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One day later

It’s Saturday morning and it’s been one day since I posted about the Health Department ordering us and other local brewers to cease tasting room operations. Unfortunately, I am in Ojai, CA for the Southern California Homebrew Festival and missed the giant outpouring of support at the brewery last night. So a big fat THANK YOU to all of the patrons who showed up to purchase bottles of our beer from the brewery last night.

On the drive up to Ojai, my phone continually buzzed with updates and best wishes from our fans. It was amazing. I don’t think we have ever seen so many responses to a single blog post. It just goes to show you that people are as passionate about our beers are we are. AMAZING!

I suppose for me, the most troubling part of this week has been the manner in which it occurred. The Health Department(to my knowledge) has never inspected a tasting room facility at a brewery in San Diego that didn’t have a restaurant attached to it. As such, there are currently zero regulations in writing that define exactly what is required of us to run a tasting bar.

Yet, when we were handed the Cease and Desist for lacking a proper permit, no one could show us what was needed to be in compliance. And in a Post Ex Facto manner, we were not required by the City of San Marcos nor the State of California Alcohol Control Board to acquire a Health Permit for tastings. Yet, now we have an agency coming back telling us that we have been illegally operating our business the last 4 years without a permit. This is what grinds at my gears.

If we “have to” comply with a new set of regulations and they can show me what will be enforced then fine. But I find it incredibly ridiculous that we’ve never been inspected, never been talked to yet they have the ability to walk in and pull the plug on our non life threatening operations! That’s why I am miffed and that’s why this week I will be working overtime to get things figured out.

I’m off to finish up my notes for my presentation today on Collaborative Beers to the Homebrewers. It’s ironic since the Health Department may have just given us a reason to release a new one with our San Diego shutdown brothers in barley…

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