Drake's Brewing Co.

Drake's Brewing Co.Drake's Brewing Co.
Drake's Brewing Co.Drake's Brewing Co.
Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Beer-to-go

1933 Davis Street
San Leandro, California, 94577
United States

(510) 568-2739 | map

View: Beers | Place Reviews
Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 90 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of PapaGoose03
PapaGoose03 from Michigan

4.33/5  rDev -0.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.75 | food: 4

(#31 of 49) Here's a brewery that goes counter to the type of vibe that I like in a pub setting (I dislike an industrial building and interior), but the quality of their beers was so good and the display of oak barrels all around the place so that it overcame my prejudice. This brewery has moved into the top 5 of those that I have ever visited.

Our visit was on a Saturday just after lunchtime, and the place was busy. We wanted to try their beers and did not realize that a food truck was also available or we would not have had lunch before our arrival. We ordered a sampler flight of 10 beers (22 beers were on tap) to evaluate. Wow! I've never given so many scores that exceeded a B grade, but that's what happened here. Scores ranged from 3.75 (one beer) to 4.5 (three of them). Very well done, Drake's!

Although we had already had lunch, we did break down and ordered some loaded Tater-Tots from their food truck which were very tasty. Based on those alone, I've given a B grade to the food. This brewery is a must-visit if you are in the area, and it will be a must-revisit when we are close by again.

Sep 17, 2016
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RyanK252 from California

4.4/5  rDev +1.4%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

Drake's Barrel House is kinda tucked behind a Wal-Mart at the back of a shopping center, but separated enough to have it's own beer sanctuary feel. Big warehouse space with tables surrounded by racks of barrels, plus a small patio space. The staff is friendly and eager to put the right beer for you in your hand, though it can get a bit busy at times. (Finding a parking spot can be a challenge at times too.) There's always a ton of variety on the board from their standards, to experimental stuff, to a healthy list of barrel aged specialty brews. The food trailer out front serves up some solid munchies too.

May 11, 2016
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ONovoMexicano from New Mexico

4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Huge space once you find it (it's behind a huge superstore). Barrels everywhere and you can essentially sit among them, even to the point of being completely hidden from the rest of the customers and servers.

There were tons of beers on tap including a number of brewery-only beers and bottles were for sale too. A few brewery-only bottles were available and the prices weren't bad.

Flights were available and not too expensive and full pours also were affordable. I felt comfortable hanging out here with my daughter due to the open space and vibe.

A food truck was present but I didn't see it serving food yet when I was there.

Apr 11, 2016
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brewaddict from California

4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

Located in the corner of a warehouse attached to a shopping mall, the Drakes Brewing taproom isn't much to look at. Cement floors and wooden benches pretty much make up the decor of this place. In the center if the space is a large walk in reefer which acts as both a display case for bottle sales as well as the keg cooler for the bar which runs along one side. What it lacks in style, Drakes more than makes up in the beer selection. There are the normal distribution offerings on tap. But, there are as many or more brewery only choices to be had as well. Service is very good and there is a food truck now available on site. If you are looking for a more brewpub experience, check out Drakes Dealership just up the road in Oakland.

Jan 31, 2016
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drew42e from California

4.87/5  rDev +12.2%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.75 | selection: 5

Best to go during special release or "first Friday" when they pull out some special beers. Drake's is a hidden gem in the Bay Area, and its odd location tucked behind a strip mall and Walmart doesn't lend itself to "just happening upon it". I very much like their beers, and was pleasantly surprised at the variety offered at the barrel house. Many barrelhouse only beers, mostly barrel aged stuff they don't bottle, and I really enjoyed both events I went to. Large, open taproom with barrels all around. No brew pub, but they do have food trucks, and the Dirty Tots are legitimately one of the best things I've ever tasted.

Jan 13, 2016
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Original_Gravity from California

4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Such a great place - and in such an assuming location - tucked away in a shopping complex behind some major retail stores. Walk in on any given day and find the core beers that you're used to - while also being treated to some interesting one-offs, as well as a decent selection of barrel aged offerings. I make a point to stop in whenever I'm in the area.

I feel that Drake's has one of the more underrated barrel programs in craft brewing - outstanding beers like Headzo and Santa's Brass come to mind.

Nov 08, 2015
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BDeibs from Colorado

4.06/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I loved the tasting room in the barrel cellar. A huge TV, but it wasn't a focal point. Nice Bar service with a lot of people behind the counter. A decent selection of over 15 beers on tap. I dind't try the food because of the 45 minute wait, but really enjoyed my time and the duck tasting trays were fun too!

Aug 03, 2015
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James_Michaud91 from California

4.91/5  rDev +13.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Brewery/barrell house/taproom/eatery tucked into an industrial mall in San Leandro. The inside is cool and spacious and there is nice outside seating. Super friendly staff. Numerous, limited brewery only and tap only selections available. And, if you thought growlers were cool you should see there to-go kegrowlers, super cheap to refill!

Jul 30, 2015
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Jdizzy92 from California

4.59/5  rDev +5.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 3.75 | service: 5 | selection: 5

Been going here since they open up the barrel house bar. I go here a lot since it is near where I live. Their Barrel House Bar is the place to be at. They have a lot of seasonal/barrel beers that you won't see any where else. Seems like every time I come here there is something new. The people that work their are great and fun. I like most of the events they do.

Jul 18, 2015
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CJNAPS from California

4.53/5  rDev +4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.75

I'm a big fan of their beers, but the vibe at the taproom was kind of whack lol
The barrel room you taste the beers in was cool but it was like a bar where no seemed like they wanted to help you, but their Hopocalypse is coming out soon so I'll forget all about this review lol

Jan 09, 2015
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John_M from Oregon

4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.25 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.5

I really like the geographical location of the brewery/brewpub, as it's no more than 5 or 10 minutes from the airport (Oakland), and so an easy stop before dropping the rental car off and hopping on my flight back home. That being said, the location is kind of weird, tucked around the back of a fair size mall and Walmart. it's not the sort of place you're going to just happen upon; you really have to be looking for the place and intent on visting. However, Drake beers are pretty popular and worth the search, which I guess explains the sizeable crowd on a Friday afternoon. The pub is located in a warehouse type of large room with barrels, tables and chairs spread out everywhere. There's a nice patio area as well, and as the weather was gorgeous, there was a good size crowd taking in the sun and enjoyng a few brews on a warm afternoon in October.

In terms of the beer, I think they had roughly 20 different beers on tap, including a firkin and something on the handpump. The selection was pretty diverse, and included a couple of barrel aged wild ales and a couple of bourbon barrell offerings (the BB RIS had just blown, unfortunately).

I didn't see a food menu, but there was a sign noting that they have food trucks stopping by on select days. I didn't see one arond on the Friday afternoon I was here (nor did I see anyone eating), but that's what I read.. Service was OK. There was some table service I believe for the folks sitting out on the porch, but otherwise you belly up to the good size bar area inside and buy your beer there (to take back to your table). Prices were OK for the most part. Most pints were around $5 or $6 I believe for the core beers, with the limited stuff served in snifters. I did feel the $7 price tag for a so-so bourbon barrel aged porter was a bit high, but that was my only quibble with the pricing here. Folks working seemed friend and pretty nice I thought.

There's no doubt I'll be back.

Oct 20, 2014
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jested from California

1/5  rDev -77%

Hello... here at the bar waiting to be served, yes I would like a beer but waiting here over 10 minutes and being ignored is no fun. Finally... Here is a twenty can I get change? Oh your shifted is done and you have count your cash box? No problem I will stand here and wait: -(

Piss poor service. Beer no way near the wait! Stay away

Sep 25, 2014
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kevrice88 from Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

Great place to visit. Awesome selection of beers to sample, more than I can sample in one visit. Nice to see a brewery with a variety of year round beers along with plenty of seasonal/rare beers to sample. Would love to visit again if ever in the area. Highly recommended for the average craft beer drinker to the beer drinker looking for something special.

Jun 26, 2014
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willjschmidt from California

4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

Drake's has a tap-room located at their brewery in San Leandro. It's in a very hidden location, make sure that you read the directions on their website before trying to find it. It's behind a shopping center off of 880. The tap-room is located inside and they also have a large outdoor patio. Great selection, typically around 15-20 beers on-tap. Prices are $5-6 for a pint of their regular rotation and seasonals. They don't have food but they sometimes get food trucks, check their website for a schedule. A great spot to enjoy the great beer from Drake's.

May 29, 2014
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BoobyTrappist from California

4.45/5  rDev +2.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2

Drake's Barrel House is great. It is probably the most chill environment you could ask for at a brew house... or should I say warehouse. By all accounts, they have taken their barreling house, added a bar and a few fridges to it, stood up a few extra barrels to serve as tables, and opened it up to the public. And, most importantly, the concept works great!

Drake's has a number of great beers in stores for purchase, but none of them hold a candle to what you can get on tap at the barrel house. They are not only very experimental (or should I say ex-beer-amental), but they maintain their high standards of quality around everything they brew as well. What you get are some non-traditional barrel-aged taste explosions.

The downside is food. There are a few snack items (goldfish, nuts, etc), but for the most part, you have to rely on the presence of a food truck. Either way, be prepared to get your calories from the delicious brews.

If you want to relax and try some amazing rare (or super hoppy) stuff, pull up a picnic table at Drake's.

Mar 19, 2014
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dirtylou from District of Columbia

4.46/5  rDev +2.8%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.25 | selection: 4.5

'love the drake'

Definitely a bit of an expedition to get here from SF via public transportation, but it worked. The physical location is buried behind a gathering of some of the worlds worst places (Sam's Club and other big boxes) but it allows for a nice big space with room for a food truck.

Nice vibe - interior filled to the brims with barrels and also some nice seating options outside.

Tap list was pretty extensive and diverse with a good stash of hops and barrel aged offerings, everything of which seemed pretty strong to me. I've had some Drake's stuff before but I'll be more appreciative in the future after seeing their pretty sweet operation in person.

Go here.

Mar 04, 2014
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JackDempsy from Arizona

4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.25

This brewery is hard to find. It is in the back area between a Walmart and the Sports Authority. No food is served - but the let you bring in anything you want to eat. I usually go down to the sub shop in the nearby plaza. There are a few tables outside, but no view. The inside has a few picnic tables and a "standing" bar. So, why do I like it? Beer, service and value cannot be beat. It is for beer lovers alone - no football or children. I love it.

Oct 05, 2013
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elNopalero from California

4.72/5  rDev +8.8%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Drake’s Brew House is nestled away in the back of a commercial complex behind a Wal-Mart, which makes it instantly the best thing about the location. (Although it’s too bad that its not the airport Wal-Mart, in which case it would be close to an In-and-Out. Speaking of which, there’s no food here to speak of, but you can bring things over.) The brewhouse has a full line up of their stapes and year round beers as well as seasonals and specialty limited releases. The staff is super-chill and laid-back, too. No complaints! I spent an afternoon here and had a blast. Last call came way too soon.

Sep 03, 2013
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bray from California

4.85/5  rDev +11.8%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.75 | service: 5 | selection: 4.75

stopped recently on a Sunday afternoon, crowded but still lots of seats and tables available.
Hard to find as everyone has said.

The 4 beers we tried were solid, the stout and IPA were really good.

we sat outside, it's a great place to hang out and relax.

they had a food truck when we were there

Jul 30, 2013
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Topher78 from California

4.57/5  rDev +5.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.75

The Barrel House is located behind a Walmart just south of Oakland in San Leandro. This hidden gem houses one of Northern California's best breweries. Not as well known as Russian River or Lagunitas, Drake's can still hunt with the big dogs. They put out some of NorCal's best Hop Bombs; whether you're trying 1500(a dry hopped APA) IPA (a style setter for West Coast IPA's), Hopocalypse (DIPA & Triple IPA), Aroma Coma or Aroma Prieto. They also know their way around barrel aging too.

Jun 04, 2013
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MilwaukeeCrusher from Wisconsin

4.37/5  rDev +0.7%
vibe: 4.75 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4

First of all this is in rather an odd place, tucked behind a mini mall. Still, I had to check out the place that I've seen many Californians call their under the radar brewery. The place had a nice atmosphere, as the fresh air passed in from the outside as well as light from the California sun. I got a flight and while their beers didn't knock my socks off, their beers were respectably good with the IPAs probably the highlight. The service was also good and the menu did have a broad range of styles. This is a nice stop if you're in the area, and probably a great one in many other parts of the country. With such competition in the state at the very least that could be said is they're moving in the right direction and the most is that they will soon be players.

Mar 15, 2013
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Ilovebeer1549 from California

3.94/5  rDev -9.2%
vibe: 3.25 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Interesting place. In an old warehouse with an industrial area feel. Snacks are the only food options. It's all about the beer here. Great selection of good to great beers. Staff was very nice and knowledgeable. We sampled several, with the Hopocalypse ipa standing out as my favorite, a 5 rating. Also tried a beer with maybe the best name ever "25 years of issues", a 3 for the beer and 5 for the name. Ill be back.

Mar 03, 2013
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FosterJM from California

4.44/5  rDev +2.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

Stopped in on October 4th with my branch manager on a Nor. Cal beer binge!

Atm- A little bit out of the way behind the old plant in San Leandro, This location was the power center that was converted to house the barrels and the tasting room. Had a ton of barrels, large bar and nice tables and places to stand.

Quality- The quality of beers on tap was damn good. Had a good 15+ taps flowing with a wide ranging amount of styles and even the barrel aged offerings.

Service- The girls behind the counter were awesome. Very helpful and friendly and quick to chit chat. Met one of the owners and chatted for a bit about their beers.

Selection- IPA's, Red, Stouts, Blondes, Nitros, Barrel Aged. Little bit of everything behind the bar and something for everyone really.

Food- N/A

Value- Standard bar pricing. Was nice to see taster, 1/2 pour, pint, goblet pricing.

Oct 16, 2012
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bbHOP from California

4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4

This place is truly my favorite spot. Hidden amongst the gritty, urban sheath of a Wal-Mart anchored San Leandro strip mall is an oasis of innovative, expressive and exciting beer. I thank the good lord that I live < 10 miles away on a fairly regular basis.

Atmosphere-wise, so much of the charm is that you're in that crazy location. The barrel house has a cool, industrial vibe - roll-up warehouse door - and a clean, modern feel to the inside. Very open space - great place to bring a book / game and chill with friends while drinking quality brews.

The beer, obviously, is amazing. What puts the place over the top isthe amazing selection of barrel-aged stuff... Imperial stout in bourbon barrels, wheat wine in port barrels, you get the drift. If you have any interest in barrel-aging - this is the place for you.

People are nice, and seem to genuinely dig what they are serving.

Feb 05, 2012
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colonelforbin from California

4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5

One of the more interesting locations for a brewpub/barrel house that I've seen. Just past a giant strip mall Walmart parking lot in San Leandro, just off the freeway.

Outside seating is kind of odd, with little tables lined up to the left of the loading dock, yet allowing some nice privacy, etc. in its own way. Inside there are tables and a bar that people seemingly only sit at if the tables are all full (weekend afternoon when I went and very uncrowded).

The charm of the Drake's barrel house, at least to me, is in the barrel aged beers on the menu. Got to give them credit for trying so many different new things. Some are a hit, others mediocre, and others a big miss; but at least they are attempting some of these beers that others would never try. I think a combination of being owned by east bay beer baron John Martin (plenty of capital from owning so many prime beer spots in Berkeley) and the sheer volume they otherwise do allows for the experimentation that you see here.

I have tried a number of their barrel aged experiments and they really are all over the map quality wise, never seen anything like it. Their hoppy offerings have always been top notch, on the other hand, so I give props to Drake's.

Check this place out if you are driving 880 between San Jose and Oakland, or vice versa. Growlers and kegs available at reasonable prices, and wacky barrel aged beers available for sampling at all times.

Nov 17, 2011
Drake's Brewing Co. in San Leandro, CA
Brewery rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 6238 ratings