Beer & BBQ: Golden State and Bludso's to Take Over Tar Pit Space
Anne FishbeinThe smoker door opens at Bludso's BBQ
If you're a fan of beer, BBQ or just places to soak up hickory smoke with a cocktail in hand, then you've no doubt heard the news about the former Tar Pit space transforming into a joint venture between Golden State, the beer and burger hot spot on Fairfax, and Bludso's BBQ, the Compton joint renowned for its intensely smoky brisket and massive, Texas-style beef ribs.
What with food being the new rock and all, it might be apt to describe this as the ultimate cross-genre collaboration -- the "Walk This Way" of the L.A. food world. The project evolved out of Golden State owners Jason Bernstein and James Starr's friendship with Bludso's owner Kevin Bludso. Bernstein -- who penned a piece on L.A.'s blossoming beer scene for us back in March -- tells us they are currently "still in demo and just getting the kitchen reinstalled," and hope to open sometime within the next few months -- likely late this year.
Bernstein has not picked out a name yet, but assures us that "Bludso's will be in the title somewhere." Noah Galuten, a former Squid Ink contributor who currently works as a manager at Golden State and is a self-confessed barbecue fanatic, will serve as manager for the new location.
Expect a tightly curated list of craft beers and cocktails meant to pair well with barbecue, and a revamp of Tar Pit's Art Deco stylings into something decidedly more casual. A full-size smoker will be included to serve up brisket, ribs, chicken and hot links, as well as other homey side dishes. There have also been assurances made of homemade pie.
Just because the barbecue favorite is moving up from Long Beach Boulevard to La Brea Avenue doesn't mean the atmosphere or attitude of the original is being altered or toned down: Galuten, Bernstein and Starr all emphasize their dedication to capturing the "essence and soul" of Kevin Bludso's pit-master methods during the restaurant's northward expansion.
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