Stone Brewing Co.
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Active Beers: 223
Beer Ratings: 100,985
Beer Avg: 3.92
Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: Y
Ratings: 546 | Reviews: 276 | Display Reviews Only:
4.25/5 rDev -7.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$$
Stopped by for lunch and a tour during a recent trip to San Diego. There is no sign anywhere near the place including on or in front of the building indicating that you are at the right place. After driving by once we figured it out and found a parking spot easily. Really big lot with plenty of spaces.
The space is beautiful especially the outdoor garden area but nothing about it reflects the imagery of the brewery. Not arrogant or bastardly. Really clean, family friendly and kind of disneyfied. There is a very large dining area with a huge bar in the middle of it with ample seating. This leads to an outdoor are where the patio and garden area. There is a second bar out there and a balcony that overlooks the gardens. The atmosphere was perfect for having great beers and a good meal in the afternoon sun. Heaters are provided for you thin skinned west coast people.
There is a second room for merch, bottles and growlers fills that had a crazy selection of clothing, glassware, books, etc. it seems like they put their name or logo on just about anything. I left with a growler, t-shirt and two really cool glasses.
You need to reserve the tour two hours in advance so make sure you do so before eating. This way, after your meal you don't have to wait very long. The tour lasts about 50 minutes and is very extensive. Our guide was really personable, funny and seemed to know a lot about beer. Afterward they provide you with samples of their basic lineup. One thing that struck me as odd was that they had beers available for grolwer fills that you couldn't sample or order in the bar/restaurant.
The place was packed so the service was slow but the food and selection were very good. The stuffed mushrooms and pulled pork sandwich that I ordered were both solid. Unfortunately they didn't have any of their more interesting beers like Double Bastard, Old Gaurdian or Imperial Stout on but I did get to drink Ruination as fesh as possible along with some of their collaborations. The guest offerings were extensive and of high quality and the bottle list was very extensive including several rarities. That being said, everything here including the food was a bit pricey.
Originally we planned on having lunch before going to Lost Abbey and Churchill's but we had so much fun and stayed so long that LA was closed and 2/3 of us were drunk. I'll have to check out those other place some other time.
01-17-2012 03:46:30 | More by corby112
4.2/5 rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
So, I finally visited the Stone Brewing Company last month. What a great place. I did drive right past it as there is no sign on the street.
Anyhow, the gift shop has all the usual accessories, as well as six-packs of Stone beer. They had a tour just getting started the day I was there. We decided to have lunch in the Bistro, and the food was very good. I had the Bruschetta BLT sandwich and my wife had the Crab Cake. Both were very good, but a bit pricey.
I had the Stone Smoked Porter on tap, and was not disappointed. The service was very good, and our waiter was very friendly. The garden area out back is beautiful, with out-door seating.
Overall, if you like Stone beer, this is a must see when in San Diego.
01-14-2012 15:09:40 | More by fsimcox
4.34/5 rDev -5.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$
My girlfriend and I were in the area, so we decided to check out the brewery and see what all the fuss was about. Pretty glad we did.
We checked out the tasting room/merch room and garden and I was pretty impressed. Tons of merch for sale and they usually have some good growler fills, especially on Sundays.
The wait for the brewery tour was 2 hours (which I've heard is pretty standard unless you get there early), so we decided to get a beer and hang out in the garden. I found Gouden Carolus' Cuvee van de Kaiser Blauw on tap, which was awesome, and we hung out in the beautiful garden for a while before heading out. There are benches and chairs scattered around the garden, which is awesome because you can just relax and enjoy tasty beer outdoors. If you're in the area, this place is definitely worth checking out.
12-21-2011 22:41:08 | More by notchucknorris
4.63/5 rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
One of the must-visits for me during my trip to CA. Always loved Stone's beer and their commitment to a regular lineup and keeping fresh bottles on the shelves, even in MA.
This place is pretty impressive. They have a big room for merch and tasting. You could buy a whole wardrobe in here if that was your thing and a whole new set of glassware. They pretty much have brewery-themed everything. The place was clean as can be. Nice station for growlers as well. The bistro portion of the building was also enormous with seating indoors and outdoors on their patio, gas-fire heating and all. You get a larger than life feel here compared to most other craft breweries.
All of the employees were nice, some definitely seemed to be on the snarky side but none were rude in the least. They gave the beer extra care, rinsing each glass with cold water before each pour. Many people were asking questions about each brew and the bartenders would give good answers and help each person find something right for them. All Stone regulars and seasonals (at the time) were available for consumption.
The food was pretty awesome. Some of it was a bit on the pricy side for what I am used to but it all used quality ingredients and tasted ultra fresh. The salad we had was very good and so was their special mac-and-cheese. The waiters were very nice and extra polite.
I thought going here might give off the disneyland feel that so many compare them to. It felt larger than life but still kept the vibe I expected. I took the tour and it was informative and you got to see how such a large scale craft brewery operates. Visit if you are in the area and take the tour, this place was awesome.
12-02-2011 18:55:22 | More by cbutova
District of Columbia
4.25/5 rDev -7.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4 | $$$
Stopped here with SirRuss and crew on 10/29/11 for lunch. It was packed, though luckily we snagged a seat outside and kicked back accordingly.
First of all: what an epically gorgeous place! Jesus H, this is jaw dropper. The only problem is, it doesn't scream "craft beer" or "angry brewer", the way Greg Koch has described Stone for years. It's not a complaint, more a statement of fact, as the sight looks like a million bucks.
The service was excellent, some of the best we received on our entire trip. Our waiter was extremely knowledgeable about not only the Stone offerings, but the guest taps too.
Selection was above average, but not entirely great. My wife, for example, prefers sweeter lambics, etc. Everywhere we went on SoCal had 'em, except Stone. Weird. Otherwise the beer list was pretty killer.
The food was tasty. Instead of doing one app and main dishes, we ordered like four or five apps, all of which were not only delicious, but sported lovely plating.
It's all a slight bit pricey though, though not not out control or anything. In mere comparison to the other local breweries, bars, etc, it'll set you back a few bucks more. But again, it's still insanely well priced compared to Washington DC.
Overall, this is a living, breathing beer mecca. Word is they're building a fifty room hotel on-site, expanding their earnest beer empire that much more.
If you're around, this is a must-stop for any beer fan. I'm of the opinion that Stone has outgrown their britches a bit, and I tend not to purchse their beers all too often these days. But it didn't stop me from enjoying what really is a fantastic place.
11-26-2011 21:26:45 | More by Rhettroactive
4.3/5 rDev -6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
I have visited twice now, so time to review.
First time was to pick up my bottle of QM from the raffle and was going to have lunch. A whiny and pissy 5 y/o squashed that idea.
Second time was for Zwanze Day 2011. Nice run event.
Atm- This is a large scale production facility with a lot of hustle and bustle, but this plaace is gorgeous. From the restaurants to the gardens. Great place.
Quality- My mark of four isnt anything against stone its just I didnt see any reason to rate higher due to lack of anything special that I havent had being available on tap.
Service- The employees at stone were nothing but hospitable on both occasions I was there. Friendly, quick to answer questions, show where to go.
Food- I havent eaten at the restaurant but I have had food from Zwanze day and their chicken and waffles were awesome.
Value- Not overly priced at all. Growlers are the most $$ I think I saw or one off clothing.
11-18-2011 19:07:26 | More by FosterJM
4.63/5 rDev +0.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$$
A: Awesome. The people are incredibly friendly and the atmosphere that they go for is what I like about the craft brew industry.
Q: The beer that they brew here is the best in the world. Enough said.
Ser: The wait staff at the restaurant is a little slow but my tour guide was amazing.
Sel: Far above average for a brewery. They not only have every beer that they regularly brew on tap along with "brewery that they like and agree with" that are also local.
F: Everything is local, fresh, and cannot not possibly be any better.
V: The beer a very reasonably priced but the restaurant is a little pricey but is amazingly delicious.
11-10-2011 05:53:57 | More by jvillefan
4.35/5 rDev -5.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 5 | $$$
This was my second visit here. First visit was a bit rushed, but this time we spent about 7 hours here. Got there for the brewery tour at 2, and we left after they had stopped serving. The tour was good, fairly informative but if you're already on BA, and/or you're a homebrewer, you probably won't learn anything that you didn't already know. The free half beers at the end were nice though. If you want to see a clean brew house, this is the place to go. Rumor has it they rent out space to do surgery--it's that fuckin clean.
Quality was good. We had a bunch of stuff from the tap, plus a bottle of 2007 Stone RIS (raisny and past its peak), and also an aged Old Guardian (2009 I think, fucking stole the show. Incredible). Tap list was good, but not mind blowing. Extensive bottle list was pretty special though. Lots of gems in there.
Service was average most of the night, except for 1 bartender. Don't remember his name, but he really went out of his way. Thin guy, with side burns. That's all I remember. Good guy.
Food is nothing short of fucking phenomenal. My friend splurged on that Australian Wagyu steak. Unreal. Probably the best steak I have ever tasted. I had a cheddar soup which was good, and the mac n cheese which was good too.
Food is expensive, but overall was very very good. Beers were actually not terribly priced. A couple high dollar things, but for the most part pretty reasonable.
Been here twice, and would probably make the trek down at least once a year if I had enough beer friends around. Yea, Stone has basically sold out and only has a couple spectacular beers, but it's still a good place to visit on occasion.
10-30-2011 20:08:49 | More by AWolfAtTheDoor
3.05/5 rDev -33.7%
vibe: 5 | quality: 2 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | food: 2 | $$$$
Stone World Bistro is dead to me now.
$3.00 valet parking? Really? Barry Manilow's "Copacabana" as reinterpreted by some easy-listening flamenco guitarist wafting over the loudspeakers?
Stone went from being the underdog with attitude back in the day (small brewery, awesome anniversary festivals, underdog attitude) to being... well, arrogant bastards.
Their anniversary festivals are now very produced affairs and have an extra VIP component that requires you to pay double to get access to rare beers. If you don't pay extra, you get common variety beers from the participating breweries. But it's for charity, so if you don't like it, you're a bad person. And too poor, apparently. I remember the festivals back before new brewery, the ones with only one session, an embarrassment of rare beer riches and plenty of places to sit, eat and drink.
Just this last weekend, they released an undisclosed amount of 2006 Double Bastard bottles with no warning about the mobs that they must have known would show up and snap up every available bottle in the first 15 minutes of the event. Dare to show up 30 minutes after the start of selling and there is not a single bottle left. Hell, the crowd had even dispersed, like it never happened. Wasted a trip down from Los Angeles? Too bad. You should have known, chump.
And now they're publishing books about how awesome they are.
Their beer is great, but I think I'm about done with these people. There's plenty more craft beer out there of equal quality without the headaches.
And now more detail specifically about the Bistro...
I have visited the Stone World Bistro and Gardens at least a dozen times since they have opened.
The food concept features sustainable, organic and local foods. Great concept, except the food is not very happening on a flavor level. I have had almost every entree throughout the last three years or so and have found the very best to be only so-so. For what this restaurant charges for its food, there ought to be a world-class chef curating the menu.
The service is sadly lacking, as in slow and inaccurate. This has not changed over the years. This extends even to the hostess, who wanted to deny seating for my party because only five of the eight had arrived. After using a little logic with her, they said the manager decided to let us be seated. Good move, as we ordered lots of food and beer between the five of us before the rest of the party arrived, who ordered almost nothing.
The ambiance of the physical space is fine: architecturally impressive, beautifully executed and manicured. I love it.
The beer selection: awesome. All Stone beers, plentiful guest taps and, during special events like the annual Winter Storms, rarities from the cellar. This leads us to the problem areas...
Overall, I have to say I am as disappointed with the way the Bistro and even the company is run as I am impressed with the concept (not execution) and physical place itself.
10-11-2011 17:32:01 | More by charlzm
4.09/5 rDev -11.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | $$$
Visited Stone when I went to pick up my bottle of BA Kona coffee macadamin coconut porter. As you first walk up the place is huge and has wonderful decor. As you enter the building the bistro is to the right and the bar/store is straight ahead. The bar area was packed by what seemed to be all metrosexual preppy types wearing nothing but v-neck t-shirts not at all what I expected to see at a brewery but I guess that is what happens when you become a huge brewery everyone wants to drink your beer and think they are part of some sort of community. Wait am I part of that community? Anyway, the place is extremely well kept and all the females that work there are attractive in their own way which makes it nice. Because who wants to look at a bunch of ugly people filling their mouthes with beer? Not me. The only downside that I noticed which kept me from buying more was that on tap the day I went was just their normal selection. I was really hoping for some one offs that I had not had before but that was not the case. With all that being said I highly recommend the place if you wear jeans with flip flops and a v-neck shirt.
09-11-2011 01:29:00 | More by DarthKostrizer
Stone Brewing Co. in Escondido, CA
100 out of 100 based on 546 ratings.