San Diego Beer Guide: Your San Diego guide to beer, beer bars, breweries and brewpubs

Latest reviews from San Diego

68 /100 4026 30TH ST
“Toronado is officially closed, but this place used to be a legendary landmark for beer in San Diego. Like a codger, I love what it used to be in 2011 - dim, friendly and quiet. But gradually over time it adjusted to the booming popularity of North Park and became extremely cliquey. The first bad decision was to turn the music volume up to 11, making this like all the other bars on the street, and just making it hard to talk to anyone who wasn't directly in my face. After that, it became clear that non-regulars were slowly persona non grata. Every time I went I'd see the same four of five loyal drinkers who had no issues getting the attention of the bartenders. The casual visitors were *regularly* snubbed, ignored and generally treated with apathy at best and causticness at worst. I recall ordering a beer 1 minute before happy hour started one day and when I asked if I could get the discount, I was told "Nah." But the back porch was pretty cool. I didn't go much after they expanded to the next door space but it does seem to have added extra seating at the cost of the familiar Toronado coziness. And I don't care much about the shift to vegan food but I know people groused. I'm glad Toronado was there, and it offered some much needed variety away from the same old San Diego breweries, but it also outgrew its charm. I hope the next iteration is as excellent as Toronado was back in the day.“
GarrettB 85 days ago
74 /100 4542 30TH ST
“Fall Brewery was my first stop in a recent North Park tour. (Take the No.2 bus) It offers an amiable vibe: plenty of space in the front with lots of natural light. You order one of their many great beers from the bar and take a stool by the open window, where you look out onto 30th Street and ponder your next stop. “
Pivoyager 94 days ago
78 /100 1441 L ST
“Located in a massive warehouse (once storing Wonder Bread) in the East Village district, Mission is a wonderful place to quaff some great crafts. Step up to the huge and well-worn bar and try 20 taps. You can get a full pint, a half-pint or a taster of a wide variety of styles: light or dark, hoppy or malty, low abv or high. Great selection that satisfies all. You can check out the brewing tanks on your way to the bathroom. I would definitely call Mission Brewery, a MUST visit. I enjoyed the following: Mission IPA, Citra Session, Shipwrecked IPA (and a Grapefruit Shipwrecked), a yummy porter and their Dark Seas RIS. Your mission, if you choose to accept it...... “
Pivoyager 94 days ago
78 /100 1202 KETTNER BLVD
“There is something about this small store with taps and a few tables I liked. Probably, the in-your-face unpretentiousness that is obvious right off the bat. It is a small place, consisting of a small walk-up bar. There is a cooler stocked with Stone goodies, several shelves of Stone swag and a beautiful courtyard patio, where one can sip a Stone brew beneath a tree. It is located in a non-descript building, which is a few steps north of the San Diego Amtrak station - and a short stroll from Little Italy. “
Pivoyager 94 days ago
76 /100 3665 N HARBOR DR, TERMINAL 2
“A Stone Brewing venue at the airport? Only in San Diego! And not just some cheap knock-up that sells microwaved food with plastic forks; this is the real deal: marble-top bar, comfortable chairs, a decent selection of Stone taps, and a real kitchen serving real hot food. While I would never make a trip to drink at the airport, this makes any layover a worthy event. Great service as well. It is in Terminal Two, past the security checkpoint. “
Pivoyager 94 days ago
82 /100 3000 UPAS ST, STE 102
“Not to be confused with the Point Loma brewery, the North Park Flavordome is a storefront operation that has a hipster vibe; it is of moderate size, there is some upholstered furniture, some communal tables outside, a number of tables and high tops with a rather small L-shaped bar, where you can slake your thirst with 20 taps of MT goodness. They offer three serving sizes and several tasty IPAs. Let me be honest, I really love this brewery. They serve no food, but there is a burger place next door. Look up and check out the lamp shades hanging from the ceiling. Why? Don't know. You can take the No. 2 bus from downtown should you decide on a North Park pub crawl.“
Pivoyager 94 days ago
72 /100 3052 EL CAJON BLVD, STE B
“Located next door to Eppig (which was closed), and across El Cajon Boulevard from Tiger! Tiger!, Pariah has a somewhat hipster dive bar vibe to it; it is small and dark with a small bar and minimal seating - I grabbed a stool along the wall-counter (Is this a thing?). That said, their beers are superb and plentiful, with plenty of taps and several excellent IPAs. Friendly service and some friendly hipsters made for a pleasant visit. You could include this in your North Park Beer Tour as Belching Beaver, Rip Current and Falls Brewery are all in stumbling distance - or jump on Bus No. 2. If you like IPAs, this is the place. Hope to hit their neighbor in a future visit. “
Pivoyager 137 days ago
64 /100 1269 GARNET AVE
“Located several miles north in Pacific Beach, along the bar-choked Garnet Avenue, SD Tap Room is a popular sports bar-pub with an outstanding beer selection. About a half-mile from the beach, it makes for a superb stop during any San Diego Brew Haj, since all the beers are locally brewed. 50 taps available, including goodies from Stone, Modern Times, Green Flash, Alpine, Lost Abby, Alesmith and one of the Pizza Ports. Try to ignore the boisterous sports bar atmosphere and focus on the wonderful selection of crafts. After all, this is why you came.“
Pivoyager 137 days ago
76 /100 3038 UNIVERSTITY AVE
“Located off 30th Street, which itself makes a great crawl, North Park is a recent entry to this scene: it is a large venue with a long bar situated among a sleek and woody interior. Enjoyed several quality brews, such as the Ride the Tiger Double IPA, Burlingame Black Lager and three others, all served as full pours or tasters. Great food and service are a plus. Swanky padded bar stools - really chairs make for a comfortable place to hang out - but there are so many other places to hi“
Pivoyager 137 days ago
74 /100 1157 COLUMBIA ST
“Overwhelmed by choices during my recent San Diego Beer Week sojourn, I did not give much thought to Karl Strauss; however, an exhausting trip to the nearby Maritime Museum, as well as an overwhelming thirst, led me to this downtown venue. Located on a generic block, the building can be spotted immediately identified from the massive leaf drapery that festoons its’ façade. Thus began, my tenth stop of the trip. Entering into the dimly lit interior, which has plenty of wood décor, can be found in any other restaurant in the city, I found a seat at the sparsely populated bar and was greeted by the cheerful and very exuberant 14-year old server (she was young, to say the least, but certainly not a pre-teen). Karl Strauss offers a wide range of brews; during my lunchtime visit, I was proffered with their Red Trolley Ale, Tower 10 IPA, Pintail Ale, and yet-to-be-named amber taken directly from the fermenting tank. While the beers cannot be compared to many of the local hop bombs, the beers here were pleasing and good accompaniment to the big and juicy cheddar burger. A pleasant experience nonetheless: decent beer, hearty chow, a friendly server who was liberal with samplers and another day in America’s favorite beer city. “
Pivoyager 137 days ago
68 /100 4101 30TH ST
“Another stop on my North Park crawl, a strenuous trek requiring plenty of beer. Rip Current is a comfortable tasting room not to far from the Belching Beaver. Nice vibe along with some tasty crafts - I tried a taster then jumped on Bus No 2 to continue my journey. “
Pivoyager 137 days ago
70 /100 3812 GRIM AVE
“This was another segment of a recent North Park crawl. Located a few blocks east of 30th Street (No. 2 bus), this location offers a friendly vibe in an open room. There is a small bar where you order the brews - I chose several tasters, which include a free glass. Excellent beer, decent service and a comfortable atmosphere. But don't linger, since there are many other places to visit, including North Park Brewing, which is around the corner. “
Pivoyager 137 days ago
84 /100 903 ISLAND AVE
“Half Door is a recent entry to San Diego's magnificent beer scene. Located in a regular two-story clapboard house, a few blocks east of the touristy GasLight District, this place is a sheer delight. First, the building itself: an inviting house with a large terrace for outdoor dining and drinking and an upstairs balcony for the same. Inside, there is a well-polished bar amid a woody Victorian décor and bric-a-brac - and, of course, there is an actual half-door. There are about a dozen house beers along with a few guest, such as Monkey's Paw. The beers are very good (I heartily recommend the Coleman Dry Stout). Excellent service and a menu loaded with delicious food (I recommend the sausage mac-n-cheese.) Half-Door should be included in any Gaslight/East Village crawl - it is a few blocks from Mission Brewery, another great venue that I have reviewed recently. Hey, check them both out! UPDATE: Returned for lunch during a November 2019 visit. Still a great place with delicious food - I had the Pork Belly hash, this time. “
Pivoyager 137 days ago
76 /100 4223 30TH ST
“Not to be confused with the actual brewery, this rustic little venue is the North Park location. Any trip to San Diego MUST include a venture to this neighborhood - Take the No. 2 Bus from downtown. Belching Beaver - North Park is perfectly situated between Rip Current's North Park tap house and El Cajon Boulevard, where you'll find Eppig, Pariah, Barn and Tiger! Tiger!, the latter being just around the corner. There is somewhat of a hipster scene: man-buns, tattoos and your general lay-abouts, all of whom are very amiable and just looking for reasonably priced brews. They offer about 30 taps of their own, and boast a goodly range of styles. (Plenty of IPAs, naturally.) There is a regular-sized bar accompanied by the ubiquitous plastic stools. There are several tables, few of which are along the large windows looking out onto bustling 30th Street, where the No. 2 will pass to take you to your next stop. “
Pivoyager 139 days ago
68 /100 3416 ADAMS AVE
“Walking through the front doors and into the rustic dining area, you face a small serving bar, where house beers (and local crafts) are poured for the thirsty patrons who have gathered with families and friends as well as locals and strangers enjoying their brews and bites at rows of communal tables. Incidentally, if you are ever curious as to where to find the noisiest brats in San Diego, then search no further than this particular room. Much like other San Diego’s beer venues, there is no table service, so you will need to go to the aforementioned bar and order the aforementioned brews and bites, the latter including some tasty salami pizza along with some pricey charcuterie: this, a fancy word for sausage and cheese platter. I got a chance to quaff their very decent Equal Rye along with an interesting Humulus Lager from friendly competitor Bruery. The beers here are fresh, well crafted and well poured. Well, one problem here at BLAH was the generally long line that resulted from the one server who seemed to spend more time checking IDs of fat Mexican chicks than pouring beers for us “thirsty patrons.”“
Pivoyager 143 days ago
78 /100 2215 INDIA ST
“While beer is not actually brewed on-site, this is a tasting room-restaurant located in Little Italy: the venue is a large room with plenty of space to eat, drink and schmooze. The large L-shape bar is the center here; above the bar is the currently changing draft listing of delicious (30+) Ballast Point brews. Of the many breweries in San Diego, I consider BP one of the best. There is food available, but no table service (it can be ordered at the bar, however.) Great service, excellent grub and some superlative beer (at decent prices) in a fun atmosphere makes BP a must stop for anyone on a San Diego beercation. I recommend the following beers: Piper Down Scottish Ale, Black Martin Porter, Double Dorado IPA and a wonderful stout that goes by the name of The Commodore. “
Pivoyager 143 days ago
78 /100 2816 HISTORIC DECATUR RD, #116
“Welcome to the Disney World of beer! Located in Point Loma (on the other side of the harbor), Stone Brewing World Bistro is part of the Liberty Station retail complex. It was once a naval base; now, it is a destination all in itself (even without the illustrious Stone presence). Upon entry, you have a decision to make, since this venue is a massive sprawl. Do I sit outside on the patio and enjoy the beautiful San Diego sun? Do I grab a table in the immense dining area? I chose to make my way into the rustic indoor bar area. At the tie of my (lunchtime) visit, they had about 18 Stone crafts on tap. You can never go wrong with Stone. The menu is very eclectic and goes above and beyond the pub grub scene. I tried a hearty dish of yakisoba, a Japanese version of stir fry. Delicious!“
Pivoyager 145 days ago
90 /100 903 ISLAND AVE
“Found this great brewpub on rate beer wandering in the gas lamp quarter. Liked it so much went back for dinner the next day. Staff shirts say “ where the west coast meets the Emerald Isle “. The beers are good to excellent the food is solid the staff are really very engaging. It’s a low key feel, really great place to have a few.“
KPD 192 days ago
66 /100
Rose's Tasting Room (Beer Store)
“Randomly found this place while shopping in Old Town. Small bar area, with a lot of latin decor. The bartender was very friendly and knew his beers. Only 10 taps, but they are all local and interesting. Unfortunately, 5 oz. samples are $4, which is a little hefty. Fun little stop, if you're in the area.“
GTAEgeek 195 days ago
74 /100
Donut Bar (Bar)
“Small bar that happened to be near our hotel. Just a little donut shop, but with an eclectic vibe and a little bar on the side. The servers are friendly and helpful. The beer list is startlingly good. While the donuts are the highlight, the beer is a great addition. Fun spot, and recommended for Friday night munchies or a breakfast beer.“
GTAEgeek 196 days ago
78 /100 1956 BACON ST
“Rather uninspiring exterior, a block or so away from the main street. Inside, though, is a friendly looking surf shack vibe. Picnic tables and bar tables, and nice patio. The bartender was friendly and helpful, and was juggling a busy afternoon pretty well. Great spread of beers, mostly their own, but with some good guest options too. The flight is four 3 oz. pours, which is a little weak, but since I favored higher ABV stuff, it worked out. The pizza looked tasty, but we didn't have any of the food. Great spot in an awesome neighborhood. Worth the visit.“
GTAEgeek 196 days ago
74 /100 3052 EL CAJON BLVD, STE B
“Kinda hard to spot from the road, but they at least have dedicated parking, which is nice. Small, dark taproom, with a lot of purple highlights, which is an odd touch. The wallpapering of random old book pages is entertaining. As to what previous reviewers said, I found no evidence of Eppig here, so they appear to have the taproom to themselves now. The bartender was friendly and helpful, and was enthusiastic about the tap list. IPA heavy list, but some quality stuff on. Quality place, and a fun spot to hang out.“
GTAEgeek 196 days ago
56 /100 3667 INDIA STREET
“Nice restaurant and patio area. Pretty crowded, but that's understandable. The servers are overworked and don't care about the beer list, but again - that's understandable. Six quality local taps, plus some cans and bottles. The food, of course, is fantastic. Best fish tacos I've ever had, easily. Visit this place, not for the beer but for the food. It's nice that I could get a nice IPA to go with it, though.“
GTAEgeek 196 days ago
90 /100 9990 ALESMITH CT
“Huge taproom off the highway in Miramar. Didn't visit it, but the patio looked inviting. Massive bar area, and interesting, modern styling. The anvil and stave is a cozy space in the back, and well worth the visit. The bartenders, both at the main bar and in the back, were friendly and knowledgeable. Fantastic selection of their beers, which is to be expected. All the flagships, plus tons of one-offs, rarities, and seasonals. The barrel aged stuff is not to be missed, either. The prices are not too high, and I appreciated the 1.5 oz. pours in the barrel room, to keep the cost of sampling down and to increase the number I could try in one sitting. Absolute blast of a place to visit.“
GTAEgeek 196 days ago
74 /100 4896 NEWPORT AVE
“Small space that occupies the old Helm's taproom on a corner in Ocean Beach. Service was helpful and seemed knowledgeable enough but probably only worked for them because of the whole weed aspect. Selection was varied and all the beers were decent enough. Worth a stop if you're making the rounds in the area, considering there are like 4 other breweries within walking distance.“
jbruner 240 days ago
80 /100 1956 BACON ST
“Old school surf shack vibe with beer hall style long tables inside and a little bit of exterior patio seating. I suggest sitting at the bar or the patio seating because the picnic table area starts to feel like a Chuck-E-Cheese with all the kids running around after a while, and carpet in a restaurant is kind of gross. Service is counter style help yourself, but the bartender knew his stiff and was solid. Selection was impressive, like 30 taps that were all very solid picks, with at least two thirds their own beer. Pizza was great, well done and tasty, definitely worth a stop as it is an OG for San Diego.“
jbruner 241 days ago
84 /100 1985 NATIONAL AVE, STE. 1115
“A large open brewery and pub located in a new development in Barrio Logan. The brew tanks have names like Plato and Socrates, even Uncle Bob. I really enjoyed the beers, very well made, particularly everything that was not hazy. I did not try any food but it looked good. Plenty of lucha libre vibe going on too.“
BeerandBlues2 278 days ago
82 /100 2865 5TH AVE
“A new spot in a busy area of San Diego, full of hipsters. The service took a while but was friendly and helpful when available. Seating was ample but challenging at times as the place filled. Only snack options for food.“
BeerandBlues2 281 days ago
“A quaint garage space full of barrelled beer sitting on various fruits awaiting its turn at the tap and/or bottle. There is ample seating for a quiet, reflective session of sour ales. Wonderful service from the owner.“
BeerandBlues2 281 days ago
84 /100 711 UNIVERSITY AVE
“13-OCT-2019, visited with the family. Fine Whole Foods with lots of 4-, and 6-packs. Not that many single bottles unfortunately. But hey, I love Whole Foods and this has a fine selection.“
jesperhammer 293 days ago
66 /100 8920 KENAMAR DR, STE #210
“Visited 16-OCT-2019. Had just one beer, an IPA, that was fine. Nice, modern room. Bar tender was very occupied with pouring a few flights. Very slow... They have a few dishes now but did not try the food. Worth a visit for its interior. Nicely decorated with ducks :-)“
jesperhammer 293 days ago
78 /100 903 ISLAND AVE
“2 story house near the baseball stadium in SD. Not as many taps as other places I visited, but it had a local feel like I found a hidden gem. Beers and food were good.“
coachd 332 days ago
90 /100 6550 MIRA MESA BLVD
“Huge place, two different places to drink beer: One outside with a food truck, one inside in the production area. Great selection of green flash and Alpine brews. Good merch section. Good value.“
coachd 332 days ago
92 /100 3725 GREENWOOD ST
“One of my favorite breweries of all time. Selection is huge, constantly rotating and unique, covering all styles. Their great coffee is a plus. You must visit this place.“
coachd 332 days ago
8 /100
Palm City Liquor (Beer Store)
“Louie is a not a good person do not shop here ever“
MaltoseGuide31 335 days ago
64 /100 411 C ST.
“Interesting space, as it shares with the Local, a kind of party bar downtown in San Diego. Service was prompt but pretty useless when it came to beer suggestions or knowledge. Selection was decent, varied styles and all beers were average at least. Not a bad stop, but not a must hit, middle of the road for San Diego for me.“
jbruner 338 days ago
84 /100 2817 DICKENS ST
“Wow, what a location; right on the waterfront near the Point Loma seafood market with loads of outdoor seating along the dock. Service was great, friendly, prompt, and knowledgeable, handled the weekend crowd very well. Selection was impressive, all the styles you could want and all were good to above average. Definitely worth a stop if you are in Point Loma.“
jbruner 340 days ago
86 /100 1441 L ST
“Big bar in a big ol’ building. No parking. Quite a few taps. My server was over the top on suggestions and analysis. Assumed I was a beer novice. Well, that’s good odds when a stranger walks in. Had some good conversation. Got a taste of the latest keg. Good times.“
bhensonb 362 days ago
80 /100 1985 NATIONAL AVE #1132
“Concrete and quartz bar. Intriguing. Pretty big tap list with a lot of rotating and small batch taps. Service was quick and understanding of my ticking delays. Flights of 4 at $2 each - a buck more for BA. Good location. Just a hop over the bridge to Coronado North Island.“
bhensonb 363 days ago
88 /100 2215 INDIA ST
“It’s huge - not Stone huge, but huge. About 50 taps. One is cask. Some rare BA ales. Food was good. Services was rapid and “crisp”. I closed out and the busy servitor came back 3 or 4 times to see how I liked it, to offer water, ... Large crowd and I still got lots of attention. Merchandise room is a hoot. Many beers to go too.“
bhensonb 363 days ago
78 /100
Bottlecraft (Beer Store)
“I’ll go with what McBerko wrote!“
bhensonb 363 days ago
92 /100 1956 BACON ST
“Quite large place in teh walking distance of Ocean BEach, soem seating outised as well, inside communal tables. Pretty fine selection on tap, flight available (small pours 1-2$). Pizza is also very tasty. Fine vibe, not crowded. Cool staff. A great, relaxed, beachy place. Loved it.“
MarkoNm 365 days ago