For a couple years, I lived in Belmont on the San Francisco Peninsula. Devil’s Canyon was my home town brewery and on the last Friday of each month, they’d hold an open house simply called Beer Friday. I remember the first time I went. I expected just a few like-minded beer geeks to show up with maybe a few other curious onlookers. As I drove that night into the small industrial park where Devil’s Canyon was located, the large crowds walking by quickly changed that notion. They had a band, a food truck, it was just a big fun casual neighborhood party. That evening, I realized people want to connect with their local brewery, even if they have only a passing interest in beer.
I moved away from Belmont in 2012 to Campbell in Bay Area’s Silicon Valley and never went back to Devil’s Canyon until last Friday. Devil’s Canyon also moved south, to San Carlos in 2013. I was there to do research for a story in the upcoming issue of Edible Silicon Valley. I won’t give up too much about the story for the next issue, but suffice to say, it has something to do with the way Devil’s Canyon was well ahead of its time in drawing people into their brewery, connecting people with the place their beer comes from.
I’d been away from Devil’s Canyon for too long. The Deadicated Amber I sampled fresh from the brewery really popped with toasted malt flavors. Deadicated Amber was my regular beer on “burrito nights” in Belmont when my wife and I would walk down to our local taqueria for dinner to recover on long work days when we were both too tired to cook. I always enjoyed Deadicated Amber on those burrito nights, but drinking it straight from the brewery was even more special on at least a couple different levels.
I’d like give special thanks to Devil’s Canyon’s Rebekah Atwell who showed me around the San Carlos facility and told me all about the Devil’s Canyon beers. Rebekah handles marketing and customer relations for Devil’s Canyon, though her official title at Devil’s Canyon is “Herself”. Her title seems like clever way of confronting conflict of identity versus categorizing people into traditional roles, but perhaps I’m just over thinking things here. Anyway, thanks to Rebekah and everyone else at Devil’s Canyon who helped with the story and looking forward to when it’s published in the next issue of Edible Silicon Valley. I’ll leave you with some pictures taken during the visit.