Why should San Diego County have all the high-quality beer in Southern California? For years, that’s the question that Jeremy Raub and father Steve couldn’t shake. Two years ago, after “lamenting the fact that L.A. doesn’t have a great beer scene,” Jeremy and Dad decided to do something about it, outlining their vision for Eagle Rock Brewery. Earlier today, Jeremy led a tour of the warehouse and outlined his expectations. Health Department willing, Eagle Rock Brewery could open by June.
Jeremy Raub grew up in Rochester, New York, and moved to Los Angeles in 1995 to work in the movie industry. Four years later, his parents followed him to Los Angeles. When Jeremy and wife Ting Su bought their first house, Jeremy and Steve celebrated by brewing red ale, using a home kit they purchased at Woodland Hills’ Home Wine, Beer and Cheesemaking Shop. Their celebration turned into an infatuation. Father and son were soon brewing on a regular basis. They became home brew judges and soon tested their mettle at home brewing competitions. This is how they got feedback and refined their brewing skills. The Raubs also racked up medals and ribbons. Two years ago, they decided to brew on a grander scale.
The Raubs bought AleSmith’s equipment since the San Diego brewery upgraded to a larger facility. Jeremy equates AleSmith’s system of repurposed dairy tanks to “a scaled up home brew system.” AleSmith earned acclaim for their brews, which helped to reassure the Raubs. “It’s nice to know this equipment has a good track record,” says Jeremy. “They have good mojo working. It makes me feel confident that the equipment works.” The AleSmith brewers are also still available for tech support, in case the Raubs run into any issues.
“We don’t like to stick to a particular style,” says Jeremy. “We try to brew traditional styles and give them our own little twists.” Their first three offerings will center on malt, hops and yeast, “to showcase beer’s three primary ingredients. One of their first brews will likely be a light Belgian style witte beer made with lemongrass and Kaffir lime leaf. Jeremy is also considering “Black Mild, an English mild ale colored black so it looks like a stout or porter, but it has light flavor.” The tasting room will have 8 taps to start.
There will be no kitchen and the Raubs aren’t planning food, but they should have prepackaged foods like cheese to show the broad ranges of flavors that beer poses. “We want to be able to teach people about all the different accents of beer.”
When it comes to opening, the Raubs have more work to do. They still need to cut the floor drains and separate the brewhouse from raw material storage, per the Health Department. According to Jeremy, “We’re hoping for some time in June.”