Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...

The Olive Tree Marketplace

Not Rated.
The Olive Tree MarketplaceThe Olive Tree Marketplace
BA SCORE
99
world-class

46 Reviews
Reviews: 46
Visits: 66
rAvg: 4.57
pDev: n/a
[ Store ]

4805 Narragansett Ave
San Diego, California, 92107-3104
United States
phone: (619) 224-0443

view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Place added by: SDBrewFan on 01-02-2008

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 46 | Visits: 66
Photo of nanobrew
4.9/5  rDev +7.2%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I love this place, especially with the relatively new tasting room. The selection is great. Mike (the beer guy) is very friendly and helpful. Some of the other staff are very helpful too. The selection is a nice range; locals, cali, belgians (including a good number of sours), American wilds, english and german brews. The price might be slightly higher than other places, however if you get anything in the tasting room you get 10% off your entire beer purchase, which makes the beer well priced. You can also get cheese & meat plates in the tasting room, and there is a full deli (closes at 6pm). (599 characters)

Photo of mrkrispy
4.74/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

I have always been fond of Olive Tree, previously a small "locals" market in OB that offers high quality deli items and is nice change of pace from the dingy beach liquor stores and markets with sub-par food and products.

Olive Tree expanded to offer craft beers and they recently opened a Tasting Room and have really knocked it out of the park. They have a great selection of the better craft beers good enough for any beer geek, as well as a good group of Alpine beers that are hard to find around San Diego. I think if you had to pick one negative for the place it is that it is simply too small to offer a huge BevMo-like amount of beers.

If you need help the entire staff is very friendly and willing to assist. The go-to guy for beer is named Mike, be sure to ask for him if you need something. He won't follow you around and try to get you to buy 10 bottles of stuff you aren't interested in. He won't try to force a bunch of old stale beers on you or try to convince you to drink the latest over-priced over-hyped beer. Thankfully this isn't one of those places that makes you feel like you are buying a used car. Care is also given to the proper storage of the beer, i.e. IPAs are kept in the cold box, not sitting out in a 90 degree store.

Olive Tree added a small Tasting Room that is awesome, a nice selection for every taste and a great addition to the experience. Who doesn't love tasting some great beers during Beer Shopping Day(s)??? They recently added a meat&cheese platter to the tasting room, hoping to try it out soon.

A fantastic store, if you are looking for hard-to-find bottles during your trip to San Diego make Olive Tree your number one stop. (1,677 characters)

Photo of pmarlowe
4.78/5  rDev +4.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

One of the top bottle shops in San Diego proper. Very good selection of San Diego and West Coast craft beers, both year-round, seasonal, and special releases. Good prices. Some single bottles are available to mix-and-match. They publish new arrivals on their frequently updated website and blog. Dedicated parking lot in back. Sandwiches from the deli are delicious.

Their tasting room is open Thursday through Saturday; very reasonably priced; tasting menu rotates frequently so repeat visits are rewarded; very cool that they now have plates of cheeses/meats to go with the tastings. Mike, the guy in charge, is very knowledgeable, super nice guy, and a regular in the SD beer scene.

Loses some points for how quickly the more popular releases leave the shelves (e.g., Pliny, Sculpin).

Pro tips: 5% discount on beer by joining beer club ($20/year); 10% discount on beer when you pay for a tasting (keep your receipt to bring to the register). Check the website before going for new arrivals. (996 characters)

Photo of HalfFull
4/5  rDev -12.5%

I was a bit intrigued by the love for this little corner of the world. So when visiting the neighborhood I thought I'd give a second visit after dropping in a year ago or so.

Bottom line is that this is a good market in a small market. O.B. is a relatively small hamlet in the greater San Diego scheme and Olive Tree fits the bill from many fronts. Good beer, and wine, and cheese, and bread, etc. It runs on a small footprint so the beer aspect is somewhat limited by design.

They offer a good mix of beer though the selection is somewhat limited though of high quality. Nice to see a 'new/special releases' rack and a chalkboard showing pending/new arrivals, again for special release brews. Service was not a factor though I sense that locals may have an 'in' in that regard.

Good for special release brews or a local hookup, otherwise I'm a bit at a loss as you are paying a bit of a premium here. They do offer some beers as singles however, nice concept. Good neighborhood store. (990 characters)

Photo of Yetiman420
4.2/5  rDev -8.1%

On a Sunday - Monday period in Mid October, I did a tour of San Diego breweries, brewpubs and beer stores. All the bottle shops I visited received A+ ratings with a significant number of reviews. My goal was primarily Russian River brews (Pliny, Blind Pig, Supplication) and then WC IPA's that I can't get in Ohio (Alpine, Kern River).
The places I visited in order of ranking...

1. 3 Way tie - KnB Wine Cellars, Beverages 4 Less, Best Damn Beer Shop
2. Holiday Wine Cellar
3. Olive Tree Marketplace
4. Pizza Port Bottle Shop

Olive Tree was my second bottle shop stop and I visted after a cheese plate and a Pliny at the nearby Vine restaurant.

This is a gourmet marketplace with a fine beer selection. I cleaned them out of the four Supplications they had and was so happy that I didn't bother doing too much looking around at other stuff. I was later told by a local that they had beer on tap but I did not see it.

The only service when I was there was a couple of young guys working the cash register.

It's in a young/hip/somewhat bohemian area called Newport Beach which has a number of shops and restaurants and is on the ocean which many of the other top beer places can't claim. (1,194 characters)

Photo of crvcac
4.65/5  rDev +1.8%

First and foremost, this place has got everything you're looking for when it comes to beer. It doesn't have the breadth of selection that say bev-mo does, however, everytime I head in there they seem to be carrying what I need. Great selection of local, popular, and hard to find beers. Service is very helpful. Price is pretty standard, not too competitive. Overall experience and small time atmosphere keeps me coming back.

Join their beer member program. Ask one of the employees who you need to talk to in order to enroll. Good perks and early notifications on up-and-coming beer releases/sales. (601 characters)

Photo of augustgarage
4.55/5  rDev -0.4%

Wonderful deli with delicious hot pastrami sandwiches among many other things. Great local bread pies, brownies, and all sorts of things.

Large craft beer, craft soda, and select wine selection with a wall of coolers and a few shelves of more limited bottles. Everything that should be in the fridge is, and most everyone working there seemed to have at least a basic working knowledge of the beer inventory no matter how obscure, sour, or unusual the bottle you ask about. Lots of imports (mostly British though a good Belgian, German, and Italian selection abounds as well), though the local brewers (with most of the currently available line-ups from Lightning, Alpine, Lost Abbey, Green Flash, Alesmith, Ballast Point, etc) are very well represented as well - not to mention Russian River, Marin, and many other NorCal offerings. Some wasted space is given over to macros, but this isn't a place just for beer (or food) snobs - but one that appeals to the relaxed beach-town feel of the neighborhood.

Prices are kind of all over the place - with some good values ($18.99 for Panil Barriquée) and some not so-good (De Dolle Bos Keun 375mL for ~$11).

A pretty good selection of domestics, especially cans, along with some limited bottlings from Deschutes, Hair of the Dog, Caldera, etc.

Stop in for a bite to eat and leave with a big box full of beer (and chocolate) as well!

Their tasting room was closed while we were there, so I didn't get a chance to have anything on draught. Next time... (1,502 characters)

Photo of abcentfishing
4.5/5  rDev -1.5%

Love to stop by, their Thur, Fri, Sat tastings are a wonderful experience. Intimate, clean, remarkably well done and I always find something I want to take home with me. Great service, knowledgeable barkeep with a wonderful passion for brew. Food is good to, and the ocean is just down the block so a bite and brew for the road works out great. The selection is a little small but bigger and more diverse than most, the manager is always expanding his selection and proud of what he brings to the table. I will be going back maybe tomorrow.... (543 characters)

Photo of ryannaman
4.85/5  rDev +6.1%

Live and drink in OB, I am so glad that we have one of the best bottle shops in Cali right in our own back yard! Been a customer for most of my time in OB and am thankful for it. The beer selection is pretty damn good and definitely worth going out of your way to check out. The krew here is awesome people and definitely willing and able to help choose or talk about some beer! Olive Tree is one of the 5 bottle shops in san diego worth checking out and for anyone drinking good craft beer in OB... you better get in there soon!!!! (532 characters)

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.8/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.75

I've been going to this market for 13 years now and it's pretty much been the same people working there the entire time. Newman and the rest of the crew at Olive Tree Market hold it down and always have info on any of the beers you inquire about. The beer selection over the past 3 years has improved immensely and they without a doubt have the best international and local beer selection in OB and Point Loma. Their 750ML and 22OZ selection at the present is amazing. A killer deli, good food and solid wine selection as well. Keep it local!

-Blog: http://olivetreemarketbeer.blogspot.com/

-Also, ask about their beer club. Members get discounts, invitations to tastings, a tulip glass and special offers for club members only. Check it! (740 characters)

Photo of pastradul
4.05/5  rDev -11.4%

I have driven pas this place several times and never would have thought twice to go in. I saw several BA's talk about this place in some threads so i decided to wonder in.

they have a great selection and good prices. good amount of rare beers and all the regulars you would expect to see in a craft beer store!

i didn't get to meet the person in charge of the beer selection but I am sure he is a great guy.

Definitely a place I will visit again! i have seen on the website that there is a tasting room open now! can't wait to go in for a visit! (549 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.2/5  rDev -8.1%

This store is a neat little one in that it's one of those places where you might actually buy more than just beer. They have a nice selection of produce and other food items that looked quite good, including a deli.

The beer selection is not mind-blowingly huge, but it is sizable and tends to feature a lot of great offerings. Of course, all the usual SD offerings, along with plenty of other CA and West Coast beers, and some beers from out of state that you don't see all that often from DFH or GI, etc.

The service was friendly and helpful, though I didn't really aks anything specific about the beer.

Overall, this is a nice store that I'd recommend stopping by if you're in the area. (692 characters)

Photo of pwoods
4.2/5  rDev -8.1%

Mike is running a nice little joint here. Mostly a higher end market with a pretty good beer selection. Most of the big hitters were present but with the limited space you just can't hit everything. He has very quality beers, though, and almost everything was kept cold. They were also the only place in town that I saw Black Tot and Supplication still on shelves. I was unfortunately unable to stop by when Mike was working but I talked with him via BM's and he knows his stuff. Beyond Mike, it didn't seem like anyone else knew too much about the beer. A nice place to check out that might have a few goodies to find. (619 characters)

Photo of PlinyTheYoungest
4.65/5  rDev +1.8%

Finally made it out to check this place out, thanks to the manager Mike messaging me about a bottle of FW XIII he had left. While their selection isn't huge, they get a good variety of beers. I was most impressed by the random special releases they still had that a lot of stores seem to be sold out of. Also their prices seemed very reasonable, definitely on the cheaper end of the SD bottle shop spectrum. And thanks to the special service and help that Mike provided me I am sure to become a return customer there. (517 characters)

Photo of ArrogantB
3.7/5  rDev -19%

I hit this up on advice from my cousin after hanging out at ocean beach earlier in the day. This is a small deli/grocery store but they have a pretty choice selection of beers. I saw several Cantillons, Alesmith 750's, Hanssens gueuze and Kriek, Lost Abbey beers. I picked up a couple Alesmith IPA's and I hope they are fresh. The prices were about average considering the quality of the beers. The only gripe I had was that I picked up a Rubicon IPA only to notice that it was dated 05/2009, I wish stores would pay attention to keeping their IPA's fresh. (556 characters)

Photo of radshoesbro
4.7/5  rDev +2.8%

went in here once a few months ago and was pleasantly suprised to find as big of a selection as they had! everything was within freshness and they had some rarer stuff that definitely makes me want to hit this place up a little more often than i already do.

their staff is very nice, but i feel like they're not super knowledgable about all the beers. after all, it's a grocery store, i don't expect them to know a lot of the questions that i might have for them.

any time that i'm in ocean beach i will definitely swing by to see what they've got!

EDIT:

Been in here a few times and their service is out of control good! Plus, their prices are some of the best in the county. If only they had a bit of a bigger selection I would consistently be in here every week. They update their beer blog every time they get new brews, so I'm gonna be sure to make sure I head down any time they get something cool!

EDIT (another one!):

This might be the best spot in San Diego to get beer. Yes, their selection is small, but they always have very good beer for such a limited selection. Plus, they've got a tasting room now! (1,121 characters)

Photo of GJ40
4.5/5  rDev -1.5%

I visited the Olive Tree while on vacation in San Diego based on the reviews here at BA.

It's a nice little food market with meats, pre-made foods, cheeses, produce and a great beer section. The numbers aren't vast but the quality is very high. They've got a great supply of CA beers including Russian River, AleSmith, Ballast Point, Stone and Lost Abbey. They also carry a decent selection of European beers; especially Belgians. And most of the beer is kept cold as well.

The guy that manages the beer area is very knowledgeable and extremely helpful with recommendations and information. He really knows the CA beer scene.

Olive Tree is well worth a stop if you're in the area. (684 characters)

Photo of paytoplay
4.85/5  rDev +6.1%

A+ job by Mike the man in charge. Selection is superb. Always striving to get in, and in quantity, the good rare stuff. Always willing to chat it up and he himself is always trying the new and the old. Plus i heard... there are some vintage beers aging and will be put out on the self at later dates. Super bonus. The best of the best shops around do this. At least where I shop. Much appreciated. Not to mention the pricing. But more weight in this review goes to the buyer and his / her effort to try all the beers out there. Not just stuff available for them to sell personally. Giving a wide spectrum of knowledge to whats good and for the price. Something that only benefits the end consumer, me. Selection doesn't get a 5.0 because there's always room for improvement. (774 characters)

Photo of Spacegrass
5/5  rDev +9.4%

I visited here twice while in OB. They had a great selection of some of the rare and special edition local brews. They also had a lot of Belgians, micros from other parts of the country, etc.

I visited here to pick up some bottles to fly home with me and I ended up meeting the guy that stocks their beer. I can't remember his name but he was very helpful. I told him my wife really liked the Ballast Points and he went into the back and pulled me one of (if not, his) last Sculpin bottles to take home. Then I tell him I'm trying to find some of the top 50 beers on Beer Advocate, and he pulls out his phone and BA.com is right there on his favorites! He's probably reading this review right now.. To him: thanks for your help, and thanks for hooking up the awesome beers.

On a side note, I also bought a 1/2lb of coffee from here and enjoyed it. (849 characters)

Photo of Chmanzi
5/5  rDev +9.4%

I have to say I wasnt sure what Id find in this little market in the Ocean Beach Area, But i Was Very pleasantly surprised. I didnt go in looking for anything in particular, but a little birdie told me they have an exceptional selection. When I walked in I spoke with Mike who was very helpful and extremely knowledgeable about his selection.

There are only a few coolers here which I liked because I know that everything on the shelves was chosen very carefully and I didnt expect to find and funky old IPA's. They have everything that I would expect form a good San Diego beer seller. They have the better Stone brews, the limited release Ballast Point and Coronado bottles, Lost Abbey's finest, and some of the high end Alesmith Brews. Aside from the locals, Mike keeps up on his belgian ales, and has a great selection of lambic, gueuze, and other interesting imports.

Aside from the selection, everything is kept well, limited UV, good temprature and well organized. You can also pick up some good artisinal cheese, bread, and all sorts of other gourmet and local foods. This makes picking something to pair with your beer not only easy, but fun too.

Definitely a good place to spark up a good conversation about the beer you love, and have yet to find. (1,264 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
5/5  rDev +9.4%

Considering this is my local beer spot (well, 7 miles away) I might be considered by some to be biased. Olive Tree Market is a small store with a deli that sells wine, food, and also has a great beer selection. Mike is the beer manager and he's a great guy. He's very friendly and is always knowledgeable on upcoming releases. The prices here are some of the best around. Mike has a great mix of locals and imports. $4.19 for Pliny? I think that's the best price I've seen. If you're hungry, the deli has a variety of delicious sandwiches. Just check this place out if you're in San Diego. Highly recommended. (609 characters)

Photo of gwguest
4.05/5  rDev -11.4%

I drove over to the Ocean Beach area on my trip to SD to visit the Olive Tree.

It's a little grocery store / market with a fair selection of wine, beer and dry goods. For someone local to the area, I would imagine that the selection isn't anything special, but they did have some limited releases from Stone and Lost Abbey. The prices were very reasonable for all of the beers. I even found one of my favorite beers from my metro area for LESS than I can get it at home. Very cool on one hand, yet very stupid on the other.

The woman who was behind the counter as friendly and offered a box for my purchase. I appreciated the offer and she returned with an sturdy box for my walk back to the car. She also gave me instructions on how to get the beach.

They do have a nice selection of craft beer (Oskar Blues and a couple others I can't recall) in cans if you're visiting the beach.

Recommended, but I can't say that anyone should drive a million miles to visit. (968 characters)

Photo of whoneeds8
5/5  rDev +9.4%

Man, Mike is THE MAN!!!!

My sister was visiting the Marine Depot last week and said if I could get the beer set up for her to pick up, she'd bring it back for me. I thought I'd have to go through Southbay, but it was just too far for her because she didn't have a rental.

That's when I found Mike. And did he hook me up. I was suprised he had all the beers I wanted.
Which were:
Lost Abbey Angel's Share
Lost Abbey Serpants Stout
Lost Abbey 10 Commandments
Alesmith Wee Heavy
Hair of the Dog Adam
Hair of the Dog Fred
Pliney the Elder (He even wrapped this in foam to keep it insulated) 3/20/09 Bottle Date

He even gave her a 10% discount.

I wish I had a job that traveled to San Diego alot, because I know where I'd go for great San Diego Beers.

Thanks again Mike,

Maston (779 characters)

Photo of d0ggnate
5/5  rDev +9.4%

I finally got a chance to stop by Olive Tree today. I had the day off work and thought what an opportunity I have to try some place that I've been thinking of for some time now.

I dropped by just after 3pm. Not busy at all, and I went straight for the beer section. Holy shi... Great selection!! A few fridge doors of quality craft beer. Another few shelves of unrefrigerated liquid gold.

As I perused, I found a large assortment of solid drinkers. A closer look found me with some beer gems. HotD Blue Dot, Avery Brabant, Ommegang Biere de Mars, etc. What a great spot to grab those beers you've been longing to try and just haven't stumbled upon yet. As I checked out, the cashier and I discussed how some of these beers were going to taste and what we thought of other beers in general.

A great atmosphere, quality selection of beer and other goods offered, and all around good times. I was also able to grab a sandwich from the deli and found that to be delicious. I can't wait to make my way back to OB just to visit Olive Tree Market. (1,046 characters)

Photo of tdawgydog
5/5  rDev +9.4%

I have to give a shout out to Mike, the Beer guy at Olive Tree Marketplace. While on vaca in San Diego I was looking for some Pliny the Elder. After posting a message in the BA forums, Mike PM'd me to let me know that his store would be getting a case of Pliny the next day. I swung by there and picked up my Pliny and chatted beer with Mike for a little while. He also recommended two other beers. I'd visit this place all the time if I lived in the area, unfortunately I live 2400 miles away:-( Thanks Mike! (509 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
The Olive Tree Marketplace in San Diego, CA
99 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.