L.A. Craft Beer Crawl 2012 Recap
The 3rd Annual Los Angeles Craft Beer Crawl kicked off to an amazing crowd of more than 400 people that included media and vip ticket holders, followed by a wave of more than 3,000 craft beer imbibers from all walks of life and culture. They were all here for one reason, and one reason only; to sample beer from some of the best local and regional breweries this side of the Mississippi…well actually, mostly California to be exact.
Despite the treacherous heat that spread throughout this concrete jungle that is downtown L.A., event goers seemed to enjoy every single minute, jumping from one watering hole to the next…some as far as 6 city blocks. This of course, did not matter, so long as there was good beer to be had, and that there was in great abundance.
Our journey began at Casey’s Irish Bar & Grill, where everyone checked in and picked up their commemorative glass and ‘treasure map.’ We were joined by our friend Sean Inman of Beer Search Party who also shared some tasting notes as well as some keen insights regarding some of the breweries present.
Here we were able to try a delicious Black Sand Dark DIPA on cask by Strand Brewing. Manning the taps was Strand’s Rich Marcello, our good friend Efrain Gallindo and Jennifer, who coordinates this weekend’s Taste of Brews Festival in Long Beach (Remember to get your tickets). We also tried Craft Brewing’s Sir Walter’s Scottish Ale. The logo reminds me of the wizard on Led Zeppelin’s IV album; and Anchor Brewing’s Zymaster #2: Mark’s Mild, and mild it was.
Our next stop was good ol’ Seven Grand where we were greeted by The Bruery’s Melange #3 poured by Mr. Matt Olesh, followed by Deschutes Brewery’s Black Butte XXIV, and the Deschutes/Hair of the Dog collaboration Collage: Conflux Series #1 which was simply marvelous. Unfortunately, we missed out on trying The Beer Chicks collaboration with New Belgium & Elysian’s Honey Chamomile Blonde, but we’re hoping we can pick up a bottle soon at their 8th Street Bottle Shop at the Golden Gopher in Downtown LA.
After a long six block trek through the streets of Downtown, we ended up at the members-only lounge, the Caña Rum Bar where we met up with Andy of Cismontane Brewing. Here we sampled Cismontane’s Coulter IPA, El Segundo Brewing’s White Dog IPA and an outrageously good peanut butter and raspberry beer called “Peanut Butter Jelly Time” by Kinetic Brewing Co.
Next up on our map was the Golden Gopher. By this time, we were extremely thirsty and couldn’t wait to get our hands on Ballast Point Brewing’s Sour Wench and Drake’s Aroma Coma. We also couldn’t pass up TAPS Fish House & Brewery’s Balinese Stout, which gave us that second wind to continue to the next bar.
Broadway Bar, my old stomping grounds was conveniently 2 blocks away. Here we tried Stone Brewing’s 16th Anniversary Ale. We then got into Lagunita’s Little Sumpin’ and Monkish Brewing’s Rosa’s Hips Dubbel. Sadly, we missed Uncommon Brewer’s Bacon Brown Ale.
We then steadily crawled our way into Las Perlas, a place known for their Mezcal and Tequila. Here we were greeted by our friends Cambria and Skipp of Golden Road Brewing and Laurie Porter of Smog City Brewing. This place was packed and felt like an oven. Thank God for Get Up Offa That Brown Ale and the Hoptonic IPA to freshness things up.
Last on the list, and literally right across the street, was Cole’s: Originators of the French Dipped Sandwich since 1908. Seriously, that’s what the sign says. Brewery’s here included Bootlegger’s, Eagle Rock Brewery, Craftsman and Telegraph Brewing Co. As a treat, we were given access to Cole’s, Only Authorize Personnel Speakeasy room way in the back. This room featured some of the best home brews I’ve ever had the chance to try. One Dead Meadow an Extra Pale Ale infused with Jasmine & Poppies, yes poppies, which is a collab between Yeast Brewers and Hot Knives Brewers. Also tried an awesome Baltic Porter by Jerl Luetz and what had to be my favorite a Vanilla Chai Latte Milk Stout brewed by Ward G. Walkup IV. I will definitely be on the lookout for all these brewers in the future.
What an amazing event. We can’t wait until next year! This event was proof that Craft Beer in Los Angeles IS ON THE RISE. It clearly seemed to be more people here than last year for sure. Thank you to the Beer Chicks and the 213 Group for putting together an amazing event that benefits everyone in the Industry, including us, the craft beer drinking public.
Cheers to you!
Beers in Paradise