1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Taproom by Firestone Walker Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Taproom by Firestone Walker Brewing CompanyTaproom by Firestone Walker Brewing Company
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

70 Ratings
Ratings: 70
Reviews: 38
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 11.14%
Taps: 12
Bottles: 0
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Bar, Eatery ]

620 McMurray Rd
Buellton, California, 93427-2511
United States
phone: (805) 686-1557

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: xlperro)
Place: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 70 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Retsinis
3.63/5  rDev -14%

Was camping in Buellton over labor day weekend, and hitting up this tasting room was on the list of to-do's agenda I had.

Stopped in at about 5:30 p.m. on Sunday. Large place, although we sat in the bar, I did do a walkthrough of the main room. Large vaulted ceilings, with a small stage for live music I imagine. Rustic design, lots of large wood beams, wood floors, clean, and fitting for the area. They also have a small shopping area with some FW swag.

My friend and I sat just off of the bar, and ordered the French fry sampler, with sweet potato fries, classic string fries, and garlic fries, all good for fries.

We each had two beers. He had the Oktoberfest & the unfiltered double barrel ale. I had the Robust Porter & the Hefeweizen. Solid, but most pretty easy to get in bottles, except the Oktoberfest and the Hefeweizen, both were good, but didn't quite mark a highlight I hoped for in the visit.

Little tough to balance out this review. Being that it's both a restaurant, and well established, quality craft breweries tasting room.

Overall, nice visit, but I guess I just hoping for more. As a brewery tap room, it was an average experience. Only 8 FW beers on tap, and most are readily available in dozens of bars all over so-cal, so I felt it under represented FW, at least this visit. Not saying I expected kegs of Parabola, 14, Abacus in abundance by any measure, but perhaps a Black Xantus, Velvet Merkin, or even just more taproom only specials, (it's a 15 year old brewery, I've experienced more variety in a 15 month old brewery) and as a restaurant, it works as family dining, but not a place I would hang out a lot in for the beer draw, given the tap list this night, and just the vibe of the place. Maybe it was the kids in highchairs sitting near to me as I sipped a beer, lol.

I enjoyed my visit, good service, nice place, good beer, but suppose with visiting a lot of breweries inside their actual brewing facilities, I enjoy that experience more. You feel the passion from the owners/brewers, hopefully meet the brewer, and it enhances the experience. Also, most breweries have either their full lineup on tap, or a few of those kegs for holiday weekends. This just felt like a good brewpub, or restaurant with solid craft beer. I've been to the main/original Firestone Walker location in Paso Robles, & preferred it there for some reason. Maybe since it because it's a smaller tasting room, not sure. Anyhow, it is worth a visit if you’re in the area, as there are only two breweries (well three if you count the one in Solvang) within 10 miles of this area.

Retsinis, Sep 20, 2011
Photo of JCellars
3.68/5  rDev -12.8%

I live in the area, so this is one of the few solid hang-outs in a small town. The place has a nice rustic feel that's very welcoming.

The service is up and down, the waitresses definitely are more friendly if you're one of the "good ol' boys" who are there several days a week, if not daily. But it's still a fun place.

The food is great! the seared ahi is definitely their strong point, although the burgers are great too.

The only down sides are the sometimes grumpy servers, the good stuff running out, and the CHP that sometimes wait down the road.

JCellars, Aug 15, 2011
Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%

Reviewed from notes

My wife and I and a friend took a trip up to the Taproom a short time after the release of Parabola. That of course was my only reason for heading up there because it is about a 3 hour drive from my house.

When we got there we decided we would also stay and have a bite to eat. The atmosphere was pretty good there was about 20 locals in there at the time having lunch and everyone was in good spirts.

When we sat down the waitress came over and she had a bit of a pour attitude who knows maybe she was working too hard that Sunday afternoon. My buddy and I ordered a Parabola on tap and it came in a pretty cool little 6oz snifter and the parabola did not disappoint. I ordered a bacon cheese burger and let me say that burger was absolutely amazing cooked perfectly and was the best part about the trip up there.

When the waitress asked if we wanted anything else we said yes all three of us wanted to order our full alotment of Parabola and then she hit us with the bad news "sorry we are all out." That of course did not make me happy at all especially since we called the night before and the lady we talked to informed us that they had plenty of supply left so thats why we decided to make the trip up there. So of course we left with a bad taste in our mouth.

My buddy some how through BA got ahold of someone who works for Firestone/Walker and the guy after hearing our story allowed us to purchase a whole case directly from them and they would cover the shipping cost. If it was not for the gentleman doing this this review would have gone the complete opposite of they way it did. So a big cheers to that gentleman who's name is escaping me right now.

Overall impression of this place is if your in the area it is definately worth stopping in and have a bite to eat and drinking a brew. They always have their great beers on tap and even some in bottles that you can purchase and take with you. It has a great atmosphere which I'm sure would be even better at night. So if your ever up in the area stop by and have a bite and a brew.

DarthKostrizer, Jul 11, 2011
Photo of jwhancher
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%

Stopped here on 6/12/11 for dinner on my way up to Prismo Beach down from Long Beach. After a relatively long travel day, I was ready for some beers and some food.

Place was relatively busy for a Sunday night. NBA Finals had just finished up. Parked up to a place at the bar. Bartender quickly came over and offered me a menu. Did the sample rack of FW's flagship beers. Ordered a pizza and a salad. The decor had a nice rustic look to it. Bathrooms appeared clean.

Food was good. Salad was excellent, pizza was decent. The bartender was very attentive to my needs. She seemed annoyed at a rambunctious group that had seemingly overstayed their welcome. Didn't bother me whatsoever. At closing time, the bartender didn't seem to rush me out the door even though I could tell she wanted the day to end. Good service IMO.

Got a couple of 22's to take home with me. Bartender gave me a FW as part of the sample tray I had ordered. Nice touch.

Glad to have stopped by. If I'm ever in CA in the area again, I'd definitely stop back in. Not really a destination place, but a quality establishment.

jwhancher, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of mthomas84
3.58/5  rDev -15.2%

Went for the release of Parabola on May 21st. We arrived at lunch time and the place was pretty crowded, we had to wait a little while for service but the waitress was friendly. I thought the inside was a nice design, kind of a rustic decore. The crowd seemed to be mostly locals or bikers stopping for something to eat. They had 12 brews on tap and all seemed to be priced very reasonably. My friend and I both got a burger and he got a side of chili too; the food was excellent. This is a place id definitely stop in for if i was in the area but I wouldnt go out of my way to come back.

mthomas84, May 23, 2011
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%

Stopped in to pick up some batch 2 Parabola this afternoon. JustinA1 and I also hung around for a snifter of Parabola and some free pretzels and mustard.

The interior of the Buellton taproom looks almost identical to the one in Paso, except it opens up to a restaurant. Same decor: lots of wood, a bit rustic, clean yet plain appearance, and lots of Firestone-Walker memorabilia. The atmosphere was pretty quiet, even though the taproom was more than half full. Feels like the local hangout.

The Buellton taproom serves twelve different Firestone beers on-tap, essentially the same amount as the brewery in Paso. You can order beers by in 4oz. samples, 20oz. imperial pints, and 25oz. mugs, and each size is reasonably priced. Our Parabolas tasted excellent, and I'm sure they take great care with serving all of their beers.

I've only got one gripe about this establishment, and that's service. The bartender that served us was pushy and unfriendly. She seemed fairly nice to some of the other customers, but we certainly got the could shoulder during our time at the bar.

Aside from service, Justin and I actually liked the Buellton location better than the Paso Robles one. Check it out if you get a chance. Maybe our server was just having a bad day.

ThreeWiseMen, May 23, 2011
Photo of MrVonzipper
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%

Made a much anticipated stop after a wedding the day before in San Luis Obisbo. Such perfect timing because this was the official release weekend of the 2011 Parabola.

The place was very busy and a little understaffed. We didn't know where to go.... To bar tables or to the restaurant, as there was no hostess or anyone to guide us. A "private" party went to a couple tables in the restaurant so I decided to wait for a table as well. It took a nice customer at the bar to tell me the restaurant was closed and we'd have to eat at a bar table. Not a problem.

Although the service was slow due to understaffing, everyone was very polite and efficient after our first few minutes after we sat. My brother and I sampled the new Parabola which was amazing and we all enjoyed our food as well. The prices very reasonable.

If someone was in a hurry or bad mood. They'd have destroyed them in a review, but we had a nice casual day with no hurry to rush home which made it a very pleasurable experience.

MrVonzipper, May 22, 2011
Photo of naproxen
3.8/5  rDev -10%

2nd stop on the migration from Coachella to Big Sur 4/18/11.

The taproom had a hard act to follow, Ladyface, and was remodeling the bathrooms at the time so back to the port o potties unfortunately.

We sat in the bar area but I did get to check out the dining area which was nice. The bar area was pretty bland in my opinion. Also, being one table of only 3 in the bar area the service was much slower and sporadic than it should have been. On the upside, free pretzels and damn tasty mustard!

The selection at the time was just ok. Don't get me wrong, Double Jack was real fresh and made me smile but there were no special beers on or anything else that jumped out at me.

I'll stop in again next time I'm driving the 101, or maybe opt to hit the other location instead.

naproxen, Apr 27, 2011
Photo of mithrascruor
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%

We went here for our anniversary dinner (yeah, my girlfriend is cool like that!). Located about 3.5 miles north of Solvang, it seems to be the happenin' place in Buellton.

Really big building - perhaps their old brewery? Nice looking bar area with lots of seating when you come in, and then the dining area off to the right past the bar. Slightly awkward layout in places with the reception desk facing the wrong way, and some of the partitions not extending far enough along the table-sides. Very spacious and a bit too quiet at times! Nevertheless, a very relaxed space - not dark, but dimmed a nice amount.

The service was very friendly and helpful - they seemed to know their beers and their food. Not always the fastest (likely due to our server working various tables all around the place), but not slow by any means whatsoever, and fully made up with the helpfulness.

As for the beer, they had (I think) 8 beers on tap. If memory serves me right, Firestone DBA, Pale Ale, Union Jack, Solace, Walker's Reserve, Humbolt Hemp Ale, Red Nectar, and something else I didn't recognize (& don't remember). It covers a nice variety of beer, though isn't a giant selection. But, it is actually more than I expected for a brewery's tasting room/restaurant. I had the Union Jack and Walker's Reserve, and the girlfriend had the Hemp Ale. Everything tasted great, and much better than the versions I'd already experienced from the bottle. (Also realized that the hemp ale I'd had before was probably skunked, because on tap it was actually good!)

The food was really excellent as well. They gave us some nice sourdough bread. We both started with the black bean & steak chili, which (with the addition of some Cholula) was amazing... very tender steak in there. She had the Taproom Burger with avocado, and claims it was one of the best burgers she's ever had. (I tried a bite and it was excellent, especially with the chipotle mayo.) I had the fish and chips. The fish was some very tasty halibut, the fries were seasoned/battered, and the slaw was very unique and tasty, made with red cabbage. We finished with the apple cobbler, which was more of a cross between apple cobbler and pie, which (again) was very tasty.

Awesome food, awesome beer, highly recommended!

mithrascruor, Aug 05, 2010
Photo of tjensen3618
3.83/5  rDev -9.2%

Had dinner here on a recent trip to Solvang. There was no wait, even on a Sat. at 7:30. The restaurant area was quite nice which you wouldn't have expected by looking at the bar area when you first walk in.

I had a Velvet Merkin and an Unfiltered DBA, their beer selection was small, but thats not too much of a surprise considering they only sell a few beers in stores. The only thing lacking at this place is the selection, some guest taps would have changed that.

The food was excellent, I had the Flatiron Steak and my girlfriend had the Halibut Fish and Chips. Both were really great, and the service was good as well.

This is definitely the place to go for a good beer in the area, and I will stop in again when i'm there.

tjensen3618, Jan 18, 2010
Taproom by Firestone Walker Brewing Company in Buellton, CA
94 out of 100 based on 70 ratings.