TR Robertson – The 9th annual Novemberfest, sponsored by the Alta Vista Botanical Gardens and the Amigos de Vista Lions Club, was held over the weekend and brought out hundreds of beer, wine, spirits and mead aficionados to sample a wide selection of tastings. An early morning misty rain did not dampen the spirits of those attending as patrons wandered through the Alta Vista Botanical Gardens stopping by the 20+ Meaderies, Breweries, Distilleries and Wineries that were set up under tents scattered around the gardens. This event is sponsored by businesses like Cosmic Solar (providing the tasting glasses), Aloha Printing, Advanced Financial Solutions, Vista Best Pizza & Brew, Elite Landcare, BHA Inc. Land Planning and JSelsRE.com.
Providing food choices at the Novemberfest was the Lions Club BBQ, Sticky Chicken, Cocina del Carmen Mexican food, and Vista Best Pizza & Brew. There were a number of vendors attending as well such as Sun Fire Hot Sauce, Odd Egg, Dragon’s Breath Jerky, Handel’s Ice Cream, Party Pop Popcorn, Butterfly Brittles, SoRich Chocolates, and first-time attendee Checkers Beard Company from Escondido. Those attending could also visit the large set of tables that offered numerous raffle baskets attendees could bid on during the day.
Some of the Meaderies that were set-up for tastings were Meadiocrity from San Marcos providing 4 flavors in cans, Golden Coast Mead, Raging Cider & Mead, Chubby Cheeks Meadery from Temecula, Mead Made Mod from Vista, Twisted Horn from Vista and first-time attendee Wild West Mead of Vista. Wild West has been open for just a month and provided food pairings with their mead tasting. Another first-time attendee was 117-degree West Spirits from Vista that had tastings of their Rye, Whiskey, Bourbon and other samplings. Distiller Justin McCabe said they are open from 3-8 pm Thursday through Saturday at their La Mirada Drive site. Mimosas was on hand for the first time, open for one year in Vista. Barrel Riot San Diego Craft Wines from Poway had a large sample of different wines to taste. They said they had a hidden Speakeasy Tasting Room on Midland Road in Poway. Another winery at the Novemberfest was Propoganda Wine with a tasting room located in CoLab in Vista.
The 20+ breweries were passing out samples of what they offer at their tasting rooms. Some of the breweries in attendance included Dog Leg Brewing from Vista (also handing out discounts for their in-house Simulator), Ten 75 Brewing from San Marcos (1st time at Novemberfest), Vista’s Barrel & Stave, InZane Brewing from downtown Vista, Belching Beaver, and Arcana Brewing from Carlsbad. Several local breweries signed up for attendance were no-shows. The North County Homebrewers Association had eleven homebrewers’ samples to taste and the Society of Barley Engineers also offered samples. Providing entertainment for the Novemberfest was the Night Owls band, all members from North County.
This annual event is always a fun time for those that enjoy sampling a variety of beers, wines, mead and other spirits and provides the breweries, meaderies, wineries and other vendors a chance to talk about everything they offer, their location, times open and discussing how their products are made. Check the Alta Vista Botanical Gardens web site, www.altavistabotanicalgardens.org , to find out dates for other events offered at the Gardens. The location for Alta Vista is 1270 Vale Terrace Dr. in Vista.