Your Guide to Craft Breweries in Torrance, CA
In the early part of the decade, the business-friendly South Bay city earned a reputation for welcoming new breweries. Red Car Brewery and Restaurant was the first back in 2000, but Strand Brewing Co. was the first non-restaurant outpost in 2009. Today, the city’s list stands at an impressive 11 breweries.
Below is a rundown of these breweries to help you plan your next (or first) beer crawl through Torrance.
Absolution Brewing Co.
Just north of the Torrance Courthouse off Maple Avenue is Absolution Brewing Co., which has called the city home since 2013. The tap room in the small industrial park features 22 beers on tap, a reasonable amount of seating, and visits from local food trucks to feed visitors. Absolution also bottles in both 22-ounce bottles and six-packs for those looking to take some beer home as well.
Open Thursday through Sunday, Cosmic Brewery is located right off Del Amo Boulevard on Gramercy Place. The brand’s aesthetic follows its name, with a space-themed motif and even telescope (and tacos) nights to peer at the stars while enjoying a few beers. They also have a self-pouring draft system, making for an easy drinking experience without lengthy waits to order.
The Dudes’ Brewing Co.
The Dudes’ Brewing Co. is named for the LA-based cult hit “The Big Lebowski” and its main character “The Dude” (played by Jeff Bridges). While the company will soon have five locations in Southern California, it started in Torrance, where it still serves a large collection of its various beers — from Berliner Weisses to double IPAs and coconut porters. The Dudes’ beers can also be found at stores all over the region.
The idea of HopSaint Brewing got its start in Hermosa Beach when co-owner and brewmaster Brian Brewer was mastering his craft at Abigaile’s in-house brewery. Since HopSaint opened its doors in the northwest corner of Torrance, it’s become a neighborhood staple for its award-winning beers and comfort food. Also check the menu for the specific days they serve carnitas, brisket, burnt-end chili, and barbecue plates.
Monkish Brewing Co.
Monkish Brewing Co. once famously had a “no IPAs” sign on its wall. Since taking it down in 2016, however, the brewery has turned into one of LA’s premier beer destinations with long lines for every release. The New England-style “hazy” IPAs deliver on the hype. If you want to avoid the lines, many of the brews are on draft in the tasting room and available for growler fills (including blanks) to take home.
Red Car Brewery & Restaurant
As mentioned, Red Car has been around since 2000 when it opened at the site of a former Pacific Telephone and Telegraph office building. Their house beers are all made with English ingredients and paired with a long list of traditional pub fare. The Red Car name pays homage to the old Pacific Electric Red Car trolleys of LA.
Scholb Premium Ales
You’ll find Scholb Premium Ales in the same block as Absolution, brewing a variety of beer styles — most recently focusing on IPAs, as many breweries around the country have. Despite being “small” by their own admission, Scholb actually has a significant amount of space inside, with ample room for drinkers, kids, and dogs as well.
Smog City Brewing Co.
From humble beginnings in 2011 brewing at Orange County’s Tustin Brewing Co. to opening their own dedicated brewery and taproom in 2013, the people at Smog City worked their way to veteran-status in the LA beer scene. Their award-winning coffee porter, West Coast IPAs, barrel-aged offerings, and sour program provide options for every beer drinker. They’re also within walking distance from Monkish, for those looking to maximize the value of their trip.
Strand’s large tasting room opened in 2009 and is just off Van Ness Avenue. It features plenty of picnic tables, space for cornhole, and a modest assortment of beers brewed right on site. Guests can bring their own food, and kids and dogs are welcome. The warehouse-sized spot is also available for private events on Mondays, for those looking to avoid the weekend or evening crowds.
Yorkshire Square Brewery
Relative newcomer Yorkshire Square is not too far from Strand but offers a different aesthetic entirely. All of their beers are on cask and brewed with traditional English styles in mind. The indoor/outdoor space includes games and the opportunity to watch some of the world’s largest soccer games (when they air) with a proper pint.
Zymurgy Brew Works
The lone “nano-brewery” on the list, Zymurgy Brew Works has a small collection of beers on draft and, most notably, offers brewing classes and events as well. While it’s easy enough to find homebrew kits in stores, Zymurgy’s classes provide brewmaster-led sessions that should increase your odds of making something tasty.