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Dec 16, 2008 08:35 AM

Best Beer

Ok, so i love beer, all sorts. Now when i go to out to the bars, they really don't have much of a selection, are there any good places to go that have more than 3 beers on tap? i mean like easily 10, and then any places that have a bunch of micro brewed beers in LA?!

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  1. You'll find plenty of other threads on this, but start with:
    Father's Office
    Third Stop
    Verdugo in Glassell Park
    Library Bar Downtown
    Wurstkuche sausage Downtown
    Lucky Baldwin's in Pasadena
    Laurel Tavern
    Rustic Canyon

    Where are you located? There's plenty more in other neighborhoods.

    13 Replies
    1. re: Chowpatty

      Ugh i am sorry but Laurel Tavern sucks, all CA beer and terrible service with a poor layout.

      I second Verdugo, best selection i have seen in LA.

      1. re: laeditormatthew

        well, I haven't actually been to Laurel yet, but nothing wrong with California beer!

        1. re: Chowpatty

          I'm scratching my head and don't know what's wrong with CA beers as well... A lot of great brewing going on all over this sudsy state...

          1. re: bulavinaka

            Oh no disrespect to CA beer just that there are 49 other states and roughly 190 other countries so when a mediocre CA beer gets served over it's superior international counterpart i cry a little. And really, i strongly disliked Laurel when i went. STRONGLY!

            1. re: laeditormatthew

              That's fair and can understand your aversion. I've never been to this place but think the concept is interesting - highlighting a region's specific products - in this case, beer. I would think visiting this place a few times would give one a pretty firm understanding of the various "styles," as well as fairly determining one's likes and dislikes about general styles or specific brews from our wonderful state.

              I turned my nose to most brews that weren't from Belgium for quite a while until I started giving some bottles from NorCal a try - now I'm a big fan of those as well. Had I stumbled across a place like Laurel, I would have dropped my baseless bias a lot sooner.

              I looked over the YELP reviews and it seems that you had quite a different experience from the majority of posters - not that this makes you wrong or them right. All in all, it sounds like it just wasn't your cup of tea with a fair dose of service issues. But as for the beers, what did and didn't you like, just so I can get a better idea of their offerings and your palate? Thanks

              1. re: bulavinaka

                Oh i would agree kevin, they both are.
                As far as beer goes i truthfully love everything, I love Rogue Dead Guy, Most anything by Unibroue, Delerium, even some good old Wisconsin PBR.
                To be honest their beer didn't bother me, it was good and there was plentiful selection but i felt like a few selections could have been replaced with MUCH better international brews. As far as the place itself is concerned, the service was terrible, we sat at the bar for a while before we were even acknowledged. I mean it is def a trendy gastro pub, you are expected to have the plot with out being told. I dont get how they have full service food but no waitresses, at least we didnt see any for the tables. Does every one order at the bar? Can any other hounds clarify this? Anyways, like i said on yelp, if i am sitting AT THE BAR i should not have an empty glass for more than a minute, i mean come on. As far as the food is concerned; the chorizo fondue was okay, greasy and def need a more malleable cheese as when it cooled it became a solid mass. It wasn't really fondue at all just heated cheese with chorizo and mushrooms, tasty but nothing i couldn't make in my microwave. The fries pretty much sucked, i was ALL for pork fat drizzled fries, i was even a little excited but they were SO flaccid and the pork fat really only would have been good if they had the fried charred acidic crispy flavor instead of a semi baked potato feel/taste. I dont know, i was just excited for a cool gastro pub but it was pretty bad experience. I will prob give it a second chance in order to try some of the more daring menu items but i hope the service and quality is better when i do... OH and it is pricey as hell.

              2. re: laeditormatthew

                "Oh no disrespect to CA beer just that there are 49 other states and roughly 190 other countries so when a mediocre CA beer gets served over it's superior international counterpart i cry a little. And really, i strongly disliked Laurel when i went. STRONGLY!""

                Laeditormathew. Are you trying to convince Californians that other states in this country matter? That is blasphemy. All kidding aside, Californians take great pride in their artisinal products whether it be our fine cheeses, wines, and yes Beer.

                We have every beer imaginable between the ultra malty belgians and ultra hoppy California style IPAs On one end of the spectrum we have Brother Thelonious (superior to chimay IMHO) and Damnation Ale (superior to Duvel IMHO), on the other end of the spectrum we have killer IPAs like Racer 5 and Ruination Ale. We've got porters like black butte porter and we have got crazy stouts, like Stone Imperial russian stout. If I want 50 different varities and a selection of over 100 quality beers, I have to look no further than my golden state.

                That being said, obviously german, belgian, Pacific Northwest and East Coast beers are not to be missed despite CA's awesome selection.

                1. re: jlrobe

                  Well said. I didn't see Thelonious or Damnation there (i dig both and might have missed them) and i pretty much like anything Stone brews but i stand by not liking Laurel Tavern.

                  1. re: jlrobe

                    One thing: Black Butte Porter is a product of Deschutes Brewery (Bend/Portland, Oregon).
                    California can boast many fine craft beers, but as an Angeleno recently moved to Portland: fresh-out-of-tap Pacific Northwest beer is plentiful, and amazing! (I miss LA., but the beer here helps.) Most important is to patronize local breweries, for the best beer supply, and support of the local crafters. If the alcohol ordinances support refillable growlers (which I'm not sure happens in L.A), that's a great way to take home a supply of fresh beer.

                    1. re: grinninggourmand

                      "One thing: Black Butte Porter is a product of Deschutes Brewery (Bend/Portland, Oregon). "

                      Funny you mentioned that. About 3 days ago while driving around town and thinking about beer (like I always do), I remember my mistake. Thanks for calling me on it!

                      grinninggourmand. you make an excellent point about Porland. As CA is known for its farm to table, Portland is known for its brewer cask to beer mug!
                      Like I said, the pacific northwest does not dissappoint!


                2. re: bulavinaka

                  pasadena based Craftsman 1903 and Prohibition are both wonderful beers.

              3. re: laeditormatthew

                Just tried Laurel Tavern last night and had a much better experience than you, Matthew. While you do have to order at the bar (no waitresses), the bartenders were all friendly and extremely attentive and the food came out quickly. Even when it got a little busy, I never had to fight for bartender attention and eye contact the way it can be in many bars. They were even helpful in recommending some new drinks to try.
                I'm not a beer drinker, so I won't comment there.
                As for the food, it was good. The best? No. But the burrata beet plate was very nice, well sized and more than enough burratta for two of us splitting it (we can both be a bit burrata territorial, so it was nice to not be fork fighting for once...). The fries were not the crispiest, it's true, but they weren't flaccid either, and they had a nice amount of seasoning and taste. Again, certainly not the absolute best fries, but there also weren't any leftover.
                I didn't try the pork belly skewers, but my meat obsessed friends were licking their fingers.
                All in all, a nice experience.

              4. re: Chowpatty

                Library Bar is great! They have some great Ales! Also Father's office is a great choice too. Plus they have the best Burger's around...Beer and burgers...doesn't get much better than that!

              5. Chowpatty has many good suggestions. I'd add the Library Alehouse on Main Street in Santa Monica. And, of course, there's the Yard House in Long Beach or Pasadena, with its 100 or so taps, but it's not so much a bar as a tourist trap.

                But Father's Office is the daddy of them all.

                1 Reply
                1. re: nick_r

                  +1 on the Library Alehouse, last night it was packed to the hilt and they staff still took the time to ask me what I like in a beer in order to recommend something I'd enjoy.
                  I can't quite recommend it, but the Otherroom on Abbot Kinney in Venice has a good selection of beer, if high priced and loud.

                2. I would also add Boneyard Bistro.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: a213b

                    thanks, i really dont like the hollywood scene, i want a good beer and a good time with friends.

                  2. T. Phillips has about 70-80 beers on tap. Locations in La Verne and Glendora.

                    Also good is Lucky Baldwins in Pasadena and Sierra Madre with about as many, very good for Belgians. Bud and Coors not on tap there, only in bottles and hidden away as much as possible.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: heckonwheels

                      Love Lucky Baldwins in Sierra Madre but at the one in Pasadena the beer is always too warm. The Coffee Table Lounge in Eagle Rock has more than 20 on tap. A mix of imports and usa and always very cold. The Weihenstephan is soo good!

                    2. Najas on Redondo pier has an enormous selection.

                      Cafe Boogaloo in Hermosa has well picked beers, good music and excellent food.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: luhkee

                        Naja's - Beer Count:

                        88 - On Tap
                        94 - Belgium (bottled).
                        96 - Other Bottled Beers
                        278 --> Is that enough ?


                        1. re: JBC

                          hahaha wow thats incredible. perfect.