Golden Road Brewing Welcomes New Brewmaster Jesse Houck

Discussion in 'Pacific' started by Jason, Jan 11, 2013.

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  1. Jason

    Jason Founder (7,998) Aug 23, 1996 Massachusetts
    Staff Subscriber

    Los Angeles, CA (January 2013) – Golden Road Brewing is pleased to announce the arrival of new Brewmaster Jesse Houck, following the departure of former Brewmaster Jon Carpenter in early 2013. Houck comes to Golden Road from Drake’s Brewing Company in San Leandro, where he served as Production Manager/ Head Brewer.

    Houck and Golden Road President, Meg Gill, first met at 21st Amendment Brewery in 2008, where they bonded over their mutual love for canned beers and California IPAs.

    Golden Road has experienced a rapid expansion since opening in October of 2011, doubling the size of their brew house and brewing capacity, releasing four canned beers and over fifteen specialty brews, opening over 500 draft accounts throughout the greater LA area. Says Golden Road President Meg Gill: “As we look forward to 2013, we have big plans for the direction we want our beers to go. We’re thrilled to bring Jesse’s leadership and dry, hoppy, clean-beer loving palate to LA.”

    Adds Houck, “I am looking forward to sharing Meg and Tony's vision of crafting quality beers for LA, and excited to be part of one of the fastest growing craft beer scenes on the West Coast.” A long time bay-area brewer, Houck brings a blend of chemistry and artistry to his brewing, having studied Chemical Engineering before becoming fascinated – and later obsessed – with home-brewing and beer.

    Co-founder Tony Yanow has also been a fan of Houck’s for years, commenting, “Jesse has created some of my favorite beers, and we’re excited to bring his creativity and brewing expertise to our team.”

    Golden Road Brewing was founded in October 2011 by Tony Yanow and Meg Gill, who are committed to bringing fresh beer to market in the most sustainable way possible. Golden Road Brewing is the maker of Los Angeles’ first canned craft beer, packaged in 16 once cans to deliver an honest pint of the brewery’s flagship Point the Way IPA and Golden Road Hefeweizen. Golden Road currently produces over sixteen beers which include a Custom IPA and limited releases. Golden Road Brewing and The Pub at Golden Road Brewing are located at 5410 W. San Fernando Road, Los Angeles, CA 90039. For more information, please visit

  2. barfdiggs

    barfdiggs Initiate (0) Mar 22, 2011 California

    Wow... did they finally decide they actually wanted to make good beer?
  3. jmerriken

    jmerriken Initiate (0) Jan 15, 2008 California

    I won't "buy" any of this until I try his beer, they have been very boring and middle of the road thus far. Beachwood Brewing blows them and every other LA Brewer out of the water (side note but true). Seems like Golden Riad cares more about being hipster, local, sustainable and profitable than they do about making good beer. They should take notes from Firestone, Stone and Sierra about making profitable, high quality widely distributed beer. I've smelled a rat from the beginning and I'm skeptical. Prove me wrong.
  4. jmerriken

    jmerriken Initiate (0) Jan 15, 2008 California

    I googled Meg Gill and she voted for Point The Way as the #1 LA beer. It's like a band wearing their own T-Shirt, pretentious and lame. This is America and I hope you're brewery is successful, but please don't try to "sell" us on something you're not, make me good beer and I'll have nothing left to say.
    barfdiggs, stillmatic and kotayk like this.
  5. Earlycsquid

    Earlycsquid Zealot (526) Jan 7, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    At best Point the way is the gateway beer in getting PBR hipsters into craft beer. But the whole company seems to have the priorities backwards, or at the very least it's just not an approach that leaves good beer for the well traveled craft beer drinker as well as having the weak stuff for those who need that gateway.

    I doubt it's Jon's fault that the company made and more than likely will continue to make bland beers.
    stillmatic and kotayk like this.
  6. dcgunman

    dcgunman Defender (607) Jul 1, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    Hope we'll see better beers coming out of Golden Road. It seems like the City of Angels loves Golden Road. You see there beers everywhere. The beers now are just mediocre if that.
  7. mjl21

    mjl21 Initiate (0) Apr 3, 2008 California

    The house beers Jesse made at 21A were very good. He did the original Hop Crisis (then a Triple IPA) and a great DIPA (then called Double Trouble).
  8. BdubleEdubleRUN

    BdubleEdubleRUN Initiate (0) Jul 28, 2009 California

    Will this Jesse be canning the berliner?
  9. Retsinis

    Retsinis Champion (848) Sep 25, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    Good news, though I agree, not sure if the blandness of the beers were by design, or Jon 's vision, so this departure, and now Jesse's arrivial may not amount to anything, or it could be a major turning point, time, and the beers will tell the tale. Crossing my fingers though.
  10. kotayk

    kotayk Initiate (0) Feb 22, 2011 California

    ...meanwhile back at the ranch ...Meg is getting dolled up for her Glamour spread...
    Make good beer ...the "fame" will follow.
  11. keaton

    keaton Initiate (62) Jul 25, 2004 California

    Oh please, every brewer or owner wears t-shirts from their own brewery or bar and every politician votes for themself. What's the point of being coy about your product if you're proud of it? Why single her out that she should be? And mocking a magazine spread (good on her if that's true). I've seen quite a bit of onerous sexism regarding Ms. Gill and it's disturbing. On the other hand, who's made fun of Sam Caglione being a model? Only me.
    DrAwkward82 likes this.
  12. jmerriken

    jmerriken Initiate (0) Jan 15, 2008 California

    If Beachwood voted for themselves as the best brewery in LA I wouldn't complain because they would be right. They don't have to try to hype their beers because their beer speaks for itself and they don't give a shit about being the newest coolest bestest brewey i.e. Alesmith. Golden Road on the other hand is trying so hard to be hipster and hyped out but the beer just simply isn't there. Make great beer and I'll have nothing left to say I.e. Stone (Ruination 10th, Enjoy By)
    dcgunman likes this.
  13. Earlycsquid

    Earlycsquid Zealot (526) Jan 7, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    Perhaps they should focus less on their Detox/retox - Jog, Yoda, Beer & Breakfast weekend events and more actual focus on brewing solid beer.
  14. PeterJ

    PeterJ Initiate (69) Dec 5, 2012 California

    Interesting. From brewing Aroma Coma and Drakonic to brewing Point the Way and Schwartz "Stout"
  15. tjensen3618

    tjensen3618 Initiate (0) Mar 23, 2008 California

    I like that they are brewing the exact type of beers they set out to brew, selling a lot of them, and aren't trying to impress a bunch of dorks on BA.
    albertq17 likes this.
  16. sandiego67

    sandiego67 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2008 California

    Kinda like Sam Adams.
  17. grilledsquid

    grilledsquid Devotee (461) Jul 10, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    I respect their business acumen but the beer itself leaves something to be desired. I do hope this new brewer improves the product as I look forward to having a local place where I can get good growler fills. As it is, I have to go to either Stone in Pasadena or Strand in Torrance--I'd like somewhere closer to me.
  18. hophead247

    hophead247 Disciple (370) Jan 27, 2008 California
    Beer Trader

    Jesse more or less 'oversaw' some of the brewing at Drakes. Definitely knows what he's doing though.
  19. robL

    robL Initiate (184) Oct 22, 2010 California

    Part of the problem with Golden Road is that since inception they've put the proverbial cart before the horse. Due to Tony Yannow's involvement, they already had 2 well-known and well-regarded bars guaranteed to pump out as much of their beer as possible. How many new breweries already have established distribution before they ever open? How many new breweries begin packaging almost instantaneously?

    I appreciate Golden Road for what they bring to the craft beer scene in LA, but I'll never choose them over another local craft beer if I have options.
    John11486 likes this.
  20. Earlycsquid

    Earlycsquid Zealot (526) Jan 7, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    Has the whole world gone crazy? Am I the only one around here who gives a shit about the rules? Mark it zero!


    I have no idea what the big lebowski has to do with stouts. other than the ability to use "brah" in the title.
    UnknownKoger and jodan like this.
  21. AptosBeerDrinker

    AptosBeerDrinker Initiate (177) Aug 9, 2011 California

    The Big Le"Brah"ski?!? With no offense to the mentally challenged, that's full blown retard.
    jtmartino likes this.
  22. Bungletronics

    Bungletronics Initiate (141) Jan 5, 2009 California

    I certainly didn't expect to see all the "hate". I've only tried their IPA and think it is pretty good. Maybe that is due to my spending the last 3 years in Texas? I don't know. I certainly don't see anything wrong with what they're doing and why not support another L.A. brewery instead of talking so much shit because they're not boutique enough or whatever the case may be? Fuck man, you guys take beer way too seriously.
    albertq17 and AptosBeerDrinker like this.
  23. kotayk

    kotayk Initiate (0) Feb 22, 2011 California

    ...yes but unlike Meg, Sam makes good beer
    U can get away with a lot of douchbaggery if u make a good product
  24. kotayk

    kotayk Initiate (0) Feb 22, 2011 California

    Has anyone tried ??
  25. vacax

    vacax Initiate (0) Jun 3, 2008 California
    Beer Trader

    Sam Adams actually has really high standards. Not all of the beers are for nerds, but they have quality and integrity.
  26. Earlycsquid

    Earlycsquid Zealot (526) Jan 7, 2013 California
    Beer Trader

    I'm not sure who's control The Big le'Brah'ski was created under, but it was the first Golden Road Brewery beer I enjoyed enough that I could see myself getting a growler of.

    In any case, looks like the new brew master's first order is 'Let's make this shit drinkable'

    I don't know anyone who would ever want a 4-pack opposed to something better.
  27. PeterJ

    PeterJ Initiate (69) Dec 5, 2012 California

    It's about time they do 12oz 12 packs. I told them from day one it should be a 6 pack of 12 oz cans with a SRP around $8-9. The beers are not my favorite to be honest but they're great gateway beers for BMC drinkers.
  28. ficklenicholas

    ficklenicholas Initiate (115) Jul 26, 2011 California
    Beer Trader

    I'm interested in trying the two IPA's again after the recipe changes.
    marcron03 likes this.
  29. tyrsis

    tyrsis Disciple (319) Mar 13, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    Same. If that IPA is turned around, getting a 12 pack of it for 16.99 is pretty good.
  30. StarRaptor

    StarRaptor Initiate (0) Jun 8, 2010 California

    you guys are funny
  31. Patrick

    Patrick Initiate (0) Aug 13, 2007 Massachusetts

    Has anyone tried the new IPA recipe? They have it on tap at Gladstone's in LAX, and I usually eat there before I fly. I'd be interested in trying the new version if it was any good.
  32. OTB

    OTB Disciple (371) Sep 2, 2011 California

    If your coming down to Torrance do yourself a favor and take an additional twenty minutes and head over to downtown Long beach and fill up growlers from Beachwood. Nobody is making better beer than Julian and the team at Beachwood. I'd put their Melrose,Hop Ninja and Laurel IPA/DIPA's up against any other high quality craft brewer's IPA/DIPA's from So Ca. as the best of the best. And the food is amazing too. You'll thank me.

    kotayk and marcron03 like this.
  33. jpeck13

    jpeck13 Initiate (0) Apr 28, 2011 California

    I'm gonna go ahead and call BS on her conversation with Vinnie Cilurzo. Both PtE and Blind Pig have caramel malts in them. Plenty of great IPAs have caramel in them, the key is to just use very little of it.
    Xul likes this.
  34. errantnight

    errantnight Meyvn (1,057) Jul 7, 2005 Iowa
    Beer Trader Subscriber

    Sam Adams is better.
  35. errantnight

    errantnight Meyvn (1,057) Jul 7, 2005 Iowa
    Beer Trader Subscriber


    She sounds like she's paraphrasing. And the lack of a distinctive caramel/crystal malt character IS a defining characteristic of the West Coast style IPA, whether or not the beers actually contain a small portion of those malts are not.

    And it doesn't much matter, regardless. She's there to sell the beer, and they've done a fine job of that even when the beer wasn't as good as it should/could be. The new guy hired to actually make the beer seems to have both the pedigree and the wherewithal to get it right. Color me hopeful.
  36. grrrah

    grrrah Initiate (0) Sep 21, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    If they can make an aroma coma-like IPA year round, they better distribute up to NorCal!
  37. grandmachine

    grandmachine Initiate (88) Mar 11, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Word. I just came back from the brewery and got a 64oz growler of their Berliner.
    BdubleEdubleRUN likes this.
  38. dcgunman

    dcgunman Defender (607) Jul 1, 2009 California
    Beer Trader

    I'll second that OTB. Here's a little nice write up on the best brewery's from east to west. Beachwood BBQ & Brewery is in there too!!
    UnknownKoger likes this.
  39. danscott

    danscott Aspirant (233) Jul 15, 2006 California

    While I am not happy about losing Jesse to Low-Cal, this sounds like a great move for both him and for GR. I expect good things to come from this.
  40. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Poo-Bah (12,078) Mar 18, 2010 California

    Yes, it's hands down the best beer they have ever made.
    quetzal013 likes this.
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