12 Breweries in San Diego You Should Visit

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If you’re a beer lover, San Diego is definitely the place to be. With over 150 breweries in the county, San Diego is considered by many to be the craft beer capital of the world. You can hop from brewery to brewery, tasting hoppy IPAs to smooth stouts, for weeks and never run out of places to try.

San Diego’s craft beer scene has been thriving for decades and the quality of the beer is unparalleled. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, you won’t want to miss out on the chance to visit some of these amazing breweries. So, grab your pint glass and get ready to explore some of the best breweries that San Diego has to offer.

San Diego brewery
Breweries in San Diego

Brewery Tours and Tastings

To make the most of your visit, consider going on a brewery tour. A brewery tour is an excellent way to experience the best breweries in San Diego. There are several companies that offer guided tours of the city’s top breweries. These tours are perfect for those who want to learn more about the brewing process and sample some of the best craft beers in San Diego.

Some popular brewery tour companies in San Diego include Brewery Tours of San Diego and Scavengers Beer & Adventure Tours. These companies offer guided tours of San Diego’s top breweries, including Ballast Point, Stone Brewing, and Green Flash Brewing Co.

If you prefer to explore the breweries on your own, you can also opt for a self-guided tour. Most breweries in San Diego offer tastings and tours of their facilities. Some even offer food pairings and special events.

In addition to brewery tours, many breweries in San Diego offer tastings. Tastings are a great way to sample a variety of beers and find your new favorite brew. Some breweries even offer flights, where you can sample several beers at once.

Are you planning your trip to San Diego?

If you’re traveling to San Diego, ensure you have lodging and tours booked ahead of time! Below are some of our top picks to help you plan!

Where to Stay in San Diego:

  1. Omni San Diego Hotel (4-star aparthotel with outdoor pool / pet friendly)
  2. Embassy Suites by Hilton San Diego Bay Downtown (4-star all-suites hote)
  3. Hotel Republic (4-star with rooftop terrace)
  4. Courtyard by Marriott Old Town (Walking distance to Old Town)

Best Tours and Experiences in San Diego:

  1. San Diego Whale Watching Cruise (aboard an historic sailing schooner!)
  2. San Diego Harbor Cruise (choose either a 1 or 2 hour tour)
  3. San Diego Hop On Hop Off Trolley Tour (11 included stops)
  4. Skip the Line: USS Midway Museum Admission Ticket (the best way to save time!)

Best San Diego Breweries

Burgeon Beer Company

Burgeon Beer Company is a popular brewery in San Diego with locations in Carlsbad and downtown San Diego. They are known for their IPAs, including the Treevana IPA and the Infinite Wild IPA. They also have a great selection of pale ales, lagers, and Mexican-style lagers.

Their downtown location is in The Arbor on Kettner Blvd. They have a full menu serving California cuisine with a full bar, not just beer, so it’s a great location to go to with others who don’t necessarily like beer.

Location: 1326 Kettner Blvd. and 6350 Yarrow Dr STE C, Carlsbad, CA

Stone Brewing

Beer from Stone Brewing
Stone Brewing (Photo by Go Travel California)

One of the most well-known breweries in San Diego, Stone Brewing is known for its bold and flavorful beers. The brewery is also committed to sustainability, using solar power and recycling water in its brewing process.

They are known for their Sculpin IPA and their stouts, including the Speedway Stout and Milagro Stout. They also have a great selection of lagers and Mexican-style lagers.

Location: 1202 Kettner Blvd

Coronado Brewing Company

Coronado Brewing Company is a must-visit brewery in San Diego that’s been around since 1996. They are known for their beachy style, producing beers with citrus and tropical notes like the Islander IPA and their Orange Avenue Wit.

They also have a great selection of pale ales to try, all with a beachy vibe. Their Coronado Pub has pub food favorites and a happy hour Tuesday to Friday 2-5pm.

Location: 170 Orange Avenue, Coronado, CA 92118

Ballast Point Brewing

Beer from Ballast Point Brewery
Ballast Point Brewing (Photo by Go Travel California)

With multiple locations throughout San Diego, Ballast Point Brewing is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. The brewery is known for its wide variety of beers, from IPAs to stouts, and its commitment to sustainability.

We love the Little Italy location which is great for tourists. Sit down outside and experience this buzzy neighborhood, while tasting some of Ballast Point’s best beers, like the Sculpin IPA and Calico Amber Ale. There are also many seasonal and limited beers to try.

Location: 2215 India Street

Pure Project

pure project
Pure Project flight (photo by Brewstills)

Pure Project Brewing is a San Diego craft brewery known for its commitment to sustainable brewing practices and innovative beer flavors. Rooted in the vibrant craft beer culture of the region, Pure Project Brewing embraces the spirit of sustainability, experimentation and quality.

Their brewery offers a wide range of beer styles, from traditional IPAs and stouts to unique sour ales and barrel-aged concoctions. Their brewing process emphasizes the use of locally-sourced and organic ingredients.

Pure Project’s Balboa Park taproom (one of 5 taprooms they operate) serves as a welcoming hub for both locals and visitors to enjoy their handcrafted beers. The taproom has a 1000-sq. ft. sun-drenched outdoor patio with cozy furniture, west-facing views, and a cool breeze coming up off San Diego Bay, and there are 20 taps, so there’s always something new to try.

Location: 2865 5th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92121

Border X Brewing

Border X Brewing is a popular brewery in San Diego founded in 2013 by brothers David and Marcelino Favela. The brewery’s name is inspired by its initial location near the U.S.-Mexico border, reflecting its mission to create a fusion of Mexican and American brewing traditions and flavors.

Border X Brewing is known for its innovative and culturally inspired beers, often using traditional Mexican ingredients such as hibiscus, agave, and churros, as well as unique spices and fruits. Some of their popular and distinctive beers include Blood Saison, a hibiscus and agave-based beer; Horchata Golden Stout, inspired by the classic Mexican rice and cinnamon drink; and Abuelita’s Chocolate Stout, a rich, chocolatey stout reminiscent of Mexican hot chocolate.

Location: 2181 Logan Ave

Deft Brewing

Deft Brewing
Deft Brewing (Photo by Go Travel California)

Deft Brewing is a newer brewery in San Diego, but they are already making a name for themselves. They are known for their IPAs, including the DeftHopt IPA and the Deft Hazy or Schwarz. But they also make quite a few unique European-inspired beer styles from Germany, Belgium, and the British Isles, like a Belgium double and triple, and a hefeweizen.

I personally really like the variety here. The tasting room is located just north of Old Town off Morena Blvd. They have a spacious patio and plenty of space indoors as well. Grab a taster tray and head out to The Gӓrten area, which is shared with a few nearby neighbors. It’s a great afternoon.

Location: 5328 Banks St A

Mujeres Brew House

Mujeres Brew House is a unique brewery in San Diego, as it is owned and operated by women. It was founded as a collaboration between the non-profit organization Border X Brewing and Mujeres Brew Club in 2019. They are known for their So. Cal Dreamin IPA and the La Jefa Blonde Ale, plus several lagers.

Owners Carmen Favela and Esthela Davila wanted to address the underrepresentation of women, particularly Latinas, in the craft brewing industry. The brewery functions as a hub for workshops, training programs, and networking events, focusing on fostering the development of women brewers and other professionals in the beer industry.

Location: 1983 Julian Ave

Bolt Brewing

Outside shot of Bolt Brewery
Bolt Brewing (Photo by Go Travel California)

Bolt Brewing is a local favorite in San Diego. The brewery is located in Little Italy, near Ballast Point, so you can do a bit of a beer crawl and try more stuff.

Sidle up to the outdoor bar and grab a beer flight, mimosa flight, or margarita flight (4 – 4 oz pours). Obviously you have to try their beer, and I recommend the Surf Lager and Stairway to Hazyville IPA. They have happy hour every weekday from 3-6pm (all day on Tuesday).

Location: 1971 India Street

Resident Brewing

Resident Brewing is a newer brewery in San Diego, but they are already making a name for themselves. It was established in 2016, by experienced homebrewer Robert Masterson and his business partners, Craig Nelson and Patrick Lively.

Resident Brewing is housed within the popular local gastropub, The Local Eatery and Drinking Hole, where it shares the space and offers a unique pairing of delicious craft beers and gastropub fare.

The brewery focuses on producing a range of high-quality, innovative beers, with a particular emphasis on hop-forward IPAs and pale ales, as well as experimenting with various styles like stouts, lagers, and sours. Some of their popular beers include the Chasing Citra IPA, Perky Blonde blonde ale, and Urbanite American IPA.

Location: 1065 Fourth Ave

AleSmith Brewing

AleSmith Brewing
(Photo credit: CC 4.0 by Liannadavis)

AleSmith Brewing is a family-owned brewery that has been producing award-winning beers since 1995. It is considered one of the most respected and accomplished breweries in the San Diego craft beer scene, known for producing high-quality, award-winning beers across various styles, including its popular Speedway Stout, a rich, coffee-infused imperial stout – and AleSmith IPA – a classic, well-balanced West Coast IPA.

Other popular AleSmith offerings include the Nut Brown Ale, Old Numbskull barleywine, and the Wee Heavy Scotch ale. AleSmith’s beers have received numerous accolades, including medals from the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup. Their downtown tasting room is one of the largest in San Diego.

Location: 9990 AleSmith Ct

Modern Times Beer

Modern Times Beer tasting flight
(Photo credit: CC 2.0 Flickr)

Modern Times Beer is a unique brewery that started as a 30bbl production brewery and tasting room in the Point Loma neighborhood of San Diego in 2013. In 2017, the company transitioned to an employee-owned structure.

The brewery operates several tasting rooms and cafes, called “flavordomes,” across California and the United States, where patrons can sample their beers and enjoy limited-edition brews. The original tasting room in San Diego, known as the “Lomaland Fermentorium,” features a retro, industrial-inspired design, adorned with colorful art installations and vintage furniture.

Modern Times focuses on producing a diverse range of beer styles, including IPAs, stouts, sours, and lagers. Some of their signature offerings include the Fortunate Islands wheat beer, Black House coffee stout, and Orderville hazy IPA.

Location: Flavordome: 3000 Upas St

Before You Go

The city is home to some of the best breweries in the country, and a visit to any one of them is sure to be a memorable experience. Craft beer has become a staple of San Diego’s culture, and the city’s breweries are at the forefront of the movement.

If you’re out and about exploring San Diego, don’t miss our other articles that will help you find the best things to do in and around San Diego.

Travel Planning Guide

🚙💨 Where should I book my rental car?

Renting a car is one of the best ways to get around in California, no matter where you’re visiting. Public transportation can only get your so far, even in big cities. I always rent with Discover Cars, which checks the prices of all major rental car companies, so you get the best rates.

🛌 What’s the best way to book my accommodations?

For hotels and vacation rentals, Booking.com or Expedia.com are the best sites, but you can also book through TripAdvisor. If you’re considering renting a house instead, don’t forget to also check VRBO, which is often cheaper than Airbnb.

🧳 What do I pack for California?

Head to the our California Packing List or Disneyland Packing List to get all the info on packing.

✈️ What’s the best site to buy flights to California?

For finding cheap California flights from around the world, I recommend Skyscanner. I’ve also had pretty good luck with Kayak.com.

» Looking for more inspiration along the route? Check out all our guides to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and San Diego. Find the best beaches in Monterey, waterfalls in Southern California, and national parks.

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Ballast Point brewery
12 Breweries in San Diego You Should Visit

1 thoughts on “12 Breweries in San Diego You Should Visit

  1. US Legal Infos says:

    I absolutely loved reading your blog post about the incredible brewery scene in San Diego! As a self-proclaimed beer enthusiast and a travel aficionado, I couldn’t agree more with your choices of must-visit breweries in this sunny Californian city.

    San Diego’s craft beer culture is truly a gem, and you’ve done a fantastic job highlighting some of the top spots. The variety of flavors and styles that these breweries offer is simply mind-boggling. From the crisp and refreshing IPAs to the rich and complex stouts, every sip is an adventure in itself. Thanks to your insightful reviews. Keep up the great work, and here’s to more hoppy adventures in the Golden State!

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