The improbable has happened, and the Los Angeles Kings have skated to their first Stanley Cup Finals in almost ten years! Whether you’re watching the game from your home, hitting the town for the communal viewing experience, or a lucky ticket holder who’ll be at the Staples Center for game three the only thing that goes better with hockey than beer is craft beer.
If you’re lucky enough to be attending games three or four at the Staples Center you should be able to score some craft beer at the stadium concessions. The selection of craft offerings is far better than Dodger Stadium’s, and you should be able to find Red Hook ESB , Sierra Nevada, and Firestone Walker in addition to the more common Sam Adams and Widmer Bros Hefeweisen taps. If you’ve got time to hit LA Live before the game The ESPN Zone, Yard House, and Crazy Rockin Fish all have decent craft beer selections for your pre-game pit-stops.
Where to Watch
If you’d like to watch the finals with other like-minded fans while enjoying a craft beer or three you’ve got plenty of options, and a few of our favorites spots will be showing the game:
- Tony’s Darts Away (link): The Burbank/NoHo neighborhood joint is proudly playing the games “with sound” and their selection of 40 craft beers from California is tough to beat! Be sure to try the Disco Fries if you need a snack.
- The Pub at Golden Road (link): Another of Tony Yanow’s ventures, the Pub will have the Cup finals on their giant screen and with any luck their delicious new Berliner Weisse is still flowing because at under 3%ABV you can drink that for all three periods and the intermissions and still be standing if game one goes into overtime.
- Township Saloon (link): Hollywood’s newest venue for sports watching has an amazing list of bourbons to choose from, and a decent tap-list that mixes lighter lagers like Hangar 24′s Helles and Victory Brewing’s Prima Pils with more robust porters and stouts. They’ll pour you pitchers and their wings are some of the best this side of the 101.
- District 13 (link): Nestled in a corner lot in the Cahuenga corridor shared with Stout and Big Wangs, District 13 is a more low-key take on the sports bar with a respectable taplist and some high quality menu items. Service can be a bit iffy, so we’d recommend grabbing a spot at the bar.
What to Drink
If you’re watching the games from the couch you have many more choices. The classic hockey beer would be Molsons probably, but why bother? Likewise, the “official” American beer of the Stanley Cup is Coors Light. If you’ve got to have a light lager with your ice hockey we’ suggest any of the craft alternatives, but why not drink something more memorable?
- Eagle Rock Brewing Solidarity: This black mild is now available in bottles in bottle shops around the city (and in Whole Foods Markets), and it is brewed in LA! It’s black just like the King’s sweaters and even the name conjures images of LA’s faithful cheering on the boys in black-and-silver! Plus, it’s relatively low ABV makes it great for drinking through all three periods. You can also head to their taproom for growler fills!
- Stone Brewing Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale: After skating all over the competition in the play-offs, the LA Kings have every right to feel smug, and this San Diego Country take on the black IPA has a big roasty malt flavor to go with the huge hop hit.
- Unibroue Terrible: We had to get one Canadian beer on the list, and this dark abby-style ale is big in flavor and in alcohol. It would make a great bottle to celebrate a victory by the Kings in game one!
- Oskar Blues Brewery Mama’s Little Yella Pils: This Czech-style pilsner from Colorado’s famous craft-canners is a more traditional style for watching the slap-shows and face-offs, and it will even fit into your LA King’s can koozie!
- Victory Brewing HopDevil: Maybe you’re not a Kings fans. Maybe you’re a transplant from Jersey who’ll be rooting on the Devil’s as they host the Kings in game one. Cheer your team on with this resinous and intense IPA.
Will you be watching the Stanley Cup and rooting on the Los Angeles Kings? They haven’t seen Stanley Cup ice since 1993, and they can use all the support that Angeleno’s can give them! Let go Kings!