Brewpubs

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Winter Beer Dinner at Ballast Point Photos

These photos were taken Friday evening at Ballast Point Long Beach; where I participated in something I have not been able to do in over two years, attend a beer dinner. A four course meal curated by Ballast Point R&D Brewer Chris Takeuchi, combined with the fact that I had yet to visit Ballast Point’s Long Beach location, made it a pretty easy decision to accept their invitation. Together with my friend Alexis, sales rep for Eureka Brewing Company, we braved the Friday night traffic for what would be a fun and tasty evening.

So, getting first impressions out of the way first, their parking lot is massive which should probably give you an indication of what to expect inside. With a little patience we ended up with one of the best parking spots short of having a handicapped placard.

When we entered I was pretty surprised at just how massive the place is. The fact of the matter is that I never even made it upstairs so it is literally twice as big as what I observed. On top of that they have an outdoor patio which I am sure is nice most of the time; last night would not have been a good time for outdoor dining (too cold). Continue reading

Long Beach Beer Lab 4th Anniversary Photos

These photos were taken Sunday afternoon at Long Beach Beer Lab, where they celebrated their fourth anniversary and Oktoberfest. The festivities included live music by The Bodleys, face painting by Liza May, one liter steins of their Oktoberfest beer, and soft pretzels from Long Beach Bread Lab.

I ran into Long Beach Beer Lab founder/Chief Investigating Scientist Levi Fried shortly after I arrived and had to comment on how much growth there had been since my last visit; Levi responded that they had been busy the last two years. I knew it had not been two years since my last visit, but admittedly my last couple of visits had been for to-go purchases so I had not seen just how much they have grown. Continue reading

Beachwood Brewing 10th Anniversary Photos

These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at the Beachwood BBQ & Brewing brewpub in Long Beach, where Beachwood fans gathered to celebrate 10 years of great barbecue and even better beer.

If you have attended previous anniversary celebrations at Beachwood, the first thing you would notice is that there was no line to get in. In fact, there were very few lines at all during the two hours I was there. The one thing that today had in common with prior years was the amazing beer selection. By my count there were 23 house brews on tap, including one hard seltzer, and Hoppa Emeritus on cask, as well as six guest taps, and eight Blendery options. Continue reading

Crac Brewery and Grub: From the Beginning

These photos were taken at Carson’s newest brewpub, The Crac Brewery and Grub; the photos are of the construction I observed between November 4, 2019 and day one of their soft open, November 21, 2020.

It was Halloween 2019 B.C. (Before Covid), when Buddy and I entered King Harbor Brewing during our nightly walk. It was the one day a year that people would wear masks, and a masked cowboy addressed me by a nickname that most of you don’t know, but told me this cowboy must know me even if I couldn’t recognize him in his costume.

After doing a little recon with the beertender I figured out the masked stranger was Jeff Parker, so I went over to be a little more sociable. It was then that Jeff informed me that he was involved with the building of a new brewery in Carson; four days later I stopped by to take the first of my photos that would show the construction during the upcoming year. Continue reading

The Brews Hall 100 Days Later

These photos were taken Thursday, March 12, at The Brews Hall at Del Amo in Torrance. While it has actually been 115 days since The Brews Hall Grand Opening and these photos, I thought 100 Days Later sounded better than 115 Days Later.

As frequently happens when a new brewery opens in the area, lots of people ask me, “how is the beer?” There are not a lot of breweries that open up trouble free, so that is usually a legitimate question. Unfortunately, I had only visited The Brews Hall once since their grand opening for a beer with a friend, and they were still new enough that they still relied on guest breweries to keep their taps flowing; so when the Vice President of Operations for the Zislis Group (owners of The Brews Hall) extended an offer for me to return and check things out, I put on my foul weather gear, grabbed a plastic bag for my camera, and headed over for a return visit. Continue reading

SoCal Vibes Soft Open Photos

These photos were taken Saturday evening at SoCal Vibes Co. in Carson, where they celebrated Leap Day with the kind of official soft open. The event featured DJs, special pricing on food from their kitchen, and special Honest Abe cider releases.

SoCal Vibes is located at the same location of the now defunct Hokulea Brewing Company. If you will recall, Hokulea shared the spot with Southern California Cider Company, aka SoCal Cider. When Hokulea closed up, SoCal Cider/Honest Abe Hard Ciders owner Spencer Chambers was determined to keep the location open. It is almost one of those “if life gives you lemons” stories. Continue reading

Hermosa Brewing Company’s 2nd Anniversary Photos

These photos were taken Saturday evening at Hermosa Brewing Company in Hermosa Beach, where they celebrated their second anniversary. The event featured food specials, the debut of Future is Unwritten, a new DDH Hazy Double IPA, Suitcase in Berlin Berliner Weisse with raspberries and blackberries, and Belle Plage, a French Saison with passion fruit. They also brought back their coffee Pale Ale collaboration with Later Days Coffee Co, Wakey Wakey. Live music was provided featuring local favorites Jeff Baker and Mike Longacre. Like last year’s celebration, two collectable anniversary glasses (a Teku and a Pilsner style glass) were available for purchase. Both glasses came with a fill of your choice and include $1.00 off all pours for the balance of the weekend.

Hermosa Brewing has some big news coming up, but I am not at liberty to discuss it at this point. Suffice it say, 2020 is going to be huge for Hermosa Brewing and will result in more fresh craft beer for the South Bay. Stay tuned, I should be able to announce it in the next several weeks. Continue reading

Burnin’ Daylight 1st Annual Anniversary Party Photos

These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at Burnin’ Daylight Brewing Company, Lomita’s first brewpub, where they celebrated their first annual anniversary party. The event featured 25 craft beers on tap, live music, food, the release of their canned anniversary beer, Burn One West Coast IPA, and the best weather we have seen this decade.

As we have become accustomed, Burnin’ Daylight took advantage of their parking lot and the ability to have guest taps to throw one heck of a party. Guest taps were provided by Beachwood Brewing, El Segundo Brewing, HopSaint Brewing, Smog City, Stone Brewing, and Topa Topa Brewing. Live music was provided by The Vibe Tribe, and food was available from Burnin’ Daylight’s own kitchen and outside grill. I am not sure who was in charge of the weather, but kudos to them for an amazing day.

While Burnin’ Daylight may only be one year old, they have quickly risen to be one of the most popular breweries in the South Bay. Throughout the day I spoke with several people that agreed that Burnin’ Daylight was one of the best new breweries in the last few years. Judging by the number of people that showed up, that opinion seemed to be the consensus. Continue reading

Photos of the Brewer’s Beer Dinner at Abigaile Brewery

These photos were taken Monday evening at Abigaile Restaurant and Brewery in Hermosa Beach, where Head Brewer Josh McCombs teamed up with Executive Chef Tin Vuong, and Chef de Cuisine Mailyn Castillo to put on another of their series of beer dinners; this time being a delicious five course dinner (which was advertised as a four course meal) paired with beers brewed by McCombs.

The meal started off with an appetizer consisting of a roasted scallop on the half shell, with a nuac cham sauce made up of butter, parsley, and coriander. This was paired with McCombs’ Dim Wit Hefeweisen which really complemented the buttery texture of the scallop.

For round two we were served a Crisp Duck Arancini, stuffed with duck and mozzarella with a lemon pepper sauce (really tasty). This was paired with McCombs’ South Side Kolsch which balanced the richness of the arancini, and was enhanced by the lemon pepper sauce. Continue reading

The Brews Hall Grand Opening Photos

These photos were taken Monday evening at The Brews Hall at Del Amo, in Torrance where they held their official grand opening. The ticketed event was very well attended, and included The Brews Hall primary owners, Mike Zislis, George Lopez, and Colin Cowherd, along with Head Brewer Justinian Caire, Assistant Brewer Alex Rodriguez, several Brews Hall investors, and craft beer fans that just wanted to be among the first to try the first brews from Buzzrock Brewing and Ta Loco Brewing Company.

Attendees were treated to a limited menu that included a chicken sandwich from Chicken TWILI, burritos from George Lopez’s Chingon Kitchen, a wedge salad from Rock’n Fish, a cheeseburger from Colin Cowherd’s The Herd, and various sides and desserts. More importantly, the first three beers were released from the new brewhouse. Continue reading

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