BREWERY GUIDES

Our comprehensive, community-specific guides are designed to help locals and visitors alike find the brewery, brewpub or tasting-room experience that’s suited to their tastes and the type of experience they are searching for.

  • Belgian Ale

    Local Belgian Ale Guide

    About 15 years ago, there was a Belgian beer renaissance raging across the United States. Even in hop-happy San Diego County, most breweries experimented with abbey ales, witbiers and even barrel-aged or wild ales brewed in the Belgian tradition. But as I’m reminded each year when asking local ale-and-lager fans…

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  • La Mesa

    La Mesa & College Area Brewery Guide

    It wasn’t until the local brewery boom of the mid-2010s that the East County municipality of La Mesa finally saw fit to loosen its regulations pertaining to alcohol production, making it legal to manufacture beer within the city limits. While that move did not signal widespread brewery construction, it resulted…

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  • Escondido Brewery Guide

    The inland North County city of Escondido has been a major destination for craft beer since the county’s largest producer, Stone Brewing, established its base of operations there in 2006. While that illustrious locale remains a must-visit, a host of smaller operations await beer tourists venturing to the area. From…

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  • East County

    El Cajon, Lakeside & Alpine Brewery Guide

    With miles and miles of beaches, it’s easy to think of San Diego exclusively as a coastal city, but its vibrant culture spans many miles east of the Pacific. That includes the famous San Diego beer culture, which has solid inland roots. For nearly a quarter-century, beer fans have been…

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  • Hillcrest Sign

    Uptown & Old Town Brewery Guide

    As any San Diegan will attest, the network of eclectic communities in the city’s Uptown area have always had a lot to offer, especially in the way of lively hospitality venues. Despite that, almost none of them were home to spots operated by local brewing companies until a few years…

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  • Little Italy Sign

    Little Italy Brewery Guide

    With eateries packing its walkable streets, downtown San Diego’s Little Italy is a destination for local and out-of-town epicures. From pasta to osso bucco, negronis and vino Italiano, it’s easy to get an authentic taste of the nation for which neighborhood is named. And thanks to a handful of brewery…

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  • North San Marcos Brewery Guide

    Just north of the Hops Highway (State Route 78) is a murderer’s row of award-winning and otherwise outstanding breweries producing all manner of ale and lager. These local businesses are sources of community pride for San Marcos denizens, beacon-like destinations for beer tourists, solid options for students at nearby Palomar…

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  • South San Marcos Brewery Guide

    San Diego’s expansive North County boasts a wealth of high-quality craft breweries. While it’s easy to gravitate to coastal communities or suds-saturated Vista with its whopping 25 brewing interests, beer tourists would do well to chart a course for San Marcos. This fast-growing community is home to some of the…

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  • Bay Park

    Bay Park, Morena & Bay Ho Brewery Guide

    Where a pair of interstates and several coastal thoroughfares converge you’ll find the Morena neighborhood. Small in size yet packed with restaurants, retail and industrial businesses, it’s home to a pair of local beer spots. One is over 30 years old and considered sacred ground by homebrewers and beer enthusiasts…

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  • San Diego Bayfront

    Downtown San Diego Brewery Guide

    Tracing the history of San Diego’s craft-brewing industry will lead one downtown, where a number of fledgling operations—Karl Strauss Brewing, Hang Ten Brewing, Cerveceria La Cruda, Baja Brewing—sought to bring handcrafted beer with heart to locals and tourists alike. It’s proven a challenging area, with just one of the aforementioned…

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