These photos were taken Thursday afternoon at Humphry Slocombe in Venice, and Firestone Walker’s The Propagator in Marina del Rel. Humphry Slocombe is an ice cream shop that opened in Venice this past August; it is the fourth in a chain of ice cream shops that has two locations in San Francisco where it was founded, and one in Oakland. The Propagator, if you were unaware, is Firestone Walker’s Los Angeles area brewpub; but you probably already knew that.
I frequently mention that I am not a foodie, I said that in my last article, so why am I visiting and writing about an ice cream shop? Well, as I mentioned above, Humphry Slocombe was founded in San Francisco, and it is currently SF Beer Week (it runs from February 1 – 10). In honor of the event, Humphry Slocombe joined forces with a few of its favorite Bay Area breweries to launch a series of one-time-only, beer-infused ice creams. As I was invited to try out some of these creations, I accepted the invitation and brought my friend Jaymes, of King Harbor Brewing and formerly AJ’s BBQ. Jaymes is a foodie the way I am a beer guy; maybe more. He plans vacations around the food he will find there, so I figured he would enjoy this adventure; I was right. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday morning at Firestone Walker’s Propagator in Venice, where a dozen Beer Media L.A. members were treated to an educational session showing us the steps in the research and development of Firestone Walker’s Rosalie, a true beer rose.
The morning began with samples of their Auld L’enzyme Brut IPA while we waited for everyone to arrive, at which point we went across the parking lot to the Propagator offices where David Walker introduced The Propagator’s Head Brewer Evan Partridge, and their Sensory Analyst Lab Technician from Paso Robles, Robert Emery, who both walked us through the steps they took in the year it took to create Rosalie. Continue reading
These photos were taken Friday at the inaugural Pasadena Tournament of Roses Sip & Savor, a three-day end-of-year event being held at the Rosemont Pavilion/Jackie Robinson Memorial Field at the Rose Bowl this weekend. The family friendly event celebrates Southern California’s food, wine and craft beer scene. Attendees can try various foods from about 10 restaurants like The Crack Shack, Pez Cantina, and Lucille’s, which you can pair with wine from about 15 wineries, or craft beer from the four breweries representing the Greater Los Angeles area.
The breweries pouring included Firestone Walker’s “sports bar”, complete with TVs so you can watch the game while enjoying one of their brews, Angel City, Alosta Brewing, and recently opened, Highpoint Brewing Company. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at Select Beer Store in Redondo Beach, where they held their 5th Annual Brewer’s Chili Cook-off. The annual event has been a fundraiser for the last few years; this year the beneficiary was Providence TrinityCare Hospice. I am not sure if they choose different beneficiaries every year or not.
This year, there were nine participating breweries; Bottle Logic, Yorkshire Square, Cellador Ales, Three Weavers, Riip Beer, Burnin’ Daylight, L.A. Ale Works, King Harbor Brewing, and Firestone Walker’s Propagator.
I am not really sure that I have attended any of the prior events, so I know nothing about the prior competitions other than what I overheard and my understanding is that in previous competitions all the chilies were somewhat similar. This year each chili was quite different from the others. Continue reading
I have to admit, becoming “The Craft Beer Guy” has certainly opened up many doors for me, including special events; and I get to meet a lot of interesting people, some of which I have developed friendships with. One of these people is Jonathan Urch, and these photos are from his 40th birthday celebration which began at Firestone Walker’s Propagator and ended down the street at Scopa Italian Roots, where Jon, his wife, and about 25 friends from around the world gathered to celebrate Jon’s 40th time of successfully navigating around the sun with a nice dinner.
I met Jon in October of 2015 at the Guinness Nitro IPA Advanced Tasting and dinner at The Larchmont in Hollywood. At the time, Jon was Diageo Customer Marketing Director. That evening was special in a couple ways; I was able to meet Jon and I was given the first Guinness Nitro IPA ever poured from a tap in the United States. As I have always been a Guinness fan, that was kind of a big deal to me. Continue reading
These photos were taken early Saturday afternoon at Firestone Walker Brewing Company’s, The Propagator Turns 2! celebration, held at the Venice, with a Marina del Rey mailing address, location. These photos are primarily from the VIP session which was held from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
It is hard to believe it has been two years already, but that could be because it was almost eight months after The Propagator opened before they were able to make The Propagator the R&D brewery it was intended to be.
Ticket holders to the sold out VIP session received a brewhouse tour, several tastes of Propagator and/or Barrelworks beers, light bites to eat and a crowler of Propagator brew to take home. Several of people were also able to take part in a taste comparison of three different hazy IPAs brewed with same recipe but fermented with different yeast strains; we were given samples of what each tasted like prior to being dry hopped and after being dry hopped. It was interesting how much difference the yeast made, both before and after being dry hopped. Continue reading
These photos were taken Saturday afternoon at Yorkshire Square Brewery in Torrance where they celebrated St. Patrick’s Day by holding their first annual N’owt but Stout Festival. The N’owt (Nothing) but Stout festival featured nothing but dark beers, like stouts, porters and dunkels from 15 breweries selected by Yorkshire Square’s head brewer, Andy Black. They also had their Early Doors Pub Bitter available because a couple of Yorkshire’s regular customers wanted to come, but did not like stouts. The Early Doors made for a great palate cleanser after drinking something like Mikkeller’s Black Tide.
Besides Yorkshire Square, the other participating breweries were Beachwood Brewing, Stereo Brewing, Verdugo West Brewing, Craftsman Brewing, Eagle Rock Brewery, Karl Strauss, Green Cheek Beer Company, State Brewing, King Harbor Brewing, Firestone Walker’s Propagator, Inland Wharf Brewing, Mikkeller Brewing, Smog City Brewing and El Segundo Brewing Company. Food was available from either Vic’s Smokin’ BBQ, or BatterFish. Continue reading
In March of 1996, the fledgling Firestone Walker Brewing Company out of Paso Robles, California released their first beer; DBA British Pale Ale. Thursday evening, 30 or 40 Firestone Walker fans met at Firestone Walker’s newest location, The Propagator, in Marina del Rey to celebrate DBA becoming of age, at the DBA Turns 21 beer dinner, hosted by Firestone Walkers first employee, Jeffers Richardson.
While we enjoyed a pour of Schwarzbier, a roasty German style black lager which was brewed at The Propagator by Ben Maushardt, Jeffers told us about the early days at Firestone Walker; go back as far as his initial job interview which involved babysitting a 5 year-old.
DBA, Double Barrel Ale, is often credit to being developed by Jeffers, but he gives full credit to Adam Firestone and David Walker as it was only because of their insistence that the beer be fermented using oak and stainless barrels, then blending them. It was obviously a great idea, and DBA has become not only a flagship brew for them, but it is also the base for several of their other beers. This beer dinner would celebrate the many uses of DBA as well as the beer itself. Continue reading
These photos were taken Wednesday evening as a couple dozen craft beer fans gathered at Rock & Brews in El Segundo, to watch and participate as Firestone Walker’s first employee and current Director of the Firestone Walker Barrelworks (aka Barrelmeister), Jeffers Richardson dropped massive amounts of acid knowledge on us.
I arrived early and immediately noticed that each setting at the tables had nine little cups; eight with what I thought was water and one with a jelly bean. I also noticed five plastic bottles labeled as either Lactic or Acetic Acid, with varying descriptions of their contents. In my head I thought this was going to be way out of my league and I would probably just take photos rather than participate. I could not have been more wrong; this was a very educational event. Continue reading
On Wednesday afternoon Firestone Walker’s Venice location, The Propagator, officially changed from being a gastropub to a brewpub with the release of their first beer from the million dollar brewhouse; aptly named, Generation 1. While the release of a beer may not necessarily be documented here, I know there are a lot of Firestone Walker fans out there and knowing that they are now able to use their beautiful brewhouse for something other than a display is news we have all been waiting for. The fact that Generation 1 is outstanding is icing on the cake.
Generation 1 is an IPA that is hopped with Citra, Mosaic and Mandarina hops; it is really smooth and has great flavors. It is quite drinkable; and it might be [one of] their best IPAs, in my opinion.
When I mentioned to Propagator General Manager Brad Ellis how impressed I was with the first batch from the new system, he immediately gave credit to the work ethic of Propagator brewer, Ben Maushardt. Ellis had first observed Maushardt up in Paso Robles and he apparently made quite the impression as the choice for brewer at Propagator involved input from the rank and file. Continue reading