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Moving to SLC from San Diego

Discussion in 'Mountain' started by Chetlemon, Jan 3, 2013.

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  1. Chetlemon

    Chetlemon Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2009 California

    I know there is NO way the beer scene will be a fraction of the San Diego brew selection, but someone please tell me there are good bottle shops, brew pubs, home brew festivals to be had in Salt Lake City. Tell me those crazy mormon laws have expired too. Please help a brotha out.
  2. mikey451

    mikey451 Initiate (35) Mar 11, 2003 Utah

    I've been writing about the local beer scene in Utah for the past 7 years, my blog has damn near every answer to every question you may have about beer in SLC. Feel free to BM me. Cheers.

  3. mikey451

    mikey451 Initiate (35) Mar 11, 2003 Utah

  4. Steve_0

    Steve_0 Aspirant (216) Mar 14, 2012 Colorado
    Beer Trader

    Nice! This is where I found out about EPIC's inked deal to move a new brewery here, to Denver.
  5. skivtjerry

    skivtjerry Zealot (524) Mar 10, 2006 Vermont

    I'm sorry. Hope you're a homebrewer.

    Seriously, it's not that bad. I lived in SLC for 9 years; haven't been back for a couple years but things keep getting better. Uinta and Epic, especially, are world class breweries with lots of nice offerings. All the brewpubs have good food, and there is an abundance of great cheap restaurants of all ethnicities. The only real PITA is the 4%ABV restriction on draft beer. No beaches, but if you're a skier you will be very happy.

    Salt Lake is now a modern progressive city, and that includes its beer scene. Drive an hour out of the city and things change drastically (not for the better).
  6. pokesbeerdude

    pokesbeerdude Initiate (0) Oct 2, 2007 Colorado

    I lived in Utah for about 4 years and the SLC beer scene experienced excellent growth from about 2008-2012. The 4% draft thing sucks, but it has forced the hands of the brewers to make some very good session beers. Squatters has great food and awesome beer, I miss being able to get their stuff regularly. Also SLC is as others have said a lot more progressive. Just so long as you're not moving to Provo you'll be able to find good beer.
  7. EdH

    EdH Initiate (0) Jul 27, 2005 Utah

    More like ten minutes :wink:
  8. shebby

    shebby Initiate (0) Feb 29, 2012 Utah
    Beer Trader

    I just got back from visiting SLC (and we'll potentially move there in August). It's definitely a cool city, although we experienced inversion (winter smog) weather the entire time so that was a bit of a bummer. But I can't think of any other major city that is so close to the mountains, and with a short drive, we could be surrounded by blue skies and piles of powder. For the most part, everyone seemed happy and laid-back, willing to chat and ready to accommodate. There's obviously a Mormon influence, but it was not nearly as pronounced as I had imagined, and I also liked that downtown stayed busy well into the night.

    As far as beer goes, I like BIG beers so I had a hard time enjoying some of the 4% offerings. They were either a little one-dimensional or watery for my taste, but they were still refreshing and drinkable. I'm spoiled by my current access to a bunch of amazing beer bars in KC, so I missed huge tap lists and paying for what you'll drink rather than a large-format bottle. For example, I wanted to try more Epic beers, but I couldn't justify buying a large-format bottle (even though they are relatively cheap) when I could only finish about half of it. We did visit the Epic Brewery for some samples and to pick up a bottle of Big Bad Baptist. Their "tapless taproom" is a cool idea but a little too small to function well at this stage. When we visited it was extremely cramped and I had basically zero interaction with the bartender, which was kind of a bummer. However, I hear they have plans to expand, which would solve that problem. Big Bad Baptist was quite good (and highly recommended). Some of the other beers I tried there tasted a little too similar and didn't exactly blow me away, but I applaud their brewing creativity anyway.

    The Beerhive Pub downtown was really cool and packed on a weekend night. They have a nice bottle list with a fairly eccentric collection, and I definitely recommend checking it out. Prices were also quite reasonable, for the most part. We didn't make it to Bayou but I've heard good things, and obviously if we move I'll have plenty of time to check it out :slight_smile:. The distribution in Utah obviously isn't the greatest either (depending on what you compare it to), though I was glad to see that SLC had a fair amount of Firestone Walker and Boulevard offerings. Anyway, this got long and sort of rambly, but hopefully there is something of use in here!

    TL;DR: There is good beer to be had in SLC, as long as you can adjust your expectations and be happy with lighter offerings on tap and limited distribution. The mountains are beautiful and the city seems cool.
    nogophers likes this.
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