For Immediate Release
Greg Koch / Stone Brewing Co.
Stone Brewing to Create Unparalleled
Restaurant & Beer Garden
The "Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens" Announced
San Marcos, San Diego County, CA --- San Diego's Stone Brewing was recently awarded Malt Advocate Magazine's prestigious "Brewery of the Year" honors, and was named one of the best small companies to work for in San Diego County by the San Diego Business Journal. Stone Brewing has also been recognized by the San Diego Business Journal as one of the twenty fastest growing companies in San Diego County, and has been twice named to Inc Magazine's "Inc 500" list of the fastest growing companies in the United States. Stone Brewing has been named the highest rated brewery in America by BeerAdvocate.com, and RateBeer.com has four times named Stone as "America's Best Brewer."
In just eight and a half years, Stone Brewing has become an icon in the world of great beer.
In mid-2004, Stone announced that the company would be constructing a new $12million, 58,000 square foot, ground-up brewing facility in neighboring Escondido, CA. The brewery is currently brewing around the clock at its San Marcos facility and is still not able to meet demand.
With all that is going on with the young company, it is understandable that some folks have not yet caught up with all of Stone's accomplishments, let alone started wondering "What next?" Well, in true Stone fashion, the brewery has the answer even if you haven't had the chance to form the question.
Stone Brewing just announced that as part of their new brewery facility, there will be an unparalleled 9,500 square foot restaurant, gift shop and visitor center. And that's just the part indoors. Outside, the restaurant will have a large patio area joined with an acre of beer gardens.
Due to open late this year [Update: Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens projected to open Spring 2006.], the restaurant will feature several dramatic elements, including a huge 23 foot high by 42 foot wide window wall that looks to the company's brewery vessels on one side, and on the other side an even larger 23 feet high by 71 feet wide dramatic slanted expanse of glass looking out to the patio and beer garden to the north.
"The glass wall to the outdoor area features three separate slide-up sections, each of which are twelve feet across and ten feet high," said Stone CEO Greg Koch. "On the beautiful days and evenings, of which there are many in Escondido, the window wall will open and the interaction between the indoors and outdoors will become nearly seamless. It is hard to imagine a more ideal setting to enjoy a Stone brew with family and friends."
In addition to two 20-plus ton boulders in the interior, a fourteen foot high artisanal stone wall more than one hundred feet long slowly lowers in height from inside the restaurant, traveling through the glass wall and out into the beer garden area. The motif of the restaurant is being described by the brewery as "warehouse deconstructing into organic," with steel, glass and concrete being intermixed with, and giving way to, organic elements of stone, water, plant life... and fresh air.
With such bold descriptions of the restaurant and beer garden features, and the existing bold reputation of the company's beers, it is only natural to be interested to know if the menu will follow suit.
"Stone fans will find the quality and character of our menu to match that of our beers," said Koch. "And for those that are not fully up to speed on just what that means, it means that people can expect to find a lot of quality and a lot of character" Koch says this will be reflected in a menu that will lean heavily towards items that are locally fresh and naturally raised, tossed liberally with spices, unique sauces and influences from around the world."
A quick glance at the restaurant's menu finds dishes with such wide-ranging ingredients as free-range buffalo, ostrich, tempeh, seitan, ragged jack, kale and bok-choy. Sauces run the gamut from Indian curry to Mexican chipotle to Argentinean chimichurri.
Stone brews can sometimes be characterized by what they are not --- light character "fizzy yellow" beers. Similarly, offerings at the brewery's restaurant might be understood by what won't be available. The company states that it will not offer soft drinks made with corn syrups, cheeses or mustards made with orange/yellow dyes, or "enriched" white breads.
Koch insists it is not due to a condemnation of any of those items however. "When considering our offerings at the restaurant, we can only provide just so many choices. It is our intent to only provide the very best choices in any given food category." This includes everything from the produce and meats, to the condiments, soft drinks, wine and beer. "If something is not considered among the best in its category, don't expect to find it at Stone."
And when it comes to beer, will the brewery offer brands other than their own? An emphatic "absolutely!" is the reply from Stone Brewing President and Brewmaster Steve Wagner. "Yes, Stone brews some of the most respected beers in the world, but that doesn't mean that there aren't many, many other great beers that are worthy of our recognition and admiration. We will eventually offer 32 beers on draft, with additional specialty selections in bottles."
Wagner reports that the beer focus will be on Stone and the best in other local San Diego beers, complimented with additional highlights from around the state, nation and world.
Ask for a "light" beer however, and Koch chuckles "you'd probably get the same blank look of wonder that you might get if you asked for a microwaveable frozen burrito, a Snickers bar, Lotto tickets, or anything else more commonly found at a gas station mini-mart."
Stone Brewing plans for their new brewery to be up-and-running sometime in October, with the restaurant and beer garden to open a month or two following. "Our first focus is getting the brewery part of the equation going so that we may start to satisfy the ever growing demand for our beers," said Wagner.
Founded in 1996, the Stone Brewing Co. is currently open for tours and tastings every Friday from 3-6pm and Saturday from 11-3pm, at [OLD ADDRESS REMOVED]. The new location will be at 1999 Citracado Parkway, Escondido, CA. For more information, go to www.stonebrewing.com