In the third of Eagle Rock Brewery’s Marxist-themed brews, we finally got our chubby little fingers on a few pints of the Extra Pale Ale last weekend at the York. We’ve been a little disappointed with ERB’s early products, but were excited to sit down and have our palettes hopped into next week. Revolution wasn’t what we were expecting; It wasn’t bad, but it threw us a bit of a curve that we needed to adjust to. Instead of dry and hoppy, the most accurate word I can use to describe its taste is “sweet”. If I didn’t know better, I would swear they had mixed some cider into my beer as I just couldn’t get past the flavor of apples. Revolution isn’t a bad beer, it just seems atypical for the style.
To get an idea of the father and son duo who are tackling the historic task of being Los Angeles’ only brewery, enjoy this spot in the Times’ Brand X (I assume because it’s xtreme) blog.
Jonathan Gold tries Cacao, kinda likes the food, and really likes their Hecho in Eagle Rock shirts. I wonder where they got the idea to steal that from Mexico from…
The LA Times interviews Steven and Jeremy Raub, owners of Eagle Rock Brewery, whose three brews are saturating the Northeast. I’ll finally be sampling the Revolution XPA tonight. I should have that review up by Easter.
Solidarity and Manifesto
After negotiating bureaucratic red tape for what seems like forever, Eagle Rock Brewery is finally open and selling beer. We’ve been waiting for the city’s first brewery in nearly 60 years with bated breath, and considering Sothern California’s strong place in the craft-beer movement, our expectations were high, maybe unattainably high. My initial reaction to Eagle Rock Brewery’s debut is that they haven’t fulfilled their promise…yet. As someone who’s done some pretty disastrous home brewing myself, I know that a beer’s potential is rarely fulfilled on the first try. Still, two separate samplings of their Solidarity, a mild black ale, and the Manifesto, a wit bier, have left me longing for something more flavorful. (Warning: Potentially self-absorbed description of flavors ahead. Skip to the next paragraph if reading this annoys you as much as reading other people’s description of taste can annoy me. ) First, both beers had a slightly bitter metallic aftertaste that is usually a result of improperly stored malts. This aftertaste was most noticeable in the Manifesto, which I was hoping would contain more fruitiness that the brew is known for. I know that ERB intentionally uses less coriander and orange peel than your typical wit bier, (think Hoegarden), but instead of a light “dessert beer”, the result was much heavier and yeastier. As for the Solidarity, I’m not a big fan of black ale’s, but ERB should be commended for attempting something a bit scarcer in this part of the world. Chocolate and coffee was slightly noticeable on the first sip, but that taste was lost for the rest of the pint. They’ll be releasing an X IPA soon that I’m hoping will fill the gaps in their current two-beer menu.
The Tasting Room
Now that I’m done sounding like an asshole, their tasting room has been designed very nicely. Marble countertops, bench seating with throw pillows, and an unobstructed view of the brewery make this a welcoming spot to talk to the father and son who run the brewery about their craft. The only catch? You need to email ahead if you want to sample the wares (for about $4 per pint) or take a free brewery tour. If that’s too much forethought to put into your drinking, you can currently find the Solidarity on tap at Verdugo and Pure Luck, while you can grab a pint of the Manifesto at Blue Palms.
No one wants to see this brewery succeed more than we do (besides probably the father and son who’ve dedicated years and untold sums of cash in this endeavor). We’ll definitely be back rooting for ERB to improve their subsequent batches.