The craft beer landscape continues to expand, mature and surprise beer fans all around the country. Whether you are dining locally or in a city far from home, you might have noticed that the barkeeps have abandoned many of the big name brews in favor of beers with names you’ve never heard of before.
The unfamiliar names and brewers are part of the fun. The trend is for bars/restaurants to tap local brewers – so if your get to know some of the LA craft breweries, you will start to see familiar names appearing on the menus at many local establishments. Local brewers like Golden Road Brewing (Atwater Village), El Segundo Brewing Company (El segundo), Monkish Brewing Company (Torrance) and Eagle Rock Brewery (Eagle Rock) all started out small and are in the process of building great local companies.
If you are into the discovery aspect of craft beer, you can enjoy the beers that show up on the menus of your favorite local restaurants. Or, you can get even more ambitious and take an afternoon trip to one of the growing number of local brewers for a tasting flight or to refill a growler (to-go beer container that allows you to fill up at your favorite brewery and enjoy the craft beer at home).
Local Craft Beer Haunts
Beer Belly – 532 South Western Avenue (just north of 6th Street; parking in the Saehan Bank parking lot)
Fun. Close. Nice patio. Local craft beers on tap. The $10 Beer Belly Beer Flight is a good way to test 4 different beers; although the last time we were there we enjoyed a Ballast Point – Habañero Sculpin IPA from San Diego that will be the future go to whenever it’s on the menu. The food is what they call ‘crafty’ food…check the menu here. Family friendly.
The Golden State – 426 North Fairfax (south of Rosewood)
This local favorite has some of the best burgers in LA and delicious beer pairings to go with. Beers change on a regular basis…trust us. The people at The Golden State know what they are doing on every level. See the food menu here.
Stout Burgers and Beers – 1544 North Cahuenga (at the corner of Cahuenga and Selma)
The Cahuenga corridor deserves a story on its own…there are a lot of great new restaurants between Sunset and Hollywood Boulevard. But Stout is one of our long time favorites. Delicious burgers and a great selection of beers (local and beyond) make it a favorite destination on a Sunday afternoon after the Hollywood Farmers Market. You can check out their beer menu here…then click on over to their burger menu to close the deal (you can’t beat the Six Weeker!)
Sunday Afternoon Craft Beer Excursion
One of our favorite local brewers is El Segundo Brewing Company on Main Street in El Segundo. We have family over in the South Bay, so we use the corner of Main Street and Franklin in this quaint beach town as a destination for family meet ups. The rallying place is Rock and Brews – the family friendly dining and entertainment destination, featuring reasonably priced casual American cuisine, as well as dishes that reflect local tastes, and an extensive craft beer selection. It’s a great place to watch football, relax and enjoy the scene.
After lunch/dinner you can head across the street to El Segundo Brewing Company. For the real craft beer fan – you can order a flight of beers in their tasting room. For regulars – bring in your ESBC growler and get it filled with your favorite brew (you can buy a growler at ESBC). Buying El Segundo Brewing Company beers to go is getting easier – from growlers, kegs and their newly available bottles – it’s all on hand and makes for a fun bit of craft beer discovery.
Do you have any other favorite craft beer places you visit? Share with us in the comments!