Since its doors opened six months ago, Haven Gastropub + Brewery has been filling a much-needed niche of outstanding beer in the company of high-quality food for Pasadena diners. For the hungry there are seasonal flatbreads, pretzel and charcuterie table nibblings, greens, swimmer, meats and sweets. But for the thirsty, the beer program is especially gripping.
With 52 taps -- 44 devoted to beer -- Haven offers a competitive selection of local and coastal brews, and it's the only place in Pasadena where you can find a beer brewed on-site. Commit to a full pint or indulge your indecision and get a flight of four. Two taps run on nitro and four others connect to casks, leaving eight taps for wine and cocktails: We thought this was crazy, too, until we heard the debut cocktail was a Manhattan made from Bulleit rye.
The house-brewed beer selection at Haven is steadily growing under the watchful eye of chef-turned-brewmaster Dave Larson and his 15-barrel system, with two selections currently available and four more soon to be released. Now pouring is the Brewmaster's Breakfast, an oatmeal stout, velvety and balanced at 7.5% abv with intricate lacing. Alongside it you'll find 100 Rubles, an Imperial Russian Stout at 12%, named for the sliding-scale beard tax enforced by Peter the Great -- undoubtedly you've noticed the popularity of facial hair with the brewing crowd.
On deck for imminent release are Hella World (IPA), Sosigenes (Double IPA), upRYEsing (Rye IPA) and Gross National Happiness (Cream Ale). Haven beer will be available on tap at your local fine-beer purveyor in about a month. Read more in L.A. Weekly's December Q&A with the brewer.
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On June 25, Haven will host KCRW/DineL.A. Dinner Date, where chef Greg Daniels will present a whole roasted suckling pig as a part of this pop-up supper club series. Prepared tableside, the pig will be accompanied by an extended pork lineup of spice-rubbed Berkshire pork glazed in cola and Golden Road's "Get Up Offa That Brown" ale, porchetta di testa with arugula, lemon and pecorino, and pork rilettes served with toasted sourdough in a Mason jar (because some things are timeless).
Along with all the pork in the Lower 48, you'll be served housemade sides, offered cocktails and beer, and be dining to the beats of your favorite KCRW DJs. Proceeds go to KCRW. Tickets are $30 and are available online at KCRW. Monday, June 25, 7 p.m.
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