Craft Beer Los Angeles

Alex Davis and Cambria Griffith brought big energy to Drink Eat Travel's firefighter benefit.

The L.A. BEER BLAST is designed to let Food GPS readers know what’s new at select L.A. bars and restaurants with great beer selections. You’ll also discover 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.


This week, Brew & You columnist Sean Inman admitted, “Being a major beer geek, any vacation destination under discussion must have craft beer on the itinerary. Hence trips to Portland, Germany and Ireland in the past. Ojai passed beer muster this past weekend not for a brewery or famous beer bar but for a liquor store.” Inman’s full post is titled Vacation Beer.


Santa Rosa, the small town in Sonoma County, houses more than one uncompromising, iconoclastic brewer. Vinnie Cilurzo and wife Natalie have turned Russian River Brewing into a powerhouse, and across town, Brian Hunt is producing highly personal beers like Death & Taxes black beer, 20 to Life sour ale and an ale brewed using redwood tips. Click Here to Learn More


On October 26, darkness descended on Placentia as The Bruery once again released their much vaunted bourbon barrel-aged Imperial stout. Some people drove all the way from Sacramento to get their hands on the limited edition beer, and you know The Bruery made it rain. Pacman Jones and Prince would be proud.


Beachwood chef-owner Gabe Gordon currently features draught beers like Baladin Al-Iksir, Marin Eschi Herbal Infused Ale, Timmermans Bourgogne des Flandres, Green Flash Imperial Red, Ballast Point Abandon Ship Smoked Lager, Amager Baychus Summer Fusion, and on cask, Stone Arrogant Bastard with Chinook hops. Track changes to Beachwood BBQ’s 24-tap menu via HOP CAM.


New beers on tap at Blue Palms include Lagunitas A Little Sumpin’ Wild, Kern River Class V Imperial stout on nitro, Ballast Point Oktoberfest, Der Kommissar Weizenbock, Rubicon Rosebud old ale, Speakeasy Public Enemy Pils and Craftsman Wryet Time rye beer. Track changes to Blue Palms Brewhouse’s 24-tap menu via HERE

According to Blue Palms proprietor Brian Lenzo, “Firestone anniversary 14 party. Nov 10. The tap list will be insane!”


Last night, bar manager Rory Snipes updated us on Boneyard’s current roster, saying, “2010 Oskar Blues Ten Fidy has been released, which has prompted us to release one of our kegs of ’09 Ten-Fidy, come taste them side by side! Also new on draft this week we have: Troubadour Magma Belgian IPA, Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale, Great Divide Titan IPA, Allagash Curieux, Craftsman Oktoberfest, Moinette Brune and Stone Vertical Epic 10-10-10. We also have some Bootlegger’s Pumpkin Ale for Halloween, and we’ll be running specials on it all weekend, dress up and drink some pumpkin beer! For those of you with friends who for some reason don’t drink beer, we also now have a full bar featuring 80+ Whiskeys, come get some.”


Here are the updates from Randi Leehan at BottleRock Culver City:

Wychwood Hobgoblin (5.2% ABV), a “full bodied ruby beer that delivers a delicious chocolate toffee malt flavor.”

Stone vertical Epic 10-10-10 (9.5% ABV), “Fermented with the legendary Ardennes strain of Belgian yeast, 10.10.10 is a Belgian Strong Pale Ale brewed with pale malt and triticale (a cross of wheat and rye), hopped with German Perle hops, and steeped with chamomile during the whirlpool stage. In secondary fermentation, we added a juice blend of Muscat, Gewurztraminer, and Sauvignon Blanc grape varieties.”


Every Thursday night from 4 PM – 8 PM, Checkers features FOUR sips and four bites for only $4 apiece. According to Checkers manager Tyler Dow, “This week at FOUR we are going to offer your palate a uniquely local take on the famous German celebration of the wedding of Crown Prince Ludwig and his blushing bride Princess Therese. We are proud to welcome to the FOUR fold the fine products of The Bruery of Orange County!” Expect Orchard White (“a refreshing Belgian-style witbier”), Saison Rue (“a spicy and full-bodied farmhouse ale of subtlety and complexity”), Mischief (“a golden strong ale style”) and Rugbrod (“named after the Danish term for “rye bread”, this is a robust brown ale modeled on the dense rye bread of Scandinavia”). They’re pouring two tasters for $4 and pairing them with food.


On October 31 from 5 PM – 5 PM, Alex Macy and City Sip LA are hosting a Halloween Beer and Zombie (Book) Pairing, featuring “7 Killer Beers (to calm your nerves!),” “7 cheeses (oh, yes…there will be head cheese!),” Ben Tripp, author of “RISE AGAIN, a Zombie Thriller,” who will read passages from his book…”and possibly eat some offal meats (Brains, Liver, etc.) for those who eat flesh!” Come in a Zombie costume and get a party favor. The cost of the event is $35. To reserve a spot, e-mail [email protected] or call 213 483 9463.


According to beverage director Eli Wilson, “We are counting down to our Saints and Sinners ball this Sunday, Halloween!! Come and join us for an evening of unholy beers, crazy costumes, and a HELL of a lot of fun! Also, I am looking forward to tapping in extremely special Saints and Sinners kegs, highlights include Deliverance, Oak Aged Yeti, Hell and Damnation, and Jackalope Pumpkin Porter.”


Since last Thursday, Phil McGovern’s Santa Monica bar has added draught beers like Deschutes Mirror Pond Pale Ale, Deschutes Jubelale, Stone Smoked Porter, Dogfish Head Midas Touch, New Belgium Belgo IPA, Spaten Oktoberfest, Weihenstephaner Hefeweizen, Victory Hop Devil IPA, and on cask, Stone Arrogant Bastard with Simcoe and Chinook hops.


According to owner Natalie Gutenkauf, “We ended up changing our BYOB: BEER dinner to Tuesday, November 2nd since the original date conflicted with the Bruery’s Black Tuesday. There are still openings available for next week and this months theme is Oregon. Oregon beers on draft will be Rogue’s McRogue Scotch Ale XS and Morimoto Imperial Pilsner. We are also excited to bring in the newest in the Lips of Faith series from New Belgium, Sahti.” What she didn’t say was that the Oregon-themed menu includes acorn squash soup topped with roasted hazelnuts and stout infused crème fraîche; and bison ragout with wild mushrooms in a barleywine sauce. Also, anybody for bacon s’mores?


Ford’s Filling Station is hosting a Cowgirl Creamery & Lagunitas Brewery Event on October 30 from 4 PM – 7 PM. The cost is $45 per person in advance and $55 at the door, as long as seats are still available. According to general manager Katie Bell, “Cowgirl Creamery founder Sue Conley will be in house speaking about the amazing history of their creamery. We’ll be serving their seasonal and small batch cheeses and the Chefs will be creating small plates utilizing Cowgirl’s products. Lagunitas Brewery will be serving a number of their seasonal beers as well for you to taste and enjoy pairing!”

Lagunitas is bringing their Pils, Censored Rich Copper Ale, IPA, A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, A Little Sumpin’ Wild Ale, Hop Stoopid Ale and Brown SHugga’ sweet release. Conley is bringing the following cheeses: Red Hawk, Pierce Pt, Wagon Wheel, Mt Tam, Inverness…and possibly some little batch stuff that sue brings down in her bag :).” E-mail [email protected] for reservations.


According to Ladyface rep Robyn Britton, “Come on in & meet the newest lady – La Trappistine, our complex Belgian-style dubbel. Rich, malty & dark in color, it has caramel notes and lots of dried fruit. 9% ABV. Other Ladyface ales on tap include La Blanche Wit, La Blonde, Chesebro DIPA and Bourbon Barrel-Aged Picture City Porter. Joining them are Pliny the Elder, Avery Dugana and Joe’s Pils, Ommegang Hennepin Saison, Val-Dieu Grand Cru, North Coast Pranqster, Port Shark Attack, Great Divide Hades, Green Flash Double Chocolate Stout, St. Louis Gueuze and Spaten Octoberfest. Our gravity-drawn Cask of the Week won’t be tapped until Saturday evening at the Ladyface Halloween Bash. “Headless Horseman” features Ladyface Weizenbock with pumpkin pie spice. Get your ghoul on!”


According to Library Alehouse General Manager Tom Kelley, a certified cicerone, “This weekend we have Lagunitas Lil Sumpin’ Wild, Dogfish Head Punkin, Jolly Pumpkin Bam Biere, Stone 10.10.10, Oaked Arrogant Bastard, RR Blind Pig swapping out for Pliny the Elder, and Bruery Humulus Lager changing over at some point to Mischief.

On the bottle front we still have bottles left of Mikkeller Rauch Geek Breakfast stout, Lost Abbey Deliverance, Bruery Tradewinds Tripel, and newly release bottle of Alesmith Decadence 2010 which have been in the cellar for six months.”


Since last Thursday, Lucky Baldwin’s eastern outpost added Ommegang Belgian Pale Ale, Sierra Nevada Jack & Ken’s Ale – Black Barleywine, Avery Maharaja, Russian River Pliny the Elder, Scaldis Ma Peche, Delirium Noel, Saison Dupont and Collaboration Not Litigation, a collaboration from Russian River and Avery Brewing.


According to Assistant Manager Martin Svab, “Here we go with the new beer: Mammoth Black Harvest, Mammoth Hefeweizen, Great Divide Hades, Great Divide Hibernation, Kasteel Donker, Guden Carolous Keizer Van Blauw, Delirium Nocturnum, Cistmontane Black Dawn, Cosmic Ales Hell Hound Brown, Bayhawk Imperial Brown, Dogfish Head Punkin’ and The Bruery Mischief.

This Saturday, join us for our annual Halloween party. The fun begins at sundown till 2 am. Evening will include a costume contest with cool prizes, Halloween-themed craft beer, and music by the Land Sharks. That about covers it. Have a great Halloween weekend!!!”


The Hermosa Beach Kiwanis Club (2515 Valley Drive) is hosting “Savor the Flavor” on November 6 at 5:30 PM. According to organizer Karen Block’s description, “Soroptimist International of Manhattan Beach is putting on Savor the Flavor, a Beer and Tequila tasting in order to raise money for a domestic violence shelter being built in Rosarito, MX. Tickets are $30/$40 Pre-Sale or $35/$45 at the door. Your tickets include a full dinner, beer tastings (and tequila if you purchase the $40 ticket), non-alcoholic beverage and much more! Tickets, breweries, sponsors and other information can be found Here


According to manager Peter Shuey, “Right now at Simmzy’s we’ve got some great stuff! Just tapped Rogue’s Jon Jon Hazelnut Brown aged in spiced Rum barrels; Dogfish Head Punkin, Avery Brewing Joe’s Imperial Pilsner, Firestone Velvet Merlin & Ballast Point Long Fin Lager. Coming up we’ve got Craftsman’s Edgar’s Ale, TAPS Schwarzbier (gold medal winner @ GABF), Maui Coconut Porter (in cans) and Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti!

Also, next week on November 4th we’ll have our friends from Bootlegger’s Brewery in house pouring some Golden Chaos, Black Phoenix & their Pumpkin ale. Festivities begin at 6:30pm.”


Andrew Kelley singled out some “draft highlights,” including Russian River Redemption (Belgian style pale ale), Lagunitas Fusion 2 (black IPA) and Sierra Nevada Jack and Ken’s Ale (black barleywine). On deck, they’ve got kegs of Russian River Pliny the Elder (double IPA) and Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti (Imperial stout).


According to manager Paige Reilly, “HOLY MOLY!!!!!!! Sierra Nevada was incredible. We brewed a hopped up Schwartzbier, and everyone at the brewery seems really excited about it.

As for Tony’s, we have an amazing line up right now: Stone’s 2008 Imperial Russian Stout and 2007 Old Guardian Barley Wine, Firestone Walker’s Black Xantus and Double Jack Double IPA AND Moylan’s Hopsickle IPA. Also, don’t forget! L.A. Vegan Beer Festival is right around the corner! Get your tickets for Saturday November 6th!!!” Buy Tickets Here


Andrew Kelley singled out some “draft highlights,” including Jolly Pumpkin La Parcela (sour pumpkin beer), Lost Coast Oak Aged Fog Cutter (barleywine) and Great Divide Hibernation (winter ale). On deck, they’ve got kegs of Russian River Consecration (sour brown ale with currants) and Russian River Temptation (sour blonde ale).


According to The York manager Mary Drenthe, “This weekend for Halloween we’re featuring Hobgoblin from Wychwood Brewery and Craftsman Edgar’s Ale on draught. We’re also pouring Eagle Rock Brewery Imperial CA Common Ale, Lagunitas Czech Pilsner, and, on deck, Firestone Velvet Merlin. Craftsman Poppyfields Pale Ale is on cask.”


Joshua Lurie

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

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