Beer Maverick

Resident Brewing Co., Downtown

Offering excellent beer, Resident Brewing is inside The Local, one of the best bars in San Diego. RECOMMENDED

Resident Brewing has one of the best webpages you will find for a brewery, including a really awesome video. That attention to quality and detail extends to their beer and their physical space, too.

Located inside The Local “Eatery and Drinking Hole,” Resident Brewing has their own bar at the back, but you can get Resident beers at the main bar as well as via table service. On my visit they were pouring 16 of their own beers. As you’ll see, the ratings for my flight (below) are very consistent, and consistently good.

Hall Pass (West Coast Pale Ale, 5.5% ABV). A very hoppy pale ale with citrus/pine notes.  3.5/5

Back Alley Porter (5.3% ABV). This is a lovely, smooth and light-tasting porter. 3.5/5

Vacation Coconut IPA (7%ABV). This is a very interesting beer; I’m tempted to call it unique. The organic coconut blends well with the tropical notes from the IPA’s hops–I would never have predicted that this combo would work, but it does. The base IPA might be not quite as good as it could be, and the result is that this isn’t something I would want to drink all afternoon, but it is definitely something worth trying.  3.25/5

Oatmeal Stout (5.2% ABV). This is a pleasant, fairly standard stout. Not as creamy as some oatmeal stouts.  3.5/5

As for The Local, I’m impressed. There was a busy lunch crowd during my visit but service at the bar was still quick. They offer a big craft beer tap list, mostly good and/or unusual San Diego County breweries along with a few other more famous ones–a nice range of styles, too. The front wall opens to the street; sunlight streams in there and through the skylights. The bar is a large  ‘L’ with 20 seats; there are about ten stools along the window, then a whole lot of high tables and a few low ones. I had a cold Vietnamese noodle dish that comes with chicken satay. It was great, and easily enough for two meals. The fun, happy vibe was promoted by the loud-but-not-too-loud Funk and Mo-Town music they were playing. It’s pretty much an ideal day drinking scene. Plenty of business folks and conference-goers find their way here, too; the Grant Hotel is right across the street. Caveat: Parking in the area is utterly ridiculous. Even the paid lots nearby are all full, and just forget about street parking. Lyft, my friends.

Even when we aren’t talking about official brew pubs (that serve food as well as house-brewed beer), it is not unusual to find a tap room sharing space with a food vendor. North Park Beer Co. shares with Mastiff Kitchen, for example, and Rip Current Brewing in North Park has Sublime Kitchen. Some do it the other way, putting a brew house in an existing bar/restaurant: Automatic Brewing is inside Blind Lady Ale House, for example, and Resident Brewing being resident inside The Local is another. In fact, Resident Brewing is probably the best example of this kind I have ever seen, because the host restaurant is so good on every level. And an important part of why the partnership works is that even though The Local has a very strong craft beer tap list, drinking the house beer is still definitely a good move. You can’t always say that.     1065 4th Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101  (Inside The Local.)