HOPPY TRAILS… Next year, Salinas will have another place for drinking some quality craft beer, with Alvarado Street Brewery planning for a new brewpub on the ground floor of the former Rabobank building in Oldtown. This will be the brewery’s fourth location in the county (on top of the original Alvarado Street spot in Monterey, plus outposts in Salinas and Carmel). Keep an eye on 301 Main St., where they hope to open in spring 2022. asb.beer.
CHEF MATTERS… All Gazi Kivrak knows how to do is make great food and chew bubblegum and he’s all out of bubblegum. The new chef at Carmel Grill House has some serious credentials. The Turkish-born Kivrak trained for four years under renowned Chef Thomas Keller at The French Laundry in Napa Valley. Try his eggplant starter, baba ganoush, or if you are feeling a little meatier, try the juicy lamb burger. Ocean Avenue and Mission Street, Carmel. 574-8991, carmelgrillhouse.com.
PIZZA AND PINTS… The Neapolitan-style pizza company MidiCi has happy hour (really, happy three hours) from 3-6pm every weekday, with $5 draft beer and wine by the glass on offer, along with appetizer options like the $9 house meatballs and garlic bread combo. 467 Alvarado St., Monterey. mymidici.com.
WINE DOWN… Lepe Cellars, where winemaker Miguel Lepe produces light Chardonnays and robust Zins and does it organic style, opened a tasting room last month that’s begging to be visited. Stop by for some sipping (and art viewing) at the Winfield Art Gallery on Dolores Street between Ocean and Seventh in Carmel. For more intel, check them out at lepecellars.com.
APP OF APPS… The coffee and beer slingers at The Beerded Bean now have an app, and with the tap of a button, you can order coffee or one of their specialty drinks – and participate in their loyalty program. Find it at the Google or Apple app stores, then fetch your drink from their location at 210 S Main St., Salinas. 202-0966, thebeerdedbean.com.
PARTY ON… With reopening upon us, Pearl Hour in Monterey is back at it with live entertainment (distanced and outdoors only, seating is limited). Sip a cocktail and listen to music at 8pm May 14 (Leche Malo), May 16 (live jazz) and May 17 (when Westfalia DJs). Meanwhile Deja Blue in Seaside is selling out limited tickets for regular Wednesday night blues shows and more.