If the movie Beerfest was real and it happened to take place in Los Angeles, it would probably be a lot like Bockfest. The second annual beer festival took place at The Vanguard in Hollywood and reeled in hundreds last Saturday, January 14. The newish event was organized by the Marketing firm, Barcelona Enterprises. It featured a small handful of European beers and an even smaller assortment of local craft beer.
Since the price of the event was $25 and it took place in the middle of Hollywood Boulevard, the attendees of the event were an interesting mix. Not to mention, the beer chosen for the event.
It felt more like a sports bar at times with TV screens all around the place showing the 49ers vs. Saints game and a cheesy 80's live cover band playing “Sweet Emotion.” Well okay, maybe a sports bar combined with a douchey Hollywood Club that had an open bar with European beer only. The crowd varied from older couples looking for an excuse to get drunk during the day again to groups of astute brewery-shirt-wearing beerheads probably thinking there would be more beer's to try.
Aside from a few malty Doppelbock's and a toasty Pilsener, there was not much beer to choose from. In particular, Schlägl and Rieder beers. Not surprisingly, it was actually a local beer (only one that was available) that formed the biggest line: The “Brunette” beer by Firemans Brew, a chocolaty German Doublebock style beer. Although, the majority of Bock-goer's preferred to drink the “Beverly Hills Gold” pilsener by Brauerei Ried brewery just for the sheer name and uncanny flavor reminiscent to Stella-Artois probably.
At its second consecutive year running, this beer event is still at its infant stage and has a lot more to go. But when it all boils down, this event was well worth it for $25. And it's probably going to get bigger and better next year. Plus, the thick pint glass issued upon walking in also acts as a souvenir to take home at the end of the event.
Until then, Barcelona Enterprises hosts an L.A. St. Patrick's Day Festival that only charges $25 admission.
Follow Javier Cabral on Twitter @theglutster.