Brewing Up a Storm

Why 2013 looks to be L.A.'s biggest craft beer year yet

When it comes to L.A.'s blossoming craft beer scene, isn't just raining, its pouring.

With no fewer than nine craft breweries in Los Angeles and Orange counties entering, or looking to enter (via Kickstarter), the final stages of commercial beer production this year, Southern California's beer scene is primed to make a great leap forward in 2013.

Making the biggest splash might be the relaunched Angel City Brewing, housed in a turn-of-the-century factory in Little Tokyo and staffed by former Golden Road brewmaster Jon Carpenter.

Although Angel City is saving its official grand opening for April, you can currently swing by for an Angeleno IPA or a Eureka! witbier during its limited taproom hours (4 to 10 p.m., Thursday through Saturday).

To the southwest, Downtown addition Ohana Brewery has ramped up production of its Saison Dubach, while also providing "ninja brewing" space for L.A. Ale Works, another upstart enterprise that released its first beer last month, a complex Bavarian roggenbier called Gams-Bart.

But hopheads are likely most excited for the permanent home of Laurie and John Porter's cult-favorite Smog City Brewing (creators of the superb Groundworks Coffee Porter), which commences operations in Torrance next month, with a taproom to follow.

It's a development worth raising a glass to.

Find products from these local breweries at beer bars such as Beer Belly, Blue Palms or City Tavern, or at bottle shops such as Ramirez Liquor  or Sunset Beer Company.