On Tuesday, Arnold Schwarzenegger was quoted in the New York Times saying, “You never have to smoke a joint in Venice. You just go on a bicycle ride in the morning…inhale, and you live off everyone else.” It doesn’t work so seamlessly with booze, but this month, Venice got its first branded beer from the new Venice Beach Beer Company. On a day full of actual “June gloom,” the company announces the debut of a new brew, fittingly called “June Gloom,” joining one released two weeks ago that’s simply called “Venice.” The city’s eponymous ale is an amber with five hops plus biscuit and caramel hops, while Gloom is based on a Belgian white with flavors of coriander and orange peel, sort of like the beer garden from On The Waterfront concentrated in a bottle. So, where do you find them?
The company, founded by actor Kerr Smith and his buddy, Tim Benedick, hopes to produce 1,000 barrels in 2012 and is currently offering these suds only at Venice and Santa Monica addresses, while a storefront and retail space are on the way.
A rep for the company says the beer is actually coming from San Jose, while the company’s offices are Venice-based, but the specific recipes are exclusive to Venice Beach Beer Co. Whether or not this makes it less Venice-y probably depends on your degree of localism, especially since the crew is next producing a third brew for 2013, a Cali-style IPA called A.W.O.L. (meaning “Always West of Lincoln,” recalling hyper-regionalist Venetian ink that stands for “South of Rose, West of Lincoln”).
Marketing and aggro civic pride aside, we’re always down to try something new and sudsy no matter the name. Look below for a list of bars currently stocking June Gloom and Venice.
Venice Beach Beer Company, available at:
The Venice Whaler
Venice Beach Wines
Whole Foods Venice