Mammoth Brewing Company
18 Lake Mary Rd, Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546
Mammoth Brewing Company is Mammoth Lakes’ largest and longest running brewery, as well as being the highest brewery on the west coast at over 8,000 feet above sea level. They have been brewing award-winning beers at altitude for over 20 years. MBC was established in December of 1995 by Sam Walker as a complimentary offering to Whiskey Creek restaurant. By 2000, production had reached about 1500 barrels per year, which was all sold locally from kegs or sold at Whiskey Creek from serving tanks. MBC functioned as a brew pub with some keg sales to local bars until 2004 when they started bottling and planning for distribution outside of the area. In 2006, Sam Walker sold the brewery to Sean and Joyce Turner and it was remodeled to increase capacity and update the bottling line. In 2013, MBC moved to its current location at the corner of Main and Minaret. Mammoth Brewing is now producing 7,000 barrels per year, half into kegs and half into bottles. They are at maximum capacity at their current location.
Tasting Room, Beer Garden + Retail Store
MBC brews a modern version of English style beers for their core lineup which include: IPA 395, Double Nut Brown, and Epic IPA. From there they branch off into all kinds of different beer styles. One of the driving factors is brewing balanced drinkable beers with a lot of flavor. Their current taplist includes 6 “Originals” available year round as well as a long list of rotating “Seasonals.” Mammoth Brewing Company is sure to have a beer on draft to please any palate.
To learn more about Mammoth Brewing Company, we asked head brewer, Jason Senior, a few questions:
ESBT: How did you learn the craft?
Jason: I learned the basics of fermentation by home brewing. Since I started at Mammoth Brewing in 2000, I trained under two classically trained brewers, Will Erikson and John Gillooly before taking over as head brewer in 2006. Everything from there is basically learn by fire.
ESBT: Tell me about the equipment you use to make your beer.
Jason: We still use the original 15 bbl. Liquid Assets brew house from 1995. We filter most of our beers through a Lenticular filter and we use a GAI rotary monobloc to bottle our beers.
ESBT: How often do you brew?
Jason: We try to brew 6 days a week, twice a day.
ESBT: Do you have a house yeast strain?
Jason: We do. A proprietary strain that White Labs keeps banked for us.
ESBT: Do you filter or add minerals to your water? Does the process differ for individual beer styles?
Jason: We carbon filter a portion of our brewing water and add Calcium Chloride and Lactic acid to most brews. That is to ensure a good ph in the mash.
ESBT: How many barrels does your brewery produce annually? Do you expect this number to continue to grow?
Jason: Around 7,000 bbls. Not without a new facility
ESBT: Tell me about your barrel aged beer program.
Jason: We produce two “clean” bourbon barrel aged beers a year- Blondibock and Lair of the Bear. And four sour barrel aged beers a year- Elderberry sour, Gooseberry sour, Forest Nymph, and Legend of the Ullr.
ESBT: What is your favorite beer? What is your favorite beer style?
Jason: Changes all the time. Also changes a lot, right now it is stouts.
ESBT: Which brewers or breweries influenced you most?
Jason: Ken Grossman from Sierra Nevada for quality. Professor Lewis and Bamforth from U.C. Davis for technical reading. Vinnie from Russian River and Tommy Arthur from Lost Abbey for sour beers. And all the great German beer for balance and drinkability.
ESBT: What is your favorite Eastern Sierra activity when not brewing beer?
Jason: Mountain biking and trail running.
ESBT: Do you have any advice for someone visiting the Eastern Sierra for the first time?
Jason: Get out and have an adventure!