What’s Brewing in San Leandro?
NOTE: Due to a technical error, several San Leandro Next posts published between June 30 and August 24, 2021 were deleted. We have been able to recover the content and are making it available again. This post was previously published on July 29, 2021.
Seasoned San Leandrans are no strangers to the fact that San Leandro is home to makers of brewed goodness. Drake’s Brewing Company has held the longest tenure, brewing beer in town since 1989 and holding fort at the Gate510 at 1933 Davis Street, but over the past decade, what was once a small craft beer cluster has grown to become a diverse brewing community.
Last year, many were sad to learn of the closing of Cleophus Quealy, a small-batch brewery that quickly became a local favorite. Cleophus opened in November of 2014 and specialized in unique brews and sours. One might call them a brewery for aficionados. Cleophus regulars will be pleased to know that they will have one more chance to imbibe in the CQ brews (read on.)
Then, in 2015, came 21st Amendment Brewery, which occupied the former Kellogg’s building at 2010 Williams Street. 21A has established itself as a fixture in the community and has consistently reigned among the top breweries in the Bay Area.
But beer isn’t the only thing brewing in San Leandro. Relocating from Oakland, House Kombucha moved its manufacturing to San Leandro in 2016 and has maintained a steady presence in retail store throughout the region. The product has a lower sugar content than most kombuchas and is therefore virtually alcohol-free.
So with both kombucha and beer being brewed separately, it only makes sense that Dr. Hops Kombucha Beer join the community. Also at the Gate510, Dr. Hops combines kombucha fermentation process with organic hops for a unique and flavorful libation.
If beer and kombucha aren’t your thing, you may want to sample a crisp hard cider, and San Leandro is also home to two cideries. Hidden Star Orchards brews cider from apples grown in the Sierra Foothills.
The newest addition to the brewing family is Blindwood Cider, located a stone’s throw from 21st Amendment, at 2457 Williams Street. Blindwood takes a somewhat daring approach to brewing cider, producing unique varieties such as honey sage and ginger peppercorn.
But San Leandro has also been home to a variety of beer events. For years, Sausage and Suds was a Downtown favorite get-together with beer, wine, food, and live music. In recent years, the Cooler has invited patrons to enjoy quizzo nights, ugly Christmas Sweater parties, and more. And after a hiatus from “beertertainment” during the pandemic, 21st Amendment has announced its Augustfest celebration – this year celebrating the 21st anniversary of the company.
This year’s Augustfest will take place on Saturday, August 21 (of course!), from 1PM until 7PM and will be serving its own celebrated beers alongside a final taste of Cleophus Quealy, as 21A has gracefully held on to some of the last CQ batches and will offer them at this event. This outdoor event will take place at the 21A Taproom at 2010 Williams Street.