Posts Tagged ‘library alehouse’

basque cider attempt, beachwood long beach, library sourfest

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011


lately I have been on a little cider kick.  not just any cider, mind you, but the funky, lambic-esque basque cider found in spanish sagardotegis.

  • after reading about the isastegi sagardo naturala over at lambic and wild ale, I picked up a few bottles to try, along with sarasola’s sagardoa.  I was greatly impressed with both ciders’ complex funk and smooth tartness, and grew interested in emulating them.
  • unfortunately, there is little information available online regarding techniques for producing basque cider, so I either had to pick up a book on cider and hope for more info on specific apples and yeast/bugs or just ad-lib and hope for the best.  the homebrewer in me immediately chose the latter, and I ended up pitching the dregs of two bottles of basque cider into a gallon of pasteurized, unfiltered organic juice.
  • after a few days with no visible activity, I combined the gallon and dregs with three more gallons, added a packet of red star montrachet yeast, and placed my fermenter into the fridge at 67F.  with significantly different juice from the basque region and questionable bottle dregs, I’m a little pessimistic about the results, but I’ll be happy with even a small amount of earthy complexity in my resulting cider.

last weekend AP and I also met up with OA and friends in downtown long beach to try out beachwood’s new brewery.

  • after hitting up a happy hour ommegang hennepin and turkey burger at congregation, AP and I made the 30 second walk over to beachwood.  the long beach venue was less crowded than their seal beach counterpart usually is, and we got a table as soon as we got in.
  • the guest taps were pretty killer, and highlights included selections from jolly pumpkin (which I have gratefully been seeing more of in socal), lost abbey, ballast point, and alesmith.  I grabbed a pour of bam noir and watched julian shrago pour candi sugar into a steaming boil kettle behind the bar.  pizza port’s boneyard barleywine took precedence over any beechwood brews as my last pour, but word on the street is they’re pretty tasty.
  • I anticipate many more trips over to downtown LB now that two great beer spots are on the same block.  now beachwood just has to finish up their bottle shop and I’ll be set…

in other news:


AP’s birthday beer tour: santa monica

Monday, June 21st, 2010

a little over a week ago AP’s birthday rolled around, so we headed off to santa monica, one of our old stomping grounds, to celebrate.

  • our first stop was library alehouse (not to be confused with library bar), a great little beer bar on main st.
  • I remember stopping by library alehouse many years ago and excitedly grabbing a downtown brown before I really caught on to the craft beer scene.
  • that tap handle is still pouring after all these years, but I have come to appreciate the finer offerings that this beer bar has to offer.
  • AP and I spotted the tap for eric’s ale and immediately ordered up a round.  we were bummed to discover that eric salazar from new belgium was going to be stopping by the next day to pay a visit.  that would have been sweet…
  • the beer was great, the scene was mellow, and the food was tasty, but AP and I packed up and moved on to our next destination.
  • our next pit stop was at wine expo on santa monica blvd.  the selection was varied, and we grabbed a reissdorf kolsch, a berliner weiss, and a geuze for later in the evening.
  • if you’re ever in the area and looking for a brew, wine expo is a good place to check out.  they have a bunch of interesting imports, but stock a pretty ordinary domestic selection.
  • we continued the bottle hunt at whole foods on wilshire, which I remembered as having a pretty decent beer selection.
  • “pretty decent” was an understatement – they had a great selection of hard to fund find beers.  after staring at the lineup for a good while, I could tell AP was done with bottle shopping, so I grabbed a bottle of port’s older viscosity, allagash’s confluence, and dogfish’s burton baton and hit the road.  this whole foods is definitely the place to go with paycheck in hand to grab some rarities for a special occasion.
  • AP and I then cruised down 3rd street promenade, ending with a stop by the fifth amendment alehaus.  I didn’t know what to expect when we stepped in, but the bar was cozy and the bartender/owner was friendly and knowledgeable.
  • my only gripe was the price of a pint – I can see $8 for a pour of eric’s ale or delirium tremens, but for port’s hot rocks lager? gimme a break.  I think the price will keep me from coming back on a regular basis, but if you’re stranded on third street shopping with your lady this place is the ticket.
  • I also tried a taster of the bruery’s coton, and let me tell you, it was one of the first old ales/barleywines that I actually disliked.  it was super hot with an overwhelmingly boozy finish.  all I could taste was alcohol.  come on guys, just stuff it in barrels for a year or two and push it for your usual $30 pricetag!
  • afterwards we grabbed some great italian at a BYOB joint where we shared some beers and then headed home.  our samo excursion was a great success – happy birthday AP!