About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group soccer columnist and blogger Nick Green writes at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!

Mob-themed Rubens Distilling and Brewing in El Segundo makes craft beer drinkers an offer they can’t refuse

jaxHead brewer Mike Hancock, right, owner Rob Bubens and his year-old Doberman Jax will mark the grand opening this weekend in El Segundo of the first combination craft brewery and distillery in Los Angeles County. Photo by Staff Photographer Ed Crisostomo).

A combo-brewery-distillery is a lot more complex to open than your average craft brewery, Rubens said.

“We carry eight licenses, two from the feds, three from the state and three from the city,” he said. “We placed our order for (the German-made still) in December 2014 and we received it in early February this year. So it took 14 months from the day we placed the order to the day it showed up in a truck. Then it was another four months until it was operational.”

Although Rubens has quietly had a soft opening for several weeks, this weekend is the first that cocktails will be available.

Read more about Rubens Distilling & Brewing here.

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4th Annual Brewer’s Chili Cookoff set for Saturday at Select Beer Store in Redondo Beach

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While the event itself begins at noon, tasting begins at 4 p.m. at Select Beer Store, 1613 S. Pacific Coast Highway.

From the press release:

Brewers and owners from local breweries will serve their own special batch of chili, while guests will sample each one and vote for their favorite.

This year’s participating breweries: King Harbor Brewing Co., of Redondo Beach, Brouwerji West of San Pedro, Phantom Carriage Brewery of Carson, Arts District Brewing of Los Angeles, Three Weavers Brewing of Inglewood, El Segundo Brewing Co., and Torrance’s HopSaint Brewing Co., Strand Brewing and Smog City.

Beers from each of the represented breweries will be served on draft and the area behind the fenced off to set up a “beer/chili garden” for the anticipated overflow crowd.

All proceeds from the chili cook-off benefit Providence TrinityCare Hospice in Torrance.

I’m not exactly a chili expert, but HopSaint’s chili is incredible, so the competition had better bring their game.

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New brew: Two 5 Left DIPA returns Friday to El Segundo Brewing Co

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Not only does El Segundo Brewing Company have an incredible line-up of IPA’s, but one of the best is the seasonal Double IPA Two 5 Left (named after a runway at nearby LAX).

And at noon Friday ESB will not only tap that, but what looks like a cask dry-hopped with Cascade hops courtesy of well-known Southern California craft beer photographer Bernie Wire.

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Great Society Cider & Mead gastropub set to open in Long Beach

societycider

Long Beach has lagged behind the rest of the county when it comes to production craft breweries (the city has none), but makes up for it when you consider that Beachwood BBQ was named the world’s best brewpub and the community will now get the first restaurant specializing in cider and mead.

Read more in this story from Staff Writer Andrew Edwards.

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Smog City Brewing of Torrance named best South Bay craft brewery by Daily Breeze readers

smogsteel

El Segundo Brewing arguably has the best lineup of IPA’s in the county.

Inglewood-based Three Weavers Brewing, chosen to make this year’s official LA Beer Week brew, is catching eyes for its quality lineup of beers and is regarded as an up and coming brewery to watch.

But it is Torrance’s Smog City Brewing that was selected as the best brewery in the South Bay as part of this year’s Daily Breeze Readers Choice Awards.

It is the first time the South Bay’s rapidly increasing number of production breweries was included in the annual poll conducted by the newspaper’s advertising department.

Smog, owned by husband and wife team Laurie and Jonathan Porter (who goes by his apt last name), has a reputation as one of the most experimental and innovative breweries in the county as the shot of the beer lineup taken earlier this week below lineup suggests.

smogbrews

You may notice the list is without a single IPA even though Smog makes Hoptonic IPA year round (it’s the biggest seller at the brewery, although it sells more Little Bo Pils to bars and restaurants than any other), a new Steelcraft IPA (named after the Long Beach tasting room that will open soon) or any of its seasonals such as Grape Ape IPA. I suspect they are so popular, Smog has problems keeping them available.

Smog is among the busiest local breweries, not only because of its excellent product, but because of its freeway-close location on Del Amo boulevard just east of Western Avenue.

Still, its tasting room is among the best with standing-friendly steel tables, stacked oak barrels aging beer and a brooding black and white picture of rock star brewmaster Porter overlooking the space.

Parking has improved markedly in recent months with the departure of its doggy day care neighbor opening up spaces and Smog is always trying new brews in relatively small batches, which pushes locals to become regulars so they don’t miss a thing.

If you haven’t tried Smog yet, make a visit and tell ’em readers of the Torrance-based Breeze sent you.

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