I was driving through the area, stuck in some awful rush hour traffic, and decided to take a detour to this brewery. It was a bit early for drinking, so there weren't many people at the bar. The bartender (Jen) was really friendly, and happily offered me the sampler when I wasn't sure what I wanted.
I tried the following:
Motorman - No strong flavors, but solid overall
South Bay IPA - Seemed a bit citrusy at first, not a big hop flavor. I liked it.
Big Red - A fairly standard Red Ale. No complaints.
South Loop Porter - I normally hate porters, but this was remarkably drinkable.
Black Bru - This was the seasonal, which seemed like an odd choice because it's a dark beer being served in the summer. I would probably have liked better it in the winter months, though.
Lovely bougainvillea drapes down from the tejas tile roof to shade the outdoor patio that is on one side of the mission-style building, adjacent to the parking lot. Inside the smaller right hand side of the space is the bar area and on the left, dining seating. Two of the exterior walls of each area are brick, while the remaining, and interior walls are painted yellow. Floors are stained painted concrete. The high ceiling is unfinished with exposed wooden joists and rafters.
The bar section hosts a long stone-topped bar with tall padded wrought iron chairs and a bar “back” consisting of fermentation vessels with several windows behind. A half high partition with a similar stone-topped counter separates this space from the dining area and also hosts several more bar chairs. Beyond the far end of the bar are the wood-clad mash tun and brew kettle.
In the dining section, rather standard tables with black wooden padded chairs fill the space. There are several framed black and white historical photographs hanging on the walls.
There are four or five house-made beers on tap, in a fairly typical (if a bit smaller than usual) brewpub lineup. The IPA we tried, however, was not particularly memorable.
The food is standard, but upscale, pub food (burgers, salads, etc.). What we tried was good.
This brewery is in an older brick building that looks like it's been renovated, brick walls, marble bar with redwood covered fermenters right behind the bar. Has some tv's but none of the big flat screens I could see. Electra Light is gold in color and has little malt aroma or any aroma at all. Has a slight toasty malt flavor and is crisp and clean with a good malty flavor. Somewhat of a sweet finish, a good session beer. Winsome Wheat is cloudy with lite malt aroma. It has moderate hop bitterness to balance the malt flavor, Medium mouthfeel and a slightly dry finish with some slight lingering hop astringency. A good session beer. Motorman Reserve has some crystal malt aroma with maybe a slight hint of chocolate malt. Sweet malt flavor dominates low hops and somewhat dry finish. Ipa has somewhat low hop aroma and gold color, sweet malt flavor followed by moderate hop flavor. 9 percent ABV is hiden by the malt sweetness. It does have some moderate hop flavor but is more of a Pale Ale than an IPA. South Loop Porter has some chocolate malt it has a slight sweetness and low hops and is a good beer but more like an English porter. Not a bad beer but not a robust porter, 7 percent abv. I did not try the food. This is a cool Brewery with its history and worth a stop!
Red Car Brewery makes reference to the Pacific Electric Railway streetcar which once ran into the city from Los Angeles. The location sits on the edge of Downtown Torrance close to the line's original location, and is devoted, nearly obsessively, to the city's former streetcar history.
The place is fairly small, with a medium-sized bar in the back. Fermentation tanks and other equipment sit right behind the bar, with a chalkboard, indicating what's on tap, next to all of it. Higher ceilings and a concrete floor make the place a little noisier than it has to be. There are TVs on both sides of the bar with sports playing. One side features a big banner bragging of their win for "Best Brewpub 2007," which is from myfoxla.com.
When I visited, there were five beers on tap. The menu indicated that there were three more that were, apparently, not available at that time. The five were the IPA, the porter, the light lager, the ESB and a pumpkin ale.
The IPA was over-carbonated (as were most of them) and lacked the smooth flavor I like in IPAs. It was all hops and seemed to be trying for the higher ABV, which was set over 9. The porter was thin and, although the color was nice, it was too light for me. The light lager had a nice taste but, again, was over-carbonated. The ESB lacked any body and was too weak for my tastes. There was also no bitterness, which left it tasting more like an amber. The pumpkin was the surprise. I don't normally like these flavored beers, but this had a very nice taste with only a hint of pumpkin flavor.