While San Francisco drinkers are partying at Outside Lands this weekend, those down south are gearing up for a whole new boozy adventure: the annual LA Craft Beer Crawl. Now in its third year, the craft beer crawl through seven of Los Angeles' most exciting bars, with more than 70 beers to choose from. Plus, there are the food trucks: the Ludo Truck stationed at Caña Rum Bar, the Nom Nom Truck at Golden Gopher, and even an In-N-Out truck at Casey's. (Score.)
With so many options of brews to try, bars to hit up, and seminars to attend, we share the best of the crawl: you can't go wrong.
Breweries to Try
Green Flash Brewing Co.: The brewery is one of the bigger names on the list, and for good reason: the number of accolades won for their list of beers is a mile-long. Its red IPA, the Hop Head Red, is a favorite among beer festivals for its trio of Columbus, Nugget, and Amarillo hops, and its West Coast IPA has a surprising amount of fruitiness.
Brouwerij West: Brouwerij West wins the prize for simplest beers: each of its Belgian-style beers has the bare minimum of ingredients — base malts, noble hops, sugar, and yeast — to make what the brewery calls a complex beer out of a simple recipe. The Blond and Tripel are must-haves at the beer crawl.
Smog City Brewing Co.: One of Los Angeles' newest (and most appropriately named) breweries, Smog City is an offshoot of Tustin Brewing Co. That doesn't mean the little brewery that could can't hold its ground with the big boys of the beer crawl: the flagship beer, the LA saison, is exactly what a saison should be: drinkable and light, with a crisp mouthful.
Seminars to Attend
Beer Chicks Picks: The whole beer crawl is organized in part by beer sommeliers Christina Perozzi and Hallie Beaune. If you're going to try any of the beers at the beer crawl, might as well try the ones recommended straight from the Beer Chicks themselves.
Whisky and Beer: If you're needing something a bit more potent after a full day of beer, Highland Park Brand Ambassador Martin Daraz will recommend the best scotch and beer pairings.
Brewers Gone Sour: Going after the trend of sour beers, the seminar will answer all your questions on wild fermented ales, lambic, and gueuze with beer expert David "The Gueuzehound" Watrous.
Bars to Hit Up
Golden Gopher: The bar has been around since Teddy Roosevelt was president. Talk about longevity, not to mention a killer beer list.
Las Perlas: The mezcal bar is taking the night off from its spicy Mexican spirits, but that doesn't mean you won't get the same vibe of a hip, drink aficianados-only bar.
Broadway Bar: For the glammed-up crowd, the Broadway Bar channels a 1940s supper club, right next door to the Orpheum Theatre.