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Eagle Rock gets its own Brewery!
January 2, 2010, 6:52 pm
Filed under: Beer, Booze | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Just opened in, well, Eagle Rock, ERB‘s a microbrewery devoted to helping people learn about the nuances of beer, started by a dude who used to work as a movie music editor and his father, both of whom moved to LA from Upstate NY, which is somewhere past even, like, Harlem or something. Their first batch is composed of three different brews, each made specifically to highlight one of the touchstone ingredients of beer-making: the hop-py Revolution IPA’s a punchy, citrusy golden brew; the malt-heavy Solidarity is a jet-black but light-flavored coffee/caramel tinged creation, and the yeasty, straw-colored Belgian-style Manifesto is made with a touch of rose petal and only 1/2 the amount of coriander and citrus for a beer of that genre

via Eagle Rock Brewery | Thrillist.


Bottle Rock the Party

Maximum 3====D
Food 3===D
Beer 3====D
Service 3====D
Atmosphere 3===D
Eye Candy 3=D

The once Culver City confined Bottle Rock now has a new location in downtown LA just for the Eastsiders. Just blocks away from LA Live, Bottle Rock LA serves up the traditional wine bar cheese and charcuterie plates with the addition of a full menu of seafood, meats, pastas, and desserts.

The cheese and charcuterie plates were very well paired with varying spreads, pastes, and fruit. The food has a delicate touch with Asian and Italian influences. Specifically, the Pig Ear Terrine and Pork Belly Risotto tipped me off that there must be a Taiwanese chef in the kitchen. This was a very pleasant surprise as both my parents are from Taiwan and it is far from mainstream fare in the U.S.

This similarly chic downtown location boasts more space and an even larger wine selection than their predecessor with nearly 1,000 bottles to choose from. Alex Macy, who recently coordinated the LACABAL event in May, has done a killer job as the beer buyer stocking some great craft bottles like Duchesse de Bourgogne and Allagash’s Hugh Malone while the taps list features gems like Old Rasputin (on nitro) and Allagash Curieux

A very enjoyable experience overall, Bottle Rock LA is definitely a go-to. Atmosphere is a bit cold with lots of concrete and metal in the room, but that can be easily overcome with some great beer and good company. The beer and wine selection is certainly among the best in LA but the food is nice and not to be overlooked.

  • Good place to start a night of debauchery downtown
  • Accomodating for large groups but may be difficult when busy
  • Good place to bring a date to impress with knowledge of food/beer/wine
  • Great stuff but gets pricey quick so beware when eating and drinking
  • Beer selection is phenomenal

Here Piggy Piggy
June 20, 2009, 10:51 pm
Filed under: Beer, Booze, Diners, Grub, Wine | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Maximum 3====D
Food 3==D
Beer 3===D
Service 3===D
Atmosphere 3==D
Eye Candy at place called Oinkster?

Oinkster has recently been featured on a certain Food Network show and is now all the rage in the center of the Universe, the Eagle Rock-Glendale-Burbank area.

The Oinkster, a fast-casual concept from acclaimed fine-dining chef Andre Guerrero, invites diners to kick back and enjoy high-quality American classics in a relaxed, modern and fun environment.

via O I N K S T E R : a slow fast food restaurant.

Serving up burgers, house-cured pastrami sandwiches, rotisserie chicken, fries, and salads, the Oinkster is truly all-American cuisine…except the Belgian fries of course. While people rave about the pastrami, I think the stars of the show are really the fries and house made condiments. The Belgian fries are fresh and crisp, the chipotle ketchup is a nice way to get some smoke on your burger, and the Oinkster mustard MAKES the pastrami sandwich.

They also maintain a more than palatable tap selection usually featuring Stone‘s Arrogant Bastard, Pale Ale, Smoked Porter, and a rotating tap featuring various craft brews. It’s also nice to see pitchers available as fewer and fewer places in LA are doing that. If none of that suits your fancy there are plenty of bottles to choose from too. Milkshakes are a must for a place like this and they’re good. If you’re a fan of Auntie Em’s, which is also in the area, then you’ll be glad to know that they cater desserts to Oinkster.

The service is pretty good, the runners are friendly and helpful, but one order is inevitably forgotten about when with large groups. That said, they are always quick to fix the problem. While there are indoor and outdoor seating areas, tables are limited and it is a royal pain in the a$$ to seat a large group there if it’s at all busy.

The Oinkster is a respectable establishment making almost everything in house and supporting local business as much as possible. The food isn’t mind-blowing nor is the atmosphere, but it’s a diner and it is certainly worthy of Gay Fieri’s lil’ show. It’s good ol’ fashioned American made with quality ingredients. Besides, the fries and beers are enough to get me (and many others) back through the door any day.

  • Sometimes orders get forgotten in large groups
  • Service is friendly and generally quick
  • Difficult for large groups
  • They use Carolina BBQ sauce so don’t expect the goopy stuff
  • I hear a dirty rumor that they will be featuring Eagle Rock Brewery one day

Silverlake Barbarella
June 19, 2009, 6:16 pm
Filed under: American, Beer, Booze, Grub, Wine | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Barbarella taps

Maximum 3====D
Food 3==D
Beer 3====D
Service 3==D
Atmosphere 3===D
Eye Candy 3===D

The same people that opened the Bungalow Club bring a beer haven to Silverlake in the form of Barbarella Bar. The name may evoke images of surreal space scenery with shiny outfits and phallic rockets reminiscent of the movie…don’t worry, it’s not that tacky. The place is spacious and pretty massive sprawling 4300 square feet with high ceilings so elbow room is plentiful.

There isn’t much wow factor to the menu but ingredients are fresh and local when possible which is a plus. The fare is pretty standard consisting of some appies like modified bruschettas and Ahi Tar Tar, both of which were good but not “OMG I just creamed my pants” good. Items like pumpkin ravioli, mac & cheese, burgers and pizza comprise the entree section. While this is far from the most innovative menu in town, it is accessible and gets the job done for a decent price with quality ingredients. The mac & cheese hits the spot.

Bartenders and servers are attractive, friendly and maintain the leather and heels sort of ambiance. However, their knowledge on the available taps is disappointing to say the least. I didn’t order wine so I can’t speak to their level of expertise in that sense, but when I ask if a beer is on nitro I don’t expect bewildered looks from both server and bartender. Nonetheless, their tap selection is impressive with about 25 varieties ranging from SoCal hop to Belgian malt. I had the Old Rasputin on nitro which was tight, but I wouldn’t have known had I been relying on the staff to tell me.

For those of you curious about this nitro nonsense, here’s the skinny: Conventionally beers are carbon dioxide carbonated. On nitrogen the bubbles are finer and make for a creamier, softer mouth feel (that’s what she said) typically used with stouts and porters.

Overall, I would say that the tap selection is the big draw while the food is mildly above pedestrian and the price point is reasonable for both. The majority female staff balances the heavily male population of the East LA scene while providing enjoyable scenery and ample opportunity for light conversation. Will definitely go back for drinks, but dinner would mostly be out of convenience.

  • Don’t expect the staff to know much about their beers
  • Service is friendly pleasant to look at
  • Good place for a group to meet or to start/end the night
  • Again, more of a group spot than a date thing
  • I saw Keanu Reeves and his beard there