When the Kellys go green in springtime, it’s not for the environment, or even for the season. It’s for Saint Patrick’s Day. Which is often more properly called Saint Patrick’s Week, what with all the goings on.
2955 Jamacha Road, Rancho San Diego
On Thursday, March 14, we will hit Hooley’s Irish Pub in Rancho San Diego for their Tullamore whiskey dinner. If you join us, expect a welcome drink, appetizer, entrée, and dessert, paired with a variety of Tullamore whiskeys. (Tickets $35)
On Friday, March 15, my husband Patrick and I plan to take the chauffeured distillery tour offered by San Diego Beer, Wine, and Spirits Tours. It starts at 11:30 am and includes pick-up from home (or hotel, if you’re visiting). The tour lasts about five hours, and visits three different local family-run distilleries. Naturally, there will be a flight of spirits to enjoy at each distillery, including tastings of brandy, whiskey, rum, vodka, and gin. But we’ll also get a guided tour at each, which will explain the history behind these California craft pioneers. Lunch is included at one of the stops. ($118 per person)
1050 University Avenue, Hillcrest
Then we’ll spend some of Saturday, March 16 picnicking on the green of Tecolote Shores in Mission Bay, taking in the green kites flown by the San Diego Kite Club when they meet around noon. Then we’ll attend another whiskey tasting, this time at gourmet grocery store Vom Fass in Hillcrest. They’ll be holding a Teeling Irish Whiskey party, serving Irish whiskeys from the only active distillery in Dublin. Guests will try three different whiskeys, sample an Irish cheese plate, and conclude with a taste of Vom Fass’s own Irish Whiskey Liqueur for dessert. Party runs from 6:30-8:30 pm. Tickets cost $40
Once all those preliminaries are out of the way, we can start celebrating properly. I want to start St. Patrick’s Day with the green cook-off in Carlsbad. Ahaana Sawen is presenting A Green Spring Fling, with folks competing for bragging rights in three categories: a green appetizer, a green beverage, or a green dessert. Bring your best green ingredients. Prizes will be awarded in each category. Cost to compete, $10; cost to be just a participant, $15. Day starts with registration and social hour at 11 am, networking time at noon, and competition and tasting at 1 pm. Visit www.ahaana.org/a-green-spring-fling.html to register.
- Sunday, March 17, 2019, 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.
2960 Truxton Road,
Free - $45
Patrick has other ideas. He’ll start the day off at the Loma Club golf course, just off the green in Liberty Station. There, he’ll join their annual St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Shamble tournament. Beer will be provided by Carlsbad Beer and Second Chance Brewery. After an Irish breakfast, he’ll swing into the nine-hole shamble format, with prizes for low score and best costume. The $45 ticket gets you your food, grog, and golf. Festivities start at 8 am.
6304 Riverdale Street, Grantville
Later, we’ll meet up and toddle off together to Groundswell Brewery and tasting room in Santee from 1-4 pm for a St. Patrick’s Day beer and cupcake pairing event sponsored by Daniela’s kitchen. $17 gets you 4 beer tasters and 4 mini cupcakes that they swear will go well together. Perhaps a Chocolate Guinness Bailey’s cupcake paired with Cream Ale, or a whiskey berry cupcake paired with Oathbreaker Russian Imperial stout.
1548 Quivira Way, Mission Beach
A few of the more sober Kellys will be joining the San Diego Paddlers, who are sponsoring a St. Patrick’s Day paddle, launching at 4 pm from Aqua Adventures Kayaks and Paddleboards. All paddle crafts welcome, whether it be a kayak, stand up paddleboard, canoe, or rowboat. Rentals will be available from Aqua Adventures ($20-$45). Wear something warm and green, and pack a headlamp.
As for Patrick and me, we’re trying to avoid the Gaslamp at all costs this year, so for music, we’re going back to Hooleys Irish Pub. This time, we’ll enjoy Hooleyfest at their Grossmont Center location. They will have live music on Saturday, March 16, from 5 pm to midnight. Bands include 80s All Stars and Ass Pocket Whiskey Fellas (21+). Pre-sale tickets $20; tickets at the door $30. And on Sunday, March 17, Whiskey Ridge and Tony Cummings will be playing. All ages welcome, no cover.