Miramar is a neighborhood located in the northern part of San Diego. It’s home to a Marine Corps Air Station, some residential areas, and tons of amazing breweries. With the abundance of quality tap houses and beer gardens, it’s no wonder that Miramar is more affectionately known as “Beer-a-mar.”
So, where exactly does one begin their SoCal beer tasting experience? Surely, a San Diego tour of the best breweries in the neighborhood would be of help. Lucky for you, we’ve put together a list of our favorite breweries near Miramar.
The first spot on our Miramar breweries map goes to Pure Project. It may seem small in size, but its flavor portfolio is anything but. Pure Project’s selection of beers is distinct and unique. They pull from tropical and floral aromas, which are tastes you typically won’t find in a beer.
The inspiration for this unique flavoring can be attributed to its founders, a couple from California who spent years exploring the Costa Rican jungle. After being inspired by the country’s beauty, they wanted to infuse Costa Rica’s spirit into a brewery. Hence, Pure Project was born.
Pure Project takes its environmental footprint seriously by being a 1% for The Planet company. With this commitment, 1% of all sales are donated to environmental non-profits. Aside from its eco-contributions, Pure Project has also had great success in the beer community. Its Roses Red beer even took home a bronze medal from the Great American Beer Festival.
- Come for the… Good of the planet
- Stay for the… Award-winning Roses Red
AleSmith Brewing Company
The next stop on our brewery crawl is AleSmith Brewing Company. AleSmith is known for its specialty handcrafted ales inspired by European classics. It’s also home to San Diego’s largest tasting room at 25,000 square-feet. First founded in 1995, this is one of the original breweries in Miramar’s trendy beer scene. Despite being older than some of its counterparts, this brewery knows how to stay current boasting countless national and international awards over the years.
If you’re interested in seeing the inner workings of an active brewery, AleSmith Brewing Company is the spot for you. For just $10, you can take a tour of the location and even get a beer in a commemorative glass.
Or you can just relax and take in the space while sitting on their large outdoor patio.
AleSmith doesn’t have a kitchen, but you can guarantee that there will always be delicious food trucks around. And be sure to try their most popular beer, the San Diego Pale Ale .394. It’s a nod to San Diego baseball legend Tony Gwynn’s batting average.
- Come for the… Insider look behind the scenes of a large-scale brewery
- Stay for the… San Diego Pale Ale .394
Mikkeller Brewing Company
Two blocks down the street from AleSmith is Mikkeller Brewing Company. Mikkeller was founded by Mikkel Borg Bjergso, a Danish math and physics teacher that initially started experimenting with hops, malt, and yeast in his home kitchen. His experiments quickly turned into internationally acclaimed beers that are exported to over 40 different countries.
After years of being a nomad, Mikkel finally decided to plant some brewery roots down in San Diego… in AleSmith Brewing Company’s old location to be exact. Since it’s a global brand, Mikkeller beers are influenced by the many sites where they have seeds planted.
One commonality you’ll find in their entire selection of beers, however, is the quality taste that pairs well with gourmet food. It was important for Mikkel to create beers that can be good alternatives to wine and champagne. Mikkeller Brewing Company is perhaps best known for its great stouts and hazy New England-Style IPAs. So grab a beer and enjoy the large, welcoming tasting room.
- Come for the… Happy place made of vibrant blue and yellow décor
- Stay for the… Raspberry Blush and Mr. Mechanic
Mike Hess Brewing Company
The fourth spot on your brewery tour of Miramar is the tucked-away Mike Hess Brewing Company. This little gem is definitely worth the stop. Its founder, Mike Hess, got his start as a family man and homebrewer. After learning about the concept of nano-breweries, Hess decided to take the next step and up his beer game. He opened the small, no-frills Mike Hess Brewing Company and hasn’t looked back since growing to be San Diego’s 11th largest brewer.
While Hess has expanded his business to bigger locations, the original nano-brewery still serves as a low-key tasting room that feels like a chill hangout with friends. The place is stocked with ping-pong tables, corn hole, darts, and plenty more games you can enjoy with other patrons. Mike Hess Brewing Company also has both indoor and outdoor seating spaces to utilize.
On the third Friday of each month, the brewery hosts its “Friday Afternoon Club,” which includes live music, food vendors, and all your favorite beers. Bring your friends for a fun Friday or bring a special someone for a lively daytime date idea. In the spirit of Mike Hess, his brewery is both family and dog friendly.
- Come for the… Abundance of outdoor games and friendly vibes
- Stay for the… Vienna Cream Ale
Pro-tip: if you order a flight, you also get a keepsake glass.
White Labs Brewing Company
At this point, you should have a nice beer buzz going just in time for the final stop. The last brewery on your Tour de Beer-a-mar is White Labs Brewing Company. White Labs is the perfect brewery for hard-core beer lovers or anyone who wants to learn more about the science behind beer. Biochemist, Chris White, founded the international yeast company in 1995 intending to make high-quality yeast easier and more accessible for brewers.
Along with the yeast producing company, White decided to open up a brewery and tasting room as a way to continue the conversation about yeast. He knew the best way for people to understand how big of a role yeast plays in beer is to have them see, taste, and smell the difference. Because of this, White Labs is the only San Diego brewery where the science of yeast is showcased through side-by-side comparisons.
It’s a great learning experience to understand why exactly you like certain beers. White Labs Brewing Company offers 32 beers on tap and tours of the facility.
- Come for the… Free yeast seminar with your order
- Stay for the… Tabberer IPA
San Diego craft beer history stretches a long way and with over 150 operating breweries in San Diego, you’ll never have a shortage of choices to choose from. Whether you prefer simple pilsners or hoppy IPAs, try elevating your beer game at one of the brewery options mentioned on the list. With the help of friendly bartenders and knowledgeable brewers, you’re sure to find something that quenches your thirst. Once you try out some of the breweries in the Miramar area, head on down to Gaslamp and Little Italy for some of the best breweries in downtown San Diego.
So grab your growlers and have fun!
Locale. 17 Breweries in Beer-a-mar You Should Try for National Beer Day. https://localemagazine.com/17-best-breweries-in-miramar/
Craft Beer San Diego. San Diego Beer Tour: Miramar. https://craftbeerinsandiego.com/blog/2019/1/21/san-diego-beer-tour-miramar0