Housed in a 100-year old factory in Downtown’s Art’s District, Angel City Brewery is set to become one of LA’s coolest watering holes.
**UPDATE: Check out Trevor Morrow Travel’s new post 3 Must Visit Breweries in Los Angeles for current information on Angel City Brewery and 2 other awesome LA breweries.**
When it comes to cities in California with great craft beer scenes, Los Angeles has long been overshadowed by San Diego to the south and San Francisco to the north.
But with a growing number of beer-centric bars and a few local breweries, LA’s beer credibility is on the rise. In fact, the city’s craft beer scene just took a giant (and might I add, awesome) step in the right direction. Enter, Angel City Brewery.
Located in Downtown LA’s Arts District, Angel City Brewery has been like my Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. Housed in a funky industrial building surrounded by a tall metal fence and closed to the public, I’ve walked by many times over the past few years and wondered, “what kind of crazy stuff is going on in there?”
I finally got to answer that question this past weekend, because just like the Chocolate Factory, Angel City Brewery is finally starting to open its doors to the public.
Walking into the brewery’s 100-year-old building, the first thing I noticed was that this place is huge, and…wait, is that a slide?
Lets deal with the slide first. No you can’t ride it. Back in the day when this building was used by Roebling & Sons to produce steel cable for suspension bridges, that slide was used to easily send spools of steel down to the first floor. Back on track — yes, this place is huge. Looking around I can imagine lots (LOTS) of people drinking beer, hanging out, and having a great time.
After checking out the space I moseyed up to the long, art-deco bar to do what I came here to do — drink beer. I worked my way through everything on tap (the Vanilla Porter, the Eureka Wit, the Angeleno IPA, and the Pilsner — in that order), and soon enough got talking to Dieter Foerstner, Angel City Brewery’s brewmaster.
I asked him about Angel City and he told me about the brewery’s focus on becoming a part of the local community and taking care of Downtown LA, and all of LA, with their beer. Angel City, which came under new ownership in January of 2012, doesn’t yet package their beer, which means you can only find it at the brewery and a growing number of bars and restaurants around town.
When I asked Dieter about working at Angel City he said, “it’s cool to be working for a company that embraces creativity and allows me to not shave.” Good thing, because Dieter is a really creative guy (and he has a sweet red beard). It’s apparent he loves what he does and loves experimenting with his brews. He once created a beer using avocados that tasted like guacamole! He even let me try two experimental beers that he’s been working on — one with a refreshing grapefruit kick, and the other inspired by au jus! Side note: Downtown LA is famous for its two competing french dip sandwich shops where the bread is dipped in au jus.
Since I’d made it through all the beers, the last thing to do was continue learning about what I’d been drinking and join a group for a short tour of the brewing facilities.
The tour was a solid cap on a great few hours at an incredible new addition to Los Angeles. I’m looking forward to seeing all of the final touches come together and writing more about Angel City Brewery as it becomes an LA institution.
Connect with Angel City Brewery
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Angel City Brewery is located at 216 S Alameda St, Los Angeles, CA 90012