Update on Proposed 10 Barrel Brewing Co Location in Downtown San Diego

Proposed 10 Barrel Brewing facility not welcomed by all - 10 news image

Last week news broke that 10 Barrel Brewing Co, a subsidiary of AB-inBev, had submitted an application to the city of San Diego to open a brewpub in the East Village downtown. Several others, and myself included, emailed a written objection to the City Planner for Civic San Diego in regards to this project.

Why should I care? Not too long ago I may not have. But the landscape of craft beer has rapidly changed, thanks to recent craft brewery acquisitions and emerging details of how “big beer” truly does business. Most of those tactics are a discussion for a different day, but in the video below, Mother Earth Brew Co owner, and SD Brewers Guild President Emeritas, Kevin Hopkins offered an interesting perspective on AB-inBev’s motives in this 10 News segment:

When reporter Joe Ditzler from 10 Barrel’s hometown of Bend, OR caught wind of local opposition, he reached out to us for comments. After a brief conversation, I was quoted in his article:

You know, as more time has gone on and big beer has become more intrusive into craft beer, it started to bother me more and more. I’ve grown tired of it, really.

That is true, in a “get-off-my-craft-beer-lawn” reactionary sense. But the real reason I took time out of my day to write an opposition to the AB-inBev backed application was simple:

Why should a multi-national conglomerate have the opportunity to open a brewpub, when the space could easily go to a locally owned, independent brewery in need of a location? San Diego might have 115+ breweries, and I welcome the opportunity for one more talented brewer to take his shot at success. It’s more important than ever to support #IndieBeer, and hopefully more San Diegans make an effort to prop up independent breweries their hometown.

Where Things Stand

As of now, a decision on the 10 Barrel permit has not been reached. Since Civic San Diego received objections to the application, the planners office will open discussion on the matter to a public hearing tentatively set for February 17th.

Correction: The Downtown Community Planning Council will meet on February 17th, a forum that allows public comments. The council will then make a recommendation to Civic San Diego, on how they believe their planning commission should vote on the permit.

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