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I was recently informed of the existence of Alesmith, a microbrewer that happens to be located in Mira Mesa, where I live.

9368 Cabot Drive
San Diego, CA 92126-4311
(858) 549-988

8They have super limited hours,
Fridays 3pm to 5pm, and
Saturdays1pm to 4pm


I'm wondering: Does anyone know what it's like when you go there? Can you drink? Is there a bar? is it just retail? I'm planning to go soon, but also planning to drink a beer while there... want to know if this is possible!

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  1. There's a tasting bar. You can buy bottles and growlers to take home with you. You can't buy a pint or anything like that on the premises, but you can sample their beers to see which you want to take home with you.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Josh

      Ahhh.... interesting. Too bad you can't get a pint while you chill, but cool that you can sample! I can't wait to check this place out! I'm so excited.

    2. Go. Taste. Few breweries in the world produce a better variety of top quality beers.

      1. Sorry to sound incredulous, but you've not had any Alesmith beer before?

        1 Reply
        1. re: RB Hound

          No kidding. That was my first thought, as well! Alesmith is one of the pioneer microbreweries of San Diego. :)

        2. The tasting room experience is not a good one. It's in a building in an industrial area, the tasting room is small and often too crowded to get a taste. But there's a reason it's crowded, they make incredible beers. You should go once but the better strategy is to find retail outlets that sell their beers.

          1. Balast Point Brewery is also located in Mira Mesa. Green Flash will be moving to Mira Mesa next spring. All we need now is a decent bar.

            Green Flash
            701 Thomas Ave, San Diego, CA 92109

            8 Replies
            1. re: stevuchan

              Ballast Point is technically located in Scripps Ranch. I wouldn't want people wandering around on the wrong side of the freeway trying to find it. Another great option, although their very nice tasting room has been getting much more crowded since being awarded Best Small Brewery at the recent World Beer Cup!

              And I should mention that in addition to tastings and growler fills, you can purchase beers by the pint, there. 11-9 Mon-Sat & 11-5 Sun.

              1. re: camilles

                I stand corrected.

                Ballast Point
                10051 Old Grove Road Suite B,
                San Diego CA 92131

                1. re: stevuchan

                  There is Ballast Point located next to USD on Linda Vista as well.

                  1. re: JonDough

                    The BP in Linda Vista is the original brewery that sits in back of a home brewing store. I have fond memories of tasting there when buying wine making supplies. The brewery capacity there was eventually too small and they built a larger brewery in Scripps Ranch, though the original is still. BP is also distilling spirits at the Scripps Ranch location but I haven't tried that.

                    1. re: steveprez

                      They're distilling? That's awesome!

                        1. re: jmtreg

                          Whiskey, rum and gin, apparently.

                          1. re: steveprez

                            The Old Grove Gin and Three Sheets Rum are currently available from select distributors. I picked them up at Distiller's Outlet in Poway (which is also the best source around for AleSmith and ALL other beers from San Diego to Belgium). They are pricey, but I want to support the market for locally distilled spirits. In a side-by-side tasting of both against the finest examples of gin and rum we had in our bar, they were excellent. I haven't brought myself to actually mix a drink with them...but will soon.

              2. You can also purchase 64 oz, refillable growlers of their beer to go at the brewery. Great way to get some of their tap only offerings at home.

                1. Do not miss Alesmith's Horny Devil, it is fantastic.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Captain Jack

                    FYI, most local BevMo's carry Alesmith beers.

                    1. Yeah, I'm going to add to the chorus of GO. Alesmith and Ballast Point are my two favorite SD breweries.

                      1. Wow - thanks everyone! Great tips! I'm so excited to try Ballast Point. I have already been to AleSmith twice now :) And I agree that it isn't much of a place for show, and my knees hurt by the about the 4th tasting, but what a gem! And in my own backyard. Funnily enough I'd never heard of them before... but I'm more a champagne girl than beer. AleSmith made a convincing argument, though!

                        Captain jack, thanks for the rec. I did like this brew quite well, but have to admit I like the Lil' Devil slightly better :) Maybe in another year or two I'll grow into it - haha. The two devils and the Nautical Nut Brown were probably my three favorites. I tried about 7 or 8 over the two days I've been so far. Plan to go back on the last Saturday of the month for a tour!

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: alegramarcel

                          AleSmith's Nautical Nut Brown is my favorite all-purpose, desert island, "there can be only one" beer. It goes with just about everything, foodwise, and is darn good all by itself as well. It's not even very expensive.

                          If it has a "con" it's that it can be harder than some to acquire since they don't bottle it. OTOH, that means you're always drinking it fresh, so that's a nice silver lining.

                          1. re: The Office Goat

                            It's one of my favorites, too. Perhaps it's just as well that they don't bottle it, because if we're always drinking it fresh, bottling it would probably be a little bit of a letdown.

                            1. re: geekyfoodie

                              Oh, I disagree. With bottle conditioning that beer would become truly epic. I'd go so far to say that all of AleSmith's beers are best enjoyed from the bottle (or cask) for that very reason.

                        2. IMHO Ale Smith is the best brewery in the San Diego area though the competition is stiff as I hear we're now up to around 50 breweries in the county. I recently tried an Airdale Dark & Stormy and found it to be better then average as well.