I’m not sure if I’m more surprised about the San Diego beer we tasted or the fact my liver hasn’t given out on me yet- seriously, just take a look at my untappd and I’m sure you’ll be wondering the same thing!
We flew in to San Diego this past Sunday and spent the last three days wandering around the city and hitting up some over-the-top killer spots. We ended up staying in Sorrento Valley, which is situated 25 minutes north of the city, and thankfully rented a car for the long weekend (we do weekends on weekdays, don’t judge us). I mean, if you’re planning to stay downtown I’m sure you could get away with walking/ubering, but as we discovered, a lot of the breweries aren’t THAT close to each other.
Before even checking in at the hotel we stopped at two breweries downtown to decompress from the plane and catch the Sounders game (and they won!!!!). Our first stop was a place called Knotty Barrel Gastropub in East Village that offered Knotty Brewing beer, local taps and a ton of bottled beer- oh, and some damn tasty food as well. Being a football Sunday, this place wasn’t completely packed but it had such a great vibe with tons of t.v’s, great food menu and all the local beers to kick off our trip. Every encounter we had with the staff was killer with hospitality and we even got a few recommendations about local spots!
Our next spot, per suggestion, was Monkey Paw Brewing & Pub which is just a 12 minute walk from Knotty Barrel. Again this brewery offered a crazy amount of beers on tap that were a mix of their own plus local California beers; we were in the mood for flights (hello, vacation!) so we were limited to their own brews. For a brewery off the beaten path or not well-known to us Seattleites, they had a pretty extensive variety from wet hopped pale ales, browns, stouts and a smoked ale. The bartender again was amazing and gave us even more suggestions. Seriously, what’s with the beer industry being so damn beautifully great?
Our last stop of our first day was Ballast Point Brewing in Miramar, their headquarters near Sorrento Valley. Yeah, yeah- we know they sold out but who doesn’t want to see what one billion dollars looks like? This brewery was like a compound and was HUGE. I’ve had Ballast Point before, like a lot of you have, but still found some tasty beers! Buying their beers here in Washington definitely costs a pretty penny; so seeing that they cost the same in California was a little bit of relief and also a WTF moment. Yeah, your beer is tasty but this chick can’t afford $8 for 8oz of brew. Still, their bOOb Check Ale was a delicious fruit beer with hibiscus, honey, lime & cherry- worth it! Overall, I’m super pumped we checked this area out and got to see what Ballast Point is all about!
I think we had set this crazy goal to hit up ten breweries that night. Well. We made it to three. And it totally kicked our asses in the best way possible! We ended our night with some Pizza Port Brewing (we’ll get there eventually) and some Chinese takeout from this hole in the wall that ended up being absolutely tasty!
Stay tuned for the next two days of our adventures in SD!