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Blind Lady Ale House & Automatic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Blind Lady Ale House & Automatic Brewing Co.Blind Lady Ale House & Automatic Brewing Co.
BEER AVG
3.63/5
Based on:
21 Beers
44 Ratings
Place Score: 94
Ratings: 61
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: n/a
Taps: 20
Bottles: --
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

3416 Adams Ave.
San Diego, California, 92116
United States
phone: (619) 555-1234

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
Automatic Brewing Co. is a nano-brewery of sorts brewing in the back of Blind Lady Ale House.  http://automaticbrewingco.com 

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-30-2009)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 61 | Reviews: 42 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of magictrokini
3.15/5  rDev -25%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 2

Love the vibe, very mellow, brick-and-wood interior. Cozy in terms of personal space. Had a video screen playing skateboarding at the time. Loud, don't expect to have a quiet conversation. Beer selection was small for an "Ale House." Sadly, it was dominated by Oktoberfest and other lagers at the time, and the Stone 13th was out. The pizza was weak. However, in the interests of full disclosure, I am a pizza snob. Prices were unimpressive, probably $2 more than anywhere else; well anywhere but Toronado SD. In short, this is not Pizza Port, so don't go there thinking it is a suitable alternative.

Photo of womencantsail
3.56/5  rDev -15.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3

Stopped here with t0rin0 awhile back, but never got around to posting my review.

Don't really bother trying to park in their lot, just go down one of the side streets and find a place somewhere down there.

We walked in and looked at the beer list, and there wasn't really much going on. Perhaps we were led astray by the classification of this place as a "brewpub". There were no house beers on, but a few decent choices on-tap.

No food was ordered, but it looked like they made a fine pizza from the appearance and smell of them. But you definitely pay for them...

The people were nice and the service was quick, but I guess I was just overall let down due to the lack of house beers and the fairly high prices.

You're better off heading a few blocks down to someplace like Toronado.

Photo of Floydster
3.59/5  rDev -14.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

We stopped here on an early Saturday afternoon, located on the east side of the 805 Freeway, surprised a place like this was in this neighborhood, walked in and saw a bistro-like atmosphere, bar directly in front of me, saw they used proper glassware immediately, clean and brand new, liked the way this place was set up although it was quite small, heard the pizza was good but was not hungry since we went right after lunch, took a while to get a bartender's attention, not many people were working but that was expected since business was slow, I ordered Automatic, their only house made beer at the moment but they were out, seemed like they had not had it for a long time too, I got a Dogfish Head Punkin instead and paid close to what I would get a four pack for at the store, not much interesting stuff on tap but it is all craft or Belgian, probably will only go back to this place once they start brewing, which is based on a pending license I believe, or when they have special events because I have heard some cool local beers show up at those, would definitely stop by if I was down there this weekend for San Diego Beer Week, still worth checking out regardless

Photo of LADaveBN
3.8/5  rDev -9.5%

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.86/5  rDev -8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

Stopped in here with some friends on Friday night. We ended up staying for two or three rounds, before moving onto Toronado.

Blind Lady Ale House is a pretty comfortable drinking spot. Even with a good-sized crowd, we were able to move around pretty easily, and eventually landed a table near the bar. The mood felt local and relaxed; cheery conversation filled the air. Many of the walls are lined with old beer bottles, which I really enjoyed - I used to decorate my garage the same way. All that said, there wasn't anything exceptional about this bar, but I could certainly see it being a good regular hang-out.

The tap list was solid, but didn't match that of Toronado, Small Bar, Hamilton's, and the other top beer bars in the area. They offered a good variety of styles, including a few lambics and sours, and each selection was either a great representation of its style or something new and interesting (e.g. Mother Earth's agave saison). There were a few in-house beers that bore the name "New English", and the one I tried (an English IPA) was pretty satisfying.

We had to order all of our drinks at the bar, but the bartender was very attentive and speedy... though also terse. S'all good in my book.

If you're looking to add another bar to your North Park pub crawl, this is certainly a worthy stop. Otherwise, hit up Toronado, Hamilton's, or Small Bar. Also, last call is at 11:15pm - lame!

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.86/5  rDev -8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

We got there after the kitchen had closed, so no words of wisdom on the food. The place has a cool vibe to it. Lots of art with beer and brewing as the subject, a glassed in wall of antique beer cans, and plenty of seating for a smaller sized establishment. We were there at night, and it at first appears to be too dark inside, but once you sit down the lighting is perfect. The bartender was very helpful when we were ordering. She informed us that their brews (Automatic Brewing Co) are in extremely short supply, and that they usually sell out within a day or two. That being said, they did not have any of their brews available while we were there. I remember briefly checking their website before we went, but don't recall if that was noted on there or not. On an interesting note, they were currently having their 2nd annual blind tasting contest that consisted of 7 BMC-type products, one of them being a 1yr old can of PBR...if you get all of them correct, you score a $100 gift card. Very interesting idea. Overall, their tap list was decent. I think there were about 15 available. The prices were very decent, too. We would absolutely make a return trip there the next time we are in the San Diego area.

Photo of FlyingBull
3.91/5  rDev -6.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 4

We used to live 1 block from here and would enjoy walking down for a brew and some pizza. They have a nice selection of craft brews on tap, accompanied by some good gourmet pizzas and other snacks. The interior is kind of typical "beer bar...find a place to sit if you can" community tables. There is no table service; order at the counter and off you go.

Go early and you'll find a nice reasonable quiet place to enjoy a craft beer and some good food. Go after ~4 p.m. ish and the place can get real crowded real fast. Thursday, and especially Friday, and Saturday can be real crowded and difficult to find a seat until the kitchen closes and the hipster moms/dads/kiddies clear out.

While in general, I like this place, I find their beers and pizzas a little on the expensive side vs. what they are. While we still occasionally go there, I'd much rather go to Hamilton's or Small Bar.

Photo of bcm119
3.94/5  rDev -6.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Fairly roomy place with many long tables, dark wood and sparse but tasteful decor. Nice selection of higher end beers, but a little less focused on local breweries than the SD Toronado. The clientele is pretty young; there are scattered hipsters but the crowd is not too homogenous, for SD at least. The acoustics are cavernous and it was pretty loud on the Saturday night I visited. Overall a stylish place with a vibrant young crowd and an upscale urban feel; not a neighborhood pub with a locals feel. Worth a visit.

Photo of nickd717
3.98/5  rDev -5.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Went here during SD Beer Week '09. Lots of great stuff on tap, although it was a bummer that a lot of the better kegs kicked before I got there (around 10pm). The place is also ridiculously small, but they keep it from getting too packed by not letting too many people in. The downside of that is that you might have to wait in line outside. I had to wait, and even my "Don't you know who I am???" trick didn't work on the guy at the door.

Finally I got in and liked what I saw. Solid atmosphere and decor. Great beers on tap: AleSmith, Port/Lost Abbey, Alpine, Russian River, etc. I ordered an AleSmith Nautical Nut Brown and a Lost Abbey Devotion Ale, which were only about $4 apiece if I remember correctly. Also had a pizza, which was above average but not great. Service is decent, but be prepared to wait in fairly long lines sometimes to order.

The crowd is a fun one. Next to us was a pack of cougs in their mid-30's, who my buddy once removed (i.e. a buddy of my buddy who is not necessarily a buddy of mine) spent most of the night hitting on. Having a serious girlfriend myself, I wasn't able to partake in this cougar hunt. Bummer.

I see now that this place is brewing their own beer, and the one listed has an A-. Nice. I'll have to come back sometime and try it.

Photo of HopHead84
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of trytoketchup
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of bradybeer
4/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Stopped by here because we were interested in seeing what the nano was up to. Walking in the bar is to the front. Beer on one side and food the other half. You order food and beer and they bring the food to you. Food looked good but didn't try any thing.

The atmosphere was nice and if we lived here we would be regulars. We could chill at a long table, play some board games, and drink very good beers.

On tap was a pale ale, IPA, DIPA, and a Saison, We enjoyed the pale ale, IPA, and DIPA. There was 20 plus guest taps but didn't try any.

Service was very good and quick.

Photo of antoines15
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of double2chin
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of djaeon
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Kalenm
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of bcerv-ca
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Norsebrew
4/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

I hit this place after a stop a Toronado. We walked there and it probably took 15 minutes. This place is more like restaurant with a great tap list. The beer selection was very balanced and had alot of gems from local San Diego area breweries. The atmosphere is open with a great Hamms beer wall art. The place of packed on a Thursday night at 9pm. The pizza was very tasty. This is a great place to go if you want a good mix of food and beer. If beer is all you are after, I would try Toronado, Hamilton's Tavern, or Small Bar in the area.

Photo of CapnTrav
4/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of ryannaman
4.03/5  rDev -4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

Stopped in a few months back and have to say this place was definitely a good choice to stop! The big board had some awesome brews... went with a DFH beer of some sort... can't recall because of the drinking that took place the rest of the night. I have to say that the service of the place was dull for only about 25-30 people there. The bartender was in some sort of daze at that point... whatever wasn't in there to shoot the shit and talk beer with the staff... although some interaction would have been nice. The lighting was nice and low... the way I like it and the benches make it a unique environment. All in all a decent time was had... so I can't complain!

Photo of tpd975
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

WeeHeavySD took me here on my trip to San Diego.

Cool little bar with open seating. The place was packed but we did find a seat. You order first and seat yourself.

I ordered a pizza which was very good. Lots of flavor and toppings for a more than fair price. The beer is all on a chalk board with a nice number of selections.

Lots of San Diego gems along with some from elsewhere. Not the best beer selection in the world, but not one I would turn my nose up at.

Overall a cool bar with great food.... there is a pretty nice beer selection to boot.

Photo of chinchill
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Visited on 4th of July a/m/ when the BLAH nicely opened early to allow viewing of the World Cup match. About 24 beers on tap, including one cask from Stone. Good variety with the selection favoring Calif. beers (including Alesmith's Speedway and Horny Devil as well as RR Pliny [Elder]) but also including a number of internationals. Food has a very good reputation but the kitchen was closed due to the holiday.

Photo of jjboesen
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.25

SDBW12 Number Nine. Translation: the Blind Lady Ale House was the ninth stop of my San Diego Beer Week 2012 trip and the one that was the farthest to reach as it required more than one bus, one being the Number 2 that also passes by the front door of the beloved Toronado. (See Review.)

The home of Automatic Brewery, Blind Lady, or BLAH – do not take this as a critique, is on the north side of Adams Avenue, in a neighborhood known as Normal Heights. Walking through the front doors and into the rustic dining area, you face a small serving bar, where house beers (and local crafts) are poured for the thirsty patrons who have gathered with families and friends as well as locals and strangers enjoying their brews and bites at rows of communal tables. Incidentally, if you are ever curious as to where to find the noisiest brats in San Diego, then search no further than this particular room.

Much like other San Diego’s beer venues, there is no table service, so you will need to go to the aforementioned bar and order the aforementioned brews and bites, the latter including some tasty salami pizza along with some pricey charcuterie: this, a fancy word for sausage and cheese platter. I got a chance to quaff their very decent Equal Rye along with an interesting Humulus Lager from friendly competitor Bruery. The beers here are fresh, well crafted and well poured. Well, one problem here at BLAH was the generally long line that resulted from the one server who seemed to spend more time checking IDs of fat Mexican chicks than pouring beers for us “thirsty patrons.”

While I probably won’t return during a future visit, Blind Lady should probably be on the itinerary of any first timer here.

Photo of csmiley
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

The Blind Lady is a small establishment that serves pizza and beer. Not hard to find but parking can be problematic once there. Looks like all parking is on the street. After walking in, there are two lines- one for beer and one for food. After getting a beer it's every man for himself in regards to seating. I stopped by on a Sunday afternoon so finding a a seat wasn't hard. Selection of taps is nice and included: Ballast Point, Green Flash, Alpine, Mission, and DuPont. Bottle selection was pretty thin but they at least had Consecration. One big letdown was no Blind Lady ales at the Blind Lady Ale House. Only guest taps available during m visit. Food (pizza) looked good but my party didn't partake. Overall vibe was laid back and the people there were nice. I would definitely stop by again for a brew.

Photo of kleffman
4.08/5  rDev -2.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Checked out The Blind Lady on a Friday night around 6:30. Was pouring rain, so I hoped it would keep the crowds down a bit. Wrong. However, with an outstanding beer selection it wasn't hard to stay occupied. Although there isn't much room to just stand a drink a beer, the layout is a bit awkward. You have to be a jackal to get a table, but eventually it will happen, and that's when I got to order some food. Got a couple pizzas and a caesar salad. Food was very good, and well worth it. Actually the prices are reasonable too. Beer prices are a bit steep for small pours, but I find it hard to complain too much about this place. Overall good, but I wish it wasn't a seat yourself style place like Pizza Port where it's just total mayhem finding a table. Oh well, I'll go back, worth the hassle.

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Blind Lady Ale House & Automatic Brewing Co. in San Diego, CA
94 out of 100 based on 61 ratings.