On the way home from a busy 12 hour ER shift today I was invited to go to the new Hess Brewing tasting room in North Park, San Diego. This is my hood so I’ve driven by it a million times and watched its progress. I have been patiently waiting to see the end result. I actually didn’t realize it was even open yet because from the front it just looks like a bunch of giant steel beer brewing kegs (…scientific name?) Like anywhere in the rest of the country North Park has seen a recent influx of these craft beer start-ups including Thorn Street Brewery and BottleCraft. Each one seems to bring something a little different.
To forewarn you, I’m not even a craft beer fan. Or a beer fan in general. When a bartender asks me what kind of beer I want I lead in with “I really like beer that tastes more like water….Bud Light is my favorite. Do you have anything like that?” Then I get a pathetic look from the bartender and sip on my Pilsner that is probably even too bitter for my tastes. Despite my preference for wine and Coors Light, I really do like hitting up these places. Hess Brewing is no different. You walk in through all the giant kegs and there is a big open space filled with happy beer-drinking people playing Yahtzee while their dogs lay at their feet waiting for me to pet them. The staff are all lovely and from what my beer loving friends tell me the beer is quite tasty. There was a food truck on the back end of the space and a table full of board games for people on first dates that need a distraction. They also sold some pretty sweet t-shirts. If you buy a flight ($15) you get this cool little poker chip that you can trade in for a Hess glass. The beer names also reminded me of Harry Potter spells which is….cool.
My lone Pilsner.
My Hogwarts poker chip.
Hess Brewing Co. is on the corner of Grim and University in North Park.