Episode #83: Tasting Room Del Mar



Tasting Room Del Mar sounds like a place only your rich uncle (or aunt) wants to go to.  In reality, it’s no where near that pretentious.  Sure, it’s classy.  Sure, they have high quality food, beer, and wine.  Sometimes you need a spot that’s not a dark, crowded, loud craft beer bar.  There’s plenty more to say about TRDM, but I’ll let our host, Executive Chef, Steven Lona tell you more about why you should head up to Del Mar and try out this new dining experience.  Another awesome part of this show is we are recording in the wine (and beer) cellar at Tasting Room Del Mar.


It starts with the origin story of this restaurant being a Bruegger’s Bagels with a glass door to the Starbucks next door.  They turned it into almost the restaurant it is today.  As it is with many places, the original plan did not work once implemented.  It went from a lounge-like feel to what it is today, a restaurant feel.  Beagle moves the conversation more to what Steven’s origin story is and the beers he enjoys.  During that conversation we start talking about Russian River and the Pliny vs. Blind Pig talk.  Magically we have a bottle of Blind Pig from our awesome listener Ryan!  Steven continues the beer conversation on how he seems to have some of the best and most sought after beers early in his beer drinking life.  You can’t talk about beer in San Diego without eventually talking about Nate Soroko.  With Steven being a chef as well, the two got along really well.  Speaking of chefs, TRDM also has a celebrity chef, their Chef de Cuisine Jenny Goycochea.  You might know her from her multiple appearances on Cutthroat Kitchen on Food Network.  We move onto a conversation about beer.  We first ask Steven about how he picks the beers. That leads into a talk about getting beers on tap from people like Societe and how hiring Michael Peacock to help with their draft system was a major plus.  Also being a new restaurant with a new draft system didn’t hurt either.

We take a break and I ask if there is any type of duality with TRDM in that it seems to be a wine bar that also has craft beer.  Steven does a great job explaining what the plan was from the beginning.  While looking into wine and beer pairings, Brian asks about their Surrender Series of meals.  In short, you let TRDM pick the food, beer, and wine for you.  You just sit back and relax and enjoy a night out.   Because of the growth of beer brunches and dinners and so forth, Steven talks about a few pairings that surprised him.

Listener Question:

Neil Halpin: What’s the best beer and food pairing they’ve ever had?

In The News!

  • Anheuser-Busch InBev’s ZX Ventures Group Purchases Popular Homebrew Supply Company Northern Brewer/Midwest Supplies.  Chris Farley (founder) says “nothing will fundamentally change.”  Read more on Brewbound.
  • Firestone Walker Says Farewell to Wookey Jack, Double Jack and Opal Saison.  Not immediately gone, but will diminish over the next few months.  More info found on The Full Pint.
  • This month, the California Craft Brewers Association became the first craft-beer trade association in the country to establish a benefits trust intended to help small brewing companies reduce the cost of providing benefits packages to their employees.  More than 700 craft breweries now active within the state, however breweries must have 10 or more employees to qualify, while those with over 100 already have access to large group rates.  Plans available include medical, dental, vision, life, and disability insurance.  Read this article over at San Diego Reader.

I Do Declare!

Thank you The Perfect Pour, Colin Salmon, Tait Campbell, Ken Lierman, Amy (and Rudy) Pollorena, Chris Bush, Mitch Tantrum, Tony Bagz, Aaron Graham, Tom Keliinoi, Nick Shields, Ryan DeBusk, and Eddie Martin!

Where to find our guests:

Tasting Room Del Mar:
Twitter: @tastingroomDM
Instagram: @tastingroomdelmar
FaceBook: facebook.com/tastingroomdelmar/
Website: www.tastingroomdelmar.com

This episode was recorded inside the Wine & Beer Cellar at Tasting Room Del Mar!

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