By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
Pasadena Weekly Executive Editor
Zacharias Gardea has been in heaven since he won a contest to name a beer in honor of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Pasadena resident’s idea was simple: Brew Heaven. It’s now the new moniker for the former Golden Road Dodgers beer. The win is an honor for Gardea, a lifelong Dodgers fan.
“Back in middle school and high school, I would go to every Opening Day game with my dad,” said Gardea, who grew up in Highland Park.
“Every Opening Day, I would skip out of school. I was lucky enough to have supportive parents and generally supportive teachers as well. They knew I was a huge Dodgers fan growing up. I still am. I really treat opening day like a holiday.”
Set for release early next year, the blonde ale is a play on Tommy Lasorda’s quote, “Dodger Stadium is Blue Heaven on Earth.”
“I’m really excited for that drop — especially if it’s around Opening Day,” he said.
“To roll that out alongside Opening Day would make it a special experience. Once the new Brew Heaven is released, that’s all we’re getting at Dodger games.”
Gardea said arriving at the name was easy. Within a few minutes, Brew Heaven popped up in his head.
“My mind just clicked to Brew Heaven,” he said. “It was in a matter of minutes when I thought of that name. I thought thousands of people are going to submit Brew Heaven. I suppose I was the first submittal of Brew Heaven.
“That was lucky. Nevertheless, it’s quite special and I’m really excited for its release.”
Gardea got the news via video from Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner.
“He’s arguably one of the best Dodgers of all time,” Gardea said. “He’s done a lot for the team, organization and city. For him to have driven the campaign, it makes it that much more special.”
Pitcher Julio Erias is also special to his family, as they moved to the United States from Mexico.
“He’s relatively young,” he said. “He’s 25 now. He still has quite a few good years remaining. I’m excited about his future, given how young he is and how he says composed during the post-season run.
“He hails from Mexico and that means a lot to the city of LA, to the Dodgers fanbase and to me.”