For the past seven years Wes Jacobs has been living a beer lover’s dream.
A home brewer for more than two decades, it wasn’t enough for Jacobs to surround himself with just one or even a few styles of beer. Instead he’s surrounded by hundreds of craft beers from all over the area, which he tastes personally, to make sure they meet his standards.
“I like a lot of different beers, and at the time breweries were brewing three or four beers regularly and I didn’t want to be stuck only drinking three or four beers. I wanted to surround myself with the best beers in the world,” said the Redondo Beach resident as he sat inside his Select Beer Store a few days before preparing to celebrate the seven year anniversary of the shop on March 9.
Jacobs is keeping things simple for the anniversary party, which will include a selection of beer from breweries that the shop has featured in the past year plus a barbecue in the back patio and of course hundreds of beers for sale.
“We just want to be a warm comfortable place where people can come enjoy some beer and each other’s company,” he said.
Modeled after the famed City Beer Store in San Francisco, there are about 500 bottles and cans of beer for sale at the shop, which is open only to those 21 and older. And the store pretty much covers the gamut when it comes to anything a beer drinker would want.
A wall of coolers on one side of the shop is filled with cans and bottles from local and international breweries with all sorts of styles available, including stouts, sours, lagers, Belgians, saisons, pale ales and rare selections.
More large bottles and cans sit on shelves on the other side of the shop and in between there’s a bar with 18 beers on tap from local breweries. So you can either drink from the bar, or pull out a can or bottle from the shelf or cooler and drink away as you shop for more brews.
Plus you can bring in your own food.
“Our idea was that there’s no better way to look for a beer than with a beer in your hand,” Jacobs said.
And if you go to the celebration, or just visit the shop one day, what kind of beers will you find at Select Beer that you may not find anywhere else?
Well Jacobs has some suggestions, including the Dark Horse Reserva, a barrel aged dark ale from a Belgian brewery called De Struise Brouwers.
“It’s a very rich, viscous beer that on a cold night you can just sit there with a sifter and it’s perfect,” he said.
If you’re also a whiskey drinker, Jacobs recommends the Hot Toddy-ish from Evil Twin Brewing in New York.
“It’s a barleywine aged in bourbon barrels and you definitely get that whiskey flavor,” he said.
Another pair of rare beers he recommends are the La Tache and Sahalie from Ale Apothecary Brewery from Oregon.
“You don’t see a lot of these around. Everything they do is barrel fermented with very, very nuanced sour notes and different fruit notes,” he said.
If You Go:
When: Noon- 10 p.m. March 9
Where: Select Beer, 1613 S. Pacific Coast Highway, Redondo Beach.
Cost: Free to enter anniversary celebration, beer and food for sale.
Information: 310-540-1221, selectbeerstore.com.