Pac 6

3 weeks from today, Pacific Plate is going to go all Tiki for their 6th anniversary because 6 is the tiki year, right? Follow their social media streams to make sure you get all the details.

March 2019 Food GPS Posts

In case you forgot to check out the fantastic food coverage on the Food GPS website, then you may have not seen the beer coverage either.

Here is your handy link spot to read what I covered in Brew & You in March….

March 7th – Beer in Temecula, Border X + Dry River Triple Can release.

March 21st– Monrovia Beer, the Cellador Famille + 8 Bit in K-Town.

2nd Impression – Wingwalker Brewing

Usually, I don’t make 2nd visits so soon after a first one (unless I really, really like a brewery) but since I was literally next door, I sauntered over to Wingwalker for round 2.

I used the lucky number method in ordering a beer this time. WingWalker had 10+ taps going and I went with #9. Barnstormer Rye IPA. Not a hazy, though the photo might lead you to believe. Instead, it was another example of a beer that wasn’t quite right. It had the hallmarks that I associate with a beer that was plucked onto tap to soon. Hazy as heck. Blunted aroma. Vegetal in taste. I did not pick up any spice or rye notes and the hops were very muted. Due to choice of hops available? Don’t know but that beer made me stop and decide that I will check back in with this and Over Town much later in the year. More progress needs to be made in my opinion.

1st Visit – Over Town Brewing

I jumped over to my valley town to another (Glendale to Monrovia) to check out yet another new brewery, Over Town Brewing. Here are my thoughts….

I had high hopes upon entering Over Town Brewing for the first time. The outside had the logo high and proud. Nice color scheme. Inside the space is filled with little and big signs of beach and road culture of Los Angeles. Highlighted by a big wooden Hermosa Beach sign that is a prime selfie spot.

Smartly, they were not doing flights or other odd sized pours. Just half’s and fulls. So I went down the list and selected what I thought would be easy hits. Pale Ale, West Coast IPA and a white ale. I skipped over the overly fruity and since it was hot, I also skipped the bigger beers. The plan was sound but the beers were all below mediocre. The Pale Ale had a tangerine puree quality to it. The White Ale needed extra spice push and the IPA tasted young to my palate.

Hopefully, the recipes will be honed with time and feedback.

Over Town

I should not be surprised when another brewery suddenly pops up without me knowing about it. And yet, I am, each time. Here is the latest:

Wingwalker is barely open a couple months and another one enters the Monrovia market, Over Town Brewing Co. There will be a first visit report coming later this month or in April.

1st Visit – Wingwalker Brewery

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.

RIP – Pacific Plate / Glendale

Sad news to report, Pacific Plate is pulling out of the Glendale market…

They opened the satellite taproom back on February 26, 2017 and they will close up on this Sunday, September 23.

Though the place was well appointed on the inside and the beers were solid, that location at the way southern end of Glendale was not, in my opinion, great. There are Glendale restaurants and shops that have trouble on the main section of Brand and the Americana (probably due to rent) has had a lot of turnover too. Being stuck at the bottom of car buying row was not optimal.

I wish I had gone more but I didn’t and that part is on me but considering the vast amounts of seriously empty retail space at the ground floor of the million condos in the Jewel City, taking over a space with customers an elevator ride away though pricier might have been the better deal.

1st Visit – Hop Secret Brewing

I made my first visit to Monrovia’s second (and perhaps not last) brewery, Hop Secret.

The address for the brewery is on Pomona Street but the brewery is closer to the Gold Line tracks. There are two entrances, one that leads directly to the menu board and the back that leads you past the brewing tanks first.

I went for my predictable flight. I tried the lager, pale ale, hefeweizen and IPA # 001. And as I started on the lager, I had raised hopes. Granted the menu board had a multi-colored pen look that seemed more at home for a sticker factory than beer, that first beer was well done. Nice and crisp.

From there, the beers diminished. The Pale Ale was fine but on that and the IPA’s that I tried, I detected a skosh of buttered popcorn taste and the hop medley’s just didn’t have much zing to them. The Hefe was an OK beer but it different have the two esters of banana and clove that I was expecting. More like a light hued dubbel in my mind.

Not a high starting point but there is enough good here to hope that improvement could occur.