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Toronado

Not Rated.
ToronadoToronado
BA SCORE
99
world-class

197 Ratings
Ratings: 197
Reviews: 111
rAvg: 4.48
pDev: n/a
Taps: 58
Bottles: 250
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

4026 30th St
San Diego, California, 92104-2602
United States
phone: (619) 282-0456

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @toronadosd

Notes:
Place added by: kleffman on 06-29-2008

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Ratings: 197 | Reviews: 111
Photo of glid02
4.4/5  rDev -1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Stopped in during a recent trip to SD.

Atmosphere is good. The main room is very spacious and allows for even a good number of people not to be crushed together. Tables dot the outskirts of the place and the bar is on the right with the beer listed above. If you go around out back there are a few picnic tables but they close the outside down a bit earlier than the inside (this may change as it was for litigious regions).

Quality is very good although admittedly it may just seem better than most because it's Toronado. All beers are served in propoer classware with good head.

Service is good. It's sometimes hard to gain the bartender's attention but not unduly so.

Selection is as expected - very nice. The tap list was impressive enough in itself and the bottle list seals the deal. Check out their website for specifics.

Food is good although a bit more expensive than the beer prices would intimate.

Value is good, with the slight exception of food as noted above.

Overall this place lives up to its billing as a top beer bar and seems very clean compared to what I've heard about the SF location. Worth stopping in if you're in the area.

Photo of adkirkish
4.83/5  rDev +7.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I'm definitely a fan of Toronado. I usually come on monday nights for 3 dollar pint night and now I'll be visiting on wednesdays for their washoe tournaments.

The staff @ Toronado have always been friendly and polite to me and my friends and can always recommend a great beer to me and give me a rundown of what to expect, even throwing in some tasters to help me decide.

The beer and bottle selection is nothing short of awesome. Not only do they carry alot of locally brewed beers (Lost Abbey / Port Brewing / Alesmith / Alpine / Karl Strauss / Green Flash etc.), the list pours into belgian and german styles to name a few.

Along with the amazing beer they have an awesome food selection. I highly recommend their sausage and potato cake plate. They offer a couple different types of links: Italian, Bratwurst, smoked apple chipotle and the portions are huge. The potato cake covers up the entire plate (it's enought for 2 people to share).

The only reason why I gave 4 stars instead of 5 is the size of the bar. It gets crowded on Mondays and I've had to wait outside just to get in the door. If this were a bigger place I would have no complaints what so ever.

Photo of Norsebrew
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 3

The hype did not disappoint! My friend and I kicked off our tour of beerbars with Toronado. As advertised, the tap list and bottle list did not disappoint. I had a Pliny the Elder, a Firestone-Walker seasonal, and couple belgian sours on tap. We easily could have stayed here all night, but there were other places to see. The staff was knowledgeable and friendly. I had a cheeseburger that was great, although the food list was on the small side. The service was average only because there was quite a crowd for them to serve. This is a must visit if you are in the San Diego area!!

Photo of Gobzilla
4.28/5  rDev -4.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

To me it felt like a spot for the locals that like great beer and have gotten to know each other well. Not to much of an atmosphere due to lack of TV and tunes but for sure the main focus is beer, and I don't mine that at all.

Really enjoy places like this that can get rare beer and have an extensive bottle list of them. Had plenty of SD brew on tap and a great bottles list. Having a cable car was awesome cause I had been chasing it for a couple months and was excited to try it for the first time. Service was good and attentive with some knowledgeable bartenders that helped out in our decisions on the great beer. Food was pretty goog considering the selection on it. The only thing bad to say is the prcing on the bottles. Have to come prepared if you wanna drink some good beer.

Photo of Errto
4.18/5  rDev -6.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

I visited the famous Toronado while in SD to see a friend. It was a Sunday and we got there early-ish, so there wasn't much of a crowd.

This was the first, how should I say this, "purist" beer bar that I went to. The appearance, though cool with lots of dark wood and vintage posters, is a bit austere and I didn't see any beverages besides beer available for sale nor any TVs, particularly noticeable music, or anything else to take away from the central focus. Appealing in a way, though ultimately I prefer beer bars that are a little more of a mixed bag. YMMV.

They had a small but fairly decent food menu including some nice specialty sausage that I liked. Draft list was large. I enjoyed RR Damnation and Pliny the Elder as well as NB La Folie, and my friend had a Celebrator, a Bernardus Prior 8 and we also split a bottle of Nøgne Ø's winter beer whose name escapes me. Extremely extensive bottle list including many sought-after rarities, but they ain't cheap.

Overall, a great place to visit for any beer pilgrim. And that's not to mention the spontaneous tasting we got invited to randomly!

Photo of emmasdad
4.44/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Instantly reminded me of the original SF location when I entered through the dutch doors up front. Dark, with lots of dark wood. Beer board above the bar to the right. Again very similar to the original, but cleaner, and not nearly as seedy (the server was also a lot more pleasant). A very nice draft beer selection ($1 off before 6pm) and an amazing (although vastly overpriced) bottle selection. Food menu looked good, but I didn't eat. Overall a tremendous addition to the SD beer scene, but not quite as wonderful as the original.

Photo of yemenmocha
4.73/5  rDev +5.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 5

Loved this place and reminded me a lot of Toronado in S.F. when I visited that one years ago - except the S.D. seemed much newer, cleaner, yet of course had the half-split front door.

I liked the simple policy of ordering at the bar and seating yourself, though it can be a bit uncivilized when trying to transition from standing to seating when everyone else is thinking the same thing. This brings out the worst in people sometimes, especially if a few beers are already under the belt.

Amazing taps and plenty of nice glassware, though many styles receive the plain pint glass. Bartenders were cool for quick questions and help with unfamiliar taps. Prices were a little high for normal prices, but luckily we were here for the $3/pint special on Monday.

A must stop for anyone who visits San Diego.

Photo of womencantsail
4.3/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Stopped in here on Friday night with a friend for a couple beers. The bar itself is quite classy with fairly low lighting, wood floors, nice tables and a nice bar. There is tons of glassware behind the bar along with coolers featuring the rather extensive bottle selection.

The tap list features a lot of California, and especially San Diego, beers including Alpine, Stone, Russian River, Green Flash, etc. There are some imports as well, but nothing terribly exciting on my particular visit.

More impressive than the tap list is the bottle list. Of course, Cable Car, and other rarities from Russian River, Lost Abbey, 50/50, Hair of the Dog, etc. The problem is that the formula for bottle pricing here is: take the retail price and double it. For example, Victory at Sea for $19, 50/50 Imperial Eclipse for $42, Cherry Adam for $29...you get the picture.

The service was good and the bartenders were helpful and friendly, which is always welcomed and a nice change of pace from the SF location.

Other than the high prices, my main gripe with the place was the large number of hipsters in attendance. I try to ignore these folks as much as possible, but it can be difficult when they're over running the bar.

Photo of everetends
4.74/5  rDev +5.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Stopped in here on my trip to San Diego. I have heard so much about the San Fran location, I figured I had to give this one a shot.

Walked in and was kind of shocked at how small the place was. A little quaint and cozy. It was a Tuesday night and the place was pretty packed. Strange crowd consisted of a large amount of hipsters, one very loud and obnoxious musician, a handful of beer noobs and some beer quiet beer lovers. Seems like this bar was more of a trendy place to most of the patrons the night I was in.

My bartender was great (I believe his name was Eric). He was a cool guy who was on his game considering he was the only bartender on duty that night. He found out we were from Alabama and that we knew a little about beer and it was like we were all old friends. He made us feel at home and even introduced us to some regulars who were friends of his.

The selection was amazing as expected. Just so many quality taps it was hard to figure out what to order every round. I didn't order anything from their bottle collection, but it was quite impressive.

The only downfall I could find with this place was that it closed at midnight during the week due to some crazy local restrictions they were having to deal with. It was difficult to leave but a blast while we were there. I will absolutely make a return trip next time I am in SD.

Photo of pwoods
4.65/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Stopped here twice while in SD. Atmosphere is a bit mixed. There are a few pretty cool, chill people. But there are also quite a few douche hipsters and the same goes for nerdy beer nerds. But other than that, this place is beer heaven with tons of rare and large format bottles all over the place and the craziest glassware selection I've ever seen. The quality and selection is unrivaled. Double Cherry Red Poppy, CdT, Expo Hop, Mongo IPA, Melange 6, etc. etc. etc. etc. on tap. Tons of the best locals/regionals in the coolers, and they had quite a few Cable Cars available. Service was a bit spotty. They didn't really seem to care too much. There was one guy that was pretty good, though. The food was pretty damn good, too, though it's mostly just burgers and sandwiches... though a bit upper scale. And they actually cooked my burger rare like I asked. Food is reasonably priced, too. The beer, however, is pretty expensive. Most of the limited stuff was served in 5ish ounce glasses that were $5. The bottles are expensive, too. Though where else are you going to be able to order a Cable Car? There are a few flaws to this place but at the end of the day I think it'd rare go here than anywhere else I've ever visited.

Photo of ocmpoma
4.15/5  rDev -7.4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

visited on 2 Mar 10:

Stopped by this afternoon to kill some time with a brew. 2pm on a Tuesday, and there were a handful of people in the bar besides me. It seemed a bit spartan, but I'm not sure if they had the furniture pushed aside because of the time of day. Pretty standard set-up: bar on the right as you walk in, seating off to the left. There was only one TV, which is nice, and there is a good-sized bier garten out back with some picnic tables. Lots of beer signage on the walls.

Taps are listed above the bar, and there are plenty of them. Unfortunately for me, there wasn't anything on cask. Specials are on additional chalkboards, and the bottle list, which is very extensive, is available. They had lots to choose from, plenty of Belgians in bottles, lots of variety on the taps, from the Bruery to Franziskaner to Guinness. Both Plinys (Plinies?) were available on tap. That's right, you can have the Elder and Younger go head-to-head.

I ordered a tripel, but the bartender informed me that it wasn't panning out at the tapline and that she could get me a bottle of it. I decided for a selection from the Bruery they had on tap, instead. The service was great, especially since the sole bartender had to deal with a... shall I say, grumpy... elderly gent who was hard of hearing and wanted "a lager" or something "not dark" and needed his onions for the sandwich chopped up. She definitely handled him with patience and class.

Overall, a good experience -- obviously, as it's the Toronado, it's a beer-focused place. Not really my style, but far and away better than many other places I've been.

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.74/5  rDev +5.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

One big strength of the San Diego branch is that the tap list is updated on the website with some regularity. I never trust the web information at the original. The taps are all top shelf as they should be: Abyss, Black Butte XXI, Mirror Mirror, Damnation, Blind Pig, Alaskan Smoked Porter, Alpine Uncommon, 12 beers from Pizza Port, Old Rasputin on nitro, Allagash Curieux, and another 15 or so beers. Plus a huge bottle list, including my choice: Cable Car 2009. Much cleaner and more civilized than the San Francisco location. But I still love the gritty feel and beer selections of the spot on 547 Haight, and it's always the first place I go when in town.

Photo of woodychandler
4.2/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

An entry in center of two overlooking windows with the "L"-shaped dark wood bar to right with 7 coolers as the back bar, as well as a bank of 50 in the back/center corner. A fairly minimal space with standard tables and chairs against left wall with high tables and chairs center. Pressed tin signs on left wall. Lavs all of the way aft, left. Having been to its sister location in SF, the service here was MUCH better. Cuz Colby was well-recieved as we walked in and we encountered some other beer luminaries as we sat and had lunch. I was deeply impressed by the 30th Street area and its bars.

Photo of radshoesbro
4.43/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

i come in here every once in a while, and i've enjoyed myself every time. they don't always have totally amazing finds on tap, but they've almost always got a couple really awesome bottles if you're ready to fork over some money. which is what i did a couple months ago when my party split a bottle of isabelle and cable car.

their bartenders are knowledgable, and seem like they could answer any questions that i have. they don't really bother you unless you look like you need assistance, which i can't stress how much i like! on one visit while my wife and i were having afternoon drinks one of the bartenders offered to let us try some of what they were drinking behind the bar, which was nice. we had a nogne-o pale and a framboise, the name of which is escaping me.

a fair selection of "pub food," their saugsages being the smartest choice. their potato salad is pretty incredible, and my wife raves about it all the time.

the only thing i don't really like is that they're very slow to update their website. it seems like every time i look it says they have the same things on tap. which, unless they never rotate a lot of their selection, can get fairly annoying. other than that, this is a nice bar to be able to hit up on a non-crowded day.

Photo of antilogic
4.44/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

Good selection. Went down for the 1st Anniversary party. Had some fantastic beers, including Cable Car (bottle '08), Midas Touch, Abyss '08, Pliney the Elder...

Some some other friendly BA faces there, and brought down a group of my non-BA friends which really liked the place as well.

Chatted with the owner and bartenders, and got some really great service. The Sister bar in SF could learn a thing or two. I will definitely be returning to Tornado SD -- Good section, nice open atmosphere with tables, bar stools and places to sit, great service, nice bathrooms, and a decent location.

Photo of OlieIPA
4.35/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Recently visited this place to meet up with some old SD friends.

A: I really enjoyed this place...but I'm not sure if it was due to the company I had. If I were going to visit this on any other occasion...I would probably still enjoy it, just not to the extent I that I initially had.

Q: For the most part, the quality seemed good...but nothing absolutely amazing.

S: Prompt and polite...just the way it should be.

S: The best thing about this place...for sure! When you have 50 taps that are all exceptional and a bottle list that includes Cable Car...all you have to do is say "WOW!" I was lucky to order a Duet IPA and Expo Hoppiness during my visit.

Overall: A must visit!

Photo of GJ40
4.72/5  rDev +5.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

I've made a quick visit to the Toronado in SF so I knew I had to visit the SD location. As many have noted, the SD location is a very different place but it's no commercial sellout. It still has lots of character and a serious, authentic pub vibe.

Toronado SD has a great selection of beer on tap (about 42 by my count) with lots from CA but also some good ones from the east coast and Europe. And they have many more in the bottle. I went with an Alpine O'Brien's IPA, an AleSmith IPA and a Bruery Humulus Lager. They were all fantastic. My wife had a RR PtE.

We also ate there and I loved the food. I had a Jalapeno burger and it was cooked perfectly and served on a nice soft, bready roll. Others in the group had BLTAs (BLTs with avocado) and a salad. Everything was good.

Toronado has it all... the atmosphere, the draft beer and the food. It's the real deal.

Photo of botham
4.45/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Phenomenal. Toronado is a badass beer bar. very unassuming from the outside and on the inside, the acoustics are horrid and the place could use twice the seating and it still wouldn't feel cramped. appearances aside, the tap list is excellent and the bottle list is even better.

quality and service were both great. proper glassware, clean conditions, easygoing barkeeps with a love for craft beer, all the ingredients of a great beer bar can be found here.

selection was very deep. there is a bias towards belgian and belgian style beers, but all other style categories are represented nicely. Russian River had three taps, Lost Abbey had four taps, and a bunch of local stuff was available aside from the belgian stock. Very diverse lists; someone has put a lot of thought into what is being served here.

food is available, but was not tried.

overall, this is a must-visit for BAs around San Diego. it does not help that this BA is staying with his sister, which lives literally two hundred feet from the front door! highly recommended. cheers!

Photo of kbm
4.6/5  rDev +2.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

I had a couple hours to kill in SD. To my surprise, I was only few miles away from Toronado. Showed up about 1pm on a Wednesday with my seventh month old.

There were only a few people in the joint so I had no problem with service.

First things first: the beer selection is top notch. I drank two Temptations, a La Flolie and a pint of Nelson (my wife had a Festina Peche).

I enjoyed the atmosphere but I can see why some people find it a little too hip. I think this has less to do with the decor and more to do with the employees and the music - both of which didn't bother me.

The bartender was super friendly and attentive. Easy ordering and they didn't require a card to start a tab (probably due to the few customers at the time).

Beer was served perfectly and tap prices (especially for happy hour) were good. Full pours. I can see where someone could get hung up on the bottle prices. But where else are you going to get a bottle of Isabella ($50) or Westy 8/12 ($42 and not advertised)? Personally, I wouldn't pay that amount for either beer but I don't hold it against them.

My only complaint is that there is no indication of the volume of a pour but that's a common complaint of mine and only a few places actually indicate pour volume, so no big deal.

I didn't eat.

If I was local, I would be here often.

Photo of DefenCorps
4.3/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

With the San Francisco location being one of my favorite bars, I was really looking forward to visiting this place on a recent trip to San Diego. The atmosphere left me really puzzled. Call me a troglodyte, but I do not want to go to a place called the Toronado when :
1. They have pop punk playing
2. They have a jukebox
3. Food comes on trendy square plates.
Not that I have anything against any of these, it just goes against everything I've come to expect and love about the SF location. Once I got over that disappointment, the massive amounts of breweriana that adorn the walls make for some interesting looking.

That about sums up all that's wrong with this place. Everything else is fucking excellent - tons of glassware with beer served in appropriate glasses, a ton of beers with a wide selection of breweries and styles and an extensive bottle list. I'd initially planned on stopping off for just one beer, but I ended up spending a couple of hours, drinking a Pliny the Elder, 1998 JW Lees, Isabelle Proximus and a Blind Pig. Phenomenal selection, and very fair prices too (especially on the taps). And any place that has bottles of Cable Car is a great place, in my book.

Service was great too - never had to wait for a beer, and the bartender was kind enough to give me the bottle of Proximus without popping the cork and let it warm up. With the lack of an off-premise sale license, that could be a risky move, but he was receptive to our request.

Food-wise, I only had a lamb sausage, one that was good, but a little salty. Excellent flavor, and pretty reasonably priced as well. All told, a must stop, but under no circumstances should you expect the vibe of the SF location.

Photo of KNORDSTROM
4.47/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Started out the beer drinking weekend at the TORONADO. This was my second time to go to the T. The first time I was very lucky to show up at there 1st Anniversary party. CABLE CAR, CONSECRATION,BEATIFICATION AND TORONADO'S 20TH ANNIVERSARY BEER. WOW ! WOW! WOW!. I've always been a IPA drinker , but I'm open minded after those tastings.

We had the taco's and a suasage for lunch. They were tasty.

Service was a MAJOR plus they were very kind and helpful both time's that we had gone. Got some goodlooking chicks to.

Cant wait to go back. It's just a 4 hour drive from LAS VEGAS FOR US , BUT WILL DO IT ONCE A MONTH!

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.1/5  rDev -30.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | food: 3

I stopped in here for dinner as my last destination before leaving San Diego. Finding the place was easy and so was getting a parking space. About six storefronts away, we could hear a roar of people and found it to be coming from Toronado.

The place was far from packed, the music was not loud, but we could not communicate in anything less than a yell. I found this to be ridiculous. Why was it so loud? Bad acoustics? The building itself was simple, yet sharp, but with the commotion, it was hard to enjoy myself.

The tap list was amazing. This is clearly the place to be if you want a sampling of San Diego brews. There was so much to choose from and so much that I had not heard of, it was a bit overwhelming. I had to go with some Blind Pig and Alpine's Red.

The Food was tasty, but disappointing. We came here to get some grub to fill up for the 5 hour plane ride back to Philly and were served petite portions of decent food. I got the pulled pork, which was pretty darn good, but there was only a thin smear of it across my bun. There was literally twice as much bun as pork, so I felt I paid $12 for a BBQ tasting bun. On top of that, it came with a few tablespoons of baked beans which I didn't really care for. There seemed to be a vinegar and spicy sweetness that really didn't get along. Also, the lack of fries (again, considering $12 for an appetizer sandwich) was disappointing. The lady got the beef satay and it came out cold. Mmm. Cold beef. I don't know if this was customary here, but its the first time we've gotten that dish cold. The cucumber salad that came with it was awesome though. To seal the deal, we got creme brule for desert and it came with a light dusting of cheddar cheese. Not kidding. On top of that, we were given forks to eat it. Wow. The portion sizes and poor quality control drop my score here quite a bit.

I would like to say a bit about service here, but there really isn't any. It's a do-it-yourself place where everything is ordered at the bar. We sat there for quite a while before realizing this, also with the last customers' old plates of food on our table. So, I had to go order beer and food and then carry a little card with our number on it back to the table with two drinks in hand. Had we had another person, this would have been a two trip job. Food came out quickly, but we still had to go up to the bar and order more beer and desert. This time, we got flat out ignored for about 10 minutes. The bartender had tunnel vision and didn't even look at the end of the bar for the longest time. We enlisted the help of a few locals to get the bar tenders attention and we waved our arms and shouted a bit just to get him to turn his head and realize that someone needed his help in order to execute the strange serving model set up here. So, for service, I really have to say, "what service?"

Not a bad place if you're sitting at the bar and only ordering beer. I presume that would be an awesome experience. But the conversation stopping noise, the lack of service, pretentious portions and randomized quality of food was a bit frustrating. I won't return, unless I'm just there for a beer at the bar.

Photo of csmiley
4.4/5  rDev -1.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Stopped by Toronado on a Monday evening in hopes of catching this place when it's not quite so busy. Well, it was still packed but pretty manageable. It's a pretty small place but there is also a patio out back which does help a little. Location seems to be just far enough off the beaten path that the off street parking is not a huge problem. The overall vibe of the place is pretty laid back and friendly. I can see stopping by to socialize and have a great beer. The bartenders were nice and come across as knowing at least a little about the brews they were serving. The food that I saw floating around looked good though my party didn't want to bother waiting for a table to try it out. The selection here is fantastic. There are 40 + taps that included: Allagash, Russian River, Sierra Nevada, Port, Green Flash, and many others. Bottle selection was also impressive with offerings from Lost Abbey, Boulevard, Meantime, Fullers, Nogne O, J. W. Lees, Hair of the Dog. Notice some of the bottles are vintages which is a plus in my book. This is a highly recommended place for anyone traveling through the San Diego area.

Photo of bigbelcher
4.2/5  rDev -6.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Wow, totally different feel than the Toranado in San Francisco. Clean and well lit. Limited food menu but the sausage was good and reasonably priced. Beer selection was good with lots of IPA's and Lost Abbey/Port Brewing beers on tap. Service was good, bartenders were pretty knowledgable and unlike the one in San Francisco- they were friendly which scores big points in my book. Some may say that adds to the charm of the one up north but I don't like being treated like a dumb kid when I go in some place. Kudos on the friendly service,

Photo of gwguest
4.75/5  rDev +6%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

Visiting SD from the Midwest, I had targeted the Toronado as a place to try a lot of beers that are only available on the west coast. I was not disappointed.

I arrived at around 2:00 on a Wednesday and there were about 6 other customers there. The place is clean with a nice wooden bar and impressive refridg'd cases of bottled beer with taps over in one corner. Toronado does a great job of keeping their web site updated with the current selection of draft beer. The atmosphere is difficult to judge, as I don't expect any place to be that great on Wed. afternoon, but it was comfortable.

The draft beer list is great and has a lot of west coast beers and highlights from around the country and a few international selections as well. For my purposes, there was plenty to try.

The service was fantastic. I was greeted promptly and my first beer was delivered quickly (not a surprise considering how few customers were in the place, but I've been to plenty of places where service is painfully slow even with few customers). The bartender knew the beer selection well and the nuances of a few beers about which I needed some more info. The bartender also let me know about some upcoming events that I could attend. I even spoke (randomly) to the owner who was also very laid back and knowledgeable.

After a couple of beers, I ordered a sausage and a third beer but asked the bartender to not bring the third beer until the sausage was ready. Again, a simple instruction that most places will screw up. The bartender obviously listened to my request and brought me a water while I waited. A few minutes later, the sausage and beer arrived exactly as I asked.

The smoked cajun sausage was quite tasty with my Pliny.

After some more time, and a low abv to finish my visit, my bill was astoundingly low. Four great quality beers, and a sausage was a mere $17 during happy hour. Even full price would have been a good deal, as the posted prices are very reasonable.

A nice relaxed place for great beer, great service and very good food. Recommended.

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Toronado in San Diego, CA
99 out of 100 based on 197 ratings.