Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine and get 12 issues / year of fresh beer content delivered to your door each month.

Already subscribe? to manage your subscription.

O'Brien's

Not Rated.
O'Brien'sO'Brien's
BA SCORE
97
world-class

117 Reviews
Reviews: 117
Visits: 153
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: n/a
Taps: 20
Bottles: 85
Cask: Y
[ Bar, Eatery ]

4646 Convoy St
San Diego, California, 92111-2315
United States
phone: (858) 715-1745

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap @obrienspubsd

Notes:
Place added by: xlperro

No notes at this time.
Place: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 117 | Visits: 153
Reviews by csmiley:
Photo of csmiley
4/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

This is a pub located at the end of a small shopping center. Stopped by on a Friday afternoon and parking was minimal. It could take a while to get a space around the pub. Once you walk in, all directions point to the bar. All food and beer orders are handled in that vicinity. Table service is pretty scarce for the most part. Food was good based on the cheeseburger I had. Selection is very nice for a place this size. Taps included: Russian River, Ballast Point, Avery, Bear Republic, among others. Bottled selections were around 100 - 150 and also impressed. I noticed selections from: Cantillon, Achel, Fantome, Russian River, Lost Abbey, Dansk, and Hair of the Dog. Atmosphere is pretty laid back but it was still really busy given the fact that I stopped by early in the afternoon. Overall I could see this place being a great place to have a beer. Food would be something I might shy away from given the atmosphere of the place. If a busy pub is what you're looking for then this is the place for you. (1,009 characters)

More User Reviews:
Photo of billab914
4.34/5  rDev -1.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Photo of blockdude
4.79/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.75

Photo of Thepleasantimbiber
4.39/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

Photo of the_encinitan
4/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Photo of MisterGone
4.73/5  rDev +7.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4.75

I would first warn potential new patrons of the parking issue. The small lot that services this place is always completely full. No worries, plenty of street parking (not on Convoy!). Every time we've come we've had less than a block of walking. I now skip the lot and go straight to street. On reason for this is that it appears that this little strip mall holds 4 of the most popular eateries in all of Kearny Mesa (this being one of them).

Get in line and order at the corner of the bar closest to the front door. Take your brew and number (for food) an head for a seat. Myself, I prefer the green rolly-chairs, reboots from some 1970s law firm library. Take in the decor of brew banners and signs, and soccer on TV (our last visit was watching Tottenham thrash Chelsea).

As for the beer, this is a beer geeks place. Simple as that. They've got what you want. Full selection of San Diego, notable American, and Belgian offerings. So far the only place I've been that has Alpine without having to go up the hill to Alpine.

The menu is a bit deceptive. Looks like typical pub far of sandwiches, burgers, deep fried stuff. Bu the sandwiches are just fantastic. Great flavor combos. And who would think that a beer place with burgers and sandwiches would have stellar salads? Perfectly tart Caesar.

This is a must. Just go. (1,328 characters)

Photo of bigTmachine
3/5  rDev -31.7%

Photo of HunterSBeerson
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of AmandaBT
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Coconuts
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.35/5  rDev -0.9%

Photo of Halloran33
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of DoubleJ
4.45/5  rDev +1.4%

When I look back at my 20's, I'm going to remember a number of things; college graduation, trips to Brazil, life on my own, a taste for beer. Not far off that list will be "Why did it take me more than seven years to visit O'Briens?" Although I've lived an hour north, I found time to make a few beer-related trips to San Diego each year, but each time bouncing pass O'Brien's.

But finally, that moment happened. Brazukas from overseas in town, and they're ready to drink the town dry of hops. In a strip mall filled with Asian eateries, O'Brien's look out of place. There was no parking inside the strip mall, so that meant parking on the street. I was worried that all the cars were driven by thirsty beer drinkers, but on a Thursday night, there was still ample space to crawl around and find our own seats at the bar. Somewhat darkly lit inside, lovely Belgian beer glassware visible behind the counter, beer signage pasted on the walls, a marker board posting special events, and even pimping its own special beer trip to Europe, you can tell there's a love for beer at O'Brien's.

Choosing a beer was another challenge, as two dozen fun beers were pouring from tap, two casks, and a bottle list filled with lovely Belgians. We were lucky to hit on the night of fresh hop ales, as it looked that one of my mates reached a hop orgasm before the night was through. Beers from Ballast Point, Bell's, Artifex, Nickel, Rochefort, Tripel Karmeliet, all available and (of the beer I tasted ) in excellent shape. Perhaps the one small flaw I can think of involves those boring shaker pint glasses

On par with the beer was the service, which was not only knowledgeable, but quick and enthusiastic to serve. I also snuck in time for some food. Food is simple but tasty (garlic fries, nachos, sausage & cheese plate), further putting O'Brien's into legendary status.

Can't decide which brewery to visit? Just visit O'Brien's instead. It's certainly better than feeling undecided to which brewery to visit next! (2,011 characters)

Photo of nebuchadnezzer
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of AlexM
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Bubbawilly88
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of aoampm
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of SDRedDevil
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of BreweryRun
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Photo of jcallover34
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Boone757
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of rolltide
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of joelambic
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of Wbradfordheaton
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of DNICE555
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
O'Brien's in San Diego, CA
97 out of 100 based on 117 ratings.