Bottlecraft - Little Italy

Bottlecraft - Little ItalyBottlecraft - Little Italy
Bottlecraft - Little ItalyBottlecraft - Little Italy
Bar, Beer-to-go

2161 India St
San Diego, California, 92101-1723
United States

(619) 487-9493 | map

View: Place Reviews
Reviews: 29 | Ratings: 88 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of WunderLlama
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75

Freindly staff in Little Italy

Great beer selections -i happened in for an aslin beer tap takeover = lucky me. Had a Fremont as well

Small number of stools at the bar, some facing outside, a few tables outside and some tables upstairs.

Bottles and refrigerators loaded with a nice variety of locals and beers of note

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WunderLlama from Massachusetts, Mar 21, 2019
Photo of MyBar
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Over the phone staff is friendly and helpful but kinda too cool for customers vibe in store. I've never actually been greeted first, I always am the greeter here and have to request assistance if needed (maybe they're shy). Once I initiate contact though, the staff is helpful so I didn't ding them too much on service although there is room for improvement. The selection never lets me down as I always find just what I'm looking for and then some! Parking is an issue with only metered parking or if you get lucky there might be a free spot a few blocks away so I only stop in here after 6pm when parking is free although sometimes still have to drive around the block once or twice till something opens up. Conveniently located on my way home from work so I'll stop in for a few bottles or cans to enjoy with dinner, I've never actually stayed for a drink on the "tasting room" side. There are several restaurants and bars along India street within walking distance so It would be a good stop on a Little Italy San Diego Adventure!

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MyBar from California, Feb 11, 2019
Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.54/5  rDev +3.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

Cool bottle shop /taproom across the street from Ballast Point in Little Italy. Small bar seats about 10, plus a few tables on the sidewalk. 24 assorted craft on tap... plus 5 coolers and some shelves with beer to go. Excellent selection...sells single can... fresh dates. Friendly knowledgeable service. Great place.

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WillieThreebiers from Connecticut, Dec 03, 2018
Photo of Rub_This_BBQ
4.72/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

lucky to hit up while on the road and it was SD beer week so bottle logic pours and to go a bottle of FOB cannot ask for more. Super nice staff and love the options of 4, 8, 16oz pours so got to taste everything I wanted to off the menu.

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Rub_This_BBQ from Massachusetts, Nov 08, 2018
Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.33/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.25

Excellent spot to hit before or after Ballast Point. Great selection of bottles and cans, some cold and some warm. Also has a solid selection of taps and different pour sizes allowing for full pours or samples.

The vibe is inviting and friendly. Good place to shop and drink simultaneously.

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ONovoMexicano from New Mexico, Feb 20, 2016
Photo of scxcrunner
4.39/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

might have been my favorite stop on our san diego trip. loved the atmosphere and really liked that you could pick a bottle to go and a bottle to drink at the shop... something you can't do in MA. also had a nice tap list of 10 beers or so.

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scxcrunner from Massachusetts, Dec 11, 2015
Photo of socon67
4.68/5  rDev +6.6%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.75 | selection: 4.5

If you hit up Ballast Point in Little Italy then head across the street when you are done. Small bottle shop with a tap area. Plenty of goodies to try. Societe The Pupil was my first choice. Staff is really nice as well.

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socon67 from New York, Nov 13, 2015
Photo of dbannister
4.53/5  rDev +3.2%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Bottlecraft is very close to the San Diego Airport (roughly 2 miles from the rental car returns). There is a Ballast Point taproom across the street from it that you can also visit.

Bottlecraft has a great selection of beers on tap and for sale. There are roughly 10 beers on tap and there is a good selection of beer types (IPA, Stout, etc.) The service is really good and the environment is very nice.

I definitely recommend visiting this place. Its also not very far from downtown.

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dbannister from California, Sep 24, 2015
Photo of Taybeh
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Friendly helpful staff. Plenty of good stuff, and you can get a mix-six. Prices are a little high, and the selection could be better, but all in all, good place, and less than a block away from the Ballast Point Tasting room.

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Taybeh from Minnesota, Nov 29, 2014
Photo of docoman
5/5  rDev +13.9%

Stopped in after visiting Ballast Point tasting... great place and awesome selection, especially one of my new found favorites The Lost Abbey... they even had some of their Angel Share Ale, which I would recommend getting before they are gone. They were willing to ship anywhere in the states also which is helpful. Staff very nice and helpful too.

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docoman from Michigan, Nov 22, 2014
Photo of mrcraft
4.26/5  rDev -3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

I visited this location since my hotel was near Little Italy and wanted to try another bottle shop in San Diego.

It was good. They have most beers on shelves on the wall, and had 3 coolers. The selection isn't as good as BDBS or my regular bottleshop in Los Angeles, but they carry quality stuff. Also, since Bell's is only distributed in San Diego for now, finding Bell's beers here was a plus for me. I didn't inquire, but you can pay a corkage fee and drink beers on site which is nice if you're meeting friends, and then have dinner afterwards at one of many nice restaurants nearby.

Overall, a solid bottleshop. I'll visit again next week since I'm down in San Diego again.

Update - 2/4/2015: They moved across the street to a brick building (almost directly across the street from Ballast Point). The bar is larger but the beer selection may have gotten smaller.

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mrcraft from California, Oct 19, 2014
Photo of Franziskaner
4.01/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75

Popped in during my vacation after a recommendation by Loews hotel concierge and BA research. This place felt special. It's nearly all beer and the exceptions were some ciders and there may have been meads. There's a lot of calculated mood lighting and I like that while there are beers on the shelves on the wall,there are also lots of shelves set within the middle arranged at angles to encourage exploration. They an amazing selection. I did not have time to crack anything open from the cooler and enjoy it. There was one guy behind the counter and he answered questions when I asked. I did take into account he had a few people at the bar on the other side of him so he can't exactly walk over to assist.

Returned in September of 2015 on a Wednesday night so things were slow. Love the vibe at this place with most of the people there for a drink and some coming in for bottles to take back. I was pleased to find Prairie Apple Brandy Noir and Russian River Damnation on the shelves. I'd still rank this bottle shop 3rd for selection and rarities behind Krisp Beverages, Bottle Craft North Park, but ahead of Bine & Vine.

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Franziskaner from Missouri, Mar 07, 2014
Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I've been to this shop several times and I sort of wish we had something like it in Denver. I know its not feasible given the difference in our liquor laws but a boutique bottle shop is pretty cool. Nice that you can pop a bottle here and drink it for a corkage fee.. Selection is pretty damn good and I even bought a Cantillon taster glass here once. Pretty much a must visit when I'm in San Diego.

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ArrogantB from Colorado, Jan 25, 2014
Photo of Boud504
4.28/5  rDev -2.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

This place is great. Tons of selection. We did a local flight and had a great time talking to the bar tender and the people around us. This is a community place that would be great for date night or just having a fun evening with friends. They had a great selection of local beers, a great selection of domestic beers, and a lot of Belgium beers.

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Boud504 from Louisiana, Nov 04, 2013
Photo of StoutSnob40
4.72/5  rDev +7.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

Consistently, the best tap list in San Diego. The large bottle selection aside, I've seen taps here I haven't seen anywhere else in San Diego. One of my favorite places to drink in the city.

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StoutSnob40 from California, Oct 10, 2013
Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
4.01/5  rDev -8.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5

Popped in while at Toronado and was actually disappointed in their selection. While they do have a wide selection of beer for a store selling beer, they had nothing special and nothing I hadn't seen anywhere else. In fact, they were the only shop that I visisted all weekend that I didn't buy anything in or have a desire to return on a next trip.

I loved the vibe, very "hip" and great placement. Guy at the counter was very nice and answered a few questions for me. Only thing I didn't like were the other people in there looking for the highest ABV beers to get "faded" on that night. Oh well, not their fault. If they REALLY step up thier selection, I'd be happier. Overall, a place to stop in when in the area but I wouldn't go too far out of the way for it.

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4.36/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

I only went here once but my impression is they have a sweet selection but as with anything you gotta pay to play. They were just a bit pricey but the location they maintain allows for this. I will say I was able to get Jester King Weasel here and at that time I really was wanting to try that. Selection overall was impressive and the inside was pretty cool as far as atmosphere.

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JDJTEXAS from California, Sep 10, 2013
Photo of HoppingAlong
4.89/5  rDev +11.4%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 5

While I live nearly twenty minutes away, I find that a trip to Bottlecraft is often worth the drive. The place is located in Little Italy, near the San Diego airport (so if you are visiting SD I would strongly urge you to stop by here before you head to your hotel). The shop is super clean, with some wood tables/benches to sit and drink/eat (you have to bring your own food, if you are into that sort of thing). The bottle selection is great, with all styles represented. While their fridge space is ample, stroll to the back of the store to find the rest of the beers they carry. The staff is friendly and helpful, and they will answer any questions you might have and they will certainly make suggestions if you need them. The prices are reasonable and comparable to just about every other shop in San Diego. They often have a couple of different beers on tap and they allow you to consume purchased bottles on premises (not sure that if there is a corkage fee, as I always purchase my bottles to go). All in all-- one of the best bottle shops near downtown.

They also have another shop that recently opened in the North Park area (an area that features some of the best craft beer bars in San Diego).

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HoppingAlong from California, Aug 09, 2013
Photo of claspada
4.18/5  rDev -4.8%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

Medium size retail establishment, very clean, well organized with plenty of local offering and everything you could expect to find from the area.

Didn't see anything rare, per say, but it would be more than useful if I was from the area and wanted to purchase something to take home but on a trip it wasn't quite useful or warranted me hemorrhaging more $ than necessary.

Prices seemed reasonable. Service was nice, asked me for assistance. Would gladly shop here if I lived nearby.

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claspada from New Jersey, Jun 19, 2013
Photo of Boga
4.29/5  rDev -2.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.75

The atmosphere of the place is great, this is a mix of a bar and store, since you can buy a beer and drink on (with an additional uncorking charge) or take it home. Don't be surprised if you see a lot of pets inside, as this is allowed.

Quality is great, nice and clean.

Service is a strong point, always friendly. They occasionally have a "Keep the glass night" in which you buy a specific beer and you get to keep the proper branded glass for it.

Selection... I'll put it this way, if you are fairly new to crafts beer, you'll be impressed; but if you know your stuff and know what you're looking for, it's fairly above average.

One of the things that I liked the most about this place is that you can take whatever food you want inside, and go at it without anyone bothering you. (I recommend Mona Lisa Italian Foods a block south)...

I normally visit once every month from Tijuana to restock... Salud!

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Boga from Mexico, Jun 06, 2013
Photo of LittleDon
3.76/5  rDev -14.4%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.25

The Good: Featured flights of four bottled beers plus two taps. You can drink on site what you buy. Close to downtown.
The Bad: Small, Selection, while decent, is not terribly large. Corkage fee after 6 ($1.25).

Honestly, other than the featured flights and slightly easier parking, I'm not sure why anyone would go to Bottlecraft. It's not that it's a bad place, but with so many quality establishments in San Diego, you have to be better and/or different than the alternatives. While the atmosphere was comfortable, the staff and clientele gave me the impression that I wasn't hip enough to be there. Service was decent, I would have liked to talk more with my server about what the store had and what was recommended, but I couldn't tell whether I was deemed to different from the regulars to talk to, or they just didn't know. The selection was quality, but limited. Again, considerably better bottle shops in the area. Would I return? Given that Bottlecraft is relatively new, and that maybe I caught them on an off night, I might wait six months and give it a second shot.

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Photo of Hanson_Cole
4.79/5  rDev +9.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

Quite possibly the most diverse selection of beer available in San Diego. My own personal beer odyssey has been enriched ten-fold simply thanks to the horizon expanding Bottlecraft Beer Shop & Tasting Room. And I'm not sure how they keep the prices so low. But you get the feeling this joint is dedicated to providing great, affordable beer for all.

Luckily, I live one block away from Bottlecraft. But even if you don't live near Little Italy... who doesn't want to take a short trip here!? It is well worth it. And if Little Italy isn't your scene, the highly successful and popular little shop has just opened a new, larger store in the heart of North Park.

You owe yourself a visit to Bottlecraft if you think you like beer at all. Seriously, you will enjoy every sip.

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Photo of djmitche
4.33/5  rDev -1.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I'm just in town for a conference, but dropped by this place to pick up some local bottles to take home, and see what it was all about. They had two flights running, based on bottle pours, as well as two beers on tap. There was a beer club meeting at the table in the back, but lots of stools available along the bar in the window. There are copies of BeerAdvocate and Zymurgy all over. The staff know their product and how to treat it.

All in all, a good selection of local beers, and a great atmosphere of beer geekery without being a bar. More of a "here, try this, it's interesting!" place rather than anything snobby or oriented toward inebriation.

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djmitche from Illinois, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of crossovert
3.79/5  rDev -13.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5

A nice place near the airport in SD. IT is on a bit of a sleepy street in a very nice area with a pretty decent stretch of hip and trendy stops. The store is small but it has good quality. Plenty of local brews are featured, not all of them but a good chunk. Nearly every beer is available cold or warm. There is a glassware rack and you can also drink a beer that you buy on-premise. I didn't see if there was a "uncapping" fee or not. A few people were sitting there drinking one night. But overall it is a pretty good shop.

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crossovert from Illinois, Jul 26, 2012
Photo of rmaste6282
4.36/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

This place is off India Street, right in the middle of Little Italy on a one way street. A true bottleshop, where you can buy singles and six packs, plus you get to open any bottles you want for onsite consumption. Brian, the owner is great, knowledgable, approachable and willing to talk beer, not just send you on your way. Prices are great, better than most in the county. The only drawbacks are the small size of the place, and no old vintage stuff since it has only been open for a year or so. Definitely worth checking out if you are in the area.

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rmaste6282 from California, Feb 07, 2012
Bottlecraft - Little Italy in San Diego, CA
Place rating: 4.39 out of 5 with 88 ratings