Taproom by Firestone Walker Brewing Company

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

82 Ratings
Ratings: 82
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: n/a
Taps: 12
Bottles: --
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
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Ratings: 82 | Reviews: 40 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DoubleJ
3.8/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

With already alcohol consumed during a short stay in Los Olivos, it decided to cap it off with a visit to the Firestone Walker taproom. The place is divided into two sections, with the bar in the middle of the two. The gift shop, which offers shirts, stickers, glassware, DBA mustard, and bottled beers, is located on the opposite side of the bar. During the afternoon, I saw a number of families here for lunch, which surprised me a bit. Maybe there's something about the food served.

12 different beers pouring from the taps. Standards like the Pale 31, Double Barrel Ale, and Union Jack are available, also a couple of the Nectar Ales brand (Red Nectar, Hemp Ale), and a few tap only options (pilsner, Unfiltered DBA). The beers are available in three different sized, and that's saying nothing about the sampler platter. 20 ounce servings are well priced at $5.50.

While there were several servers at the bar, it did take a little longer than I anticipated to cash out. Also, if you purcahsed something from the gift shop, you will need to pay for it at the bar. Still, it was a very minor dent to an otehrwise good visit.

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.58/5  rDev -15.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 3 | food: 4

The Taproom off 101 between Santa Maria and SB. It is a nice place. When you walk in the bar area is directly ahead of you, the sitting off to the right a little bit. The tables abd bar seem really nice, atmosphere is good. They have a very large area for parties and overflow on the opposite end of the taproom.

I have mixed feelings about this place. The first few times I visited I was terribly disappointed in the service. However, I have made recent trips this summer and was surprised by the improvement in service. They are often understaffed, especially during the busy afternoon crowds. It looks promising but I am hesitant to give it a good rating on service due to my past experiences but its looking better. I am also continuously disappointed in their selection. Firestone has lots of great beer(Parabola, Abacus,Saucerful of Merkin, and more) These beers are VERY RARELY on tap at their own taphouse. I was going here every weekend but I stopped because of their distribution practices and quite frankly I am tired of having the same beer over and over again. To me that is a foul and a big one. Unfortunately I live on the Central Coast so I am stuck. You wont find anybody here to speak knowledgably about beer. Instead you might a get tourist or local who just drinks and does not know what they are drinking.
///2 Nov 08-Ok. Service was slow and bad once again today. Some things never change...and the same beers AGAIN!
///26 Sep 09- $27 for a growler of Double Jack? Are you kidding me? That is w/o the glassware!What a rip off! House pints are nearly $5. From a place as abig as FW you would think could have cheaper house pints but nope, they are hyping the beer and price. Screw these guys!

Photo of Floydster
3.85/5  rDev -9.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

We stayed in Solvang one night during our central coast trip and this was the obvious choice for dinner, first thing I noticed when I walked in was that Double Jack and Abacus were on tap, that won me over right there, place was huge and looked a production brewery on one side even though it is not, probably lmost as big as the actual Paso facility now that I think about it, atmosphere is cool with a big bar area including a dart board, dining area right next to the kitchen, bunch of labeled mugs around which made me think they have some kind of club where the locals get their own glass and have it filled for a discounted rate, place was wide open and clean, one of the nicer dinners I have had in a beer establishment in some time, people working were nice but a little confused when I asked questions, employees seem to be having a good time which is a good thing, other beers available were pretty standard inlcuding pale, double barrel, porter, hefeweizen, hemp ale, etc., my Double Jack came in an oversized wine glass for six dollars and did not have any more than six ounces in it, was not too stoked on that after having full pints of it for a dollar less back home beforehand, food was good but expensive, fried chicken special was seventeen dollars and came with a reasonable amount of mashed potatoes with tasty gravy, small amount of watermelon and corn on the cob, overall it was a fun experience and glad we went, would go back in the future

Photo of Bung
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of orangesol
4.41/5  rDev +3.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

*I am going to combine my scores and reviews for both the taproom and barrel works since they are one listing over here on BA*

Our last stop on our drive to SD. I was mainly stopping to check out the barrel works but we decided to stay for dinner so I got to check out both. Atmosphere at the barrel works was awesome, you can get a beer and take a walk through the barrel room which is awesome. The taproom was packed with people but it still had a good vide. Quality across the board was quite good. Lots of great touches in both spaces help but don't detract from the atmosphere. Service in both spaces was solid. I never had to wait for a beer and the bartender at barrel works was great to talk to, especially being a fellow cicerone. Selection was excellent. Taproom had all of the staples on and the barrel works had 9-10 specialty beers on, most of which never leave the premises. Food in the taproom was pretty good. I got a burger and it was pretty good. Prices on the beers were fine, food was definitely overpriced on nearly all of the dishes. Overall a really nice showpiece for a great brewery. Glad we could stop and check it out.

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4

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.

Photo of bradybeer
3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 2

Having developed a taste for Firestone-Walker Brews as of late we decided to stop by this location while driving from San Diego to Santa Cruz.

As mentioned by others this is only a taproom. This is very easy to find, as it is right off the 101. This place is very large-the dinning area is to the right when you enter. The bar is straight ahead with more seating to the left. Seems to be very large for being out of the way.

We tried a sampler of six.

Firestone-Walker Double Barrel filtered & unfiltered

Firestone-Walker Special

Hemp Ale

Firestone-Walker IPA

Red Ale


All of the beers were well made and drinkable-the stand out for me was the unfiltered Double Barrel.


Since we assumed there would be a good food selection for lunch we were famished when we arrived. Word of advice-if you plan on eating here for lunch-don’t. The selection was thin, the quality was sub par-and it was expensive on top of that. We had the Plowman’s Plate-and for about $10 we should have received more meat and cheese-other than this selection there was a turkey sandwich, chili, and a salad.

Service was excellent our bartender was friendly and helpful.

Beer prices were good as well with pints at about $4 and the sampler at $6 for what looked like 3 oz samples-and you got a free pint glass.

I would stop off again-but next time I may try the Paso Robles location.

Photo of jdense
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Stopped by with buddies for an after-round beer at La Purisma GC. Had to ask for directions from club pro, but easy to find, and easy access to northbound 101. The Firestone Walker standards were on tap, with the Velvet Mirkin seasonal a plus. They had FW XIII for sale $25 including the wooden box which is the best price I've seen (sans sales tax). We arrived during happy hour, the restaurant wasn't open yet. Had some pub grub. Took a look at the restaurant which all agreed was very nice, and all stated they would bring their spouses for a dinner here, which is a pretty high compliment for the atmosphere. The pub was certainly primarily catering to locales, the friendly barkeep seemed to know everybody's name. I had a 24 oz. pour of Union Jack IPA for $6.50, and the freshness and barrel aging shined through more than the Oregon purchased versions I've enjoyed in the past. I would have liked to see more adventurous taps (e.g. Abacus), but other than than a really pleasant stop, will be sure to come back again when in the area. Recommended.

Photo of AlexM
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of dwagner003
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of drewbage
3.8/5  rDev -10.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5

Well, the brewery did use to be on site here back a few years and they used to have the Firestone "Burton Union" system setup. Back in those days the menu was kinda pathetic, frozen mini-gourmet pizzas (e.g. with cactus paddles).

What a difference a few years makes. What had been a side line part of their operation has now blossomed. The old back of house that had the fermenting barrels is now wide open with tall ceilings and operates in the evening as their full fledged dining room.

The front bar area has been spiffed up with more tables and space for the customers. The bar itself pours the full line of FW beers, including the vaunted and rarely seen Unfiltered Double Barrel Ale. Also included on the taps are some of the other products that FW now owns, like the Nectar Ales products (sometimes labeled as FW beers).

Clean, efficient and an oasis between SLO and Santa Barbara.

Photo of VegasBill
3.83/5  rDev -9.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Have been trying to stop here for a while now and finally made it. The atmosphere,think of a big modern empty warehouse that has a bar and restaurant in it. But somehow it comes off OK and while it is not as cozy as the corner beer bar it does have a comfortable feel to it. The food is good at lunch but it changes at dinner to outstanding. They make their own mustard and I ordered the burger for one meal,I had three, and piled the mustard on it WOW.
As for the beer, as stated before the Double Barrel Unfiltered Is outstanding, also I am not a big fan of nectar beers but again theirs is so good. Firestone Walker does a first class job in every way in my opinion and if I can fit it in I will stop here as often as I can.
One more thing, I was there in the afternoon one day and it was slow so I was talking to the bartender and she told me some of the regulars blend the beer, say one half pint of one and one half pint of another, why did I not think of that!!!

Photo of Bwagner1122
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

Photo of Drink_LocalSD
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Visited this afternoon following a holiday trip to the Central Coast. Hadn't been here in at least 5 years and many changes have occurred. Primarily, the actual brewery is now in Paso Robles. The Tap Room/Bar has been expanded into the former space occupied by the brewery. Lunch is served Friday - Sunday. The service was quite good. We had the burger and a specialty sandwich. Both were very, very good. While waiting we enjoyed some pretzels and spicy house mustard.

Beers on tap included the usual: Pale Ale, Union Jack, and Double Barrel Ale (DBA). I believe they also had an unfiltered DBA. The highlight was a special seasonal beer called Velvet Merkin. It is an oatmeal stout. Fantastic!!! Inquired about other offerings and was told that a keg of Saucerfull O' Secrets is soon to be tapped. But here's the best news - They still have a few bottles of the 12th Anniversery (even after I picked up a couple). Better hurry though, they're going fast.

Photo of Gobzilla
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of charlzm
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 5

Visited for dinner on Sunday, 05/25/08 at about 6:30pm.

My party of four arrived at the Taproom concerned, as the modest parking lot was full and cars were parked on both sides of the street just outside.

Upon entering, we discovered that the bar and adjacent bar seating area were packed to the gills with folks, but that there tables available in the restaurant proper for immediate seating.

We were seated in the restaurant proper, a cavernous, dimly-lit two story room of cinder block dominated by exposed HVAC ducts overhead, printed banners hung on the walls depicting painted, stylized scenes of wine country, a two story window with drawn blinds and an open kitchen. The tables are seperated into several areas by waist-high dividers cleverly made from barley sacks stretched on frames. These provide enough privacy that diners sitting directly on the other side cannot see or really hear you.

The atmosphere was busy and convivial, with the demographic skewing to younger diners and families with teen children. Besides the food, most every table was drinking Firestone Ales.

The service we received was frequent, personable and accurate. What more can you ask for?

The food was, in a word, outstanding. Between our party, we ordered four entrees: fish tacos (declared as "very good" by my girlfriend), smoked grilled free range Alaskan Sockeye salmon and asparagus (noted as "among the best I've ever had" by my friend) and the Sunday shrimp special: butterflied, breaded and deep fried Fijian jumbo shrimp with shoestring fries. My friend's wife declared them scrumptious.

I ordered their burger, ordered medium well, which I shared with my other three dining partners. After we had all eaten some, it was declared unanimously as the best of our four meals and I will even go so far as to say it is the best hamburger I have ever eaten. Sorry, Office Burger!

For libations, my friend and his wife ordered a pint each of Walker's Reserve (which they both enjoyed). I had a soda and a four beer taster, all of which were very good. My girlfriend had a soda.

The total bill for all this food was $97.00. Wow. What a bargain for such good and plentiful food and well-crafted beer.

This was a sublime dining and beer drinking experience and I can only say that I am intensely jealous of those who live within easy reach of this fine institution.

The only negative I have is that there are only four FW beers available at a time, which is really not much of a complaint since all of their beers I had that night were at the least flavorful and good drinking.

I will return any time I am even remotely near, and may even consider a special trip form time to time. Yes, I liked it that much.

Photo of LakerLeith
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of Rumrunner
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Buellton is a small city located in the central coast of California's wine country. Plenty of vineyards, grassy knolls and beautifull tree lined hills. Luckily for the beer drinkers there is the Firestone Walker Taproom.

The word 'taproom' makes one think that this is a small tasting room. Not at all. This is a large restaurant with a good sized bar. The bar is in the middle and there is a dining area on either side of the bar. The atmosphere is rustic without being too western. The wagon wheel at the front door might make one think of cowboys and hillbillies but the decor is pretty mild on the inside. A few wooden barrels and not too much junk on the walls. A very pleasing and friendly vibe to the overall feel of the taproom.

The place is very clean and well manicured. The servers were very pleasant and did a fine job. When I stopped by a few locals sat down next to me and we instantly had a good conversation going. I lucked out and talked with some great people.

The FWB has a full menu for lunch and dinner. A very large selection of mainly American style food. Steaks, salads, chili, burgers, fish, pizza cooked in a wooden oven and more. I found the food to be well prepared and definately worth the stop over on my road trip.

I had the FW Reserve(porter) and the unfiltered Double Barrel Ale. I think these are the breweries best beers in my opinion. They also brew the Nectar Ales which are available at the FWB Taproom. I think the tasters are a good choice for the first time visit.

If you are staying in Buellton or nearby this may be the only place for some quality beers. If you are road tripping on the 101 this is a great stop for a pint and some food. They also sell growlers for the road tripper on the 'go.'

Photo of vfgccp
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%

Photo of Retsinis
3.63/5  rDev -14.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

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.

Photo of drewone
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of MonkeyKnfeFight
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of Soto
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of ubiq3000
5/5  rDev +17.6%

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Taproom by Firestone Walker Brewing Company in Buellton, CA
94 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.