While the official LA Beer Week festivities don’t begin until Thursday, September 19th, the fifth iteration of the celebration of craft beer in Los Angeles unofficially kicked-off at the opening of Mohawk Bend’s I Shoot Beer People photography exhibit, and the brews are not going to stop flowing for the next 11 days!
I Shoot Beer People is an exhibit showcasing the craft beer photography of Bernie Wire, and LA beer was out in full force to support the beloved documentarian. It was a veritable who’s-who of the city’s craft beer professionals, and there was a sense of excitement, and some trepidation, about the official start of LA beer week. These are all the people that make the beers we’ll be drinking, and that organize all the events we’ll be attending, and they were understandably a bit nervous and wary of what the next two weeks held.
But mostly everyone was excited to show-off how far craft beer has come in Los Angeles during #LABW5.
Beer of Tomorrow Is Your LA Beer Week HQ
This post will be continually updated throughout the week with new details and information as we hear about it, and you can check our LABW section for a collection of all the LABW posts.
The (New) Union Station Festival
There had been a bit of controversy this year as the LA Beer Week organizers have moved the traditional closing festival at Union Station from the final Sunday of LABW to the first Sunday. They’ve also moved the new Opening Gala from Union Station’s sprawling – but often scorching – courtyards into it’s art deco Ticketing Hall. The move means a much smaller capacity, but hopefully a more comfortable and intimate experience for attendees. Ticket prices have also increased to $70, and they are nearly sold out – so don’t put off buying tickets if you haven’t yet!
Opening Gala – Union Station – Sunday, September 22nd 11am – 3pm
The Beer of Tomorrow Picks
Beyond the Opening Gala, LABW 2013 looks to have more can’t-miss events than any of the previous beer weeks! The organizers have even built a handy map so you can see at-a-glance where and when events are happening.
Here are some of our picks for LABW5 events that should be excellent and memorable:
- Thursday 9/19
- ERB’s The Right Brews at Story Tavern – Eagle Rock Brewing is will be pouring Populist IPA and Solidarity at Story Tavern via standard kegs, nitro taps, and special casks so you can experience first hand how different dispensing techniques affect the flavor of the beer. Drink tasty brews with the ERB brewers and get edumacated at the same time!
- Dogfish Night at Select Beer Store – Some serious taps of rare DFH brews and the Let’s Be Frank Truck join up to kick-off LABW in the South Bay!
- Stone Kick-off Party at Verdugo Bar – Look at this tap list. Just look at it! $40 gets Stone fans a pint and 5 tasters off this amazing list!
- Friday 9/20
- Brewers Karaoke Championship – Some of LA’s most talented (or, just most goofy) brewers and brewery staff will face-off at Downtown’s Melody Lounge in a battle of vocal chords for the hearts of all in attendance.
- Saturday 9/21
- LA Beer Bloggers Summit #7 at Angel City Brewery – We’ve already told you about this event, but it’s shaping up to be a great chance for beer fans to meet, network, and learn how to best cover beer in Los Angeles!
- OC Fest of Ales – This OC festival in downtown Anaheim is the marquee LABW event in OC. Check out their site for all the details.
- Special Guest Lance Rice at iO West – Hear beer historian Lance’s incredibly inspirational story first hand while enjoying a specially curated tap list of LA craft brews!
- Sunday 9/22
- Monday 9/23
- Tuesday 9/24
- Musical Beer Crawl – The echo Park spanning rock-and-roll stroll is back for another year! Print your passport and enjoy the food, brews, and tunes!
- Beachwood BBQ Tap Takeover at Tony’s Darts Away – Join Brewmaster Julian Shrago in sampling 6 Beachwood brews! Mocha Machine! Mind Melder! Disco Fries!
- Growlerfornia Panel Discussion – Join Tomm Carroll at Chloe’s at Golden Road Brewing for a panel discussion about the changing California growlers law and you could win free growlers for a year from GRB!
- Lost Abbey vs New Belgium at the Surly Goat – Yikes. It’s a busy evening, but take a look at this madcap taplist!
- Wednesday 9/25
- Craftsman Beer Dinner at Maxmiliano – Details are still scarce, but do you need details? Mark Jilg + Andre Guerrero = awesome.
- Thursday 9/26
- Friday 9/27
- Saturday 9/28
- Walker’s Wild Ride – David Walker, Jeffers Richardson, and the beloved ’55 Land Rover will hit The Daily Pint, Surly Goat, Blue Palms, and finally Mohawk Bend at 2pm, 3:30pm, 5pm, and 7pm respectively, and at each stop a very special sour brew from the Firestone Walker Barrelworks will get tapped!
- Rarest of the Rare at Smog City – Smog City is bringing out the big, barrel aged, sour, and crazy brews to share with their fans. If you are anywhere near the South Bay on Saturday – don’t pass this one up.
- Sunday 9/29
- Brewer’s Brunch at Eagle Rock Brewery – Expanded and featuring beers from many of the LA Brewers Guild breweries, this low-key brunch is a great way to wind the week down.
- Game of Thrones “Take the Black” Stout release party at Blue Palms – Costumes! Sausages! Brews! All on the roof-top bar of the adjacent Music Box Theater! Say farewell to LABW in style!
That is a lot of picks, but you don’t have to take our word for it! Look over the comprehensive list yourself, or you can check out these other lists of events:
- Randy Clemens’ list of his 10 must-attend events up for LA Magazine.
- There are two picks for each day of LA Beer Week in this LA Weekly post.
- Eater LA has A Guide to Navigating LA Beer Week up.
- Zagat has a list of 10 LABW events you can’t miss.
- Girls Who Like Beer has a focused list of the events happening in North East Los Angeles
- Beers in Paradise have a list of five events you shouldn’t miss.
Unity 2013 – Official LA Beer Week Beer
The nascent LA Brewers Guild has selected honey as the thematic ingredient for LA Beer Week brews, and once again Eagle Rock Brewery has brewed Unity, the official beer of LA Beer Week.
Details on Unity 2013 are scarce, and ERB Brewmaster Jeremy Raub has been uncharacteristically tight-lipped about the beer. We know that the beer has been brewed, we know it features honey, and we know that it’s scheduled to be bottled on the morning of Thursday, Sept. 19th. Beer of Tomorrow will be at the brewery for the bottling, and we will update this post as soon as we know more!
UPDATE 9/19 I just returned from helping the ERB crew bottle 75 cases of Unity 2013, and I’ve got some details on the beer:
Unity 2013 is a “Red Mild” that is also Eagle Rock Brewing’s ProAm entry into this year’s Great American Beer Festival. The beer is the invention of homebrewer Craig Wickham, and it uses honey – 2013’s thematic LA Beer Week beer ingredient – and hibiscus. At just over 4%ABV the mild is quite quaffable and refreshing, and bottles of the brew are available in the ERB Taproom starting today and will be rolling out to LA-area bottle shops beginning Friday.
We’re also piecing together a list of other LA-area breweries making a beer for LA Beer Week:
- Angel City Brewery – Honey Chrysanthemum Ale
- Beachwood Brewing + Drakes Brewing – Mind Melder IPA
- El Segundo Brewing Co. – Honey Sage Pale Ale
- Smog City Brewing – High 5: a red ale made with 5 different types of honey.
- more to come
We are going to keep this post continuously updated as we get more information about festivities and as more events are announced. Be sure to follow us to stay updated, use the official hashtag (#LABW5), and also follow LA Beer Week on their various social media channels:
And of course make sure to follow Beer of Tomorrow on any or all of our social media outlets! We’d love to hear from readers during the festivities!
Our favorite beer app/social network, Untapped, has announced the special LA Beer Week 2013 badge! Scoring the badge is super-simple, just check into any beer at any location within LA or OC between September 20th and September 30th! Don’t forget to add your location to the check-in to score the badge. And if you are not an Untappd user, LA Beer Week would be a great time to try the iOS/Android app out!