What’s In Store: Fogbelt keeps it local

At Fogbelt, owners and 15-year wine industry veterans, Paul Hawley and Remy Martin, both 33, are all about making beer on-site with local ingredients. They even grow a lot of their own hops. The hops they grow are organic and, for the hops they buy, they try to go local and organic whenever possible. The brewpub officially opened in February. Fogbelt keeps five beers  on tap and adds a couple seasonal offerings which they switch out. Fogbelt is a seven-barrel brewhouse which produces 14 kegs per batch.
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The five mainstay beers these brewers have perfected over the years, are a tribute to the tall redwoods that only grow in our Northern California fog belt: Lost Monarch Wit Beer, Atlas Blonde, Del Norte IPA, Hyperion Red Ale and Armstrong Stout. More are coming as the two branch out with sours, Belgian and higher alcohol ales. When Hawley and Martin harvest the hops, they will also be making a a fresh hop beer, which is characterized as being more aromatic and flavorful, and less bitter. To make it, Hawley said, brewers  have two hours from picking the hops to getting them into the kettle.
Hawley and Martin started making their own beer out of necessity when they were working in the wine industry in New Zealand, a land to which their film majors drew them. Having a hard time finding a place open that sells beer after their 12-hour shifts, they got into home brewing. Back in the States, Martin studied brewing at UC Davis.
“We want to keep it simple,” said Hawley. He added that they strive to use only local, seasonal ingredients for everything they serve.
In addition to pints ($4.50), pitchers, flights, 32- and 64-oz. growlers to go, Sonoma Hard Cider and wine by the glass, the taproom serves a variety of  panini ($7-$8), sausage (Sonoma County Meat Co.) plates ($6), side salad ($4) and appetizers ($6). Coming soon: a belgian waffle BLT. The brewery and taproom hours are Wed. 3-9 p.m., Thurs. through Sat. 12 – 10 p.m. and Sun. 12 – 8 p.m. The kitchen closes one hour before closing each night.

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