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Discover the Lost Abbey in San Marcos

Brewer Jon Jimenez, 22, caps kegs for a new line of beers, the Hop Concept. The first set of beers will be the Hop Freshener series • Steven Buriek/ The Telescope
Brewer Jon Jimenez, 22, caps kegs for a new line of beers, the Hop Concept. The first set of beers will be the Hop Freshener series • Steven Buriek/ The Telescope

“A place for Saints and Sinners alike.”

Embark on a crusade through Rancheros Road to 155 Mata Way, Suite 104 and you will stumble upon The Lost Abbey Brewery. This local brewery in San Marcos welcomes all to join together and partake of exceptional craft beers.

Before Lost Abbey opened in May 2006 it was the location of Stone Brewing Company. Stone moved in 2005 to a new facility in Escondido. One of the co-founders Vince Marsaglia, who along with his sister Gina Marsalia owns and runs Pizza Port had a vision of creating a Belgian style brewery “The Abbey that never had a home.”

This vision was accomplished when first lead brewer from Lost Abbey, legendary Tomme Arthur created the first Belgian style beer at Solana Beach Pizza Port in 2007, the “Dubbel Overhead Abbey Ale.” A beer that propelled a chain reaction of many new Belgian inspired beers for the brewery. Lost Abbey takes pride in being a Brewery based predominantly on Belgian styles.

The brewery’s reoccurring motif on beers and environment plays on the age-old dichotomy of Good vs. Evil. Brews incorporate names such as “Witches Wit” in reference to a witches being burned at the stake, and righteous names such as “Devotion Ale” pertaining to worshiping one on the most high. This concept fabricates an Armageddon within the brewery’s walls.

At the door of this sanctuary you are welcomed by a 25-foot wooden beer fermenter, carrying the emblem of Lost Abbey, a crucifix. It holds one necessary ingredient in each flank required for the creation of beer. Hops to the left, barley bellow, a seed of yeast on top, waves of water rightward, and a Celtic knot in the center representative of the culmination of all ingredients.

Decor in the brewery is on point, and in line with their motif. Diabolical and gruesome paintings of devils, coupled side by side with gleaming priests and heavenly worship. There is no conflict between the two, more a sense of coexistence. Lack of seating in the brewery gives the feeling of being in a large tasting room, and makes for a much livelier ambiance.

Many who are familiar with Lost Abbey have been confused on the relationship between Port Brewing, Lost Abbey, and Pizza Port. Adam Martinez, marketing director for Lost Abbey cleaned up the confusion with a statement “Port and Lost Abbey are the same company. Pizza Port is a different entity owned by Vince and Gina Marsaglia. It’s kinda like kissing cousins,” Martinez said.

“Port Brewing is more West Coast, hop-centered beer. Lost Abbey is more Belgian inspired,” said Sam Shaler, 24, a bartender at Lost Abbey.

Frank Jonston, a regular since the beginning of Lost Abbey, shared why he enjoys coming into a smaller brewery in comparison to large-scale breweries such as Stone. “Stone just got too big, valet parking, and all the prices went up.” Furthermore he commented on the prices offered Lost Abbey. “There’s no tax on beers. I love that,” Jonston said.

Above the threshold of the barrel room there is a sign that says In Illa Brettanomyces Nos Fides, which translates to “In the Wild Yeast We Believe” Lost Abbey prides itself in the use of these wild yeasts that help to produce complex flavors and sensory compounds in their Belgian style beer.

This week Lost Abbey will be highlighting and rereleasing three recreated beers. Cuvee de Tomme, a Bourbon Brandy aged sour. Track 10, Bourbon Barrel aged Serpents Stout with vanilla, coffee, and cocoa nips. Brandy Angel Share, a Brandy English Barley Wine.

Image Sources

  • A&E_The Lost Abbey_004_sm: Steven Buriek/ The Telescope | All Rights Reserved
  • A&E_Lost Abbey_sm: Steven Buriek/ The Telescope | All Rights Reserved
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