An easy gag to go to when you have a website named “Nachonomics” that reviews nachos is when you are talking about any other sort of consumable that you want to briefly mention is to throw in a, “But this is NACHOnomics, not X-onomics...” where X is the name of the consumable. Now that you know the secret, you’ll find it especially comical when I say today’s review is of the nachos at Lagunitas Brewing, but don’t expect me to really cover the beer because this is NACHOnomics, not BEERonomics! So what mysterious non-beer related nacho mysterious does this mysterious brewery hold?
The Lagunitas brewery is set up as a cross between Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory and any sort of ghoul filled abandoned industrial factory level from the Fallout series, only less chocolate related than the former and not as run down and full of cannibalistic humanoids than the latter. Entering this nondescript warehouse leads you immediately into a crazy painted and lit hallway playing music from “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory”, but not the creepy boat song, so don’t get your hopes up there. This is the family friendly “Pure Imagination” (composed by Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley, and musical direction by Walter Scharf, sung by Gene Wilder (rest in peace)), and hopefully they have the rights to it to avoid any RIAA litigation.
So you walk down this mystery hallway to the center of the building where a central tower of offices and stairs leads up to the restaurant at the ceiling from which catwalks spider out leading all over the brewery and you can look out the windows over the entirety of brewing operations. Architecturally it is bananas, I cannot express that enough. Being able to hang out in the awesome restaurant/bar area overlooking a gigantic warehouse like you’re a Powersuited Raider Boss chowing down on Iguana on a Stick and drinking a Nuka Cola makes is quite something to see. What else is quite something though, getting to do that PLUS some sweet nachos and Lagunitas beer straight from the source.
As we’ve learned from previous nacho experiences, if there is some kind of pig related meat option for them, always go for it, barring any religious restrictions of course. I went with the carnitas over the brisket or chicken, and it was certainly the right choice. Another right choice, the dual chihuahua cheese and queso fresco as while a liquid cheese on its own is usually questionable, when you combine that with a solid cheese they both bring out the best in eachother. AND ANOTHER RIGHT CHOICE, the multi colored jalapenos on top, smart. Watch any cooking show on TV and they’ll go on and on about “plating”, which is basically, “make your plate look pretty”, and just that little extra hint of color really does make the dish look so perty.
But having said three right choices that this dish has made, it has unfortunately summoned a bad choice, because bad choices operate via the same rules as a Beetlejuice, Bloody Mary, or a Candyman. My only complaint and bad choice here, the chip to topping ratio was skewed in favor of the chips. A good ratio so that you don’t have too many chips or too many toppings (known in the nacho business as “The Leavings”) leftover is tricky and you usually have some in one way or the other, which is perfectly acceptable. On these nachos however I had easily in excess of 10 dry chips with nothing to put on them at the end of the meal! If I just wanted dry chips I would have ordered their chips and salsa rather than their nachos, and I NEVER order just chips and salsa.
f I was more of a beer guy I’m sure I could recommend you a beer to drink with your nachos, or remember the name of the one I had with my order that was really good, but no dice. If only there was some sort of individual at the brewery who might know a thing or two about both the food and beer being served there you could talk to for such information! I’m sure no such person exists though, so I guess you must just be on your own. Actually, maybe the magician they have on location might know a thing or two. Oh, I didn’t mention they have a magician? Yeah, tasty nachos and a magician. You should really check them out ASAP.