By Marissa Willman
Specialty pizza and craft beer—what more could a girl ask for?
These are the staples of Lamppost Pizza and Backstreet Brewery in La Quinta, which arrived on the desert culinary scene in 2005. The restaurant is half sports bar and half pizza parlor, making it a great location for both a night out at the bar and family pizza night.
My boyfriend and I—both admitted pizza addicts and no strangers to beer—decided to try this restaurant last weekend. Our server, Breanna, was both attentive and knowledgeable. When we asked to see the beer menu, we were expecting a one-page list of what was on tap. Instead, we were brought a full-sized binder with an impressive selection of craft beers. All of the bases were covered, including pale ales, pilsners, stouts, reds and hefeweizens. Even more impressive was that the book included a composition breakdown and nutritional information for each beer.
One thing is for sure—Backstreet Brewery doesn’t mess around when it comes to craft beers.
I chose the Hep Kat pale ale, a feisty ale with citrus notes, while my boyfriend settled on the Rita Red, a surprisingly smooth red ale. We were both extremely satisfied with our choices, though next time I’ll be sure to opt for the beer sampler to taste a few different offerings.
And whether you’re new to the craft beer scene or an experienced brew master, you’ll want to chat with manager Evan Bone—the man knows his beer. He’s been at the La Quinta location since their opening in 2005, having worked at the Vista location prior to his desert move. Bone explained that while the beers were once brewed on-site (you can still see the tanks from the bar), they’re now supplied by the brewery’s sister stores in Vista and Irvine. The selection rotates slightly with the seasons, including an Oktoberfest brew in the fall.
While we could have sat and sampled beers all night, we decided we’d better try some food. We started with the combo platter, which includes a generous sampling of appetizer staples such as hot wings, potato wedges, jalapeno poppers and mozzarella sticks. The menu includes salads and pastas but we were set on trying the restaurant’s namesake pizza. Breanna informed us that their most popular pie is The Whole Nine Yards, a combination pizza, but we couldn’t resist the All-Star Chicken, a creamy blend of fresh avocado, tomato, garlic, mozzarella and grilled chicken. Whoever decided to put avocado on a pizza deserves some recognition because that pizza was simply amazing.
My boyfriend also ordered the meatball sandwich, which was a satisfying sub with fresh-cooked meatballs, a generous serving of marinara sauce and provolone cheese.
All in all, Lamppost Pizza is a great pizza parlor for families to share a few slices and the bar is a must for any craft beer connoisseur. Backstreet Brewery also has plenty of big screens to watch a game over some good grub.
Lamppost Pizza & Backstreet Brewery
78-772 Highway 111, La Quinta