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San Diego Beer News

Tasting Room Trend

Aug 6
via @amped_alex

via @amped_alex

More and more San Diego breweries are planning, or have already completed, satellite tasting room operations that don’t have a brewery component. Currently, under state law, brewers can receive an unlimited number of duplicate licenses to open these spots, but Assembly Bill 2010 may soon limit that number to six.

Stone led the charge, opening the first Stone Company Store in South Park in June of 2011. They have since created outposts on Kettner Boulevard by the train station, right outside Petco Park, in Oceanside, and in Pasadena.

Modern Times Beer was invited to build their “Flavordome” inside the burgeoning North Parker on 30th Street, and they held a soft opening in May of this year.

8/10 mile directly north, San Marcos-based Rip Current is planning to build out a tasting room/restaurant combination right across the street from Ritual Tavern, with a prospective fall opening. 2/10 mile north of there, Belching Beaver swung up their garage door-style windows for the first time in April of 2013.

AleSmith’s space is TBD, while Port Brewing is closing in on a date for the unveiling of their Cardiff digs. Fellow North County brewery Iron Fist just signed a deal in Barrio Logan (close to the space of Border X Brewing’s satellite operation). Also south of downtown, Coronado’s new restaurant is soon coming to Imperial Beach.

The next to set up shop will be Santee-based Manzanita Brewing Company, who are hoping to open their Pacific Beach operation just north of Bare Back Grill in early September, just in time for the release of their pumpkin beer. There, they’ll have 23 taps and two beer engines.

This post was updated to include a few more businesses-in-planning. Know of other San Diego breweries planning satellite tasting rooms? E-mail me at 

Fire Burns Wet ‘N Reckless Brewing

Jul 28

Dave Hyndman via Wet ‘N Reckless Facebook page

A two-alarm fire at Wet ‘N Reckless Brewery in Mira Mesa caused significant damage last night.

According to media reports, a welding touch being used to complete repairs started the fire as owner Dave Hyndman left the facility briefly.

60 firefighters spent 40 minutes extinguishing the blaze. It is unknown if or when Hyndman will rebuild and reopen.

On This Day In 1996…

Jul 26

18 years ago, on July 26, 1996, Stone Brewing Co. sold the first keg of Stone Pale Ale to Vince Marsaglia of Pizza Port fame.

Beer legends Gina Marsaglia, Greg Koch, Vince Marsaglia, and Steve Wagner. Photo by Marc Figueroa

Beer legends Gina Marsaglia, Greg Koch, Vince Marsaglia, and Steve Wagner in 2014. Photo by Marc Figueroa

This is a big deal, as there were few craft breweries in San Diego at the time, and this showed two local companies supporting each other.

Three years ago, Stone co-founders Greg Koch and Steve Wagner gave Vince Marsaglia a call to commemorate the fifteen-year anniversary of the sale, and uploaded the resulting video to YouTube.

In 2006, Stone decided to move operations to their current location in Escondido. And who ending up taking their place in San Marcos? Port Brewing/The Lost Abbey, a brewery project by none other than Vince Marsaglia and his sister Gina.

Stone has also been in the news recently for other reasons; as you have probably already heard, one week ago today the brewery announced that they are pursuing a brewery project in Berlin, Germany that they hope will be open in late 2015 or early 2016. Peter Rowe from the UT went more in-depth on the $25M project, which is being pushed forward with an indiegogo campaign. Stone is also looking to build a brewing facility “East of the Mississippi” — details for which are still under wraps.

Team Karl Cleans Up PB

Jul 25

Last weekend, Karl Strauss showed its commitment to community and environment with their fourth annual beach clean-up in partnership with the Surfrider Foundation. 144 team members—from brewers to HR to sales—arrived at Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach early in the morning to begin cleaning up the beach and surrounding inland area.

“We are a local company operating in a beach city so it’s important for us to give back and do what we can to keep our oceans clean,” says Matt Rattner, President, Karl Strauss Brewing Company. “It was incredible to see so many team members volunteering to help out in such a meaningful way.”

Team Karl in PB

Team Karl in PB

Surfrider Foundation San Diego Chapter Manager, Haley Jain Haggerstone, was onsite to brief staff and reiterate Surfrider’s goal to protect and preserve the world’s oceans, waves, and beaches. “I was thrilled to organize a beach cleanup for the Karl Strauss team.  Karl Strauss has been a big supporter of ours for years through the Beach to Brewery fundraiser, hosting our quarterly chapter meetings, and donating beer for our events. They collected an impressive amount of trash and helped make a big impact,” says Haggerstone.

Overall, the clean-up was a huge success with 278 pounds of trash (plus 53 pounds of recyclable materials, 3,755 cigarette butts, 1,017 miscellaneous plastics, 633 plastic food wrappers, 330 plastic bottle caps, and 281 plastic lids and straws) taken from the coast. Employees picked up more than 3,750 cigarette butts and 2,000 pieces of plastic—reiterating the importance of Surfrider’s “Hold On To Your Butt” and “Rise Above Plastics” campaigns.

Herringbone Local Ales & Acoustics Night

Jul 24

HERR_LocalAlesAcoustics_WebGraphic_0726Once a month, La Jolla’s Herringbone restaurant is partnering with local breweries and musicians.

This Saturday, North Park’s Thorn St. is the featured brewery, while musicians Andy Mauser and the Kris Bradley Duo are set to play.

Past brewery collaborators have included Modern Times Beer and Acoustic Ales (fitting, right?)

See the photo at right for more information on food specials, location, and times.