For us OC locals who like to get away every once in a while, Big Bear offers a perfect escape to enjoy snowboarding in the winter and water sports in the summer. Lucky for beer lovers, it also offers a quaint little brewery where you can sample some tasty beer and delicious grub. Big Bear Mountain Brewery is located on Big Bear Blvd., a short distance from the ski resorts. For those familiar with Big Bear, it’s basically right across the street from the Alpine Slide.
The brewery’s décor (think beer-themed bumper stickers and signs) and beer selections (written on a chalkboard behind the bar) prove that the owner is a bona-fide beer aficionado- and for the most part, the brews don’t disappoint. We ordered the sampler, which included a large taste (in a slender mug) of each of the 6 beers currently on tap. Since we had read mixed reviews about the place, this was a perfect way to taste each one before deciding on a pint.
Our favorites were the Old Miners Gold German Pilsner, the Red Ant Hill Red Ale, and the Grizzly Bear Doppel Bock. We did not particularly enjoy the Orange Blossom Amber, but were told that some locals visit the place regularly for their daily dose. My pint choice, served in a mason jar, was the Doppel Bock. This amazing brew was surprisingly smooth for a 10.8 ABV beer, with a roasted malty Guinness-like flavor. And, as the bartender pointed out, the brewery’s prices don’t change based on the alcohol content… so, unlike some places, the IPA and Doppel Bock were just as reasonably priced as the other brews.
If you do venture up to Big Bear to enjoy the newly-fallen snow, it’s worth the stop at Big Bear Mountain Brewery to relax and warm up over a pint of tasty mountain brew. For more info, please visit their website.