These photos were taken Saturday at the LA Beer Week Kickoff Festival which was held at the Los Angeles Center Studios in Los Angeles. This event marked the beginning of the 11th Annual L.A. Beer Week and featured more than 90 independent local craft breweries, pouring a reported 250 brews.
Similar to last year, it was a pleasant, mostly overcast day, which sure beats the 100+ temperatures of years past. I did not even notice the sunburn on my face until Sunday.
The annual event also featured games, a DJ, live music, a panel discussion, and food trucks and popups from Slice and Pint, Simmzy’s, Bartz Barbecue, Cousin’s Maine Lobster, Baby’s Badass Burgers, Angry Pig, and Street Kitchen. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at the El Segundo Brewing Company tasting room, where they celebrated eight years of brewing their hopcentric ales. The celebration was spread over three days with a bottle release on Friday, the anniversary party on Saturday, and a Michelada party on Sunday.
Attendees on Saturday had 20 El Segundo brews to choose from, including their anniversary beer, Ochos Locos DIPA on draught and a hazy cask version done with vanilla beans. In addition to the quality brews we have come to expect, Bartz Barbecue was there with their special offerings along with Churro Garage with their tasty desserts.
Entertainment was provided by Beer & Magic who delighted attendees with their close-up magic and slight-of-hand. I am not sure, but there may have been some wizardry involved as well. Kids that were too short to watch the magic entertained themselves with cornhole and Jenga. Continue reading
These photos were taken Wednesday afternoon at the El Segundo Brewing Company taproom, where they hosted a live podcast starring comedian Bert “The Machine” Kreischer. The Machine was joined by El Segundo resident, comedian, and “Chef to the Headliners”, Dave Williamson, founder and creator of The Gundo Comedy Festival which is celebrating its 5th Annual Gundo Comedy Festival this week in El Segundo.
The free to attend event was pretty crowded, considering that it was held at noon on a Wednesday. This was the fifth year Bertcast was held at El Segundo Brewing, meaning El Segundo Brewing was hosting the event before Kreischer became the big name star he is today. El Segundo Brewing co-founder Tom Kelley told me that former employee Gordon Whelpley is the one that turned him on to Kreischer. During the podcast Kreischer revealed that he never enjoyed the IPA style of beer until coming to El Segundo Brewing, and it was El Segundo’s beertender/brand ambassador Brandon Ortega that introduced him to his first enjoyable IPA; it was all about the grapefruit.
While this was my first time attending the event, it was obvious that several of the attendees had attended some of the previous events. Of course, the El Segundo Brewing beer and free Bartz Barbecue probably contributed to filling up the taproom. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at Smog City Brewing Company, where they celebrated six years of brewing in Torrance. The all-day event featured a two-hour, ticketed VIP session, 25 Smog City brews, beer cocktails, food trucks, games, tours, and lots of camaraderie as hundreds of long time fans descended upon the Smog City parking lot and tasting room.
To facilitate serving the thirsty and hungry, the entire parking lot was closed off to allow the setup of the Beer Garden Bar and Patio Bar to supplement the Main Bar inside; additionally Bartz Barbecue, Oaxaca On Wheels, and Hustle N Dough were set up providing food. DJ Gustavisimo was there spinning vinyl that sounded like he had borrowed part of my record collection. The LA Brewers Guild was there reminding people that tickets for the L.A. Brewers Kickoff are now on sale, and that the California Craft Beer Summit will be held in Long Beach this September. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at Los Angeles Ale Works (LAAW), in Hawthorne, where they celebrated their second anniversary with an 80s themed block party featuring several food trucks, DJs, live music, pop rock beer slushies, candy necklaces, Micheladas, a laser light show, a double juicy IPA can release, and lots of other L.A. Ale Works beers.
I arrived about an hour after the official start time and the block party was already filling up with LAAW fans along with their families and dogs. DJ Sundy was providing music and food was being served up by Bartz BBQ, Kogi Korean BBQ, Hustle & Dough, and Scoops on Tap.
Inside the tasting room, there were at least 25 beers on tap, including the two beers featured in their can release, Lazer Star and Night Beams. There was an outdoor bar set up for their Reserve Beers, featuring options like Celestial Blüme Berliner with tea, Channel Conditions Brett Saison, and Olivera Blanc and Olivera Noir, their beer/wine hybrids. Also available were the 2017 and 2018 Rush’n Attack Imperial Stouts, Heavy Impulse Barleywine, and Sled Dog Imperial Stout. The outside bar is also where you would go for the pop rock slushies and Micheladas. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at El Segundo Brewing Company, where they celebrated seven years of brewing some of the most hopcentric beers in the South Bay. The celebration featured pretty much everything you would expect to find at a birthday party for a seven year-old; party favors, hats, a barbecue that you could smell for blocks around, birthday cake, a balloon artist and beer, lots and lots of beer, 23 of them to be exact.
El Segundo Brewing Company’s history pretty much reflects the entire South Bay craft beer scene when you stop to think about it. The first time I visited El Segundo Brewing the South Bay had three craft breweries (although they called them microbreweries back then), El Segundo Brewing, Strand Brewing and Monkish Brewing. In fact, on the date of my first visit to El Segundo Brewing they only had three beers available (four taps seemed like the norm in 2012). Today the South Bay has grown from three craft breweries to 23, and El Segundo’s tap list has expanded from three to 23. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday, April 7, at Smokefest; which was held at Los Angeles Ale Works in the Spacex Corridor area of Hawthorne. The event, which coincidentally was held on National Beer Day 2018, featured lots of barbecue, kid friendly games, live music and special beer releases.
Vendors that participated in the event included A’s BBQ, Bartz Barbecue, Hayseed BBQ, Oak Smoke BBQ and Hustle ‘N Dough Donuts. Live music, while I was there, was provided by Brothers Pine.
I was only there for the first couple of hours, but it was easy to see that it was going to be a busy day with plenty of good food to go along with the LA Ale Works brews. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday, March 18, at the Absolution Brewing Company tasting room in Torrance, where they celebrated their three year anniversary.
Say what you will about Absolution Brewing, these guys know how to throw a party, and Saturday’s extravaganza was no exception. In addition to the 20+ beers that were on tap at the main bar of the tasting room, they had four special firkins and about 10 other special brews which were available in the front office. For those with an appetite for food, Bartz Barbecue was there with their brisket and pork sandwich options.
As this was a daylong event, I split my day up with two visits. Continue reading
This past weekend, Torrance’s oldest production brewery, Strand Brewing Company celebrated their 7th anniversary with a weekend of beer, love and BBQ at their new Dominguez Street location. The three day event featured new beers released by Strand along with food by Bartz Barbecue and live music from such artists as Big Bad Rooster and Strand co-founder Joel Elliott’s, Uncle Bill.
Due to time constraints I was only able to stop by on Saturday, which is when these photos were taken. If you have visited Strand Brewing’s new location, you know they have lots of space in their 36,000 square foot facility and they made the most of the space making it relatively easy for the more than 700 people a day that showed up to have room to eat, drink, play games and dance to the music.
Three years ago co-owner Rich Marcello confided in me that the morning of their 4th anniversary he was sitting on his surfboard wondering if anyone would show up to their anniversary party; they showed up in droves. I asked Marcello if he had those same concerns this year and he admitted that prior to opening the doors at 4:00 PM Friday he did wonder the same thing; however, those concerns were immediately put aside as more than 700 people showed up Friday evening. Continue reading