March 12 2017

Whiskey Quest

It’s been just over six years since I posted here, which is a damn shame. I’ve had some EXQUISITE food experiences in the intervening years, but due to other mediums like Instagram and such, I’ve neglected to catalogue them as I should.  So let’s see if I can rectify that.

Recently, I discovered the glory that is Seven Stills.  And the reason I say glory, is because they are living one of my dreams.

Back when I first started homebrewing, one of the things I desperately wanted to do was distil my homebrew down into liquor. That, of course, is not quite LEGAL, and despite my best efforts, I wasn’t able to find anything that could help me.  Fast forward nearly 20 years, and you have Seven Stills: a craft brewery (a mere 1.5 miles from my home) that takes their kickass brews and distills them into whiskey.

I was so enamoured with Seven Stills that I immediately joined their Founder’s Club so that I had access to their new and experimental stuff ahead of the public.

As part of my first Founder’s Club order, I scrambled to grab a bottle of EVERYTHING ELSE THEY HAD AVAILABLE. While they have a good stock at the distillery, there are some of the older brews that they have sold out of.  So today was an adventure in finding out if anything else was out there.

Today’s flight plan.

Despite the meticulous flight plan, I started the trip off with a stop at The Storehouse to grab espresso and an apple galette.  Good choice, me.

Leg One:

The jaunt from the Storehouse to BevMo! on Bayshore was quick, even with the stop to get gas.  This place is my go-to BevMo! because it’s close to home and has ample parking.  They didn’t, however, have any Seven Stills products on hand.  That was fine, though, seeing as I’d just dropped a buttload of cash there the other day to grab a bottle of Redbreast Lustau edition (matured for its final year in Bodegas Lustau sherry casks).  So I didn’t feel too guilty dashing in and out of there and on to (hopefully) greener pastures.

Leg Two:

From Bayview to the edge of the Mission was a fairly easy drive, despite having to spend one whole exit on 101 on a Sunday morning.  This stop was as Gus’s Community Market, a great little corner grocery with a really good beer, wine and spirits selection.  While they did carry Seven Stills’ California Courage vodka. But that wasn’t what I was looking for. They did, however, have a six-pack of Belching Beaver‘s Peanut Butter Milk-Stout, the source beer for the Seven Stills/Belching Beaver collaboration. So I grabbed that, and then it was back outside to the car with the added adventure of avoiding the sidewalk condom (Thanks, Mission!).

Leg Three:

While longer, the trip from the Mission to Laurel Heights and Cal-Mart was relatively easy. My attempt to find street parking BEHIND Cal-Mart led to the discovery of the back parking lot (and entrance) which saved me a whole lost of hassle.  Cal-Mart has a LOT of stuff packed into a very small space, and so it took me a little while to find the whisky section of the store, which was oddly tucked behind the 10 items or less checkout counter. After surviving the glares of people who thought I was cutting in line, I was able to sidle up to the whiskey selection and peruse until, lo and behold, I found two bottles of Whipnose, one of the bottles I was NOT able to get ahold of directly from the distillery.

@sevenstills — There is one bottle of Whipnose left at Cal-Mart. Just sayin.

A post shared by Clay Robeson (@clayrobeson) on

I grabbed that and ran (after paying for it, of course).

Leg Four:

This was by far the most harrowing part of the journey. While the distance was a mere 2.1 miles to Blackwell’s Wines & Spirits, it took me nearly 45 minutes to find parking.  The Richmond is tough that way.  Blackwell’s, by the way, is great. Awesome staff, amazing selection of both beer and spirits (wine too), and they DO carry Seven Still stuff… it was just stuff I already had.  I did, however, pick up a bottle of The Mutant Killer Zombie Manhattan Project Thingy.  How could you not, with a name like that??

Leg Five:

The next part of the journey took me across Golden Gate Park, and south into the Inner Sunset for a visit to the San Francisco Wine Trading Company.  Also an AWESOME place with a kickass selection and a tasting bar.  They, too, carried Seven Stills stuff, but again, not anything I was looking for.  I did, however, peruse their wine selection for a long, long time before leaving.

Leg Five Detour:

It was a this point in our epic adventure that I realized it was well past lunchtime, so I took a detour to Guerra Quality Meats on my way back to the car and nabbed myself a Sicilian sandwich, which I have been gnawing on while I type this.

The Long Trip Home:

As I was traversing Monterey Heights and making my way into Sunnyside on my way home, a spied the Monterey Deli (specialty beer & sandwiches). Of course, I stopped.  Little mom and pop shop with a rather surprising selection of beers and spirits, and some not half bad wines, too.  I’ll be stopping back there, I’m sure.

And then, finally, home.  Sandwich in hand and keyboard at my fingertips, I officially re-launch my foodie/beerie/whiskeyie blog.


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Posted March 12, 2017 by Clay in category "adventure", "whiskey

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