When Andy, Brad, and Ed decided that they wanted to start their own brewery, many of the pieces were already in place. Andy and Brad had been home brewing for years, their experiments in alcoholic alchemy resulting in such special recipes as White Chocolate Raspberry Stout and S'mores Porter. Ed had a background in business and a love for craft beer himself. What the team didn't have, however, was money. Since loans were hard to come by due to the economy, the three raised the cash in the only way they knew how: a swap meet. Dan Marino collectibles, sports cards, and even a massage table were sold to the bargain hunters, and the three got the cash they needed to start their brewery.
Though Brew Rebellion's origins are humble, the beers are not. Brewed in batches of only thirty to fifty gallons at a time, the menu is always populated with new, fresh creations. Though mainstays such as the Peach Honey Wheat are typically available, the chalkboard's erasers are choked with the wiped-away remnants of limited-time offerings. Local ingredients go into the beer whenever they're available, sometimes even including jalapenos picked from the brewer's own garden.
As the name suggests, Just Cruzin Productions specializes in events with a lot of horsepower. Guests browse more than 1,000 hot rods and classic cars at The Classic at Pismo Beach, an annual show that has been drawing droves of auto enthusiasts to central California for almost three decades. Its expertly maintained autos on display are in mint condition?they're judged based on areas from their interiors to their engine compartments, as well as on the owner's overall attention to detail, making it hard to win just by taping cardboard cutouts of a Corvette to a wagon. But the company also produces other major open-air shindigs, such as The Wagon Wheel Country Music Festival.
What unites its large portfolio of events is a passion for charitable giving. Through the Just Cruzin? Life Foundation, it's directed millions of dollars in event proceeds to organizations including the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Ronald McDonald House, and the Jerry L. Pettis Loma Linda Veterans Hospital.
Hickory Ranch Steak House takes the steak in its name seriously. All of the steaks here are certified 100% USDA-choice Angus beef, and so are the burgers?the Black Label burger, for example, consists of a blend of Angus cuts, including short rib.
The rest of the menu focuses on
seafood and hearty meat dishes, from beer-battered or grilled shrimp
to rotisserie chicken and spare ribs rubbed in a Texas spice blend. Frosty margaritas and bottled American craft beers pair well with the savory plates. As for entertainment, the restaurant's big-screen TV often shows extreme sports, such as motocross and basketball games where the players don't wear helmets.
Riley's Farm recreates the convivial, rustic atmosphere of an 18th century public house, serving up farm fresh comfort food including barbecue, baked bread, Scottish beef pies, and cider-baked ham alongside mugs of ale and glasses of wine. In the nearby orchards and berry fields, visitors can pick their own bushels of apples, pears, and strawberries, and a schedule of living-history reenactments sends audiences deep into America's past to witness scenes from the Revolutionary War and Gold Rush. Located in a 1880's packing house, the farm's theatre company offers up dinner events that feature staged drama, improvisation, and a premium on guest interaction. Many shows include live music and dancing, as well as outdoor activities like country hayrides or tomahawk-throwing competitions.
At CrossFit Power Lab, kettlebells, rowing machines, plyometric boxes, and climbing ropes replace the treadmills and elliptical machines traditionally found in a gym. CrossFit offers high-intensity exercises based on functional fitness, which involves training your body to handle real-life situations. Coaches here oversee classes and tailor moves for each individual to make sure everyone is equally challenged, whether lifting weights, rowing, or flipping tires.
Reps for Life stages an all-fronts attack on flab with energetic classes, a gym filled with workout gear, and adept personal-training sessions. More than 16 group fitness classes, ranging from Zumba and cycling to intense plyometric intervals, help to drop pounds, whereas a 25-foot rock-climbing wall heightens adrenaline more effectively than bungee jumps off a bunk bed. Pelts find chic new hues within onsite tanning booths, and muscle soreness abates under the deft manipulations of Reps for Life's massage therapist. The sweat haven's expansive facility is outfitted with locker rooms for the safe storage of purses, wallets, or space-station blueprints during workouts, along with a steamy sauna and refreshing showers for post-workout fresheners.