Now in its 5th year, L.A. Beer Week seems to have become more than just an opportunity to ween people off of Miller Lite, graduating into a massive ten-day, two-county affair with emphasis on even more sophisticated explorations of local beer.
Sure the tap takeovers and special beer releases will always be an integral part of what LABW provides, but more than ever this time around, breweries are teaming up with restaurants (and even their own kitchens!) to create beer-pairing dinners that are guaranteed to chip away at L.A.'s obsession with wine.
"Beer is all over the flavor range, in every direction," said El Segundo Brewing's Tom Kelly on why his hop-forward brand decided to focus on beer dinners for its LABW events. "Wine tastes like grapes, since it's made from grapes ... Winemakers are completely limited by the quality of their fruit. Brewers [on the other hand] are chefs, artists even and have a chef-like creativity to bring to life recipes that many wouldn't even consider."
From special seating five-courses with high price points to casual pay-as-you-go mix-and-match menus, the remainder of L.A. Beer Week is filled with options for any budget and any palate. Turn the page for the next five days of ways to explore the culinary connections between beer and food.Monday, September 23rd
WHAT: Celebrate the Sauce at The Parish
WHEN: 5:30 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.
WHY: The Parish chefs will be kicking off LABW by preparing beer-inspired dishes to be paired with selections from the bar's 21 taps, which this week promises to include favorites such as Allagash Curieux, The Bruery's Hottenroth and Noble Ale Works Naughty Sauce. Everything from pork belly to octopus can be purchased paired with a draft beer or a la carte, ensuring something for foodists as well as beer fans.
WHERE: The Parish, 840 S. Spring St., Downtown; 213-225-2400.
WHAT: El Segundo Brewing Company at Tripel
WHEN: 5 p.m. - close
WHY: For one night only, the Tripel will be serving a main entree created by Top Chef winner Brooke Williamson that was inspired by El Segundo's bitter flagships, Citra Pale and Two 5 Left double IPA. Brown sugar ribs atop a Thai green papaya slaw with Citra hops will be available all night or till it's gone. Draft pours of Citra Pale and Two 5 Left pours will also be available.
WHERE: The Tripel, 333 Culver Blvd., Playa Del Rey; (310) 821-0333.
Tuesday, September 24
WHAT: Craft Beer & Food Dinner with Ladyface Ale Companie at Cooks County
WHEN: 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
WHY: The weekly beer dinner series that has been going on since August continues through LABW with a four-course meal inspired by and paired with brews from Agoura's Ladyface Ale Companie.
WHERE: Cooks County, 8009 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles; 323-653-8009.
WHAT: Goose Island Beer Dinner at Rock & Brews Redondo Beach
WHEN: 6:30 p.m.
WHY: Chicago's Goose Island gets flack for being majority owned by Budweiser's parent company, but the brewery continues to make its classic craft beer styles, all of which will be on display at this five-course beer dinner that will pair regular Rock & Brews menu items with regular and "vintage" Goose Island beers. Tickets are $45 classic, $55 for the vintage package. Call 310-378-4970 to reserve a spot.
WHERE: Rock & Brews, 6300 Pacific Coast Highway, Redondo Beach; 310-378-4970.
WHAT: 5th Annual Autumn Beer Dinner with Allagash at The Bottle Room
WHEN: 7 p.m.
WHY: The Bottle Room's Allagash beer dinners are an annual LABW tradition, but this year, Beer Chick Hallie Beune will be guiding the five-course meal as it's paired with favorites and rarities from Portland, ME's finest. Tickets are $64. Buy them here.
WHERE: The Bottle Room, 6741 Greenleaf Ave., Whittier; 562-696-8000.Wednesday, September 25
WHAT: L.A. Beer Week Tasting Dinner at The Brewery at Abigaile
WHEN: 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
WHY: In their refurbished old hangout for hardcore punk icons Black Flag, brewer Brian Brewer and chef Tin Vuong will host a beer-pairing dinner featuring wit-cured wild salmon and a beer float for dessert. Brewer will be on hand for discussions and brewery tours as year-round and rare in-house barrel-aged beers are poured. Tickets are $65. Buy them here.
WHERE: Abigaile, 1301 Manhattan Ave., Hermosa Beach; 310-798-8227.
WHAT: "Build Your Own" Brewer's Supper at Chloe's
WHEN: 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
WHY: Golden Road Brewing hosts this mix-and-match dinner experience at its dark and wooden pub-within-a-pub. Choose three savory dishes from a list of seven creations from chef Adam Levoe and be whisked away to pairing paradise with its accompanying brews. There will be one seating at 6:30 p.m. followed by a special Homebrewers Night. Tickets are $38.
WHERE: Chloe's at the Pub at Golden Road, 5410 W. San Fernando Road, Los Angeles; 213-373-4677.
WHAT: Craftsman Beer Dinner at Maximiliano
WHEN: 7 p.m.
WHY: As Craftsman's unofficial tasting room, Maximiliano has the honor of hosting the only LABW dinner featuring L.A.'s oldest craft brewery. A five course menu created by chef-owner Andre Guerrero will feature duck breast and pork belly paired with some of the rarest Craftsman beers around, including a 2011 El Prieto, 2012's Honesty Ale and a yet-unnamed pale fermented with sauvignon blanc and riesling grapes. Tickets are $50. Buy them here.
WHERE: Maximiliano, 5930 York Blvd., Highland Park; 323-739-6125.
Thursday, September 26
WHAT: Epic Ceviche Party at Bizarra Capital
WHEN: 6 p.m. - 10 p.m.
WHY: There is no greater Mexican dish to pair with a cold one than ceviche -- and to prove it, Bizarra Capital is hosting an all-you-can-eat ceviche bar that will feature shrimp, clam, halibut and octopus ceviches created for perfect pairings with Epic Brewing's Imperial IPA, Brainless Raspberries, Sour Apple Saison and Belgian Wit & Imperial Red. $5 pours and $10 all-you-can-eat ceviche bar.
WHERE: Bizarra Capital, 12706 Philadelphia St., Whittier; 562-945-2426.
WHAT: Wetten Imports Beer & Food Pairing Night at Little Bear
WHEN: 6 p.m. - 2 a.m.
WHY: Major importers of Belgian favorites like Delerium Tremens and Lucifer host. for the first time, a beer and food pairing night at downtown L.A.'s all-Belgian beer bar. A la carte food items will be available all night along with pours of their complementing beers from Europe.
WHERE: Little Bear, 1855 Industrial Street, Downtown; 213-622-8100.
WHAT: Green Flash Tap Takeover Pairing Dinner at Tuning Fork Gastropub
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. - 1 a.m.
WHY: Reps from San Diego's pioneering Green Flash Brewery will be on hand to guide diners through chef Jay Bedassie's five-course beer pairing dinner. Giveaways all night too! Tickets are $60.
WHERE: Tuning Fork Gastropub, 12051 Ventura Place, Studio City; (818) 623-0734.
Friday, September 27th
WHAT: El Segundo Brewing Company at Bank of Venice
WHEN: 6 p.m. - 12 a.m.
WHY: In addition to the chance to see the new space from the owners of Venice Alehouse, there will also be a four-course pairing menu available all night long and El Segundo beers such as Vanilla Hyperion's Stout, Two 5 Left, Citra Pale and Casa Azul Mexican Lager
WHERE: Bank of Venice, 80 Windward Ave., Venice.