What Inspired 10 New Los Angeles Craft Beers?

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Craft Beer Los Angeles


Eric Mclaughlin (Ohana Brewing Co.) (photo courtesy of Andrew Luthi)

I recently brewed an American Pale Wheat Ale test batch with Nelson Sauvin and a little Cascade and Sorarchi Ace. With the temperature in mind, I’m hoping for something light with a good amount of wheat character. There’s a “healthy” amount of bitterness, and I didn’t want to go too heavy handed with the Nelson. It’s such an amazing hop, but I don’t want it to be the only flavor in the beer. It will be kegged off this week, so I am hoping to squeeze it into our production schedule, with any necessary recipe tweaks, before summer.

Stephen A. Kooshian (Pacific Plate Brewing Co.)

The most recent beer we have brewed at Pacific Plate is our North English Nut Brown Ale. It is a very traditional brown ale inspired by the famous brown ales of New Castle. We start with a malt profile of pale, caramel and chocolate malts and add a delicate hoppiness with classic East Kent Goldings hops. We ferment with a classic English yeast strain to achieve a subtle fruitiness. The end product is a very balanced and drinkable brown with a proper balance between malts, hops and yeast. 5.5% ABV.

Jonathan Porter (Smog City Brewing Co.)

We just brewed our Anniversary Steamfunk Brett IPA, which will be a very hoppy 100% Brett fermented IPA using some new hop varieties that will be released for our anniversary this year on May 9. I was inspired by some of the Brett IPAs out there- like Galaxy White IPA from Anchorage, and Stone’s Enjoy After IPA- but also by the complex aromatic compounds produced by some Brett strains. We have been pilot batching a wide array of styles and often incorporating Brett. We felt that using it in a style that adds the intense fruitiness of some hops would be a perfect fit. Obviously those beers I named above are living proof! Hopefully we can put our own spin on this relatively obscure execution of the popular IPA.

Craft Beer Los Angeles

Alexandra Nowell (Three Weavers) (photo courtesy of Alexandra Nowell)

We brew all of the time at 3W, but the most recent new recipe was for International Women’s Collaboration Brew Day, which is done in association with the Pink Boots Society. The beer is known as “Unite Red Ale” – which is common to all of the breweries that participated in the March 8 brew day. It’s 5.8%, rich ruby red in color, and has a unique hop profile from the use of relatively new hop variety Jaryllo, in combination with El Dorado. I get a lot of pear, coconut, pineapple, and even a little mint in the aroma and the finish, which is absolutely unlike any other hop I’ve used before. Since this is such a limited release beer, I felt like it would be the perfect testing ground for experimenting with Jaryllo (since I’ve never actually brewed with it until now). I went heavy handed on Jaryllo in both the kettle and the dry hop, just to see what it’s capable of doing and I’m extremely happy with the result. We will be releasing Unite Red Ale at Three Weavers on Saturday 4/4 with other members of the LA chapter of Pink Boots.

Craft Beer Los Angeles

Chris Sparacio (Timeless Pints Brewing Co.) (photo courtesy of Timeless Pints Brewing Co.)

The most recent new beer I brewed was a Green Tea/Clover Honey IPA. This was a small 10 gal batch made to be served in our tap room on St. Patrick’s Day. It was poured in 10 oz. glasses only, so we could hopefully share it with everyone who joined us to celebrate that day. The brew was well received and was gone well before closing. The Idea was given to me by one of our favorite regular patrons. She had told me some time ago that she had tried a wonderful Green Tea IPA by Stone Brewing Company. I thought, “What a great idea for a special brew for the upcoming holiday”! My approach for the beer was to make it my own. I kept it fairly light in body, but on the high end in alcohol. About 8.2% abv. I also wanted the IBU’s to be moderate (68 IBU’s) as to not overwhelm the green tea flavor. As I was putting the recipe together, the idea of adding in a little clover honey would be a perfect touch for a St. Patrick’s Day special.


Joshua Lurie

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

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