On Saturday afternoon PINT Magazine held their inaugural “Laughs by Volume” craft beer festival at LA Mother which is located at The Carriage House in Hollywood. Laughs by Volume provided a twist to the typical craft beer festival in that they added comedy to the mix by having local comedians Evan Wecksell, Sammy Obeid, Jason Love, Atsuko Okatsuka, Jonesy and Stevie Mack perform for the festival attendees.
Laughs by Volume was held over three sessions, with the first beginning at 1:00 PM, followed by 5:00 and 9:00 sessions. As I had other events to cover, I opted to attend the 1:00 show. To say that the event got off to a shaky start would be an understatement but when I stop to think about it, they had the same issues I have seen at just about every beer festival I have attended. Things like jockey boxes messing up, not enough ice, or volunteers not showing up.
Luckily, the 1:00 show was not very crowded so any slight inconveniences were pretty much blown off; additionally, people that attended the first session were told they could stick around for the second session. It is my understanding the 5:00 show had the most pre-sold tickets; I have a feeling it came off as much more organized by then because everything was set up pretty well and there was plenty of ice for all the beer by the time the 1:00 session ended. Continue reading
A couple of weeks ago I informed you of an upcoming craft beer event, Laughs By Volume, which is being held January 30, 2016 at LA Mother, located at 1627 N. Gower Street in Hollywood.
In my initial post I listed the participating breweries as Santa Monica Brew Works, Absolution Brewing, The Good Beer Company, Hand-Brewed Beer, Fireman’s Brew, The Bruery, The Great Beer Company, Four Sons Brewing, Kinetic Brewing Company, Congregation Ale House and Pacific Plate Brewing. I am happy to announce that the number of participating breweries has been increased to include Timeless Pints, Mission Brewery and The Dudes’ Brewing Company however, Congregation will not be participating.
I also mentioned that everyone attending Laughs By Volume will receive a gift bag with products, discounts and special offers from all the participating sponsors; this too has been expanded and is now valued at over $300! Continue reading
Happy New Year, everyone; I have a feeling this is going to be a fun, beer-filled year. I would like to tell you about an upcoming craft beer event that will be held January 30, 2016. Laughs By Volume, presented by PINT Magazine will present a new twist on your typical local craft beer festival by including comedy from local comedians. Included in the price of admission is a souvenir PINT glass, three hours of unlimited tastings of at least 20 different brews, six comedy acts and an amateur comedy contest with a cash prize. So, if you get funnier the more you drink, you might want to enter the contest.
As far as the breweries represented, at this time they will have Santa Monica Brew Works, Absolution Brewing, The Good Beer Company, Hand-Brewed Beer, Fireman’s Brew, The Bruery, The Great Beer Company, Four Sons Brewing, Kinetic Brewing Company, Congregation Ale House and Pacific Plate Brewing.
Comedians scheduled to appear include Evan Wecksell, Sammy Obeid, Jason Love, Atsuko Okatsuka, Jonesy and Stevie Mack. These guys have been on everything from MTV to David Letterman so it should be pretty fun. Continue reading
These photos were taken at the 4th Annual Alpine Kraft Bierfest which was held at the Alpine Inn Restaurant at Alpine Village in Torrance. The craft beer event featured beers from all over the United States with a couple very rare Belgian brews added for good measure. While I did not take the time to count each of the breweries represented or the number of various beers available for sampling, they advertised over 40 breweries and 100 beers. I know there were a couple other craft beer events going on in Southern California this past weekend, but if you drove away from the South Bay instead of towards it, you may have messed up.
The Kraft Bierfest was held over the course of two sessions, beginning Friday evening and concluding with an afternoon session on Saturday afternoon. This was the second time they have split the event up over two sessions. Last year, to avoid the possibility of the best brews running out during the first session, Alpine’s event coordinators decided to split up the beers by day and put up a schedule of appearance for the brews so people could choose which day would have the most beers that they wanted to try. This time they made every brew available on both days but cut off serving brews that were limited on Friday so some would be available on Saturday. While there were people that were not too happy when the Agrestic or Winter Harvest ran out on Friday, the people that showed up on Saturday were quite grateful.
While I do not have the final numbers, it seemed like there may have been people in attendance on Friday night than Saturday afternoon; I doubt if either session had more than a couple hundred people in attendance. The only line I recall seeing that had more than four people in it were the first few people that arrived Saturday and headed straight for the Agrestic. I would not be surprised to see this event go back to being a one session deal. Continue reading
These photos were taken Sunday afternoon at the El Segundo Rock & Brews Garden on Main 5th Annual Local Craft Beer Fest. The family and pet friendly event featured beers by 16 breweries, from Valencia to Redlands and all over the South Bay area. Included in the price of admission, attendees were treated to a nice barbecue, a raffle, face painting, and games for people of all ages.
A few of the breweries in attendance included Absolution Brewing, Strand, El Segundo, Three Weavers, Phantom Carriage and Barley Forge. There was also a first time attendee for any festival I have attended, Reel Brewery. Reel Brewery is currently contract brewing but hope to open a tasting room in 2016 in Van Nuys, around the corner from MacLeod’s. I noticed that Santa Monica Brew Works was converting people with their PCH – Pale Chocolate Heaven. I tried Reel Brewery’s Hollywood Pilsner which was their take on Firestone’s Pivo Pils with their heavy dry-hopping; it was interesting enough that I look forward to visiting their tasting room when it does open. Continue reading
It has been a real pleasure watching the evolution of this craft beer festival; the first one in 2012 had almost as many beers as attendees but attendance has increased every year since. In 2014 it was decided to hold the event over the course of two sessions and it worked very well. Last year each session had different special beers; this year both sessions will have every beer. When asked how they would ensure that certain beers were not tapped out on Friday, leaving Saturday’s attendees without, I was told that they would be monitoring lines and weighing kegs if that became an issue. Continue reading
On Sunday afternoon, Abigaile Restaurant & Ocean Bar in Hermosa Beach continued their series of Brewtopia beer festivals, this time combining it with Oktoberfest since it is October. The event featured a wide selection of beer from such breweries as Stone, Black Market, New Belgium, Great Divide, Paulaner, AleSmith, Green Flash and The Bruery. Also included in the price of admission was all you could eat pretzels, sauerkraut and brats, and burgers. There was live entertainment provided by Mark Righteous and Jason Juices.
After a couple months of weather that was about as unnatural for this area as it comes, we actually had a nice day at the beach; not too hot and not too humid, it was just about perfect. Typically these mini-festivals at Abigaile have been packed but yesterday’s event was anything but which meant plenty for everyone and no lines. I cannot really explain the low turnout but those that did come out had a great time.
Before I left, I stopped at the bar to try the new brew by Abigaile’s new brewer, Paul Papantonio; it is a black IPA named Midnight Mass. I had an opportunity to try it a couple weeks ago at Abigaile’s Meet the Brewer event when it was “not quite ready” and all I can say is that Papantonio has some big shoes to fill following Brian Brewer, but if he did this well on his first brew with the new-to-him system, we have a lot to look forward to. Cheers! Continue reading
On Saturday afternoon Tap & Cheer Events presented their 6th Annual Beer, Art and Music Festival, lovingly known as BAM Fest, which was held at the 18th Street Arts Center in Santa Monica. The 18th Street Arts Center is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization and is the beneficiary of all the proceeds from the BAM Fest fundraiser. The event featured beers and ciders from more than 30 craft breweries as well as foods from six food trucks and live music provided by Nick Shattuck, Heaps N Heaps and Whiskey Sunday.
Considering the heat index was well over 100 degrees out when BAM Fest started, they had a very nice turnout. I am not really sure how the crowd size compared to previous years because people seemed to be seeking shade more than normal which probably resulted in more art being seen this time; it did appear that there were more art exhibits opened to the public this year and I am sure everyone that took advantage of them appreciated it. The weather pretty much forced everyone to get to know their neighbor since the parking lot had about three umbrellas that most attendees tried to fit under at some point. Continue reading
On Saturday evening, the new Whole Foods Market in Playa Vista held a mini-Oktoberfest at their Astro Pub bar, which is a full bar complete with 24 craft beers on tap; with 14 of them dedicated to local breweries. The Oktoberfest was the second in a series of tap takeovers, beer dinners and various beer events planned by Raul Moran, the beer buyer for Whole Foods, Playa Vista.
The evening consisted of Oktoberfest style beers featuring such breweries as Three Weavers, Sierra Nevada, Ballast Point, Goose Island, Spaten, Weihenstephan and Hofbräuhaus. Also included in the price of admission was plenty of schnitzel, sauerkraut, brats and giant pretzels. Piped in German music resulted in spontaneous breakouts of the ever popular Chicken Dance. There was also plenty of swag available for anyone that wanted it. They had a moderate turnout, and everyone that attended seemed to be having a good time making new friends while enjoying the food and beer.
The Astro Pub is located in the front of the Whole Foods Market, Playa Vista at 12746 W. Jefferson Boulevard. As I mentioned, Moran plans on having a series of beer dinners and tap takeovers every couple of weeks. I would suggest following the Whole Foods Facebook page to be kept in the loop. Prost! Continue reading
This will be my fourth time attending BAM Fest and all I can say is that if you enjoy craft beer, live in the Los Angeles area and have never attended BAM Fest, you are doing yourself a disservice. From the first time I attended in 2012 I have been nothing but impressed; and the event just seems to get bigger and better every year and 2015 appears to be no exception.