The year is 1995. Space shuttle Atlantis docks with the Russian Mir space station; Steve Fossett becomes the first person to cross the Pacific Ocean solo in a hot air balloon; millions watch the O.J. Simpson trial; the San Francisco 49ers win their fifth Super Bowl; and third and fourth generation Sonoma County locals, the Norgrove family, establish the Bear Republic Brewing Company.
Twenty-five years later, Bear Republic Brewing Company has become one of the most awarded and beloved independent brewers in the North Bay and across the U.S., best known for their hand-crafted, time-tested beers like the Racer 5 IPA.
In addition to their main brewing facility in Cloverdale, Bear Republic showcases their brews at their Lakeside Brewpub, located at Roberts Lake in Rohnert Park. Visitors to the brewpub enjoy the company’s wide selection of beers, specialty cocktails, pizza, burgers and more.
This summer, in the wake of Covid-19, the Bear Republic Lakeside Brewpub reopened its massive outdoor seating area on the lake for safe and socially-distant dining, and the brewpub now also offers curbside pickup and beer to-go, as well as a home-delivery option.
Now, in commemoration of Bear Republic’s 25-year anniversary, the company is turning the clock back for an anniversary event featuring a ’90s throwback menu on Friday, Aug. 21.
Old-school fans of the brewery will happily welcome back menu items from yesteryear including the Rocket Burger, featuring fire-roasted mild green chili and cilantro aioli, and The Press grilled chicken sandwich with brie, bacon and caramelized onions.
The special menu also features throwback prices on menu items such as the BRBC Wings and garlic fries, as well as Racer 5 IPAs. The ’90s menu is available on Aug. 21 until supplies last. The Lakeside Brewpub is open for outdoor dining, socially-distant indoor dining and to-go service daily from 11:30am to 9pm. Visitors are asked to wear a mask or facial covering and respect social distancing recommendations to help curb the spread of Covid-19.
For those who can’t make it to the 25th anniversary throwback event on Aug. 21, Bear Republic Brewing Company offers an easy way to find BRBC beers closer to home with its online “Bear Tracker,” which lets users search by Zip Code to find bottles and cans at a store near them.
In addition to classic beers like the Racer 5 and the Hop Shovel IPAs, Bear Republic is still creating new, tasty brews, such as the “Hoppy Pilsner” and “Bear Necessities.”
The latest addition to the company’s Brewmaster Series, the “Hoppy Pilsner,” blends clean malt flavor, classic Pilsner bitterness and hoppy aromas, and is described as a “decidedly West Coast take on the classic lager beer.”
The simple and straightforward “Bear Necessities” is an American-style ale brewed with cascade hops and pale barley. Bear Republic says the release “pays homage to the people who show up daily to keep us going.”
Bear Republic Brewing Company’s Lakeside Brewpub is located at 5000 Roberts Lake Rd., Rohnert Park. Open daily, 11:30am to 9pm. 707.585.2722. BearRepublic.com.