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O'Brien's

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

146 Ratings
Ratings: 146
Reviews: 116
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 8.88%
Taps: 20
Bottles: 85
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: 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:
None, yet.

(Place added by: xlperro)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 146 | Reviews: 116 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by opwog:
Photo of opwog
4.22/5  rDev -3.9%

I have been to O'Brien's once years ago for some Stone party during the World Beer Cup, but back in those days I use to chisel my reviews on the side of brick buildings.

So I made my way back down there finally during their anniversary week, for the Greenflash night. First of all, the bar is an anomaly as an Irish named beer bar stuck at the end of a busy Asian plaza. So parking can be an issue as you try not to hit the hipster youth culture driving tricked out cars or small cycles with mohawk helmets. But once you get the car parked, everything seems to gel together. The bar itself almost prides itself on not being anything special. It is a smaller room with about 10 bar seats and then an uncomfortable assortment of over crowded tables and broken chairs. This is surrounded by an L shape outdoor patio with wobbly plastic patio furniture that you would buy at Longs Drugs.

But this place is not about furniture nor comfort, it is about getting a full pint of aged Barleywine if you want it. On this night they had the Greenflash 2004 Barleywine and their current Barleywine on brandy barrel. I have always heard that the service was bad at O'Brien's, but the girl who we kept going to was great. But at the end of the night we found out that she was new and coincidentally, I tried to ask a different girl a question and she mumbled something and walked away. So maybe some of the older employees are just a little jaded by the ramblings of the Imperial thought process. Besides a great beer list, all pouring perfect, we found out that they have one of the best French dip sandwiches ever to be served at a beer bar.

So you need to get down to O'Brien's now, get the French Dip and get your beer snob on.

opwog, Jan 13, 2009
More User Reviews:
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5/5  rDev +13.9%

AmandaBT, Nov 09, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Coconuts, Oct 20, 2014
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4.35/5  rDev -0.9%

wethorseblanket, Oct 18, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Halloran33, Oct 15, 2014
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!

DoubleJ, Oct 13, 2014
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O'Brien's in San Diego, CA
97 out of 100 based on 146 ratings.