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Westwood Brewing Company

Official Web Page 
1097 Glendon Avenue, Westwood, California 90024
Tel: (310) 209-2739   Fax: (310) 824-2739

Opened: 
Capacity: 
Date Visited: 16th July, 2001

The Westwood Brewing Company is located in the center of “Westwood Village”, one of LA’s fashionable communities, populated mostly by students and young professionals.

The main bar and restaurant was pretty busy for a Monday night, while a second bar upstairs was hosting a comedy night. I took my seat at the bar and was instantly greeted by a friendly bartender. There were 6 beers on tap that pulled directly from 381-gallon tanks; you couldn’t get much fresher than this.

Prices Pint: $3.50, Taster (5oz?): $1.25

There are over 40 ales in total that are offered in rotation and by season, most notable of which is the award-winning Wee Heavy, as well as an English bitter that I would have liked to try. Other interesting sounding brews include a Belgian Triple and Quadruple (?) and a Pumpkin Spice Ale. I will certainly have to return to try some more.

For everyone else, there’s a full bar, draft Guinness and Cider, as well as a few popular bottled beers. The majority of the crowd, however, seemed content to be drinking the house-brewed ales, in particular the Hefeweissen.

Food
This is a brewpub, and my sole intention here was to review the beer. However there is a fairly interesting menu with a variety of pizzas, sandwiches, salads, fish, pasta, steaks and bar appetizers. Prices range from cheap to $22 (the 16oz Porterhouse).

Verdict
This is not the most exciting range of ales I’ve ever tasted but all were very enjoyable, most notably the Scottish Ale. I would certainly like to return when some of the other brews are available. I certainly recommend that any visitor to the area should check this brewery out for some satisfying alternative drinking and a friendly casual atmosphere. Their ales seem like easier to drink versions and are great for newcomers to those styles, but there is also plenty of interest for beer veterans too.

Beers Reviewed

(click on beer name for full review)
JW Pale Ale Type: Pale ABV: %
Very light in color, almost lager-like. Fresh and piney nose with good signs of citrus, which comes through in the flavor. Mixture of lemon and grapefruit but subtle and sweet rather than bitter and tangy. A light, refreshing and easy drinking pale ale that would certainly work well on mainstream lager drinkers. There’s not a whole lot of depth or body, but it does work pretty well as a friendly beer. It certainly makes a great session beer and is particularly suited to summertime.
Ratings: Appearance: 3/5 Aroma: 7/10 Palate: 3/5 Taste: 7/10 Overall: 14/20 Score: 3.4 

 

Ruby Red Ale Type: Red ABV: %
Dark reddish-purple color. Nose is a little perfumey with some subdued fruitiness. Spritzy carbonation, pretty light, predominantly sweet and malty, sugary, berry-like, slightly toasty and a light herb. There’s some bitterness in the finish that balances the beer out well, while there is some sweetness in the aftertaste that was a little short-lived.
Ratings: Appearance: 2/5 Aroma: 6/10 Palate: 3/5 Taste: 7/10 Overall: 11/20 Score: 2.9

 

Honey Porter Type: Porter ABV: %
First looks are deceiving, black in color looking almost espresso-like, with a nice head. I really didn’t get much in the nose though, a little malt, a little flowery but otherwise very clean. It was also very light on the palate and didn’t create too much interest at all. The flavors were certainly much better, if not exceptional, with a noticeable malt and a lingering honey aftertaste. This one was certainly a disappointment, lacking in character and not really offering much to talk about.
Ratings: Appearance: 5/5 Aroma: 5/10 Palate: 2/5 Taste: 5/10 Overall: 8/20 Score: 2.5

 

Smoked Scottish Ale Type: Scottish ABV: %
Very dark brown color verging towards black. The nose is full of malt and smokiness, which also comes through in a bold and well-pronounced flavor, while there is a slight bitterness in the finish. The dry smokiness is just balanced out in the aftertaste by a little lingering malt. Pretty easy drinking for the style, medium to full in body, and very satisfying. It’s a very good interpretation of its kilt wearing counterpart, full in body and flavor.
Ratings: Appearance: 5/5 Aroma: 8/10 Palate: 4/5 Taste: 8/10 Overall: 16/20 Score: 4.1

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