L.A. Beer Blast A40

Brewmaster Belgium

Chimay brewmaster Dominique Denis poured a Chimay Blue Grande Réserve jeroboam for L.A. Beer Week.

The L.A. BEER BLAST is designed to let Food GPS readers know about what’s new at select L.A. bars and restaurants with great beer selections. You’ll also discover great beer-related events in the area and learn about industry leaders. Expect a new L.A. BEER BLAST every Thursday evening, in time for the weekend rush. Look in the left sidebar, SUBSCRIBE to Food GPS and you’ll receive the L.A. BEER BLAST by e-mail.

Beer epicenters like San Francisco and Seattle already host their own beer weeks. This year, the L.A. beer scene finally advanced enough to justify its own Beer Week, filling 11 days with events at 35 establishments and drawing participation from over 50 breweries. The “week” culminated on October 24 with a massive beer blowout at La Cañada-Flintridge’s Descanso Gardens, which just might be the L.A. beer event of the year.

Chimay is a revered Belgium brewery that dates to 1862, when Cistercian Trappist monks began producing beer and cheese to sustain the order, employ locals and generate money for their charitable foundations. For the past decade, brewmaster Dominique Denis has been entrusted with maintaining the consistent excellence of Chimay Red, White and Blue. On October 24, we met at the L.A. Beer Week Festival. He took a break from pouring Chimay in the Descanso Gardens rosarium to discuss his background and what differentiates Chimay from other breweries.

Brew & You columnist Sean Inman continued to attack L.A. Beer Week with reckless abandon. He recently documented six events in a post titled “L.A. Beer Week Recap, Part 1.” This week, he also recaps the L.A. Beer Festival in a post titled “Afternoon in the Garden of Craft Beer.”

Through the end of October, beer writer Tomm Carroll is filing quick-hitting dispatches from Europe on his iPhone. HIS LATEST REPORTS have been updated throughout his hop-soaked journey.

131 Main Street, Seal Beach, 562 493 4500

New draught options at Gabriel Gordon’s noted Seal Beach beer bar include Pliny the Elder, Evil Dead Red, Karl Strauss Double Red Ale, AleSmith Nautical Nut Brown, Sam Adams Imperial White, Oskar Blues 10 Fidy and Two Thousand Eight Barley Wine. Track changes to Gordon’s 24-tap blackboard menu via HOP CAM.

4524 Saugus Avenue, Sherman Oaks, 818 990 2583

Manager Ray Garcia just added bottles of Schonramer Gold.

1050 South Flower Street, Downtown, 213 747 1100

Here’s today’s update from Alex Macy, BottleRock LA’s resident beer expert:


  • Allagash Interlude
  • Allagash Fluxus
  • Alpine Pure Hoppiness
  • De Proef Reinart
  • De Proef/Allagash Collaborative
  • Deus Brut
  • Goose Island Bourbon County Brand Stout
  • Goose Island Christmas Ale
  • St. Bernardus Christmas

  • Firestone Double DBA
  • Green Flash Hop Head Red
    2310 Pico Boulevard, Santa Monica, 310 450 7631

    The Daily Pint owner Phil McGovern updated his tap selection earlier today, highlighting Bitch Creek ESB, Russian River Blind Pig, Sierra Nevada’s Anniversary IPA, Duvel Green, Wexford Irish Cream, Ballast Point Yellowtail Pale Ale, Firestone Double Jack double IPA, Dogfish Head Palo Santo Maron, Green Flash 30th Street Pale Ale, and on cask, Firestone unfiltered Double Barrel Ale and Stone Levitation.

    Also, October 30 is Lagunitas Night at the Pint. David Stickel described “Glassware giveaway, plus Hop Stoopid, Brown Shugga, Lil Sumpin Sumpin, Lil Sumpin EXTRA, Czech Pils & IPA on tap!”

    426 North Fairfax Avenue, Fairfax, 323 782 8331

    Here’s today’s update from The Golden State co-owner James Starr:

    New on tap: North Coast Old Rasputin, AleSmith Grand Gru, Green Flash Grand Cru, The Bruery Snicklefritz, Craftsman 1903, Craftsman Edgar’s Ale, The Lost Abbey Devotion, Firestone Union Jack, Allagash Curieux and Pizza Port High Tide IPA.

    17 South Raymond Avenue, Pasadena, 626 795 0652

    Lucky Baldwin’s is celebrating their 13th anniversary through November 9 by collaborating with Stone. Expect rare Stone beers like 2008 Old Guardian BarleyWine aged in Red Wine barrels, Stone Smoked Porter w/Vanilla Bean, Double Dry-Hopped Ruination IPA, 07.07.07 Vertical Epic and fittingly enough, Stone 13th Anniversary Ale. Russian River Brewing is contributing kegs of Pliny The Elder, Damnation, Blind Pig, Russian River IPA and Collaboration Not Litigation Ale, a collaboration with Avery Brewing Company. You’ll also find Craftsman Edgar’s Ale, AleSmith Speedway Stout and a vintage keg of 2001 St. Bernardus 12, which is available exclusively as a $6 taster. $22 gets you a commemorative T-shirt and glass, plus a choice of draught beer.

    Lucky Baldwin’s
    21 Kersting Court, Sierra Madre, 626 355 1140

    Lucky Baldwin’s eastern outpost is also celebrating the Anniversary Festival, where you can get a commemorative glass, T-shirt and beer for $22. It’s a $1 discount on refills if you have the glass in hand. Jamie, a Delirium Café staffer, promised “many Stone beers, including vintage beers,” plus other strong IPAs like Port Brewing High Tide, Bear Republic Hop Rod Rye, Avery Old Jubilation and Port Brewing Hop 15.

    21356 Devonshire Street, Chatsworth, 818 734 7056

    According to resident Beer Geek David Stickel, “It’s kind of a mellow week for new beers after all the excitement from L.A. Beer Week. Stone IPA is back on & Drakes 1500 will be up as soon as the Racer 5 kicks. Chimay Tripel should be back on tap in time for the weekend. Duvel Green and Acme Pale have been well received, and will be staying on for a while. We’re hoping to fire up the beer engine pretty soon and get some cask beers pouring, but we need to drum up a little more interest first. Stay tuned for big things coming in the next couple of weeks.”

    154 International Boardwalk, Redondo Beach, 310 376 9951

    Here’s today’s update from Assistant GM Martin Svab:

    New @ Naja’s (or newer and still pouring):

  • NB Tart Lychee
  • NB La Terroir
  • NB Biere de Mars
  • Gentleman Scholar Requiem Espresso Stout
  • Stone Imperial Russian Stout 2008
  • Double Bastard 2006 & 2008
  • Sierra Nevada Tripel
  • Shipyard Smashin Pumpkin
  • Dogfish Head Punkin
  • Rogue Double Dead Guy
  • Lucifer
  • Sam Adams Imperial White
  • Pliny the Elder
    229 Manhattan Beach Boulevard, Manhattan Beach, 310 546 1201

    Here’s today’s update from Simmzy’s Manager Chris Garza:

    “New arrivals at Simmzy’s include the highly sought after Sculpin IPA from Ballast Point in San Diego. Pouring now is the last of their tasty “Rocktoberfest”, a sweet, well balanced Marzen. As well, we have two Craftsman beers that will be entering the lineup shortly. We have the Poppy Field Pale Ale as well as the super limited Edgar’s Ale. This weekend will probably be the last chance to get a taste of New Belgium’s sour beers, so get here when you can! Cheers!”

    3408 Verdugo Road, Glassell Park, 323 257 3408

    Here’s today’s update from co-owner Ryan Sweeney:

    New on draught: The Bruery Snicklefritz, Allagash Interlude, something new from Half Moon, and Ommegang Adoration, a 10% Belgian strong dark ale. On deck: Stone Smoked Porter with vanilla bean and AleSmith Evil Dead Red, their Halloween beer. New bottles: Sprecher bourbon barrel aged doppelbock and Dugana, “Avery’s answer to Pliny the Elder,” which is “not as big as Maharaja, but bigger than their normal IPA.”

    5018 York Boulevard, Highland Park, 323 255 9675

    According to The York manager Mary Drenthe, new beers on tap are Craftsman Edgar’s Ale, Hobgoblin English Ale and Belhaven Scottish Ale.


    Joshua Lurie

    Joshua Lurie founded FoodGPS in 2005. Read about him here.

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