Barebottle Brings Beer-Brewing Award Home to Bernal Heights


This Golden Age for Beer in Bernal Heights is officially in full swing, with a handful of new craft-beer havens now open for business around the neighborhood. The Barebottle Brewing Company at 1525 Cortland opened just a few months ago, but it’s already emerged as a must-visit destination for beer lovers, who love it for the wide selection of tasty, house-made beers and the airy, comfortable space.

And now there’s another feature to celebrate: Barebottle just won a medal for making great beer. Team Barebottle explains:

The Barebottle Brewing Company earned a bronze medal at the 2016 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) competition four months after opening it’s doors in San Francisco. GABF is the largest commercial beer competition in the world and recognizes the most outstanding beers produced in the United States. The top three winners in the competition’s 96 beer-style categories were announced October 8 at the Great American Beer Festival awards ceremony held at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado.

Barebottle credits the success for its early GABF medal to its innovative approach to developing and brewing beers. “We’re honored to receive this award, and excited that our model is generating early results,” said Lester Koga, co-founder. “As homebrewers and BJCP certified beer judges, we use a competitive method and local inspiration to develop our beers, and so far, it looks like it’s working well.”

Barebottle was recognized in the Strong Ales beer-style category for its Coastal Red, a big Amber beer inspired by California Coastal Redwood Trees with, “hints of spicy banana bread, fig, and black currant” says Head Brewer Cortlandt Tocyzlowski, who developed and refined the original recipe first as a homebrewer, then as a professional brewer at Drake’s and E.J. Phair before coming to Barebottle as Head Brewer. “These big beers can flirt with being too sweet. I actually use 2 yeast strains: an English strain for 2/3rds of primary, and then West Coast Ale Yeast to help it finish fermenting out.  I think this give me that perfect balance of English body and esters, while the West Coast Ale makes it more crisp, less cloying.”

PHOTO: Barebottle Brewing on Cortland, by Telstar Logistics

2 thoughts on “Barebottle Brings Beer-Brewing Award Home to Bernal Heights

  1. Congrats to the team at Barebottle, a medal from GABF is very serious business in the beer world,

    I like that they are still having food trucks every night for food options to pair with the large selection of beers, which is super cool. Also neat is that they have fresh Crowlers(32oz. cans of to-go beer) already filled and ready to go in the side fridge if you are in a hurry. They are also dated if you worry about when they were canned.

    The only problem is the place is full when I get down there….just kidding. Seeing folks you know and meeting new neighbors over some suds is never a bad thing. Plus cute kids and dogs.

    Keep up the good work, cheers!!

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