I admit it. I am an unabashed fan boy of Firestone Walker. I have the latest Luponic Distortion in my ‘fridge right now. So yeah, I will be tuning in to hear David Walker chat. As substitutes for an anniversary party goes, this is a good one.
In case you missed it on your Facebook feed, this was posted last month…
Almost makes me want to get a barn. I expect to hear about some interesting beers coming from BarrelWorks with this coolship in place.
April is the 4th month and in a bit of coincidence, there are 4 Firestone-Walker events this month as well.
Thursday, April 11th @7pm
City Tavern Culver City
Come drink FW beers and meet David Walker.
Friday, April 12th @7pm
The Federal Bar in NoHo
Come drink FW beers and meet David Walker
Thursday, April 18th @6pm (Q&A starts at 7pm)
Chloe’s inside the Pub at Golden Road
Meet Jeffers Richardson the Barrelmeister from Firestone
Wednesday, April 24th
A 4 course dinner pairing.
If you are a F-W fan (like I am) then these will be events to mark on your calendar
Firestone-Walker ain’t what it used to be. It’s bigger. My last visit to both their Paso Robles brewery and the Taproom and restaurant in Buellton was many years ago. I had heard about the changes and the new equipment and the addition of Barrelworks but I was not prepared for the scope of the expanded footprint of their entire operation.
They have added space everywhere on what is fast becoming a Firestone-Walker dominated stretch of land just off the 101. They have a huge restaurant where you can get the Central Coast Locals Only beer, 805. They have warehouse space for their “traditional” barrel aging that you see in such releases as their anniversary beer. And these large tanks are another (albeit large) sign of the changes taken place.
The brewery has been tricked out as well as expanded. Brewmaster Matt Brynildson now has new toys like a wet mill which maximizes yield from the grains while using less energy and added an automated hop doser. Which will make the bitterness you get from Union Jack even more consistent.
2012 proved to be a major year of growth for Firestone-Walker and it was great to get a tour of the whole facility and see all the changes firsthand.
This year, they came up with yet another great hook for a beer event. They brought five sour beers to five different L.A. bars. Did not tell the bars which beer they had and then had David Walker drive the Firestone-Walker emblazoned rover from spot to spot to reveal which sour they had on tap.
I skipped the first stop at Golden Road because the Better Weather Festival (to be reviewed later by my special westside correspondent) was in full swing. I headed for the Verdugo first and was treated to Lil Opal which poured a light yellow color and had a touch of tartness. And out on the patio after watching my Dad’s Oregon State team win over UCLA, was the full F-W entourage including brewer Matt Brynildson.
Then the next stop beckoned. While they headed to Alhambra and 38 Degrees, I jumped to the 4th stop, Far Bar. All because of a dirty hippie (aka, the 6th anniversary beer from Kern River) It’s good to have two beer events in one spot. Makes my job easier plus that Imperial Red is quite good and a beer you should search out. Notes of Citra hit the nose but the beer doesn’t try to tackle your palate. It is soft and strong. As the time approached for the 4th sour, many familiar beer geeks filed into the now expanded space on 1st for the reveal of SLOambic.
A red hued beauty with a light fruit taste and a nice bit of tart to it. Firestone sours are not the mouth contorting puckery kind but on a hot day where lighter beers seemed more appropriate, they really fit the bill and it was great to see the bar filled with snifters of the strawbeery in everyone’s hands.
Events can be hard to pull off. Events that involve L.A. traffic, a skosh harder. But this worked like clockwork. People could get one beer or all five. The taps flowed when promised and the group was more than willing to talk with everyone. It is a model L.A. Beer Week event. And whatever crazy idea they have for next year. I will be there.
Then the rover was off to Blue Palms for it’s final stop.