Another feather in the cap of the Art's District already robust brewing scene, Art's District Brewing is a sprawling space for drinking, gaming, and even day drinking (an elusive activity for Angelenos). This new brewery comes from 213 Hospitality, the minds behind The Varnish and Honeycut; but this time, they're going all-in and actually brewing their own beer on site. The space is quite large, with plenty of booths, high tables, and bar space to go around...even when it inevitably gets very crowded on Friday nights. Featuring a colorful, graffiti-artist designed outdoor space, a big patio, and games like corn hole, skee ball, and darts, it's an ideal place for day drinking. In fact, after our Friday night visit, we came back Sunday for a friend's birthday party...and stayed for hours! In case you don't totally fill up on beer, they also have a window from Downtown hotspot Fritzi (from Chef Neal Fraser), where you can treat yo'self to hot dogs, burgers, fries, and other satisfying bar bites. Click through the gallery below for a better sense of their beautiful, industrial-cool space.
These beer wizards were kind enough to give us a tour around their brewing facility, which is huge. Admittedly, I know absolutely nothing about brewing beer, but from the looks of it, it seems that they're using some of the most innovative brewing methods. With our peek behind the curtain, we learned of their plans to expand their brewing facility, allowing them to produce far more beer (and even, maybe, allowing them to sell to other bars, liquor stores, etc). When they opened about 6 months ago, they launched with nine original beers ranging from golden ales to stouts and IPAs, but they also host a variety of guest beers from other local breweries.
Kyle and I ordered two of their originals, the Mateo and the Le Mule. The Mateo is a classic golden ale: a great go-to beer for anyone and perfect introduction to their line-up. I ordered the Mule, a ginger-lime saison that was light, refreshing, and fun. I later tried the Spirited, a simple Saison that still had a nice bit of spice, which I really enjoyed. Both were perfect for lounging on the patio and munching on snacks.
We obviously had to make use of the Fritzi counter, ordering the Snappy O'Brien dog (smashed tots, grilled peppers, onions, bacon, cheese, and ketchup) and their special wings. The hotdog was definitely indulgent and delicious, with the grilled peppers and onions tempering the richness of the smashed tots, bacon, and cheese. The glazed wings were simple, but really tasty.
Overall, our weekend jaunts at Arts District Brewing were a lot of fun. On Friday night, we enjoyed having a casual date night, sipping some beers, sharing some food, and winding down from the week on the outdoor patio. While Sunday, it was a perfect location to catch up with friends and challenge them to games of skee-ball. It managed to be fun and upbeat without being loud and impossible, a hard balance to strike for a bustling bar. We would definitely recommend checking it out for a post-work happy hour, or plan a day of drinking with a big group.