Beer Maverick

Iron Fist Brewing Co., Barrio Logan

A big list of good beer in a modern tasting room with a great patio, next to Chicano Park.

The Iron Fist tasting room is located in a very modern building right next to Chicano Park (which was recently recognized as a National Historic Landmark, with murals covering most of the concrete surfaces of the interchange and on-ramp to the Coronado Bridge). The main Iron Fist location, where they do the brewing, is up north in Vista, CA. The Barrio Logan tasting room is large and trendy. There is a nice outdoor area (rained out on the day of my visit, unfortunately, but that’s a rare occurrence in San Diego).

They were pouring 22 beers on my visit. I ended up trying two flights and enjoyed just about everything. My favorites were the stouts brewed in collaboration with legendary home brewer Ken Schmidt. These are branded “Aloha” and have Hawaiian-themed names.

Nelson the ImPALEr (Pale Ale, 5% ABV). Note of apple juice on the nose, seems like a Belgian-ish yeast. Light gold color. Hops definitely present but not overwhelming.  3.25/5

Counter Strike (IPA, 6.5% ABV). A good San Diego IPA, with Galaxy and Citra hops.  3.5/5

Pecan Pie Porter (Porter with roasted pecans and vanilla, 9.5% ABV). Interesting! Body of a brown, nose of a BBA, raisin flavor, maybe fusil alcohol, sweet. The vanilla was a bit too strong for the pecan. Overall, a good beer. 3.5/5

Velvet Glove (Imperial Stout, 9% ABV). Intense, smooth, perfectly roasted malts. A great stout.  4/5

Aloha Plenty (Ken Schmidt porter with coffee, coconut, macadamia nut, 9.5% ABV). Wow. I could drink this every day. The coconut is perfectly balanced with roast malts, coffee, nut. Incredible.  4.5/5

Koloa Town Brown (Ken Schmidt porter, 9.6% ABV). Quite similar to the other porters on offer, but not quite as good.  3.25/5

Coffee Milk Stout (4.5% ABV). This is a passable milk stout. It doesn’t measure up to other offerings available here.  3/5

Big Kahuna (Ken Schmidt Russian Imperial Stout, 9.7% ABV). I wasn’t sure about this one. At first I thought I detected a metallic flavor on the finish, but I think it was probably just the coffee blend in the stout. Overall this was fine. 3/5

There is a restaurant next door; you can go there to order and then they will bring your food over to the bar.

In addition to the patio and the main room, which has plenty of seating, there is a small lounge with leather sofas. Apparently you can rent that room for special occasions. Might be a good place to watch some of March Madness.

Google Maps brings you to the wrong side of the building. Cut through the parking lot next to Chicano Park, then turn right and you’ll see Iron Fist almost at the end of the building. There is a parking garage entrance just before you get there, and quite a bit of street parking.     1985 National Ave., #1132, San Diego, CA 92113