It’s one of the few breweries located in the city centre of San Diego. We have come here since 2006 almost every year. Karl Strauss is one of the pioneers in the SD beer scene. We like the Red Trolley ale they sometimes have it even on cask. Thursday is cask night. Food is very good too and during summer we like to sit in the small beer garden. Overall one of our favorite places in SD.
This is where it all started for me. Around 1990 domestic beer was just beginning to come out of the dark ages. This place was an oasis. They always had an excellent selection on hand listed from the light in color beer to the dark. The food was pretty good. At this time it was really happening. Some nights it was tough to fight through the crowd and get a beer. The people that worked there were great and more than happy to talk about beer. I loved the $1 beers on Tue nights. It doesn’t look like they do that anymore. Sometime when I’m back in town I need to go back and re-rate it. This place rates high for what it gave us back then.
An old building in the heart of downtown, with lots of wood, a big bar, and plenty of seating. Service was great, helpful, knowledgeable, and very present. Great selection, including most of the GABF medal winners, and some different experiments too. The beerfather of San Diego, the OG.
My favorite of all the Karls. I’ve been coming here since 1990. There is always an interesting seasonal specialty beer or two pouring. Food is always good or excellent. Unlike many places around the Convention Center Area, they treat tourists with respect. Hardcore baseball-watching group on the bar-TV’s is always a plus for me.
Stopped in for a few drinks after spending all day at the zoo. Service was great. Asked the bartender if they had any of their 20 yr aniversary ale on tap to sample. They didn’t but he opened a bottle for us and everyone at the bar to try. Was good for a wine/grape-flavored brew. The Oktoberfest was very drinkable as is the Red Trolley Ale. Only had an appetizer (garlic fries, which were good) so I can’t comment too much on the food. Definitely worth checking out.
I went here both nights that we were in downtown San Diego. The lure of Coronado wasn’t strong enough to pull me away. The food is great, the service is amazing, and the beer is very good. The only things that I can ding this on are that it can be a little loud inside and the selection is limited to their brews - not a bad thing, but it is hard to justify a high "Selection" score. There is no mention of their "Belgian Trippel" here... a shame... this is an amazing brew. Not a typical trippel, but truly a wonder.
Hit it during happy hour on a Wednesday. Very helpful staff. The beers tend towards sweet rather than bitter, but that’s Herr Strauss’ German background. The Santa Fe Beef Quesadilla was quite good. Nine beers on tap.