Yesterday, the hearts of so many beer aficionados were at the Echoplex. The event was sold out online but the Uncouth Gourmands were not deterred. The low down was that there were going to be 100 or so unsold tickets at the door. Apparently, all of LA heard the same rumor and the line was around the corner. Luckily, the UG’s were at the front of the line.
Despite the intense afternoon heat, Carina and I got there about an hour early. We had already grabbed some cheap lunch at Sharkey’s Woodfire Grill to pad our bellies. We were a bit turned off by our neighbors in line but decided to brave through it. The beer was supposed to be worth it and, after all, it was charity. At about 40 after 2P, we finally reached the gates of heaven. As we entered we were greeted by a lot of vivacious and friendly volunteers who all bustled and hustled through the heat for a good cause. Every patron was given a 4 oz beer glass, 15 drink tickets, and a beer list. Nervous about 15 drink tickets, I quickly rushed to the food section in order to fill my belly once more before the booze. Kind vendors like: Nicole’s Cheese Shop, Scoops, and others kindly donated so many of their people and resources so that we could all leave in a state of verticality after 15 small but potent drinks. After a few pinches of food, I quickly gravitated towards the long but fairly quick flowing beer line.
Beer Highlights: I started off with the #26 (Telegraph Rhinoceros), or as I like to boast, the only 10% baby. The Telegraph was bold, resonant and delicious! The minute I took the last swig, I immediately craved a refill. Another notable favorite was The Bruery-Young Lambic. Oh man, that was awesome! No other adjectives could describe that one. It was a light, crisp, vinegary heaven! If God made butter that’s what it would taste like. I can’t wait to install a keg of the Lambic at my place. I’m kidding about the last part but it was oh soooo fulfilling. I know Carina loved the Telegraph White Ale but that is because she is a Bay Area girl and sort of grew up on it, oh and it is delicious. It is like how we are Pasadena girls and Crafstman, a Pasadena brewery, always tops our favorite brewer list because of city pride and delicious taste. I am kind of bummed we didn’t have any Craftsman brews yesterday, we were just trying to sample new beers that we had never tasted.
Here’s a list and review of the ones we tried. Beer Report Card:
The People: A mix of uber hip young hipsters and old fat dudes. Despite the beauty of the respectfully produced beer, the patrons were the best part. All spectrums of people were represented. Anyone who loved beer was there! Not too much drunk tomfoolery either. We pimped out our site for a bit and made a good amount of unexpected connections. We met, ate, and drank like champions! The first picture is with the other local food bloggers: on the left is Yo Soy and next to me is Kirby Von Scrumptious. The boys below are the ones that checked the time and had us rush to the Firestone Walker booth for the rotating tap that only came once around 6p. They are sort of our heroes as they introduced us to our favorite drink of the day. It was dark, refreshing, and yummy and so were the fellows!
Organization of the Event: So I know these kind of events get a lot of shit for being haphazard and mis-managed (i.e. the yelp bloggers), but we left the place with no such negative sentiment. In fact, we commented on how much we enjoyed ourselves. I think the event’s orchestrators are due a certain amount of credit for that. Sure, the MC was a little uncertain about when the panel was going up but someone else’s tardiness was responsible for that. And I suppose there was a degree of uncertainty about what was going on at all times but I think that was the motive of the host. I think moments like that are inherently unpredictable anyway. As we UG’s know, good times are often an accident. Plus, everyone was having a good time so nobody cared; order came secondary to beer and people.
Funny/Uncouth Moments: I was telling someone what uncouth meant while passing out our website on guest check cards and in that moment I managed to knock over a table. The other funny moment of the day was when I asked that guy Joe, in the picture below, for a beer. He responded by saying, “Bossy, aren’t you?”. I quickly pointed to Carina and said, “She’s the bossy one!” Without skipping a beat he said, “She’s a reform Jew and a woman, what do you expect?” I am sure that there were a ton of other funny and uncouth moments but I was too drunk to remember them.
Final Swig: So for $30, you not only got an ample amount of food and beer but, most importantly, good company. Worth it? Abso-f@cking-lutely! Yesterday’s Beer Fest changed LA food events in a very positive way. “Success!” on behalf of the Uncouth Gourmands.