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Library Ale House
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Bar, Eatery ]
2911 Main St
phone: (310) 314-4855
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Reviews by mickeymac:
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4
The Library Alehouse is on the small side, with an outdoor patio in the back. It has an upscale look and feel, with lots of wood and glass and big skylights that make it pretty bright during the day. The place is dominated by tables, with a limited number of spots at the bar. Nobody will mistake it for a dive bar. Nor will anyone mistake it for a comfortable neighborhood spot.
The number of beers on tap is impressive at close to 30, but nothing very exotic seems to make the cut. On a positive note, nothing by the big US breweries is wasting tap space. On a recent trip selections included Mad River Jamaica Red, Arrogant Bastard, Pranqster, SN Pale Ale, Stella Artois, Lagunitas Pils, and Mad River Steelhead Stout. The bottled choices included several Unibroue ales, Chimay, and La Chouffe.
The food menu is varied and the food is better than average for a pub. However, the prices are higher than average for a pub. The menu varies from burgers and sandwiches to salad and pasta and full-blown entrees. You will be dining with real cloth napkins.
All in all, this is a decent place to stop in for a pint or two, but it's nothing spectacular. The fact that this is one of the best beer bars in LA County is a sad commentary on the state of beer culture here.
09-10-2003 03:39:09 |
More by mickeymac
More User Reviews:
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.75 | $$
Visited back in September 2012 on a Sunday evening. The place was pretty packed when I walked in...I wanted a seat at the bar since it was just me, but I had to settle for a spot by the window since all of the seats at the bar were taken (due to the football game in progress at the time), which was OK, allowed me to people watch. The atmosphere was good, given the crowd, although not too loud, but a good vibe. Probably a good place to hang out when the place is not as crowded. By the time that I left, I think that they were actually turning people away. The hostess and wait staff were nice enough, I didn't find the wait staff overly knowledgeable about the beers, but the beers on tap were displayed nicely on a chalk board above the bar. I ordered a Firestone Walker Oaktoberfest; given it was a west coast beer. The beer was served in a proper glass with a proper head on it. I also order the fish and chips, which was nice, nothing outstanding, but good fare. Overall, a good place and one that I will certainly go back to if/when I find myself back in the area.
01-24-2013 17:19:51 |
More by PhillyStyle
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | $$
I visited today with my wife as we were in the area and I have had my eye on this place for a while. Right off the bat we were told we couldn't sit at a table if we weren't going to eat. We said that's fine and we could order some appetizers and beer together. Again, we were told we couldn't sit there unless we ordered a full dinner. The hostess was a bit rude about this, especially since there were a bunch of tables in the back section of the place that were empty. Oh well, we were able to find a section right near the front window to sit and people watch for a bit. I like how this place is going for a library theme with the decorations and the menu (burgers/sandwiches are called "stacks"). Lots of cool empty bottles line the bar area and whatnot. They have around 30 taps at any given time. Right now they had a hop fest theme so I was able to get a bunch of hoppy beers. I had to order all the beer at the bar and service was not that great. The quality off the taps was very good and fresh. Prices were pretty reasonable and they offered tasters and flights which I took advantage of. Overall, this is a good place to check out if you are in the area and want some good beers.
02-20-2012 06:21:26 |
More by UCLABrewN84
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
What a small beer pub should be. Put it a block from the beach and it becomes excellent.
29 taps, nice rotation. Printed list details the usual selections, with a chalkboard above the tap selection to highlight new offerings. For an out-of-towner, they offer a nice mix of local offerings. For a local, they seem to have a good mix of beers I'd want to drink if I lived here.
Menu is extensive for such a small place. Sandwich offerings are very good and apps are really good, with asparagus and seared ahi my favorites.
Staff was knowledgable and pleasant. Outdoor seating in the back, sheltered from the wind.
2 tv's in the bar area if you want to catch a game.
My first choice if I'm back in the area.
09-23-2011 00:46:35 |
More by beer2day
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 2.5 | $$$
I have been here a few times. Not the greatest place but I will keep coming back for the brews!
The parking to this place is a nightmare but so is the parking to every place in this very busy part of Santa Monica.
The service is so so. When waiting to be seated one could expect to be awkardly standing inside for quite some time.
The atmosphere is very loud inside louder than at other establishments. The patio is less crowded and has a backyard feeling...well its a backyard basically!
The food is mediocre for a restaurant with so many options to chose from. I have had the NY strip steak, the jerk chicken, and a few of their burgers. The burgers were kind of ok.
The selection of beer is pretty good, they have many california favorites from stone, Pizza port, Russian River etc. I enjoy their daily specials.
Overall: Its a nice place with good beer and bland food!
09-07-2011 06:05:36 |
More by ChanChan
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I was in Cali for a few days and stayed at the viceroy with a buddy of mine. This place came highly recommended by numerous people on this site. Its a nice little bar located amongst many other retail shops. Nice big windows in the front that let in a lot of light. We actually sat at the front window both times we went b/c it was cool to people watch and enjoy the nice weather. The atmosphere was a bit crowded on a fri night but we still managed to sit down in a few mins. We went back again on sat for lunch and it was much less crowded. I would say the service was ok but not great. We never went without anything but we were never sure who are waitress was while eating and drinking. Great beer selection with a lot of local stuff that I was eager to try. Bear republic cafe 15 was the beer we drank the most, it's a delicious, dank dipa. The food was tasty. We had chips with salsa and guac, fish tacos and burgers on our 2 visits. Great burger for sure. I thought the prices were very reasonable and portions were quite large. I would certainly recommend stopping by if in the area.
06-18-2011 15:27:59 |
More by gibby
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Been to Library Alehouse on a number of occasions, and for the most part had a good time, with one minor gripe that I will get too. They do some beer events, or rare keg tapping now and then. Sometimes publicized, sometime not. Was there once during a Laker playoff game, that was pretty insane. The beers here are good, and they do rotate, and the beer are listed on a chalk board, as well as the menu, which is a plus. They have a nice patio in the back, but I've not yet been able to get a table back there though to fully enjoy it.
My only minor gripe is the place is not well suited, space wise, for what it is. It is a very popular bar, I get it, but even when it's slow, (which is not that often) it feels crowded, (i.e. bumping into people coming and going, even while seated) it's just a too tight of a space for me personally. Maybe one day the Salon next door will go up for sale, they will buy it out, knock down the wall, and expand the place, or maybe one day move to a larger location, as I like the theme, the ambiance, the beers, all of which are put together well, and executed pretty good too, but again, it's just a bit too small for how busy it gets. Being as popular as it is, maybe they can start saving up to do just that, in the mean time though, I'll still enjoy the beers there when I go.
04-22-2011 22:06:31 |
More by Retsinis
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I can't believe I haven't reviewed this yet. This is the place I go to more often than FO now. I know a couple people that work there, but I just like the atmosphere here better. Almost always busy, but in a good way. The quality here is nice. Very clean and in style bar with appropriate décor. The service is always great here - I never have to ask for another beer, the server is always on top of it. The selection is pretty good also. They have their normal staples but they often get some great "special" beers including Jolly Pumpkin's I've never seen on tap around here before, Parabola, Abyss, PtY, Racer X, etc. They essentially get anything special at some point in time. I also really like the food here. Their chicken quesadilla and chicken/steak tacos are legit. In addition, the price is not bad at all. I will continue to come here for years.
02-12-2011 04:29:35 |
More by SpdKilz
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3 | $$
Went yesterday on a pub crawl with friends in Santa Monica. Library alehouse has narrow passage ways in the front of the place and a bunch of tables in the back.
Their Beer menu is quite phenomenal, they have everything from Bitburger to Yella Pils on Tap, Palo Santo Marron on Tap, Unibroue Terrible, Ommegang Belgian IPA as well as a littany of American, German and Belgian craft and import brews. Staff was decent and let you try a small sample of beer before you purchase something. Nice mixed, unpretentious crowd at this place and reasonable pricing makes this place one that I will re-visit. My Only issue is that the glassware they use might be gipping the consumer out of a few ounces of liquid, the glasses they used seemed kinda small
02-06-2011 18:36:55 |
More by keithmurray
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | $$
The library ale house is in the trendy main street area of Santa Monica. I visited here twice during my stay in SoCal.
Both the outside and inside have a neat appearance to them, with exposed beam that only serves the purpose of decoration, as it is not load bearing.
The bar is on the left, and a bunch of tall tables are on the left. The back room has tables.
The beer selection is pretty good, with taps from a handful of local places that I have never seen before. There is also Parrot in a Palm Tree, Pliny the Elder and Blind Pig.
The bartenders are pretty friendly and do know their beer. The manager, Tom, was more than happy to talk beer, and was very friendly. I ran into him the day after my visit and he approached me to say hello and talk for a bit. Very nice.
Overall I got a great vibe from this place. Friendly beer people mixed with the typical Santa Monica vibe.
02-06-2011 02:31:04 |
More by Hojaminbag
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Library Ale House in Santa Monica, CA