On a lark, while heading out of the gold-rush area of CA and heading towards the Cascade Range, we decided to tour the Sierra Nevada Brewing Company located in Chico, Ca. We have toured other breweries, big and small over the years, and have always found the process and the art that goes with it to be fascinating. We were expecting a small to medium sized factory-type operation and an interesting but unremarkable tour. What we got was anything but. First, the place is enormous. Second, it is gorgeous - architecture, magnificent cut/beveled glass, wonderful woodwork, hand-painted tiles (in the work areas!), frescoes depicting both the process and the company heritage and incredible amounts of copper makes it truly unique in the industry. Third; it was spotless - everywhere. Everything gleamed. Fourth, the tasting room was beautiful and the beers were absolutely delicious. Fifth; Emma our tour-guide was the perfect hostess and ambassador for the company. She really loves her job and it shows. She is extremely knowledgeable about the product and the company and never missed a beat. She also never made you think that she was reciting something for the thousandth time like many such guides unfortunately seem to do. She kept it moving, sprinkled in appropriate humor and never seemed to be at loss with even the most technical question. It was a thoroughly enjoyable tour and a must-see for beer enthusiasts anywhere.