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Beer lovers Bday in SD

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  • keena Aug 4, 2009 07:38 PM
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My husband started home brewing last year (bday gift from me) and it's really awakened his love of beer (vs. my love of wine). So for his bday, I am debating where to take him. He said beer is important, food not so much. I, however--designated driver--would put a little more on the food part.
So--I've narrowed it down to these:
Linkery, Jaynes Gastropub and Stone Brewing Co.
As we live near PB, Stone Brewing is a trek ....

What do you think?
We already love Karl Strauss in LJ. I think their beers are underappreciated and their food is a lot better than people will give credit for but I think it's time for something new.

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  1. Linkery!

    1. Blind Lady Ale House.

      1 Reply
      1. re: mmjgam

        second BLAH.

      2. If you live near PB, I think an option you should consider is The Vine in Ocean Beach. They have a really good selection of both beer and wine, and pretty tasty food. They get bottles from Russian River and Alpine, which are not commonly found in restaurants.

        Other places you should consider are Ritual Tavern and Blind Lady Ale House.

        I like Stone, but it's a really long drive if you're going to get beer.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Josh

          Well he is really into beer on tap...is one better with drafts vs. exotic bottles?

          1. re: keena

            Ritual has more on tap. The Vine is bottles only, though just down the street is Newport Pizza and Ale House, which has a really impressive draft lineup - one of the best in town. It's a younger person's hangout, so the music is loud and it's kind of rowdy, but the beer selection really is stellar.

            Jayne's only has a few beers on tap, and nothing particularly remarkable. Linkery often has good selections, but their lineup varies a lot, and if you're just going mainly for beer then it can be pricey.

            Another place you might want to consider is Neighborhood, downtown. Good draft selection, good bottles, and the food is tasty, too. They also do wine.

            1. re: Josh

              2nd Ritual, they also have 'beer flights' which may interest your hubby.

        2. I really like the Toronado, beer afficionados seem to be really into it, they have a ton of beers on tap and bar snacks, maybe you could move on from there for dinner in the area at linkery, urban solace, ritual tavern, jaynes gastropub. Just a thought.

          2 Replies
          1. re: jennywenny

            Toronado is a good spot, their food options have improved tremendously since their opening. They actually have full meals now, some of which are really good.

            1. re: jennywenny

              Toronado's my favorite place for beer right now... the food has definitely improved and, recently, I ordered their maple-mascarpone cheesecake with maple shortbread on the side. It was probably one of the best desserts I've had in a long time.

            2. You haven't mentioned when you are going, if you care about having a table vs. sitting at the bar and what your tolerance is for waiting for a table.

              Every suggestion in this thread will net you good food and beer, but most of the places mentioned do not take reservations. Toronado can get packed and loud as can Blind Lady, but both have incredible beer selections. I love the food at Blind Lady.

              If you want a sit down dinner with beer, I would say Linkery or Ritual, if you are going for beers and some food but not necessarily a full traditional meal, definitely Blind Lady.

              4 Replies
              1. re: JRSD

                30th. St. South heading North, all good beer destinations food above average where noted.

                Hamilton's Tavern
                Sea Rocket Bistro, food
                Linkey, food
                Toronado
                Ritual Tavern
                Jayne's Gastropub, food

                (I do suggest taking a right on Adams and headding up to BLAH as well).

                If still wanting beer after this, you need help.

                1. re: Ewilensky

                  My first thought after reading the original post was Hamilton's, and I'd like to put a plug in for their food. It's slow coming and prepared next door, but is inventive, tasty, and most importantly, really goes well with beer.

                  1. re: mcgrath

                    mcgrath, have they imporved recently? Used to LOVE Hamilton's cafe when it first opened but then they changed the menu, removed some of their excellent sandwiches and I felt the quality itself went way downhill. Would love for them to improve, as I can walk, err, stumble home from them and it made for a really nice cheap quick dinner when my wife and I didn't feel like cooking.

                    1. re: Ewilensky

                      Yeah, they changed the menu around again a couple of months ago and it's better than it was before even the previous change. It tends more towards pub food than Toronado but it's still good. Might be a bit strange for the birthday dinner though unless the focus really wanted to be on beer. I think The Linkery has the best blend of good beer and good food.

              2. Well. . .there's always O'Brien's, which has great beer and crappy food. Or Pizza Port in Solana Beach.

                3 Replies
                1. re: jmtreg

                  hmm, i think we might just do BLAH as the thought of "enforced tipping" at Linkery is just wrong to me, no matter how wholesome the food is.

                  1. re: keena

                    The beer is also overpriced at Linkery, even for being local, on a beer engine... BLAH is a great choice.

                    1. re: keena

                      The Checca w/ Anchovy is a fantastic pizza. Also the bacon-and-egg pizza is great.

                  2. My personal Favorite is Stone, simply because the garden is amazing and you can make a day or night out of it. You could as well Check out the Karl Strauss Gardens in Sorrento (simlar to stone but on a smaller Scale) if you like Strauss. It is One exit up the 805 from La Jolla Village (unless that is the Strauss you were referring to).

                    In PB, the Tap Room has a great selection of local breweries on tap. The pizza is great as well (though the service is generally miserable at best).

                    I have heard nothing but Rave reviews about Blind Lady Ale house, but sadly have yet to go.