All posts by Israel

September 2016: Temescal Brewing + The Bay Bridge

Sunday, September 11, 2016
Temescal Brewing + The Bay Bridge
4115 Telegraph Ave, Oakland
Meet at 1030 | Roll Out at 11

Hey guys! How’s 2016 treating ya’ll? We thought we’d bring the Cru back from the dead. We’ll start with some baby steps…

We’ll be riding the eastern span of the bay bridge as far as they’ll let us (almost to Treasure Island). Then we’ll head back for a few beers at the newly opened Temescal Brewing in Oakland.

It should be a fun and chill one hour ride with negligible elevation gain.

We like to blame The Grand Cru’s hibernation to us figuring out how to raise the next generation of the Cru. Expect some babies on the ride (specifically ours). We’ve worked to make it kid friendly. Temescal Brewing has a great outdoor space and is family and pet friendly.

As usual, we recommend you take public transit when possible.  Temescal Brewing is a 1 minute bike ride from the MacArthur BART.

Looking forward to seeing some familiar faces!

P.S. Consider this a warm up. October will be back to our usual 20-30 miles. There are so many new taprooms to visit…

April 2012 Ride | The Grand Cru on Tour to Petaluma

The Grand Cru on Tour

Saturday April 28 to Sunday April 29
Departing & Returning to the San Francisco Ferry Building
Spending the Night in Petaluma
RSVP via email to claim a spot at the campsite |


Since last month’s ride got rained out, we want to make it up to you. April’s ride will be double the fun, consisting of two days of riding (i.e it’s an overnighter).

This is something I’ve been wanting to do with the Cru for a while. A few of us rode up and stayed at Lagunitas a couple of years ago and had a blast. Here’s the itinerary:

Day 1:

Bike route 1503217 – powered by Bikemap

Day 2:

Bike route 1503220 – powered by Bikemap
For those of you that have never gone on tour, this would be a great first outing. That being said, this ride will be harder and longer than our usual Grand Cru rides – so take that into consideration. You’ll also need to bring something to sleep in (a tent might not be necessary if the weather’s good, but you will need a sleeping bag/blanket) and a few other items so consider the additional weight when making your decision.

I’ve gone ahead and reserved a large campsite a few minutes ride from Lagunitas. In order to monitor the campsite capacity we’ll actually be doing some RSVPing for this one. If you’re in – send me an email. That way we can decide whether we need to reserve additional campsites. If you have questions, post them in the comments so we can make the Q&A public for the benefit of others who may have the same questions.

See you in a few weeks, and don’t forget to RSVP at


P.S. For those of you concerned about a lack of a Russian River ride this month – don’t worry, we havent forgotten about it. It’ll happen in the next few months.

Tour de Biere 2012 | Debrief

Tour de Biere 2012 Riders:

We wanted to thank you all once again for supporting the Tour de Biere 2012. We were shocked that the ride sold out even faster this year despite an increased price.  Four days!

The weather cooperated (always a risk when you plan a bike ride in February) and all of last year’s breweries and supporting business signed up to be part of the ride once again. This year we added Elevation 66 to the tour and had additional support from Clif Bar.

We succeeded in having fun, riding around the East Bay and drinking beer. How did we do on the money raising front? We’re happy to report that the East Bay Bicycle Coalition will be receiving a check for $1,239 – an 83.9% return on the money generated through Tour de Biere ticket sales.

This of course wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of the East Bay breweries who opened their doors to us, and the local food purveyors who provided caffeine and energy boosts throughout the day. Please keep their community support in mind when you spend your hard earned dollars.

It’s our hope that February’s ride isn’t a one-off thing, but the first of many rides you’ll be doing as part of the Grand Cru.

March’s ride has been posted to our website. We’ll be going to one of our favorite Bay Area breweries – Russian River Brewing Company. It’s home to such greats as Pliny the Elder and Supplication. We hope to see you in Santa Rosa in a few weeks.

In the meantime, take some time to make sure you’re kept in the loop:

Sign Up To Our Newsletter (You’ll find a google groups sign-up box in the right hand column)

Follow Us on Twitter

Like Us on Facebook

Colin, Israel & Phil

Thanks again to:

Trumer Brauerie
Linden St Brewery
Triple Rock Brewery and Alehouse
Elevation 66 Brewing Company
Pyramid Brewery
Bicycle Coffee Co.
Clif Bar

March 2012: Russian River (RIDE CANCELLED)


We will be rescheduling this ride to April, date TBD.

Russian River Brewing Company
Saturday, March 31 2012
Meet at 1130 | Roll Out at Noon
725 4th St, Santa Rosa


We limit ourselves to one Russian River visit per calendar year. That usually means we’re back there in January. It’s already March…we’ve been slacking.

Russian River probably doesn’t need much introduction. If you’re a hophead you’ve probably had your fair share of Pliny the Elder. If you’re into sours – Russian River has one of the best barrel aged sour programs in the world. Long story short: they’re my favorite brewery in the area.

Colin’s planned a 27 mile loop around Annadel State Park. It should be somewhat leisurely if the weather cooperates.

Bike route 1448596 – powered by Bikemap

Unfortunately the public transit options up to Santa Rosa are limited so I would recommend carpooling with your Cru mates.

I’ll see you all in a couple weeks.


P.S. The day before the ride Russian River will be releasing their latest batch of Beatification. (Coincidence?) It hasn’t been around in years so lets all keep our fingers crossed in the hopes that they don’t sell out of all 1,000 cases the day before.

June’s Ride | San Francisco & Social Kitchen and Brewery

June’s Ride | San Francisco & Social Kitchen and Brewery
Social Kitchen and Brewery
1326 9th Avenue, San Francisco
Sunday, June 26th
Meet at 11:30a, roll out at 12:00p

This month we’ll be visiting the newest kid on SF brewing scene, Social Kitchen & Brewery. Their focus is on beers that are food-friendly and full of flavor. It turns out not everything has to clock in at 10% and have gobs and gobs of hops. Their beers are neat and their space is great.

Here’s the ride:

Bike route 540947 – powered by Bikemap 

As usual, I would encourage everyone to take public transit to Social Kitchen. The 16th/Mission BART station is a half hour ride away.

Tour de Bière 2011 Debrief

As everyone’s livers recover from the 2011 edition of SF Beer Week, I wanted to give you folks a debrief on the inagural Tour de Bière. The ride was to benefit the East Bay Bicycle Coalition (EBBC), and I think we did pretty well.

We did what we could to keep costs down and the EBBC will soon be receiving a check for $720, 96% of the revenue collected.

One reason we were able to keep costs down was the tremendous support from the East Bay breweries who opened their doors to us at no cost. Those five gentlemen from Trumer? They gave up their Sunday morning to help make Tour de Bière happen. Same goes for the Bicycle Coffee Co folks and the owners of Linden St. These businesses gave us their time and wares in support of the ride. Triple Rock and Pyramid Berkeley were both generous with their discounts and freebies.

The event wouldn’t have been a success without all of you who attended. The ride sold out nearly a week before the event, which was much sooner than expected. Thank you for your support and for helping us raise funds for the EBBC. For those of you who had never ridden with The Grand Cru before, make sure to keep in touch:

Subscribe to our mailing list

Subscribe to The Grand Cru

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
Follow TheGrandCru on Twitter

Add our RSS Feed to your Reader

March’s ride details will be posted within a week…stay tuned.

January’s Ride | Santa Rosa & Russian River Brewing

So you resolved to live a healthier 2011. You decided to get out of the city more often to enjoy the bay area’s beauty…well, The Grand Cru’s here to make that happen.

This month we’ll be doing our annual pilgrimage to Russian River Brewing – one of the most respected breweries in the world. We’ll be riding a 35 miles loop based out of Santa Rosa exploring the area west of Sebastopol. As an added bonus our path conveniently routes us in front of Hopmonk Tavern. (Probably a good place to rehydrate.)

Bike route 785005 – powered by Bikemap

As is often the case, I’ve set up a poll to determine the date that works for the most people. Please follow the link in the box below and mark your availability.

The poll will close the evening of Monday, January 10. That night I’ll post the finalized date.

I hope everyone’s new year is off to a great start and I look forward to riding with all of you in 2011!


P.S. Worried that those post-ride Plinys will blow your new calorie budget? Well, Vinnie’s got you covered with a new line of beers. Pliney-lite has the same hop wallop in just half the calories!

November’s Ride | Hayward & The Bistro’s Barrel Aged Beer Fest

Original photo by

This month we’re back in the East Bay to visit The Bistro. “But the Bistro’s not a brewery” you’re saying? Well, you’re right – but we’re going to cut them some slack because they’ll be hosting the 5th annual West Coast Barrel Aged Beer Fest on Saturday. If you’re unfamiliar with barrel aged beers – you’re in for a treat. The gamut runs from hearty imperial stouts aged in bourbon barrels to mouth puckering lemonade-like beers aged in oak. Tickets run a bit steep. I don’t know what the pricing will be this year, but I don’t expect much of a change from last year: $40 for ten pours and a tasting glass, with additional pours costing $2. If that seems expensive – well it is. But keep in mind that these beers take a long time to produce and are often labor intensive. If you’re hesitant about diving in, the Bistro will have a few non-barrel aged beers to be purchased individually.

Since we’ll be doing some advanced beer drinking I’ve tried to strike a balance with an easier 19 mile ride up one of the Hayward hills. It’s a long and gradual climb with a great decent back to barrel aged goodness.

Bike route 750251 – powered by Bikemap 

As usual I would encourage everyone to take public transit over to The Bistro. It’s located just three blocks from the Hayward BART station. It’s extra encouraged this month as many of the beers aged in old spirit barrels clock in above the 10% mark.

Looking forward to riding and drinking with ya’ll on Saturday!


P.S. Please note that the roll-out time’s been shifted back an hour to 11 instead of the usual noon o’clock. I don’t want us to miss out on choice selections because of a late start.