20080328_hopsbeer.jpgAt Ballast Point Brewing Company in San Diego, the brewing part might get toned down. With hops up from $6 to $30, according to the San Diego Reader, brewer Yuseff Cherney is struggling to make his Dorado Double India Pale Ale. Over at Pizza Port in nearby Carlsbad, Hop Suey Double IPA is also in harm's way. With worldwide hop acreage about one-fourth of what it was 15 years ago, microbrewers might be diluting signature flavors in the upcoming year, or even considering vintner's licenses.

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