Oakland has been a bit of a dark horse in the race to becoming one of California’s top craft beer destinations, but today it deserves every inch of credit it is given. While filming in this wonderfully rugged and unashamedly urban spot, we discovered a diamond in the so-called rough. Tucked away in West Oakland, straddled by a criss-cross of train tracks, you will find Linden Street Brewery – a handsome brick warehouse and a symbol of the regeneration at the heart of this innovative city.
‘Lager’ than life
The four man team is expertly led by Adam Lamoreaux whose passion for the golden stuff is clear. He will guide you through the brewing process and lovingly tell you how each variety is created (which, we learnt, is largely through adoration and serious attention to detail). There is a heavy focus on lager, as Lamoreaux believes everyone happily drinks IPAs (himself included) and that something new needed to be done. They offer a variety of different brews; the Californian common ‘steam beer’ which can be found in most breweries, a black lager, a red lager and a special ‘town lager’, which is only delivered locally… by bike. These boys do Cali cool well.
A local focus
Another thing that sets Linden Street Brewery apart is its work with local restaurants and therefore its innate ability to become a feature on the food scene. A recent collaboration saw them creating a special lager called Superfly for hip Oakland eatery, Hawker fare. Made with malted barley and rice, it has a nutty character and goes pretty perfectly with the lauded rice bowls that helped sky-rocket chef James Syhabout to Michelin-starred fame. More recently, Lamoureaux and Shyabout joined forces to open THE new culinary hot spot, the Dock at Linden Street.
So you see, Linden Street Brewery does more than what it says on the tin. Yes, it creates delicious lagers that keep punters coming back for more, but it also seeks to promote other emerging talent in the unique, industrial landscape. Gone are the days of Oakland as a route to SF; places like this are redefining this city and it’s pretty exciting.