a couple great meals and even better beers at blue palms brewhouse
my fiance and i had a chance to check out blue palms brewhouse in hollywood this weekend. we were pretty excited to go after looking at the beer list online. their beer menu changes daily and has a fine selection of about 25 craft beers on tap (and more in casks and bottles) from producers like lost coast, crafstman, victory, allagash, stone, lost abbey, etc.
friday night we strolled over and it was about half full. the atmosphere is a little too much like a tommy bahamas store, but i guess they are just playing off the blue palms name with the trees and bamboo and dark woods theme. still, it's nice and comfy, with big flat screens for the upcoming football season.
we started with a craftsman black sour - dark, tangy, and refreshing, and the lost coast scotch ale, which was slightly sweet and complex. we ordered the kobe burger #2($16), which comes with porter-braised short ribs, gruyere, and sauteed mushrooms, with sweet potato fries, and the tuna melt ($13), which is not something i normally order out but the fennel and roasted tomatoes intrigued me. the burger, ordered medium rare, was super juicy and dark pink inside, and though the short rib topping could have used a touch more seasoning, the meat was tender and fatty, and the sweet potato fries were excellent - crispy and salty, not a bit soggy like some, even when they got cold. the tuna melt was on toasted wheat, with big slices of braised fennel which balanced the sharp cheddar. the onion rings on that visit were tasty, but a little soft. our second round of beers was lost abbey's judgment day - at 10.5% alcohol i don't remember much except that it was damn good, and stone 12th anniversary ale which has the depth of a porter, rich coffee flavor, and the lighter body of an ale.
on our second visit we had the fish and chips ($13) - great meaty fish and supercrispy light batter, excellent skin-on french fries similar to those you might find at the county fair (dry not greasy), and tartar sauce with fresh herbs. yum. the reuben ($12) was tasty with loads of melted gruyere, but needed a much higher meat-to-mustardy coleslaw ratio. the onion rings on this visit were much better, golden and sweet with an audible crunch.
at least six beers on the menu had changed only two days later, and we had the victory festbier, which was light bodied with a toasted brown rice flavor, really different and refreshing, a "fred" golden ale from hair of the dog which was sweet and balanced with tropical fruit aromas, and stone's cali-belgium, which is brewed like an IPA with belgian hops, lighter and less bitter than their other IPAs.
if this place balances out the menu with a few lighter items and keeps up the amazing beer rotations, i can see myself going quite often. the staff is friendly, the prices are reasonable especially for hollywood. this is pretty much a dream come true since i can't even think of a comparable place except for father's office, except here there's zero wait, you can get the burger how you want it, and NO attitude. and for me, no driving! yay!
at hollywood and gower adjacent to the henry fonda theater.
After seeing this post, I had to go down and check it out. Lucky Baldwin's is a bit of a trek for me, and I can't stand FO. Thanks, tastycakes!
I also started with the Craftsman Black Sour. Now, I love sour beer; sometimes I'll bug the bartender at Lucky Baldwin's to check if anything is sucking the bottom of the keg, and to give me one of those with all the yummy yeast. But this beer is the sourest beer I've ever tasted. It's fantastic...in small doses. I also had a cask Stone smoked chipotle porter, which I probably won't order again, and a pretty tasty IPA the name of which I can't remember. Rodenbach? (I guess alcohol affects one's short-term memory...)
They do have about two dozen high-quality taps, with most of them dedicated to beers that are hard to find elsewhere. Prices are in the $5-9 range; food looked to be around $12-25. I didn't try the food, as Jitlada is just a short ride away.
On Wednesdays from 5-7 they pick a beer and sell $3 pints of the stuff, so if you're looking to get a good dose of high-quality beer for cheap, that's the time to go. Also, it seems that beeradvocate.com has picked that time to descend on the place in droves, so if you want to talk specific gravity they should be able to accomodate you.