selections here.


Superstition Meadery

A few of the great meaderies in America will be in attendance, including local standout (and one of our favorites) Honey Pot Meadery… but we have to tip the cap to Superstition, one of our favorite meaderies on Earth. Our visit last year led us to try every single mead being poured– and led us to drain our wallets on bottle purchases. When it comes to mead, it’s very very rarely done better than at Superstition.

If you see us there, please say hello! We love to meet readers/followers. Also, if you don’t follow us on TikTok and Instagram, please do so! Thanks– can’t wait to see you at the party! 🍻