There are now four breweries and a tasting room in a tight grouping in Barrio Logan, making it an excellent destination for a beer tour. It is easy to get to the area on the trolley so that you don’t have to drive, though free parking is plentiful in the area. The area is also close to the concentrations of breweries in East Village and Downtown to the north, and National City/Chula Vista to the south.
Alta Brewing (brewery)
Attitude Brewing (brewery, food soon)
Border X Brewing (brewery, food)
Iron First Brewing (tasting room)
Thorn Brewery (brewery)
Alta Brewing opened in 2017 and went through some growing pains, parting ways with their original brewer after a business partner dispute that led to a brief closure. They reopened about a month later after corporate restructuring and hiring a new brewer.
Attitude is still quite new, having soft opened in fall 2018. Their kitchen, which looks promising and is suppsed to open before the end of 2018, will make an excellent addition to this fun and well-designed beer-hall-style tasting room.
Border X is opening a new restaurant and tasting room in the LA neighborhood of Bell: LA Eater just included them on their list of their eleven most-anticipated restaurant openings of 2019, which is pretty high praise. Border X does excellent live music events at the their Barrio Logan location, and the taco shop out back is great. The beer is good, too.
Iron Fist makes excellent beer at their north county brewery, and their tasting room in Barrio Logan is a modern, fun place to enjoy it. I particularly enjoy their stouts but they offer a wide variety of styles, all of them well made. The patio out front is nice.
Thorn Brewery is the second and much larger location for Thorn Street Brewing from North Park. Especially well-known for their IPAs (both West Coast and hazy styles), they make an eclectic cross-section of beers. The Barrio Logan location is the production brewery that makes the core styles that are canned and sold around the city and state.
The best tour to hit all five is this route. I recommend starting at Thorn so you get the best beer earliest in the tour. You can end at Attitude or Border X and spend a long time enjoying those places, too.
If you wanted to hit the best three, I’d suggest Thorn, Iron Fist, and Border X. If you want to emphasize the Mexican-American theme and local character, visit Attitude and Border X. But all five are good and each has its distinctive charms. Underneath the overpass to Coronado Bridge is Chicano Park, where you’ll see huge murals on just about every concrete surface, most having Mexican-American, pro-immigration, anti-racism and liberation themes. It is definitely worth taking a few minutes to walk through the park.
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