On a windswept Saturday night, I braved the slow 210 freeway and set my sights to Monrovia and a new brewery on the outskirts of the main drag of this community, Wingwalker. The first impression is good. There is a nice little patio as you walk up to the entrance. There is a painting hanging up near the door and as you walk in, there is a nice dark wood bar with the silver gleaming cooler behind it. Not much in the way of signage but thanks to my far vision glasses, I can make out that three beers are on offer. Dark Matter Porter in both regular and CO2 versions. A mild and a Festbier.
It is brand new days for this brewery that literally opened at the start of the year. So I was not expecting to have the best beer experience. I was nicely surprised with the start of ….
Dark Matter – Nice and roasty. Maybe a skosh too bitter. Tilted to the coffee side. The Nitro blunted that a bit and would be my choice of the two.
…then the last two beers were tasted and the review started trending down…
Miskatonic Mild – Tastes way green to me. Smells worty. My reaction might be due to lack of British Beers in my life. But aim is off.
Physics Phest Bier – Tastes a bit off as well. Too sweet and a little to mineral tasting. Closer to style in my thinking. But could be heavier and maltier.
The other weird thing is that one long section of the bar seating is an actual small airplane wing. I had to look at it a good long time to see it under the clear epoxy/resin? And I felt that it would have been much better to have the same wood all the way around and then fly the wing above the customers, maybe with the logo stamped on it as well.
The brewery has an old/vintage brewing system that was first brewed on in 1980 and is apparently a system that makes brew days long and longer. If the system can be mastered, this might be only a slight hindrance but it could be worse. The space could use more logo branding, from coasters to glassware to tap handles. Handwritten signs are fine but they will need to be upgraded. There does appear room to grow with 12 taps unused and the former home brewer also distills so there might be spirits in the future.
Overall, this space really looks only 80% ready. What is done is solid but more work is needed on that and the beer.