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Thirsty Bear Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thirsty Bear Brewing CompanyThirsty Bear Brewing Company
BA SCORE
86
very good

78 Ratings
Ratings: 78
Reviews: 60
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 14.85%
Active Beers: 20
Beer Ratings: 243
Beer Avg: 3.64
Taps: 0
Bottles: 0
Cask: N
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]

661 Howard Street
San Francisco, California, 94105
United States
phone: (415) 974-0905

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Notes:
None, yet.

(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
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Ratings: 78 | Reviews: 60 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DaveDLD
4.83/5  rDev +28.1%

of all the brewpubs i went to in san francisco this weekend, i'd have to say that thirsty bear was my favorite. it's located in the south of market area which is right near union square. i had the ipa, brown, and wheat (which was a white ale) and all were delicious. they have taster beers for only .75 cents which isn't too bad. i had never eaten spanish cuisine, which is what they serve, however, i was VERY pleasantly surprised. everything was delicious and the waitress was friendly and was able to explain certain things on the menu that i wasn't familiar with. if you're going to be in union square or at the SFMOMA i'd definitely go to thirsty bear.

DaveDLD, Nov 13, 2007
Photo of phergy
4.75/5  rDev +26%

I went to the Thirsty Bear for lunch on last Wednesday, May 14th. The staff was friendly and attentive. My first beer was the Howard Street IPA. It was dark amber with a creamy colored head. It left a fair amount of lacing on the glass. This is a bitter beer, but not really citrusy. The malt is definitely present at the finish. The beer has a great mouthfeel; lingering but pleasant. If time weren't so short I would definitely have another.

Next I had the Lamb Burger. It wasn't a huge sandwich, but it was filling, and very tasty. It was unlike any other sandwich I have had, with a seasoned lamb patty, red onions, feta cheese and tomato jam. I would have it again.

I finished with the beer sampler, which I would have started with if I had noticed it on the beer menu. The sampler included one of each of the beers they have on tap; currently 9 different beers. The cost of the sampler was $9. I enjoyed all of the beers, each being a good representation of its' particular style.

If I had one problem with the Thirsty Bear, it was that the lunch menu seemed a little limited, but it is better to do a few things really well than lots of things poorly. I would definitely recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting San Francisco.

phergy, May 20, 2008
Photo of andyj
4.63/5  rDev +22.8%

Seldom is it the case that brewpubs have more than the blah-blah ales and blah-blah lagers. This place had two wheat beers (Belgian and Bavarian respectively), a surprisingly good Vanilla Ale, an wonderful stout with a hefty additional of roasted barley, mmm roasted barley. There were several other beers, I think I counted eight and it was a nice well-rounded variety with some extraordinary stuff. And they have food, good food. It is Spanish Tapas style -- Spanish pub fare. The dishes were very good, but I should say they are larger than your average tapas dishes. My wife and I each ordered three thinking they would be small, but they turned out to be heftier portions than I had ever imagined. This place also has pool tables and stuff like that upstairs and is in walking distance to the museum and 21st Ammendment brewpub. Of 3 brewpubs I went to in SF (21st Ammendment & SF Brewing) this was the best.

andyj, Oct 02, 2003
Photo of searsclone
4.58/5  rDev +21.5%

We stopped here on our last day in SF so that we could check out at least one brewery. We tried to go to Magnolia, but it was unsuccessful. We got there right as they opened on a Monday morning, so it was very low key and we got great attention. Our bartender impressed us with his knowledge of the beers and his knowledge of the the local beer scene. We had the flight of 9 beers, and all were very good. We had a small appetizer that was also very good. We didn't spend much time here, but if I ever find myself back in the area, I will definitely try to go back. Overall it was a very good experience.

searsclone, Sep 13, 2011
Photo of bradybeer
4.5/5  rDev +19.4%

Last stop on the brewpub tour of SF.

Walking in the bar is to the left with seating to the right and upstairs where there are pool tables and darts. We ordered a sampler set which had a Golden Ale, Vanilla Ale, Wheat, IPA, Brown, Stout, Winter Warmer, and Dopplebock. I think I missed one. Beers were organic and OK the stand out was the Dopplebock which if I weren't driving would have had a pint.

We ordered the Chicharonnes (made in house) which were very good as well as the sliders which were good as well.

Service was good and the prices reasonable. I would come back for the food alone but the beer is very very solid and is the reason I think this is one of the best breweries in the bay area.

bradybeer, Jan 30, 2011
Photo of xhcadamx
4.45/5  rDev +18%

A - CLASSY joint to say the least. There was a huge focus on decorating this place. Nice downstairs with an impressive bar and great tables. Upstairs had FREE pool and darts with tons of room (I think it is used for private parties).

Q - The beer is tasty. Sure there is better but this is the best brewpub in SF.

S - A very knowledgeable waitstaff. Very prompt and pleasant - every time I have been there.

S - Couple of good selections. Nothing that you can't find anywhere else. Every once in a while they have a black lager which is always nice.

F - Not your typical brewpub.... This place offers Spanish cuisine! Nice Papas (small plates) of really tasty food. The potatoes and calamari are a must.

Best brewpub in SF IMHO.

xhcadamx, Jan 25, 2009
Photo of bjohnson
4.43/5  rDev +17.5%

After a lot of walking around Fisherman's Wharf and other places in San Francisco during the morning and early afternoon, Emma and I stopped into the Thirsty Bear Brewing Company located on Howard St. near the MOMA and Yerba Buena Gardens. This is our first beer stop during our week long stay in California.
While walking up to the door, I was pleasantly surprised that is wasn't just pub grub and actually was a bit more interesting. Spanish cuisine. Thumbs Up Set in an old brick building, the brick walls give this place a nice ambiance, highlighted by the low soft lighting. High bar tables and benches line one side of the bar area, with a long bar on the other.
I counted 9 taps, but only indulged in a couple of their offerings. On tap included a brown, red, ipa, pilsner, lager, golden, wheat, and a stout and esb both served on nitro.
Howard St. IPA came with a clear amber color. Soft fruity hop twang in the aroma. A good backbone of malt with a strong citrus bitterness in the finish. Not a bad IPA, but nothing that was overly amazing. Kozlov Stout on nitro came to me as it's head was still forming. Jet black with a tan head. Roasty and dry with hints of dark fruit. Quite smooth and soft from the nitro. Finished with this one.
I also sampled Meyers ESB (3oz. pour) and a sip of the Golden Vanilla. ESB was very nice and bitter with a fluffy mouthfeel. Golden Vanilla was, I believe, their golden pale ale. Vanilla was a bit too prominent. First thing that came to mind as I sipped was the smell of Vanilla extract.
Food was excellent and exactly what I was looking for. Hanger steak sandwich with blue cheese aioli, red onions, and watercress on an herb roll. The garlic herb french fries that accompanied the sandwich were also excellent. Never had those type of flavored fries before. Emma had a spanish meatball sandwich with the lightest, crispiest, and perfectly seasoned onions rings I've ever had.
All in all, exactly what we were looking for as the food by Fisherman's wharf is for the tourists, birds, or sea lions...depending on who gets there first. Not overly expensive as our bill came to around $35, not including tip. We sat at the bar and watched some Spanish league soccer highlights.

bjohnson, Sep 24, 2007
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.33/5  rDev +14.9%

I thoroughly enjoyed the Thirsty Bear!

It's nice to find a bartender who knows his beer; will listen to what you want; and then make suggestions based on that (and not what they're interested in or know about). Additionally, I really appreciate a bartender or server who'll steer you right as far as the menu offerings go (as in "perhaps the 'blah blah' might be a better choice").

I had a "Rum Runner". It was a kind of barleywine-style ale served in a smaller glass. It was a deep chestnut brown with an off-white head, and exhibited caramelized brown sugar and some spiciness. Quite nice. Well done.

It's a good looking place (exposed brick, wood floors) with some interesting quirks, i.e. the odd orange and silver bar top. It's open and spacious and comfortable.

They offer 7 regular beers, 2 seasonals, and a cask offering.

The food is good and the service follows.

Well done all around. Worth a visit!

NeroFiddled, Jan 18, 2011
Photo of rossthefireman
4.3/5  rDev +14.1%

This is going to be a combo review of both beer and food.
The Thirsty Bear is a very 'hip' SOMA establishment that caters to the clientele in the area which is business people, hipsters from the art college, and people who attend conferences nearby at the Moscone Center.
The establishment is very upscale in both looks and food type. A Spanish based menu with tapas and full meals are available.
REMEMBER- this is an 'organic' establishment. Every thing they serve is organic all the way down to the T Shirts for sale.
The food was excellent. I had the grilled chicken sandwich with murcia curado cheese, roasted pasilla pepper relish, orange-pimenton aioli & french fries. The sandwich was excellent and the fries were extremely crispy on the outside but perfectly cooked on the inside.
I also drank the Howard St IPA that I thought was excellent. A very citrusy IPA with a nice balance of citrus malt and hops. I asked the waitress what type of hops they used in the IPA and she said chinook and cascade. Very knowledgeable staff.
I did go there during lunch time so the place wasn't overly crowded. I could see how this place would get packed on a Friday night after work or during a Giants game as it is on the way to the park.
I recommend it and will definately be going back myself.

rossthefireman, Oct 18, 2009
Photo of slander
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%

The alleged California, I see. Okay, I have to admit, it’s seemingly real. Everybody out here says it is, anyway. Did the pre-check in at the hotel and set out for beer. This, an easy walk and found in a strip of store and eats on 3rd. Made direct eye contact with the host station people and silently passed them by; I’s got a bar to be at...

It’s a large, cavernous space, surprising for the strip it’s in. Off to the left, a copper-like colored with silvery swirls of wet lookingness topped bar beneath laminate, and a stainless steel drain trim running its perimeter. Wood base & piping foot rail, the stretch broken by a service piece. Seating for nearly a dozen and a half on the straight piece on brown leather chairs, and seating for another 4 up front on the wrap around. A trio of upright bar towers of 3 each clustered at both ends of the bar and a sole handpump further along.

The barback is a ½ wall of glass with 2 long shelves running its length holding boozables, and offering views of fermenter tippy tops from the sunken basement brew room behind it. Below it sits a long counter with stacked glassware of all sizes and shapes, and a pair of tap towers holding 4 each on the barback pouring organic wines. Cooler space & shelved booze down underneath the bar, and growlers in a fridge at the far end. Vintaged horizontal sign pieces for each house beer and ‘certified organic’ signage running along the overhang above. I beams and pieced phat wood beam uprights along the bar, holding beer boards listing selections, OG’s, IBU’s, and ABV’s on the posts at both ends, and mounted flatscreens above.

The far wall is brick, and the other areas are painted in shades of green, beige, orange, yellow & red. Concrete floorings, a black painted ceiling with panels with spots, and a high squared skylight piece on center. Glass lampshades tracing the bar, and elongated versions of the same up front. Some cool horizontal art pieces on the big brick, curtainings, and plants in, well, planters.

2 dozen raised roundies in a row adjacent to the bar and along the far wall, some effectively sharing boothing benchings, and a few around the front bend. More seating to the rear, tiered to one side overlooking the open kitchen sunken below the stairs, and a few tucked forward the kitchen in a nook. Some 2 dozen+ tables in all back there, some of which are piecemeal plankings of color and coolness. And a secret front section curtained off (but I will not, cannot be kept out), holding a single table in the large front windows over 3rd, and a ½ dozen tables against the far wall.

Upstairs, a wraparound space with a single pool table and a pair of dartboards. A small “L” shaped bar around the bend shuttered just now with a few hightops adjacent, and a smallish event room to the rear with a dozen tables and another pool table. Cool views over the down below from uppathere.

Took in a sampler ‘cause ‘cause. 7 full time beers (Polar Bear Bohemian Pilsner, crisp, pleasant enough; Golden Vanilla, an American blonde and the nose knows first what comes, much vanilla not goodness there, no; Valencia Wheat, a Belgian wit, coriander, check, orange peel, check, it was okay; Brown Bear, an English style Brown with big maltiness, very good; Meyer ESB, caramel sweetness with nice hoppiness; Kozlov Stout, a dry irish stout on nitro, roasty, chocolatey, mmmm, quite nice; Howard Street IPA, in at 7%, nice bitterness), and a single seasonal (Winter Stave, a Golden Ale in French oak from white wine with cranberries & Brett, 6.3%, and has some, you know, nice sourness going on), guest tap (San Francisco Strong Ale, a brewer’s guild collaboration, 8.5%, has some alcohol to it, uh huh), and cask offering (21st Amendment Lord & Master, an 8.3% English Strong Ale). The Brown Bear, Meyer ESB, Kozlov Stout, Howard Street IPA, and Winter Stave were the best of ‘em. Took in shortys of the Brown Bear & Kozlov Stout on the heels of the sampler. And the aforementioned organic wines on tap, currently 3 red & 3 white, as well as a dozen bottled wine selections, mostly California & Spanish.

Today’s lunch special ($8) is a Spanish cured meat bocadillo with roasted piquillo peppers, lettuce, and aioli. It was a good sandwich, served with house pickled vegetables picked at, as I had no idea what they were beyond beige, reddish & kind of yellowlike vinegarings. I was happy to have gotten my snack on.

Oh, this is the tapas place Ben was talking about. Seems that every item on the menu has at least one word that I don’t know. Friendly people on both sides of the bar (Joetender saw some Brooklynburg things just recently). Caught a nice snack and some good beer here.

slander, May 01, 2012
Photo of rwhitmore
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%

Had lunch here on a Monday. I ordered the Monday pork sausage special sandwich and it was delicious, albeit on the messy side, which made it a little hard to eat gracefully.

The decor and atmosphere are just great, rustic but sleek and clean as well. The service was nice and attentive. It was my first visit, and my server offered his suggestions, and more important, why he liked them.

I had the IPA, the Red Ale and the ESB. All were well-made delicious beers. The ESB stood out, creamy and rich, with a well balanced hop bite.

I enjoyed Thirsty Bear a lot, it's well worth a visit on you next trip to San Francisco.

rwhitmore, Nov 04, 2013
Photo of Mark
4.21/5  rDev +11.7%

This pub has a more upscale feel to it than most of my favorite places. Tanks are very hidden behind an exceptionally long bar. There is a thin eating area fronting the bar. There is also an upstairs area as well. A wide selection was available on tap, at least 6 offerings. These included an IPA, Pils, Stout, Porter, and an ESB, I believe the 6th was a wheat beer. Food is Spanish style, Tapas being the specialty. Looked good but also a bit expensive and I wish I knew how big the portions are. A decent pub in the south of Market area, while I prefer 21st Amendment, I thought this place had a wider selection of brew. One other thing we enjoyed was a good converstation with our bar man who was English. We conversed about the U.K. and cask ale. Nice guy. Worth going to by all means.

Mark, Jun 05, 2005
Photo of nickiversen
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%

Traveled to San Francisco for work and researched the area for good beer bars and brew pubs.

Stumbled into Thirsty Bear after a lack luster one beer at Gordon Biersch and en route to the San Francisco Brewing Co.

They market themselves as brewing organic craft beers. The environment is trendy and enjoyable. Decor is crisp and clean. Dimly lit and long oak bar. The selection is typical of normal brewpubs (ie IPA, ESB, American Ale, etc.). Went straight for the IPA for the first beer and was satisfied. Even body beer with crisp hoppy finish. The after taste left my palate dry so I soaked that one up quickly. Moved on to the ESB, which is nitrogen poured, and stays bubbling for a while after the bartender pours it out. Enjoyed this beer one as well, malty taste that goes down smooth.

Didn't try the food; was there strictly for beer. The environment was fun. Loft upstairs with pool and darts. It was busy (Friday night) so the place was packed. Didn't think much of the bartender, poor service and attention but the place was pretty hectic. If I lived in San Fran this would be a frequent.

nickiversen, Sep 05, 2009
Photo of bobsy
4.18/5  rDev +10.9%

I stopped by here with my wife shortly before new year's, and had an enjoyable experience. The bar is located very close to San Francisco's main shopping district which proved handy as my wife was trying to take advantage of the strong Canadian dollar.

My first impression on entering was that I had walked into a wine bar. Everywhere I could see lots of clean wood and exposed brick. The crowd seemed to be a well-dressed and richer than me. The trendy atmosphere worked for me, and we had a relaxed time. Very good, but expensive, Spanish food. The prices of the tapas on the menu may have required a call to my bank manager. We split a traditional paella, which was delicious. Service was courteous and efficient. Good beer selection of house brews, with maybe 12 on tap at time of visit. I opted for the winter seasonal, which was a kind of bock, while my wife opted for the ESB, which was solid, but not spectacular. I also grabbed a few samplers, and was impressed by the stout and IPA.

bobsy, Jan 11, 2008
Photo of brewandbbq
4.14/5  rDev +9.8%

Second visit to the "other Bear".
Long bar and some tables lit with reddish tones.
Kind of an odd combination for a brewpub, upscalish with a DJ pumping up the "jam". Hmmm, better than 21st Amendment anyways.
They had a good selection of beers going, although when I ordered the Dunkleweizen, it was out. 7 on tap me thinks.
We both got the White beers which was as good as I remember.
Big glasses too. Like yum yum,- wish I had some now -yum.
Didn't eat or look at the menu, Pam was fading fast.
Brewhouse is behind glass in back of the bar, and there looked like there might have been an upstairs, not sure.
Service was very good, the barkeep gave us a verbal rundown of the beers and served 'em up quick and neat.
Recommended.

brewandbbq, Jun 12, 2005
Photo of JoshuaCain
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%

my first time in Thirsty Bear was last night, Fat Tuesday, which was their cask night as well.
local, organically brewed, cask conditioned ale for $3 per imperial pint means this is going to be my tuesday spot from now on.
the atmosphere was okay, very loud, but not pretentious or beer snobby at all. some cool art on the walls is also a plus.
as I mentioned it was cask night, so I didn't try a wide variety of brews, but the cask conditioned IPA was really quite nice. a milder english style but with good bitterness and a great mouthfeel. I also tried the pils and was pleased with that brew as well.
service was fine, but nothing special from what I could tell.
selection was good, with house brews representing a wide variety of ale and lager styles.
didn't try any food, but what was being served looked good enough.
overall this place is worth stopping by, but I would recommend you try to make it for the unbeatable tuesday cask nights.

JoshuaCain, Feb 25, 2009
Photo of boussh
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%

On our second trip to Thirst Bear, we were much more impressed with everything. Our first trip was so-so ( the bartender ignored us and the beers were nothing special), but this time we stopped in to complete our stong beer card put on by 21st Amendment, Thirsty Bear and Magnolia. The idea to drink 9 stong beers of various styles and keep a cool glass.
So on this trip we tasted the Bearly Legal Barley wine which was well balanced between hops, malt and alcohol( about 10%), not too sweet and great with the blue cheese on my salad. The Winterbock wasn't as impressive, but still a good showing. A little more astringent then I like in a beer, but with the fried almonds and paprika it was not bad.
Our server was attentive and our food can rather quickly at lunch. After this experience, we might stop in again and give thier other beers a try.

boussh, Feb 20, 2004
Photo of CrackedHarlot
4.09/5  rDev +8.5%

Nice brew pub. Very unique selection of craft brews. We had the tasting flight which was a good deal. 9 studen different beers including their two seasonals. Really enjoyed he the Panda Bear Ale and the seasonal Dopplebock. Food was decent, we had several tapas style selections. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area.

CrackedHarlot, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Bierman9
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%

Came here about 930PM on the Sunday night of Memorial Day weekend. Another long front-to-back place. Flamenco music playing on this eve. Long bar lines the left side of the room, with brew kettles visible behind glass behind the bar. Right side lined in brick, with numerous tables scattered about, booths along the wall, and with a small stage near the middle right for musical entertainment. Somewhat dimly lit, and rather sparsely populated on this night. Besides bier they have lots of liquor here...anything you might want. Does have a yuppy-ish vibe, as earlier noted; tries to be more of an upscale place. OK, overall. Had 8x biers on tap during this visit, and I enjoyed a couple of pints of their seasonal Maibock ($5.00), served in a great German, stange-type glass. Bartender was quite pleasant, an English chap. He was a few minutes late pouring me my second Maibock, and I wasn't bothered by it, but he comped it for me. Cool. Decent place in general, though I'd hit Toronado or Zeitgeist first, personally.

Prosit!!

overall: 4.08
atmosphere: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: n/a | $$

114

Bierman9, Jun 09, 2005
Photo of bultrey
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%

I have a feeling that this is the type of place where your experience depends on what time of day you go. I went twice on a recent business trip for lunch, and really enjoyed myself, though I understand that this place is suppose to turn kind of "clubby" in the evenings, which I really dislike. Anyhow, it's got a very classy, slightly modern, and cleanly decorated interior -- lost of wood, iron work, nice curtains, etc. It's quite spacious... several tables in a front section by the windows, a long bar (12-15 seats?) along the left, but the room is wide enough to accomodate several more tables on the right side of the room adjacent to the bar area. There is also a staircase on the right that leads to another spacious mezzanine, and the downstairs continues on beyond the bar to yet another spacious seating area. So all in all, it's big.
Brews rangs from average to very good, with the Polar Bear Pilsner, Meyer ESB, Winterbock, and Bearly Legal Barleywine being particular standouts. They have about 5 or 6 regular beers on draft to choose from, plus usually one or two seasonals. They also have a cask-conditioned ale on all day Tuesdays, similar to the "kill-the-cask" Tuesday's that seem to be popular in several other area establishments. Service was impeccable, very attentive and friendly. I actually asked if I could meet the brewer, Brendan (sp?) -- I had wanted to ask about one of the beers, and he came out and had a long conversation with me, very passionate about his beers, but at the same time, seemingly having fun with it all. He gave me a couple of free samples (bock and barleywine), even though I was trying to avoid those because I was technically working. Really friendly guy. The food was a particular highlight -- I had some sort of sliced steak sandwich with caramlized onions, etc., on one occaison, which was very good, and a crab and cheese dip on another, which was fantastic (and a perfect match to the pilsner). I put "reasonable" for pricing, because it does seem like an upscale establishment, and I am from NYC, so the prices don't shock me. But it might be bumped up to "a little pricey."
All in all, if you find yourself stuck at the Moscone Convention Center, I would make a bee-line here for lunch every time, and might even come back for dinner one night.
Overall, a place that I think frames craft brew with a nice, sophisticated tapas bar kind of feel.

bultrey, Feb 14, 2006
Photo of willjschmidt
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%

Brewpub located in the South of Market neighborhood of San Francisco. Slightly upscale decor. They have about 8 of their beers on tap. Mostly basic brewpub styles. I sampled the IPA and it was pretty good. The food is Spanish with a trend towards tapas. The food is decent and a bit pricey. A bit of a step-up from the standard brewpub food. None of the beers are what you would call outstanding but they are all decent. This is one of the better brewpubs in San Francisco. It's near downtown and Union Square, thus easily accessible for tourists.

willjschmidt, Jul 17, 2009
Photo of UncleJimbo
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%

This is a very good brewpub very close to the Muscone convention center. There is a decent selection of good brews, with about half a dozen on tap at any given time. I recall the stout as being very decent. I think they have a cask one night of the week. They also serve home made sangria. As for the food, it has a Spanish theme. The tapas (appetizers) are exellent, and go very well with the beers. Try the cod cheeks!

This is a comfortable place, though a bit more of a restaurant and bar than a typical brewpub.

UncleJimbo, Dec 29, 2002
Photo of Gavage
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%

This place is located close to the convention center which makes it easy to hit for lunch or a quick pint after sessions. The place has more of an upscale modern restaurant feel with very high ceilings, plenty of wood tones, lots of brick, and nicely separated areas for the bar and dining. The bar can seat about 20 or so and overlooks a few tanks behind the bar. Several hitops and some circular booths are also just off the bar.

There were 8 beers on tap during my visit - most seem to be the normal house beers except for a 15th anniversary beer that was an imperial red ale. The beers I had during my few stops here were of good quality and OK versions of the styles - and the crowd seemed to be drinking quite a variety of styles.

The food was focused on tapas, and several of the dishes were quite good like the octopus, albondingas, and empanadas. The paella was also good hearty portion. The tapas format worked well here for having beers and food with a bunch of people.

Overall this is a good place to hit for the whole food and beer experience, but don't expect any over the top beers here - they brew to fit the clientele, which I am sure focuses on local business men and women, and of course conventioneers.

Gavage, Oct 21, 2011
Photo of timlyon
4/5  rDev +6.1%

timlyon, Jun 19, 2014
Photo of PhiloPsych
4/5  rDev +6.1%

I went to the Thirsty Bear restaurant with a group of 8 friends. This is a great place to go with a large group. We ordered three paellas and several tapas. All the food was good, but I was mostly interested in the beer. Apparently they keep seven "regular" beers on tap (though these apparently rotate from time to time, too) in addition to a couple seasonal offerings. Though I wasn't there on a Tuesday, I understand that every Tuesday night they have a beer on cask.

I tried all the beers. All the regular beers were good. They had a vanilla beer that was unique, interesting, and good. Their website advertised an amber ale on nitro; they didn't have it, but they did have an ESB on nitro and it was very nice. I hadn't ever heard of anything but a stout being nitrogenated, so I was very interested and definitely pleased. The IPA and the stout really stood out though. Both were excellent. I had a 20 oz glass of the stout. One friend (a homebrewer) had two rounds of the IPA and was very impressed. Another friend had the ESB and also really loved it.

If you are ever in the Union Square area and looking for a place to get good beer, I heartily recommend Thirsty Bear.

PhiloPsych, Apr 10, 2007
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Thirsty Bear Brewing Company in San Francisco, CA
86 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.