Tasting notes, fast facts, and expert reviews on every brewery in the San Diego region
By Bruce Glassman
This is the most controversial brewery ever to open in San Diego. Why? Because it’s not independently owned by San Diegans; it’s owned by AB InBev (Anheuser-Busch). Of course, there’s nothing inherently wrong with being owned by a large corporation, but the arrival of 10 Barrel caused many local independent brewers to protest what they saw as an appropriation of the “San Diego Craft Brand” by outsiders who were not a true part of the San Diego craft community. Does this matter? Only if you’re a consumer who feels strongly about supporting local and independent brewing concerns.
Regardless of who owns it, the huge 10 Barrel location is spacious, inviting, and beautifully designed. All in all, the tasting room and brewhouse occupy about 9,000 square feet, broken into a cavernous downstairs and a sunny, open-air upstairs bi-level patio that overlooks the developing Maker’s Quarter neighborhood below.
An ambitious variety of more than 20 beers are on tap, including numerous offbeat styles and hybrids (some of the beers are brought down in kegs from 10 Barrel in Bend, Oregon). The lighter beers and hoppy selections were, for the most part, unremarkable (Joe IPA was the standout), but the “Wild Card” creations, such as the quad-like King at War Stock Ale and Clodhopper Harvest Ale (a nicely balanced ESB-style hopped with local Star B Ranch hops) were memorable for their impressive flavors.
San Diego is all about great beer—and there’s an awful lot of it! We currently have more than 120 working brewery locations in our county, with an estimated 30-40 more in the planning stages. That’s a lot of breweries to sort through. So where to begin? Well, the answer is right here. If you want to plan any kind of brewery experience, The San Diego Brewery Guide is your most essential tool. Not only does it list the location and key information about every working brew house that’s open to the public, it also allows you to search for breweries that meet your specific criteria. Do you only want breweries in a specific neighborhood? No problem. Only want places that have patios for dogs? You got it. Do you want to keep your search limited to small or medium-sized breweries? Yup, we got that.
With so many breweries to choose from, we hope you’ll keep coming back to consult The San Diego Brewery Guide on a regular basis. Our ultimate goal is to make it easy for you to plan the perfect day or weekend of brewery tours and tastings in San Diego—and to do it time and time again. If you haven’t already, you’ll see that there’s nothing better than enjoying a great brewery-fresh beer right where it’s made.
So get out there and explore! Sip. Savor. Socialize. And get ready to be awed by some of the best brews to be found anywhere on the planet. Enjoy!
- Bruce GlassmanEdit ModuleShow Tags