Finding Valiant Brewery is a little tricky. There's no signage off Batavia so you'll just have to use GPS or play pick-a-driveway. (I use GPS). But once you find it, you'll be rewarded with a menu of great Belgian- and American-style beers. Food trucks are scheduled for the weekends; the night I went it. was gyros and Greek-style french fries.
The tasting room is comfortable, with three big-screen TV's to watch the upcoming Duck playoff games and your Anaheim Angels. A very friendly and knowledgeable staff helps you choose your poison if you're not familiar with Belgian beers. Valiant doesn't just brew the occasional Belgian; it's made a point to brew some of the best Belgian-style beers outside of monasteries.
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I tried their Acurum: Trappist Style Ale, a full-flavored dark ale, with notes of plums and raisins. Even at 10.5% ABV, it was smooth, unlike some IPA's high in ABV. The Alpha Drive: Centennial/Simcoe/Amarillo Double IPA 8.8%ABV had a citrusy upfront with the hoppiness at the back. Imperial Coconut Brown Ale 7.6%ABV has a strong, but not overpowering, coconut flavor. The trend here at Valiant seems to be smooth and enjoyable—quality qualities!
A big trend in beerdom right now is pineapple IPAs. I've had a few local ones—,won't mention any names, but... meh. I wasn't really impressed with the genre until Valiant's Alpha Colada: Pineapple/Coconut Double IPA 7.6%ABV. It's the equivalent of a Mike Trout grand slam, and even though I'm no fan of Piña Coladas (the song's even worse), Valiant blended these two flavors perfectly. Just enough pineapple, a touch of coconut, and a Double IPA: the perfect OC craft beer.
OK, Angels: your turn. BRING IT!
Valiant Brewery, 2294 N. Batavia, Unit C, Orange (714) 204-0080; www.valiantbrewing.com