1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Red Car Brewery and Restaurant

Not Rated.
Red Car Brewery and RestaurantRed Car Brewery and Restaurant
BA SCORE
86
very good

29 Ratings
Ratings: 29
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 21.07%
Active Beers: 5
Beer Ratings: 47
Beer Avg: 3.7
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask:
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

1266 Sartori Avenue
Torrance, California, 90501
United States
phone: (310) 782-0222

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 29 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of willbolk
willbolk

California

4.13/5  rDev +10.1%

Maybe a bit biased since this is my local brew pub, but I love Red Car Brewery.

Beer wise, they only have their own brews, which amounts to a selection of about 5-6. They've got a red, blonde, IPA, porter, plus the occasional seasonal. Their pumpkin ale was pretty good. Pints are about $4.50 or so. They have growlers to go as well.

Menu is fairly typical pub grub, but very good indeed. I can highly recommend the chicken strips with garlic fries, which are the best garlic fries I've ever had. The wife swears by the ahi burger and the club sandwich. The blazing noodles are also very tasty. Haven't been disappointed with any menu item.

The space is quaint, but nothing to write home about. Service has always been attentive. They have live entertainment most Friday and Saturday nights. Free wifi.

Be sure to go to restaurant.com to get discounted gift certificates.

09-15-2010 05:57:31 | More by willbolk
Photo of BeTheBall
BeTheBall

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +10.1%

Went in the middle of a Friday afternoon, so not very many people were there. Long bar from front of the space to the back down the right; dining area with tables (12?) on the left. We sat at the bar. Barkeep was very friendly and offered good suggestions. Behind hte bar are all the wodden barrels in which the beer is made; very cool. They had maybe 6 beers on tap, an IPA, Porter, Belgian Wheat, golden ale, red ale...
Had a sampler of them all, then a Belgian Wheat, which was quite tasty. Was starving after flying all day, so had the Ahi burger. It was slightly over cooked, but still quite good. The fries are the best I've had in a long time; nice and crispy. Very happy we stopped there, and hope to hit it again before we return to the other coast.

08-14-2010 15:19:06 | More by BeTheBall
Photo of Gobzilla
Gobzilla

California

4/5  rDev +6.7%

Really cool of the manager to let us sit at the bar and get a taster set even though the place was closed. We walked in late but still manged to get some beer poured for us so I can't speak of the atmosphere cause it was only me and my budy who were in the bar. They had 5 house beers that were pretty decent with their porter standing out to me the most. Cool bar with the wood covered fermenters sitting right behind the bar. The bartender was nice enough to pours some tasters after closing hours and was friendly as well. I will definitely try to come back to taste their food and give the porter another run. Cool place to stop by if your in the city of torrance.

05-31-2010 00:52:40 | More by Gobzilla
Photo of Floydster
Floydster

California

3.43/5  rDev -8.5%

My family and some friends ate down the street at La Capilla tonight and stumbled across this place after when we were walking around this old run down part of town, stopped in for a few pints and got a growler to go, do not know how much the pints were because I did not buy them, but the growler I bought was $4.50 for the glass and fourteen bucks per fill regardless of the beer, I had the special bitter first while we there and got a porter for round two, neither were very good, the IPA I brought home in the growler was a little better with a great nose but still lacking some other important qualities, place is an old depot building, the tanks are literally five feet from where you sit right behind the bar, lots of families in here and a few beer drinkers too, did not look over the menu much but most people seemed to be eating pizza, laid back inside but located in a bit of a ghost town in Torrance, service was decent as it was not too busy but they still probably could have used a few more pople working, only had four different beers on tap and they were all their brews, the only one I did not have was their brown ale, will probably go back in October to try their pumpkin ale as I have heard good things about it, not the best beer but cool to have a place like this fairly close to my house, just weird that it took me this long to get out here, will go back, worth checking out if you are in the South Bay

07-13-2009 03:10:19 | More by Floydster
Photo of 86sportster883
86sportster883

New Jersey

3.93/5  rDev +4.8%

I was staying overnight in Manhattan Beach after a week long meeting in OC. It was a Friday night and although somewhat burned out from the week, I decided to grab dinner someplace new and wound up at the Red Car Brewery. This place was a pleasant surprise in terms of the low key friendly atmosphere and the excellent food. The beers were all tasty and very drinkable (I had the sampler) but nothing struck me as exceptional. There was live music though, which was all original and quite decent, and my Chicken picatta over garlic mashed potatoes was outstanding.

01-31-2009 05:36:27 | More by 86sportster883
Photo of mlaroche
mlaroche

California

3.93/5  rDev +4.8%

Atmosphere: The venue was bright and spacious. I was really impressed with the brick and nice wood finishing, including the presence of the brewing equipment behind the bar. I would feel comfortable grabbing lunch with grandparents here, going on a date with my wife here, or having a couple beers with my friends here. This area of Torrance was pretty cool - a nice little downtown area is a rarity in the LA area.

Quality: The beers were pretty good. The IPA had nice hop aroma, and my friend really enjoyed the Pumpkinhead.

Service: The bartender was friendly and was attentive.

Selection: I was really disappointed with their beer selection. They list 6 all the time beers and only 3 of them were on tap. There was also a pumpkin seasonal on tap, so they had 4 house beers on tap - kind of a small selection. The menu was diverse - ahi salad, pad thai, standard burgers and pizza... a bit better than your standard pub fare.

I do have a complaint: their website doesn't say their hours on special days. We drove 20 minutes there on the day after Thanksgiving for lunch, only to find their opening delayed to 3. So seriously, if you run the website, please put special hours on your website.

12-02-2008 03:22:59 | More by mlaroche
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

3.68/5  rDev -1.9%

Visited on Monday 01/07/08 at about 4:00pm. Place was deserted. My friend and I sat at the bar and ordered an appetizer (spinach/artichoke dip). He had a pint of the porter, while I had the sampler. The bartender was very friendly and attentive, though not as knowledgable about beer as we were. The food took a long time to come, but that was okay. They have six taps brewed on premises, though they were out of the red ale when I visited. The decor is best described as early 20th century red brick: reminded me of a firehouse. Dark and quiet when we were there, though I have been before when it was bustling and noisy. The relief bartender was also attentive and friendly; she and I struck up a conversation about cars, of all things. Nice place. (here comes my standard closing line). If I lived closer, I'd visit a lot more often.

03-10-2008 23:33:36 | More by charlzm
Photo of kleffman
kleffman

California

3.83/5  rDev +2.1%

Somehow I didn't know this existed even though I grew up in Torrance and lived there for 12 years. Visited with some buddies and just happened to hit happy hour. Nice little appetizer menu to go with the beers. Tried a couple of their ales and was quite impressed with the IPA. It's a big IPA that they may as well call imperial. Really enjoyed my visit and would like to go back for dinner and beers some day. I sat at the bar and just looked at their very nice wood covered brew equipment and brick walls. Cool place, especially for a quite beer deprived area (well I live in SD, so everywhere is beer deprived to me...)

12-24-2007 06:18:58 | More by kleffman
Photo of instrumentality
instrumentality

California

3.65/5  rDev -2.7%

My girlfriend and I visited this brewery specifically because we wanted to check out their Pumpkinhead beer and see if it was growler worthy for an upcoming Halloween party. I've just reviewed two of their beers, including this one, so I'll try not to be too redundant here.

We arrived on a Tuesday evening around 6pm. Getting there was relatively easy from the 110, and apparently just as easy to get to from the 405. In fact, we probably could have just taken surface streets from my place in Long Beach and made decent time as well.

The one annoyance is that there doesn't seem to be any simple way to get there by public transportation. I checked the MTA web site and they couldn't even plot a course that would get me there.

Nonetheless, we got there...

The atmosphere was comfortable, with a reasonably long bar with brewing equipment in the background, and behind our bar stools, a significant supply of tables for dining. Others have broken the visual down with more detail, so I'll defer to them for much of this.

Apparently, we got there on the day they were having a special Oktoberfest Food-and-Beer pairing meal (five beers, five courses, $45 if I recall correctly), and by 7:00, the place was packed, but the clientele was pretty mellow (probably mostly early 30s to early 50s) and it wasn't all that noisy once everyone found their seats. About 1/3 of the bar seats remained vacant throughout our time there.

The bartender was a little slow (attention-wise, not mentally), but we weren't in too much of a hurry, and when he did show up, he was helpful, so I was happy with his service.

They only had four brews on tap: the Motorman's Reserve (bland), Big Red (like the chewing gum), the South Loop Porter (coffee/chocolate), and their seasonal special, the Pumpkinhead Ale (refreshing, slightly pumpkiny). I think all of the brews could have stood for a bit more carbonation, as there was no head to be found on any of them, but flavor-wise, they were all at least average. They were served just a bit too cold, but this tends to be the standard and I'm learning to get used to it.

The food, however, was quite impressive. I had the Motorman's Bacon Cheeseburger (three cheeses, hold the bacon and the "secret sauce"/Thousand Island) and fries and my girlfriend had the chicken picatta. We were both quite pleased. She couldn't even finish her meal, but somehow had extra room available to snatch up some of my fries.

Overall, I'd say the beer was so-so and the service was slightly better, but the food was worth coming back for and I'll take a so-so local beer with good food over a generic macrobrew any day.

I did end up purchasing two growlers of Pumpkinhead, but that was more out of desperation than any signficant appreciation. I'm optimistic, though, as I hear their IPA will be showing up very soon, and their dIPA should pop up sometime in December, so hopefully I'll have something tasty to refill those growlers with soon.

10-25-2006 21:51:46 | More by instrumentality
Photo of loving44
loving44

California

4.58/5  rDev +22.1%

This is my local haunt as its right down the street from my home/work. It's a small unassuming building from the street, right next to railroad tracks... I've never seen them in operation.

The inside is industrial with worn brick, stainless steel, and wood. Large brew kettles behind a long bar t the right with restaurant style seating to the left. The two areas separated by a chest high wall. The majority of the time the restaurant section is "seat-yourself". The whole place is a historic building, once a telegraph station. It's a really interesting building. There are 5 or 6 TVs showing different programs all the time, but it's not a loud sports bar atmosphere. An outdoor patio is also available.

Only ales brewed on premises are available as far as I know; no macros. Selection varies, and can seem small at times, but they usually have at least three on tap with the occasional seasonal special such as their winter warmer/strong ale "night train" and their pumpkin-head pumpkin ale (awesome). I'm a big fan of the IPA, and the South Loop Porter. The beers vary a bit from time to time due to slight recipe changes, but each one is very high quality and delicious. The brewing passion shows in these beers!! All beers are available in growlers, pints, and smaller taster versions.

The service has always been great. Sometimes they get busy and will mess up food orders a little, but both times it has happened top me I was compensated with free beer or free desert. I didn't mind at all!

That brings me to the food...

The burgers are fantastic as well as the fries. You have to try the fries!! Lots of dishes available ranging from simple sandwiches to fancy schmancy pasta dishes. The menu really has something for everyone and is pretty inexpensive considering the quality of the food. I love the motorman bacon cheeseburger and the seared ahi sandwich.

Recently they have stopped selling kegs, but re-fillable growlers are always available. This is a great place to stop if you are in the area at all... quality all the way!


** it seems their website has not been updated for some time as kegs are still advertised as being available. I would advise calling with any questions you have regarding information on the website.

09-19-2006 03:12:47 | More by loving44
Red Car Brewery and Restaurant in Torrance, CA
86 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.