On the last Tuesday of each month, Library Alehouse hosts a benefit for a different nonprofit. On December 29, the 14-year-old alehouse honored the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, a “membership supported advocacy organization working to improve the bicycling environment and quality of life in Los Angeles County.” There were raffles for bicycles and Patagonia gear, and 15% of proceeds benefited the organization.
Owner Dave Lackman opened Library Alehouse in 1995 after developing the business plan as a UCLA senior. The Woodland Hills native originally planned to brew in-house, but zoning laws and water quality made that element untenable. Instead, Lackman focused on West Coast microbrews, then slowly expanded internationally. Now, with increased competition and a more knowledgeable clientele, it’s imperative to have a tighter list than ever. “Palates are elevated, so we’re working harder with breweries to get exclusive stuff,” says Lackman.
Library Alehouse sourced eight different holiday beers for their Brewfest. Since holiday beers are typically high ABV, the best way to experience the biggest variety and not get too ripped was with their four-beer flight.
Deschutes Jubelale was a 6.7% ABV copper hued ale with a spiced grape sweetness.
Port Brewing Company’s Santa’s Little Helper was nearly black, a rich 10.5% Imperial Stout with an enticing coffee aroma and a flat top.
Mikkeller Fra Til (From To) is an 8% Belgian porter with a dark brown color and a tan top. It was somewhat bitter body but a spicy tingle at the finish.
Fra Til was my favorite beer of the day, followed by Santa’s Little Helper, Jubelale and Celebration.
On January 26, Library Alehouse is planning a fundraiser for the Boys and Girls Club of Santa Monica, with possible beer pairings from Firestone Walker.