Things We Love About Summer

THE PLACE TO DRINK BEER IF YOU'RE REALLY THIRSTY

The Yard House, which has locations in Long Beach, Costa Mesa, Irvine and Rancho Mirage, has the world's largest selection of draft beer—not including Ed McMahon, that is. Hi-oooooh! They've got everything from Anderson Valley Boont Amber Ale to Young's Oatmeal Stout. You could literally spend all day emptying your stein and still have half the alphabet left to go. 1875 Newport Blvd., Costa Mesa, (949) 642-0090.

THE BEER PLACE WITH DIY BREW

You know how sometimes when you're in the middle of a beer you find yourself saying, "I could make a better beer than this, especially if the place I was making a better beer than this also had top-quality baked breads like Jewish challah and sourdough and rosemary. But, hey, who am I kidding? Such a place does not exist and never will. The people are right when they point at me clucking their tongues, saying, 'Look, there goes the fool who dreams of beer and fresh baked bread, how his mother and father weep! It is better he stab himself in the throat'"? Well, sure, but as for that beer and bread thing, there's Brewbakers. Brewmaster Dennis Midden started one of these places where people can custom make their own beer and, because his father was a baker, married it with fresh baked goods. So you not only can make your own beer and drink beer while doing it, you can have a nice big freshly baked pretzel and talk about brewing beer. Just like they say, fresh beer is better, and what's more you can slap your own label on your concoction and take it home or give it as gifts or sell it illegally out of the back of your Rambler. What do I care? What's more, you can talk about beer with other beer lovers as you brew and people who love beer can go on about that stuff for hours until you want to stab yourself in the throat. Skoal! 7242 Heil Ave., Huntington Beach, (714) 596-5506.

THINGS WE'VE HEARD IN BARS, NEAR BARS, OR ON THE BEACH

"Over summer vacation, we went to parties every other night, and when we didn't go to a party we went out somewhere. My mom gave me money as long as I took the baby with me. So whenever I needed money I just went, "Milo, come with me."

-Teen girl to a classmate lying one towel over

WHERE TO DRINK BEER IF YOU'RE GERMAN

Huntington Beach's Old World is home to Rathskeller, a delightful Bavarian pub and restaurant that's been around since 1978. It's the closest thing to the Wolf's Lair this side of Dusseldorf. There's great German food to help wash down your lager, and on weekends, owner Lony Hauff plays traditional Bavarian music on his organ vile son-in-law Axel tends ze bar und talks about his favorite topic: soccer-ball. Remember: if you've had too much Hefeweizen, just ask Axel to heil you a cab. 7561 Center Ave. #48, Huntington Beach, (714) 894-6612.

MORE THINGS WE'VE HEARD IN BARS, NEAR BARS, OR ON THE BEACH

"We just got back and now we're planning to go to Nepal."

"Nepal?!"

"Yeah, we're going to be hanging out on the Himalayas."

"Himalayas? That's Tibet."

"Tibet. Nepal. It's all mountains."

—Two women, Laguna Beach

A REASON TO TOAST MR. & MRS. WORM

Is Newport Beach the most patriotic city in the county? We like to think so. Come spend your Flag Day—Saturday, June 14—in Newport, where you'll be helping Dennis Rodman celebrate his wedding to longtime companion Michelle Moyer. The bash will be held on the beach in front of Rodman's Seashore Drive home. Rodman, a tireless booster of the Newport Beach lifestyle, told the LA Times, "Everybody's invited! We will have a ceremony and a concert, too!" His last beach party two years ago was a rousing soirĂ©e, with rock bands, a helicopter, the public and police all getting into the swing of things. This time it'll be a full moon, so the party can just go on, and on, and on. Isn't it high time that the city fathers recognized Rodman's efforts to shine the spotlight on his chosen hometown and named him Newport's official greeter?


Photo by Jim Washburn

SOMETHING TO PONDER ON BEER

Enigmatic. Looming. Totemic. Stumpy. No one word can describe the Pole of Mystery, nor can one beer unlock its secrets. Three is the number, at least, of the tankards of golden mead needed to see the wordless truth the pole holds. How many times have you driven right by it without seeing? It stands on Orange Street in Costa Mesa, just south of 17th, a few poles down on the right in all its creosote wonder. You see a pole like any other, yet when you look up, you see that another length of pole depends from it, hovering like a weightless trifle, yet dense with portent. Is it the ghost limb of a long-vanished pole? A sign that Jim Morrison is resurrected? Some whacked sort of Viking shit? Reason won't help you. Beer will help you. Listen to the beer. (You probably shouldn't bring your own—this is Costa Mesa, buddy, not Newport—but it is conveniently at the neighboring Chester Drawers Inn, with salted peanuts.)

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