Yard House Quest – Visit 1

Posted by Darryl | Bars, Restaurants, Tastings, Yard House Quest | Posted on October 22nd, 2011

Hockey Season has started, my season tickets are in hand, the LA Kings have had their first game at Staples Center, and I have started on this year’s Yard House Quest to sample every beer they have on tap.

This past Tuesday, the Kings had their home opener at Staples Center, winning 0-5 against the St. Louis Blues. (The NHL made the Kings play “Home” games in Stockholm & Berlin, but we’re not really counting those as home games.) After the cheering and brief celebration at Staples Center, I took the short walk across the street to The Yard House at LA Live. I found a couple of spots at the bar as one of the bartenders who knows me from past visits automatically brought me the list of beers on their current Six Pack Sampler. Since this was my first visit there this season, and my quest had reset to zero, I of course ordered the sampler.

Sampler1This Six Pack Sampler contained:

  1. Shipyard XXXX
  2. Leinenkugel’s Sunset Wheat
  3. Bass Ale
  4. Anchor Steam
  5. Shiner Bock
  6. Lagunitas IPA

I had previously tried all of these except for the Shipyard and the Leinenkugel. This gave me the opportunity to do a blind tasting of the beers to see if I could identify them. With my eyes closed, I’m handed a glass to taste and identify. I was 4/6, confusing the Bass Ale and the Shiner Bock… how I do not know. (I never claimed to have a good palate.)

A Shorty glass

Shorty vs full pint glass

My companion on this evening’s quest ordered a Shorty of a Lost Coast Apricot Wheat — her favorite beer, and unfortunately only available on tap. (Nice of the Yard House to carry it!) A “Shorty” is Yard House’s new glass size. At 9oz, it looks like a mini-pint. (Holding it makes your hand look a bit large!) Unfortunately, because it’s only 9oz she wasn’t willing to let me have a 1/3 of it to meet my 3oz minimum! I’m probably going to drink a Shorty or two during the quest, so that I don’t overindulge during any particular visit. On my next visit (Saturday, 10/22) I plan to find out if beers traditionally served in a goblet are available in a Shorty.

Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale

Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale

After my Six-Pack, I ordered a pint of Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous (I needed to try a “Black IPA”, although I’m not a fan of the name for the style.) Then I spotted the tap for Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout, by North Coast Brewing Co, and noticed that it had a nitro sprout. Old Rasputin is one of my favorite stouts, and might be the first Imperial Stout that I ever had. Because it’s a beer I know and like, I was anxious to try it on nitro to see if I could detect a notable difference. I could, and it was a good one. It was much smoother than the Old Rasputin I was used to, and probably something I would get again!

On the food side this visit I was kind of mellow, only sharing a tasty Walnut Pear salad. (The nachos at the game filled me up!) But, as with everything I’ve tasted at Yard House, the salad was a tasty, light meal for the night.

I suspect that the sampler menu will not have changed for my next visit. If I recall correctly, they change them on Tuesdays so I’m still in the same 7 day window. That means that I’ll either have to go for the other sampler, or just get a few Shorties. Either way, I’m still early in the quest so it won’t be hard to find beers I haven’t had yet!

After 1 round, 8 down!

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