To celebrate their successful first year of beer production, Golden Road Brewing held their Better Weather Fest. For anyone that hasn’t been to Golden Road since their initial soft opening one year ago, you may notice some changes. Some rather large changes. Namely, the massive 200 and 300 barrel fermentors in the brewhouse and the finished Golden Road Pub. If you’ve been coming to Golden Road regularly, you’ll be no stranger to the expansions, the finished pub, and the experimental beers coming out, but still, seeing those giant fermentors and conditioning tanks is a sight to behold.
The festival kicked off with a massive temperature spike that sent sweat-producing signals into every beer drinking Angelino in sight. Luckily there were plenty of liquid refreshments around provided by both Golden Road and the rest of LA’s burgeoning craft breweries. Angel City, Eagle Rock, Taps, The Bruery, Beachwood, Ladyface, Strand, Firestone Walker & Walkers Wild Ride, Haven, Kinetic, Monkish, Ballast Point, Stone, Oskar Blues, as well as others were there pouring beers for the masses. The crowd was an energetic mix of lively beeries, foodies, and locals–all excited about celebrating the one year anniversary.
Golden Road offered hourly tours of the new brewhouse along with tastings of their new batch of Burning Bush as well as (my favorite) the LA Beer Week-inspired, prickly pear spiced Belgian Optunti Ale. It was hard to pick out the prickly pear, but the cactus honey offered a nice sweetness that balanced out the signature Belgian yeast notes. We had a moment to talk to Jon about the brew and his new set up, and it sounds like he’s really excited about how things are progressing. They should be brewing on their new 50 BBL system full time in the next couple of weeks.
Everyone on the Golden Road crew was working hard to make sure everything was going smoothly. Meg could be seen periodically carrying boxes of beer around and making sure everyone was happy; Cambria was snapping pictures of cheerful beer drinkers; Paige was running the blind can tasting sessions; and Skip was checking in on the vendors. It was a well oiled machine and a very well run festival. The only drawback was the heat, and one could see crowds rush towards the massive cold room each time it was opened to try and capture the faux winter breeze.
Near the tail end of our stay, we had the opportunity to join Meg and a few others on a trip through the Golden Road special event space, Chloe’s. IIt reminded me a bit of Disney’s Club 33, and it has that same sort of feel and draw to it. The space will be used primarily for beer professionals and businesses, but who knows, they may have an event for a select few at some time in the future.
And so ends a successful festival for LA Beer Week at one of the premier breweries in LA. We are definitely looking forward to next year’s festival. Cheers and a massive pat on the back go the Golden Road crew for all their hard work and dedication!