With some 2,800 craft brewers in the nation, many of them serving up their beers only in their hometown, it's pretty much impossible to try everything. That's why we went to each city in Beer Camp Across America, Sierra Nevada's seven-stop festival that offered space to every brewery in the nation. At these stops, we sampled hundreds of beers unique to (and sometimes only known in) each region. Here from the San Diego fest, are our favorite small-time brews from Southern California – ones you'll have to try after surfing in Malibu or fishing in San Diego.
Ballast Point: Even Keel
The Brewery: Ballast Point, a brewery in San Diego, California
The Beer: Even Keel, their session IPA
Credit: John Schulz
Tasting Notes: The San Diego brewery’s tropical Sculpin IPA is rightly lauded as one of America’s finest IPAs, but when you’re drinking six beers, you’ll want this session IPA. Despite checking in at 3.8 percent ABV, the herbaceous, grapefruit-tinged Even Keel remains rather full-bodied.