The 20 Best Beers to Drink this Spring - hop culture
The Fun Zone is a dry-hopped grisette barrel-aged with nectarines. It’s lightly fruity and extremely refreshing, perfect for a mid-day BBQ or late night dinner party. Pair with a veggie platter or some light appetizers.
Meet Robert Fitzgerald of Gunwhale Ales - voyage la
Our Head Brewer Kevin Hammons deserves a ton of credit, as he is pumping out new beers almost every week with incredible quality. Without pilot batches, this can be a risk… and consumers should consider how hard it is to nail something on the first recipe. Consumers want ‘the shiny new” but there really is a big degree of difficulty in executing it. The rest of our production staff and our front of house (taproom) staff also has been so great since day one.
6 Questions with Bobby Fitzgerald, Co-Founder of Gunwhale Ales - hop culture
My partners and I wanted to bring to market beers that weren’t readily available at the time: Easy drinking saisons and mixed-ferm beers, unfiltered hoppy beers, and more balanced and nuanced interpretations. We also thought it to be fun to explore the hybridization of styles–with the goal of exploring hops and yeast together, to make beers with a sense of the place of our region, and that matched the lifestyle of Orange County
COMING SOON: GUNWHALE ALES AND BELLO - ocweekly
Helmed by Co-founders Bobby Fitzerald, Justin Miller and JT Wallace, as well as Head Brewer Kevin Hammons, the crew has set their sights on a destination off the 57. Instinctively, we assumed Anaheim; alas, it was an optical illusion. While they are most definitely off Orangewood, the second branch of Gunwhle Ales is in neighboring Orange
WHAT’S NEXT FOR ORANGE COUNTY’S BURGEONING BEER SCENE?
As Boy Pablo’s “Dance, Baby!” jams in the background, Bogdanski slings five bags of chilled pelletized hops onto Gunwhale’s second-level fermentation catwalk, climbs up a squeaky ladder, then squirts isopropyl alcohol around a tank’s bottom port. “I have to blow off some of the hop matter caked in the bottom,” she explains, then waits patiently as nothing comes out.
COSTA MESA’S WALKABLE BEER TRAIL, WHAT THE ALE!
Well, OC has another beer trail: a quarter-mile-long stretch of Randolph Street in Costa Mesa holds upward of 60 beers and some of the tastiest bites in the county.
I recommend starting at Gunwhale Ales
“3 SMALL SOUTH O.C. BREWERIES YOU NEED TO VISIT”
With their focus on rustic farmhouse and wild ales, Costa Mesa’s Gunwhale has an impressive array of the Saison style. Showing just how diverse a single style could be, one could explore the archaic nature of this style and how unique each example could be all while still exhibiting classic Saison-style indicators.
GREG NAGEL’S FAVORITE BEERS OF 2018, WHAT THE ALE!
I can’t talk favorite beers without mentioning Gunwhale Ales, who seemingly make beers for me as if it were my personal chef. We obviously have the same taste in beer: IPA and Saison all day. Of its many Saisons, Hayshaker pushed all my farmhouse buttons.
Some Ways To Experience Local Sour Beer Culture
Focusing on rustic saisons and sours, Gunwhale ensures you’ll find some great-tasting beers. Hayshaker is a staple for the traditional farmhouse ale and a recent bronze medal winner at this year’s Great American Beer Festival.
"best local brewery (editors choice) and best sour beers (readers choice) 2018" -- Oc WEEKLY
“Its ability to shine a prism on common beer styles such as the IPA and Saison and fill a portfolio with brews that are so full of personality is astounding. The IPAs are soft and hazy, dank West Coast, or dry and brutey; the wild IPA is foeder-aged with expressive trois yeast. On the Saison side, it’s a rainbow trip into what beer is capable of becoming.”
GUNWHALE ALES MISSION STATEMENT, OUR BEER OF THE WEEK! - oc weekly
“Mission Statement is a love letter to French oak and peaches. The beer looks like peach-juice from foggy fruit pectins…the head dissipating into thin air as its poured. On the nose is a two-lane street of oaky-vanilla and fuzzy peach skin with bits of tropical funk from the Brettanomyces yeast.”
2018 GREAT AMERICAN BEER FESTIVAL WINNERS, OUR BEERS OF THE WEEK! - oc weekly
“Hayshaker Classic Saison: One of the most under-appreciated beer styles and the people at Gunwhale Ales usually have multiple on tap at all times. ”
episode 214: Gunwhale Ales at Windsor Homebrew Supply Co. - 4 brewers podcast
"This week, we’re back at Windsor Homebrew Supply Company for part two of our four-part series and today, we welcome Kevin and Bobby from Costa Mesa’s Gunwhale Ales ."
PODCAST EP 77- DRINKING BY THE SEA WITH BOBBY FROM GUNWHALE ALES -- THE FULL PINT
"This week, we are joined by co-founder Bobby Fitzgerald of Gunwhale Ales in Costa Mesa, CA. Gunwhale Ales is a fairly young brewery with a focused lineup of beers crafted to drink by the sea."
"The Hop-Forward, Yeast-Driven Suds of Gunwhale Ales: What the Ale!" -- Oc WEEKLY
"Home brewers with a passion for life that equals their passion for beer, friends Justin Miller, JT Wallace and Bobby Fitzgerald say their goal is to merge the great-tasting farmhouse style with the hop-forward West Coast IPA for a hybrid they call Coastal Ales."
"Nagel’s Best O.C. Beers of 2017" -- ORANGE COAST MAGAZINE
"...the Gunwhale guys came out of the gate with several pale-farmhouse style saisons, each of which instantly got my attention. Although all of them are completely different, Majordomo did it all for me."
"Loaded to the Gunwhales at Year One" -- Orange coast magazine
"It’s fairly uncommon when a brewery makes great beer right out of the gate. It’s even rarer when you find one that gets better with every beer you try. Compound that with a year of solid releases, and you’ve got something truly extraordinary…"
"The 10 best breweries to get craft beer in Orange County" -- Oc register
"Not far from the Lab and the Camp, you’ll find this smallish, stripped-down but sleek gem. There aren’t any upholstered stools or chairs, but there’s an attempt at decor, with white subway tiles, nautical touches and hanging ferns..."
"Best Winter Beers In Orange County" -- CBS LOS ANGELES
"Gunwhale’s unique seasonal ale Wolfbait is perhaps their greatest offering. The beer begins with a dark farmhouse base that is fermented in an oak foeder and Saccharomyces Brux Trois yeast. The final product is a delightful dance of sour cherries and gingerbread spice that makes you yearn for a roaring fire and bearskin rug."
"EPISODE #118" -- BREW BLOODS PODCAST
"Two co-founders from Gunwhale Ales in Costa Mesa, California join Marc to talk about what a coastal ale is, how hard it is to stand out in a mature beer market, and how three co-founders make a business work without butting heads."
"[S4/E40] Gunwhale Ales, Brah!" -- FOUR BREWERS PODCAST
"Ok, I’ll spare you the poor impersonation of a mid-1980’s surfer. Gunwhale Ales is fairly new to Orange County craft beer scene, but they’re already making some bodacious waves—sorry. I said I would stop. Ok. Gunwhale Ales has been open less than a year, and they’re already making a splash—damnit. Ok. Gunwhale Ales is making some rad beer…ugh. I give up."
"[S4/E39] It’s Always Sunny In Orange County" -- FOUR BREWERS PODCAST
"Craft and Independent brewery numbers are at an all-time high, and the variety of beer available to beer drinkers is simply amazing. This week, we’re hanging out in our proverbial backyard and drinking some brew from sunny Orange County, California."
"What Beer Taught Me About Business" -- article from writing stiles
"For Gunwhale Ale’s co-founder Bobby Fitzgerald branding is about authenticity – what is OC known for, and how is that reflected in the beers they offer? They sought to capture the sense of the region and reinforce a sense of place through a culinary-driven, locally-sourced approach."
The Experience: Gunwhale Ales (Costa Mesa, CA) -- the EPISODIC EATER
"Next up was my favorite of the night, the Old Rackatee, and Amarillo a single hopped, saison with farro. If you read most of my work, you know I geek-out over complexity in beer, this Old Rackatee embodied just that. On the nose was mostly citrus hopped notes from the Amarrillo, true to that hop’s profile of course. It smelled just like I was about to dive into a west coast ipa, I was wrong. "
"Gunwhale Ales beer balances nautical and nice" -- los angeles times
"Highly nuanced, wine-like beers like Gunwhale's are usually found on the outer fringes of the beer industry, made by small operations like Monkish in Torrance or as part of nerdy side projects that, with barrels stacked to the sky, look more akin to wineries (see: Bruery Terreux and Beachwood Blendery). If you want the beers at home, you'll normally have to buy them in a large-format wine bottle with a cork and cage top that elevates the product even more.
Year in Review — How did we find time to drink? -- good beer hunting
"These guys are going to make some of my favorite beer in 2016. Such a great concept. "
"Gunwhale microbrewery focuses on 'coastal ales,' bold beers with a strong vibe" -- l.a. times
"He pointed to the bar of finished wood, more than 100 years old, found in Old Towne Orange. Adding to the rustic decor were hanging ferns. Mounted on the wall was an antelope head, and nearby were tools a lumberjack, sailor or farmer might use: a pitchfork, saw, ropes with various knots. Outside, the patio was dotted with tree trunks being used as tables."