South Park Brewing Company – San Diego, CA
Tours Offered: No
Food Service: Full service restaurant
Kids & Pets: Kid friendly, dogs on outside patio only
A Brief History
Located on the acclaimed San Diego boulevard of beers, 30th Street, South Park Brewing Company was established in 2014, and opened its doors for business in the spring of 2015.
SPBC is owned by local beer legend Scot Blair, the proprietor of lauded San Diego craft-centric venues including Hamilton’s Tavern, Small Bar, and Monkey Paw Brewing Company. As a matter of fact, Blair’s newest venture is right nextdoor to Hamilton’s. Literally, his two brew operations are connected by a common wall between the two locations.
What sets South Park Brewing Company apart in our crowded San Diego craft beer scene, is they pair their in-house brews with fresh seafood fare. Their motto is “Honest fish, thoughtfully crafted beer” which is a spot-on description of this quaint brewpub.
South Park Brewing Company’s fresh fish and seafood is provided by locally operated Catalina Offshore Products. Cosimo Sorrentino pulls double duty as brewmaster of South Park Brewing Company, in addition to his current (same) position at Monkey Paw downtown.
They haven’t even been open a year, and Cosimo already has South Park Brewing Company turned into an award winning brewery. These are recent awards from California beer competitions:
- Bronze – 2015 SDIBF: Scripps Pier Stout
- Bronze – 2015 LAIBC: 2 Griffs Pale Ale
- Silver – 2015 LAIBC: Scripps Pier Stout
South Park Brewing Company beer is not distributed, and only available on tap at the brewery, or to go in 32oz growlers.
More Pictures from South Park Brewing Company
Our Visit to South Park Brewing Company
South Park Brewing Company delivered tasty beer, flavorful food, and excellent customer service. Definitely a “come for the beer, AND stay for the food” brewpub!
With a long cafeteria style table running the length of the building, and the bar spanning the width, there was plenty of room to accommodate a crowd. Whether you started with food or beer, you could conveniently open a tab at either of the counters (food or beer) that were opposite each other.
The beertender working that day provided some of the best hospitality we’ve ever experienced at a San Diego craft brewery. She was super-friendly, and went out of her way to provide top-notch service. Thanks again, Lauren!
South Park Brewing Company’s impressive draft list was comprised of their own 4 creations, along with fellow San Diego breweries, and other select craft beer from around the country. They brew on a 5 barrel system, and their production capabilities are maxed out.
Depending on your point of view, that might be a good problem for a brewery to have, but it does present a challenge in what core beers are on rotation. Unfortunately for us, their whole line-up of IPAs (IPA, Goldline, and Finest City) were in the tanks, not flowing from the taps. But the list of SPBC brews we were able to try that day were so delicious, they only left us wanting more.
As for the food, South Park Brewing Company featured an overwhelmingly creative seafood based menu including soup, ceviche, small bites, a piled sushi roll called a “stack”, and sandwiches. Their most notable offering was the “Pick Your Fish” 3 step process, which we regret passing on. From the fresh case, you chose your fish, followed by seasoning, then how you wanted it served — tacos, sandwich, salad, or bowl. With 6 flavors served 4 ways, that’s 24 possible combinations for having your fish prepared!
To start we ordered some Clam Dip, which was served warm with toasted french bread slices for scoops. Since we are both suckers for grilled cheese/hot sandwiches we split the Hammies Garlic Shrimp & Bacon Grilled Cheese, and a Spicy Lobster, Avocado & Gruyere Sandwich. We loved every bite, and Boston’s own lobster rolls have nothing on SPBC’s lobster sandwich.
Needless to say, the next time we’re in the mood for some fresh fish or seafood, we won’t hesitate coming back to South Park Brewing Company. Their beer alone was worth the trip, and we still have to try those missing IPAs, the build your own fish entree, and one of those stacks…
Exclusives on Tap
South Park Brewing Company had a very appealing guest tap list as well, but we only wanted to sample the in-house South Park brews:
- Saison: 3.5/5
It was lighter bodied for a saison, with a glowing, bright iridescent yellow tone. A quick flash of funky farm up front, followed by its dry hopped finish, which tasted like Citra hops.
- Lime In Da Coconut: 4/5
A mild sour ale, with quite a bit of fresh lime juice coming through. It was nice and citrusy, but not too puckery and overbearing. So refreshing, and it bodes well in our warmer San Diego climate.
- 2 Griffs Pale Ale: 3.5/5
An easy drinking pale ale with low bitterness, similar to an extra pale ale, or ESB. It paired great with our seafood sandwiches, and we would highly recommend you do the same.
- Scripps Pier Oyster Stout: 4/5
We could see why this ale is a multiple award winner! Our first time drinking an Oyster Stout, which was brewed with actual salt water. A light bodied stout with dark roasty notes, with the zing of salt in the finish.