Sunday, July 8, 2012

Road Trip Day 10: San Diego, CA

View from the pier at breakfast
Today was our day to explore the city a little bit and get into the beer scene. We started off with breakfast at Mitch' Seafood on the pier, which was great because the sun was warm with a cool breeze, we could eat outside and watch the sea lion (or harbor seal?) swim around amongst the boats, and see the birds hunt for their breakfast. It was peaceful and a great way to start the day.

From there, we walked back to the hotel where our car was and headed to the north side of the city. We had a few stops planned, but figured that we would ask around as we went. Jen was excited because we were driving by Miramar again, which is pretty cool. Sometimes you can see the pilots practicing and the sound of the jets as they pass is crazy!

We started at Ballast Point Brewery. They had way more on tap than we were expecting, but lots of great beers. It was a simple tap room, with a good size bar and servers who knew their beer. They also had brewery tours for the "beer bus" people. We then went to AleSmith, which is a newer brewery. They had a smaller taproom, but it had a more sophisticated feel. We tried a few beers there, said hello to the beautiful huskies that were enjoying the afternoon with their owners and moved on.

Rough Draft Brewery
Inside Rough Draft Brewery
The next stop was Rough Draft. This place was a little tricky to find because it's located in a office building/warehouse type of area (as many of the breweries here are), and only has a small storefront. Inside however, it's fairly large. They have only been open for a few months, but seem to be doing well and are looking forward to bottling and distributing soon. The beer was solid and the place started to pick-up as we were leaving. We then headed to Hess Brewing, which was tiny and literally had a garage door as a door. It was like a storage space that they opened up each day and served beer from. There were a lot of people there and like many of the breweries, they had a food truck outside for people to snack from. The brewer was the server and they only had 5 beers, but it looks like they have a dream and they are going for it full force. Great place to check out.

Hess Brewery
Green Flash Brewery
Next stop was Green Flashing Brewing, which is a larger brewery that distributes across the country. They just moved into a new, large warehouse space, where you can see their entire production line while drinking your beer. Like Ballast Point, they had too many on tap to try them all, but we did what we could:) Great place and more friendly people.

The last stop was Wet n' Reckless Brewing, another brand new, brewer run place. It had the same style atmosphere as Hess, but a few more beers to try. There were a lot of beer fanatics there checking this place out...and it was worth the stop! We also met some people who are going to the Stone Sour Beer Fest, which is the reason we drove all the way down to San Diego. So we chatted a few people up and then decided to head back to the hotel and relax a little bit...we'd had A LOT of beer and needing something to eat.

San Diego at Sunset
On the way back, we decided to stop at In-n-Out Burger. Jen had been looking forward to this since before we even left, so this was the chance....Double-Double animal style with animal style fries and a drink. YUM! Makes you feel a little gross later...but good at the time! After refreshing and eating, we headed to the lounge at our hotel, grabbed a couple drinks, talked to some new people, and then took a walk down by the bay. It was a beautiful night and we needed to walk off some of the booze. Lots of people were out and about as well, waiting for the sun to set. On the way back to the hotel, we stopped back by Mitch's and grabbed some fish tacos, which were awesome! I'm not a huge fish/seafood person, but these were great. When in Rome...

All in all, a very productive day and I like San Diego even more now! Check it out sometime...great place.

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