Mad Vanilla

BIG SHOUTOUT to vanilla for consistently killing the adjunct game and pumping up the pastry jams. For those of you who are familiar with our stout program, you are also familiar with vanilla in its many forms. If you’re seeing vanilla in a beer description, it usually means we used around a pound of vanilla per barrel (with exceptions like last year’s MT: ULTRA Vanilla, which used a total of 24lbs), and we tend to harness the powers of multiple kinds in order to conduct a truly masterful symphony of vanilla flavors.

MT vanilla processing


What we think of as the smell and taste of #vanilla comes from a complex compound called Vanillin, which can also be found in olive oil, fruits, butter, and oak, and even coffee, tortillas, and oatmeal. Depending on the type and origin, vanilla can yield a wide array of flavors and aromas, from delicately floral to rich and caramel-y. Tahitensis (A.K.A. Tahitian Vanilla) is extremely fragrant, yielding a lot of aroma; tons of floral and fruity notes. Planifolia is your traditional vanilla and our bread and butter. Madagascar is the most common vanilla and tends to play well with others, yielding delectable bourbon notes. Mexico (the birthplace of vanilla) tends to produce smooth, deeply rich vanillas that have complex notes of baking spices and bourbon.

Our special projects wizards painstakingly select the adjuncts of each beer to suit the desired flavor profile. For example, a chocolate mole-inspired beer would absolutely be receiving Mexican vanilla. A beer where vanilla isn't necessarily the star of the show--but highlights other ingredients in a supporting role--might receive Madagascar, and so forth. Within the department, everyone has their own favorite type of vanilla. Justin really loves Ugandan vanilla, which carries a huge marshmallow and creamy flavor; if we had a "house vanilla", it would be Ugandan. On the other hand, Kyle prefers Papua New Guinea vanilla, which is chocolate and caramel-butter forward. 

MT vanilla processing 2


We'd challenge you to taste the differences, and heartily encourage you to report back with your findings. As always, feel free to shoot any questions, comments, or concerns to, and sign up for our email newsletter and follow us on Instagram to stay in the loop.

Special Release Highlight: Pool Zone

The sun is currently kicking ass and taking names, but luckily, our resident mages of fermentation have graciously blessed us with a new form of IPA wizardry that will provide a momentary reprieve from the effects of global warming. It’s a tall order, and while we love an IPA as much as--if not significantly more than--the next guy, sometimes a fully fledged, big bodied murk lord isn’t exactly what the doctor ordered. Enter: Pool Zone.

Pool Zone (2021)

We set out to concoct a singularly effervescent beverage that would provide a drinking experience akin to dipping that first toe into an infinity pool. Chasing the aforementioned high began with Golden Promise, an heirloom barley malt that provided a delightful, distinctive departure from our regular 2-row base. Then we tackled the aromatic part of this equation. In addition to Cascade hops, we selected Citra and Mosaic for the dry-hop, which imparted an immense tropicality to this beer, juxtaposed by that snappy bitterness you’d expect from a WCIPA. Then the twist; we delicately imbibed this majestic liquid with carbonated water, whose minerality not only emphasises the hop character and creates a sensational mouthfeel, it also brings everything down to a cool 3.2% ABV and 100 calories per can.
The finished beer is light and bubbly, yet sturdily malty (thanks to that heirloom barley), with a tantalizing bouquet of pineapple, guava, and tangerine, a splendor of hops, and a palate-teasing saltiness that really ties the whole thing together. This delightfully spritzy elixir will be available in 12oz 6-packs in the upcoming online special release presale this Saturday. As always, we recommend staying in the loop by signing up for our email newsletter, which you can do by clicking that nifty envelope icon at the top of this page. 

Special Release Beers Just In Time for our 8th Anniversary

July is shaping up to be quite a month: Not only are we on the verge of our 8th anniversary as a company, we also find ourselves on the precipice of an exceptionally exquisite exhibit of fermented wizardry with the July Part 1 special release sale. In lieu of a birthday cake, we have a truly spectacular lineup of beers, including MT8 (the newest iteration of our yearly celebratory brew), DDH Underworld Dreams (one of most original hazy IPA recipes), canned Nectarnomicon (a smoothie-style wonder you may recognize from fests past), and Static God (a collab with the caffeinated powerhouses at Fuzz Coffee Roasters). If you want in on any of these liquid party favors, they’ll be up for grabs online on Saturday at 10AM via the presale page. To plan your acquisition strategy accordingly, we’d advise reading on.

July pt1 presale


The last year has been utterly bananas in every conceivable way, and we’re celebrating the fact that it’s over—and that there are many more ahead—with this beauty of a DIPA. MT8 is an incredibly lovely mélange of Riwaka, Nelson Sauvin, and Mosaic hops complemented by a generous addition of Phantasm Powder (A.K.A. freeze-dried New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc grapes). This beer is a joyous explosion of fruit character, and a liquid promise of better days ahead. We hope. We really, really hope.

We brewed the first batch of this incredibly pillowy haze-beast back in 2016, and it has since evolved into this double dry-hopped wonder. DDH Underworld Dreams is stuffed to the gills with Idaho 7, Mosaic, Simcoe, and Amarillo hops. The result is a face-melting explosion of pineapple, orange citrus, and berry flavors and aromas that’s just a straight-up joy to behold.

ddh underworld dreams ipa


Our inaugural round of canned Nectarnomicon is a throwback to a previous, very popular Maui Wowie version, which many of you will undoubtedly recall from a few of our past beer fests. Armed with a new name and perfected recipe, the Island Smoothie Edition is packed with ridiculous amounts of blood orange, pineapple, and passion fruit (added post fermentation for extra smoothie texture), plus an abundance of coconut and vanilla for sweetness and body. It’s a kettle-soured fruit bonanza that will launch the drinker into a brain-bending trip through an unrelentingly tropical fruit-vortex. 

The final beer in this special release highlight is the result of a collab with Fuzz Coffee Roasters, a new San Diego roastery that we’re particularly excited about, both because it was co-founded by our Roastery Manager, Seancarlo Ohlin and because it's an objectively stellar roastery. For this team-up, we decided on a blended barrel-aged stout featuring their Colombia Urrao Finca San Carlos coffee, as well as chai spices and both Papua New Guinea and Indonesian vanilla beans. Once you taste Static God, you’ll understand why we’re already excited for collabo round two.

As we mentioned previously, these beers will be yours for the taking at 10AM this Saturday via the presale page. You’ll also be able to snag MT8 in tasting rooms on draft for our 8th Anniversary Kickback festivities, which you are all hereby cordially invited to. We hope that everyone’s summer is going considerably better than your last, and should you need any beverage accompaniments, you know where to find us.


modern times beer



Prepare thy bods for MTB Spring Break. With every degree the temperature rises, the number of times we catch ourselves daydreaming about sipping a delicious beverage outside increases exponentially. Order of Hermes and Foamer Pils have reigned supreme over temperate revelry for some time now, so you may recognize these glorious vessels. If you do, you know that they’re virtually guaranteed to serve you well in any leisuretime setting.

The first beer we’re shining our spotlight on is Order of Hermes. We’ve brewed this beloved super-Berliner a handful of times at this point, and this pink-tinged beauty never disappoints. This particular batch, brewed in Portland, is loaded with even more ridiculous amounts of pineapple, passionfruit, and dragon fruit than ever before (44lbs per barrel), making for a deeply quenching beverage that will have you in full vacation mode, beach or no beach.



The second half of this dynamic duo is Foamer Pils. We started with Gambrinus & Weyermann Barke pilsner malts, then our Belmont brew-wizards masterfully hopped it with Tettnang. The resulting pilsner possesses a splendid floral character that’s bright, delicate, & crazy-drinkable. Whether you’re mowing the lawn or lounging by a hidden waterfall in an undisclosed location, this is a seriously solid liquid companion.



BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! We’re unabashedly thrilled to announce that we’re teaming up with a few awesome local haunts to bring you Flavor Buddies; 50% culinary delight, 50% libational wonder, and 1000% delicious. Our buddies will supply the special edible creations and we’ll supply the special release beers, so all you have to do is show up and get down on some of the most heavenly pairings in the known universe. For the program’s debut, we’re joining forces with Tribute Pizza in North Park, Crack Shack in Encinitas, and Dough Exchange in Santa Ana. We’ll have updates on how/when you can secure these goods in the very near future, so definitely keep your eyes peeled whilst scrolling our feed.

These ideal al fresco libations will hit the presale page at 10AM on Saturday, and will be available for pick-up the following Wednesday or Friday. If you’d like to peruse the full lineup, as well as receive a morning-of sale reminder, we’d highly recommend signing up for our email newsletter--just click that nifty little envelope at the top.

Reparations Beer

At Modern Times, we have a motto: Be excellent to each other. This deceptively simple phrase embodies the core values that this company was built on, and in recent times, it means listening, learning, and doing the work. We deeply believe that there is a desperate need for real, meaningful equity for America's oppressed populations, and we continue to work toward increasing our involvement in the critical areas of racial and social justice. On Saturday, Reparations--a nuanced and exorbitantly delicious imperial stout with vanilla, coffee, and ginger that will benefit an outrageously deserving cause--will be up for grabs at 10AM in the online presale. The project was helmed by the Modern Times African-American Employee Resource Group (ERG). Here is their statement regarding this most excellent adult beverage:

“As we begin to look forward to a MUCH more prosperous year in 2021 vs its 2020 counterpart, all of us who make up the African American ERG here at Modern Times are excited to tell you about an important cause that Modern Times will be supporting in a significant way. As some of you may have heard, Great Notion brewed a beer aptly named Reparations recently. It was inspired by the Black is Beautiful Imperial Stout which numerous breweries (including Modern Times in collaboration with Alesmith) decided to brew themselves in show of support to further the messaging of inequalities that exist in America (and the world) presently, particularly impacting the African-American population. Similar in purpose, our Reparations seeks to bring awareness to as well as actively support an initiative exploring how a modern-day reparations package could help take the next step(s) in lifting the African-American community out of the cycle of economic oppression.”

Reparations Beer


As for the beer itself, Reparations is a decadent 11.5% ABV imperial stout featuring generous amounts of Ugandan vanilla, Rwandan coffee beans, and a delightful touch of ginger. All of the profits from this delectable concoction--our goal is $30,000--will be donated to NAARC (National African American Reparations Commission) as they push for restorative justice and political reform. This includes support for the HR-40 bill which seeks to explore and evaluate proposals on how best to implement a reparations package to African-American communities. If you’d like to know more, feel free to check out the Reparations Movement.

The End of and Era: A Fond Farewell to Blazing World

This is the glorious tale of one of the original pillars of dankness on which the Modern Times Multi-verse was built. It’s been a staple in our year-round lineup since 2013; a tried and true bastion of resiny goodness that has melted the brains of beer enthusiasts far and wide. Though its 8-year reign is drawing to an end, Blazing World will be fondly remembered as a unique beer, an amber beauty, a supremely-quenching refreshment, and all-around super solid choice.

The recipe for Blazing World was conjured from the combined brewing magics of our very own Jacob McKean (Founder/CEO) and Mike Tonsmeire (The Mad Fermentationist), with the intent to create a titan that could hold its own in the company of existing behemoths like Alchemist’s “Heady Topper”, Troegs’ "Nugget Nectar", and 3 Floyds’ "Gumballhead", that were--at the time--serious bleeding-edge heavy hitters.

Thus, The Stickiest of the Icky was born—a luxuriously hoppy IPA with a uniquely amber hue, loaded up with intemperate quantities of Nelson, Mosaic, and Simcoe hops, which are some of the fruitiest, dankest hops sweet, sweet money can buy. It boasts a pleasingly dry character and lightly bready malt backbone that form a magnificent platform for its huge, complex hop profile. By cracking a can, you thereby agree to have your flavor ports stormed by an armada of interdimensional taste lords.

Farewell Blazing World


The year following its inception, Blazing World would serve as Tim--our current Director of Brewing Operations’--first solo brew at Modern Times. Tim is not the only thirsty soul Blazing World has welcomed to MT; it’s been a reliably delicious gateway beer for many patrons into the realms of IPA wizardry. However, by the end of 2015, our brewery had grown and now had the capacity to expand its offerings, which meant new trend-setting IPAs (hello, Orderville). Even with a minor recipe tweak (goodbye, midnight wheat), and seriously bangin’ Nelson hops sourced straight from New Zealand’s Freestyle Farms, Blazing World was up against some serious contenders both within and outside MT.

Today, an era is ending. We will be phasing this stunner out gradually, so before you majorly freak out, cans will be around for a little while longer, with its final brew day scheduled for the end of May. This victory lap will take the form of a mixed-pack, which will be available through the summer. While it’s true all good things must come to an end, that doesn’t mean we don’t totally have more good stuff in the pipeline; Dungeon Map, a West Coast IPA and our first ever year-round 12oz 6-pack, is stepping onto the scene, and we’ll be damned if it doesn’t honor Blazing World’s tasty legacy. We understand, you need time to mourn, so stock up while you can, friends, and toast to the rise--and fall--of one of the baddest beers in the game. You will be missed, Blazing World, but never forgotten.

LAGERS; They're the New Pizza

Greetings, friends! After a brief can-release hiatus, we are back in action with a delightful grip of special release beers. There’s a whole bunch of deliciousness that falls under the April Part 1 umbrella, but what we’re most stoked about is a pair of impossibly tasty, extra crispy lagers. To say they are the cat’s pajamas would be a gross understatement...dare we say that they’re the new pizza? We totally do.

abaddon and real chill

The first half of this dynamic duo is a tall glass of refreshment that most of you will likely recognize: Abaddon. This Helles lager has quickly become one of our most highly regarded crispy bois. Brewed in collaboration with Wayfinder, this beer started with German malts and was hopped with Perle & Hallertau Mittelfruh. It’s naturally carbonated, making for a beautifully bright, effervescent character. This one is a majestically expressive take on a traditional style that’s both balanced and jaw-droppingly crushable, so it’s definitely a good thing that we went with the 19.2oz cans for this bad boi. 

The other utterly lovely beer we’ve opted to highlight is Real Chill. This pils was hopped with lavish quantities of Perle, Spalter Select, and Mandarina Bavaria, and then meticulously dry-hopped with Spalter Select and Saaz, yielding intriguing aromas of black pepper & lemongrass, followed by flavors of lemon and black tea. It’s both super-crushable and enchantingly complex, and we’d highly recommend putting some in your face.

Both of these ideal liquid specimens (plus some other tasty surprises) will be on offer online in the presale at 10AM on Saturday. Quantities are limited, so if you want in, we’d highly recommend marking your calendars, and if you’d like an email reminder with all the relevant details, you can totally sign up for our email newsletter by clicking that little envelope icon at the top. 


One of our most infamous haze beasts makes its triumphant return in the forthcoming special release presale, so obviously, we’re going to seize this opportunity to sing its many praises. If you’re a devout follower of our hypest brews, you’ll be well-aware of the reputation of this certified murk lord. Of course, we are referring to Dinosaur World.

Dinosaur World DIPA 2021


The hazy DIPA is now a stylistic fixture in our tasting rooms, and while patrons may have become accustomed to the presence of these majestic juice-bombs, what they may not realize is that Dinosaur World paved the way for these hopped-up heavy hitters. In 2017, our brew-wizards set out to conjure forth a beer that was straight-up stuffed with Citra hops, boasting a touch of sweetness and lots of body. They were extremely successful. Dinosaur World became one of our most beloved beverages seemingly overnight, and what began as a deceptively simple desire turned into an epic quest for excellence and consistency, with multiple batches--including Double Dry-Hopped iterations--dazzling beverage enthusiasts throughout the MT realm. 

Dinosaur World collage 2021


Since then, the recipe hasn’t changed much. We start things off with 2 Row, Extra Pale, Maris Otter, White Wheat Malt, Flaked Oats, and Crystal 40, which create a suitable base for as much Citra as we can muster. We also throw some Amarillo and Mosaic into the mix, which yield an exceptional beverage, bursting with all sorts of fruity notes (i.e. tangerine, passion fruit, citrus, and stone fruit). It looks like orange juice (and kind of drinks like it, too), and greets the palate like an old friend while Reunited plays somewhere in the distance.

Cans will be up for grabs Saturday at 10am in the online special release presale, along with a grip of other, impossibly delicious works of brew-sorcery. You can get the full scoop via our email newsletters (sign up by clicking that little envelope in the top bar), as well as our Instagram feed (follow @moderntimesbeer). Please bear in mind that quantities are hecka limited, so if you want in on the dino-magic, we’d advise being ready to strike this weekend.


Oh, hey, didn’t see you there! You may be a little surprised to find yourself on the blog this early in the week, but we wanted to allow you all ample time to get adequately stoked over this month’s special release offerings, so here we are. Welcome. For the March Pt.1 presale highlight, we’re shining the spotlight on a decidedly delicious, Portland-born, extraordinarily decadent canned single--Cosmic Entity: Pecan Pie Edition. If you’re ready to float down a lazy river of veritable dessert wonderment, let’s dive in.

If you’ve been with us for a decent amount of time now, the name Cosmic Entity probably rings a bell, and may or may not also elicit a pavlovian pang of thirst, accompanied by some light drooling. Don’t worry, it’s normal. One of the first stouts ever to come to fruition at our Portland outpost, Cosmic Entity has served as the trusty steed on which a whole bunch of delicious adjuncts have ridden into tasty infamy. This particular version definitely falls into that echelon of nobility. The Pecan Pie Edition is loaded with copious quantities of astoundingly fragrant, hand-toasted pecans (7lbs/bbl), an ungodly amount of coconut (10lbs/bbl), cocoa nibs (2lbs/bbl) and a masterful blend of coffee Mexico Muxbal and Guatemala Todos Santos (1.33lbs/bbl). It’s truly a swirling vortex of dessert magic that you can experience with the crack of a can.

cosmic entity: pecan pie edition


As our PDX head brewer, Mat, so excellently put it, “it can be tough finding a balance of flavor intensity when you have this many adjuncts, especially when the beer already has so much complexity on it's own, but this one was something we feel we is firing on all cylinders.” We really pulled out all the stops on this one. The coffees introduce delicate notes of caramel and vanilla into the mix, and the toasted pecans provide all the roastiness this balancing act calls for, which is why our brew-sorcerors opted to leave the cocoa nibs untoasted, ensuring that the chocolate notes (whether from the malts or the actual nibs), wouldn’t be too overpowering. This iteration of Cosmic Entity is straight-up over-the-top (in a magnificent way) in terms of both aromas and overall delectability, and we are inordinately amped for everyone to have a shot at a slice of this pie.

Cosmic Entity: Pecan Pie Edition will be included in the online special release presale this Saturday (3/6) at 10AM. All the details will go out via email newsletter (which you can sign up for by clicking that little envelope icon up at the top), plus, keep your eyes peeled for appearances of the other, equally awesome March Pt.1 special release beers on our instagram feed (@moderntimesbeer). We’ve got some serious stunners in store for you all, so marking your calendars is highly advisable. 


It’s nearly presale o’clock, which means an array of stupendously tasty new delights will be up for grabs online Saturday morning at 10AM. It also means that it’s officially time to grab a beverage and settle in for our special release highlight. While this particular drop is a truly astounding, borderline overwhelming dreamscape of potable deliciousness, we’re focusing our collective gaze to a Leisuretown-born work of stout-craft, Silence of Light—and what a beauty it is.

Silence of Light (collab w/ Equilibrium)

Leisuretown, our Anaheim outpost, has become an irreplaceable force in our production strategy. Even with the challenges that come with acclimating to new surroundings: fine-tuning a new brew deck, getting the crew in sync, and functioning in general (especially in the face of a global pandemic)--there have been some seriously glorious gems emerging from Leisuretown already, and we’re particularly digging the lean into the non-barrel-aged imperial stout in 12oz cans. Our OC brew-wizards have masterfully honed their powers of fermentation, and have been cranking out these feats of excellence consistently, which is, like, really, really impressive. This beer is no exception, and it’s even more exciting because it’s a collaborative endeavor with the folks at Equilibrium Brewery. Based out of Middleton, New York, these badasses are driven by their near-unquenchable thirst for knowledge, with an intense focus on research and exploration. Equal parts scientists and brewers, their team boasts an intense curiosity that we were supremely stoked to harness. 
Silence of Light began with an intricate malt bill: a 2-row base with a supporting cast of malts and cereal grains like rolled oats, oat malt, pale chocolate malt, chocolate wheat malt, double roasted crystal, Heritage Crystal, and a touch of Blackprinz malt. It was then loaded with a whopping 180lbs of pistachios, hand-roasted in the Leisuretown kitchen. Then, 15lbs of Ugandan Vanilla entered the fray along with 60lbs of Cocoa Nibs, through which the beer was recirculated for an additional 5 days for maximum flavor impact. The nose on the resulting beverage is all fudge, with the daintiest whiff of vanilla. It’s medium-bodied, with a gargantuan chocolate fudgy presence, followed up by swirling notes of marshmallow with a subsequent silky-smooth, Amaretto-like finish, thanks to the pistachios. It’s Decadent with a capital D, and we are stoked to treat you all.

Silence of Light (collab w/ Equilibrium)

This concludes the special release highlight. Silence of Light will be up for grabs Saturday in the online presale. Quantities are limited, so if you want in on this cocoa explosion, we’d recommend having your clicking fingers primed and ready to strike at 10AM. We sincerely hope that everyone is hanging in there, and can’t wait to unleash these titans of scrumptiousness. Stay excellent, friends. Cheers!