Just outside of San Diego, Stone Brewing Co. offers its process, brews and a peek inside the factory to out-of-town guests, beer aficionados, and curious beer drinkers in its plant and restaurant site.
This award-winning brewery makes its site a tourist destination, complete with beer tasting at the end in its retail shop and restaurant.
Throughout the site, the Escondido brewery offers photogenic spots for the camera-crazy tourists.
Year round, the brewery offers 10 brews. They include:
- Stone Pale Ale
- Stone Smoked Porter
- Stone India Pale Ale
- Stone Levitation Ale
- Stone Cali-Belgique IPA
- Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Black IPA
- Stone Go To IPA
- Arrogant Bastard Ale
- OAKED Arrogant Bastard Ale
Check the brewery’s website for upcoming events at all locations. For example, the Escondido site showcases a New Year’s event for beer lovers, who loves to watch the beer come down in the middle of its’ bistro.
Most customers are out-of-town guests, beer tourists, those curious about brewing process and lovers of brews.
Founded in 1996, Stone Brewing established a zany attitude to go against the common thread of brewing beers. In 2013, the brewing company is rated as the 10th largest craft brewery in the United States. Stone will open a plant in Richmond, Virginia in the upcoming year. In addition, the brewing company plans to open an international site in Berlin, Germany.
With about 30 tour participants, the plant holds more than 70 tanks of fermenters that produces up to 4,000 beers. Brews stay in the fermenters for about seven days before bottling. The plant also showcases a small batch system for brewers to formulate new batches and experiment different tastes. Tour guide Justin bragged about the brewery’s talents – the brewers. For example, one brewer roasted coffee in Maui for the last seven years before coming to Stone Brewing bringing the Hawaiian roasted flavors to the beers.
A tour costs about $3. Tour participants can listen to a beer guide about the brewing process, specialties of Stone Brewing and a souvenir glass with a taste of four brews.
Stone distributes its brews in 40 states. In addition, it is exported to Puerto Rico, Japan, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand,, United Kingdom and Sweden.
Stone Brewing Co.
1999 Citracado Parkway
Escondido, CA 92029
Tip #1: Saturdays are the busiest tour dates. If you want an early tour, arrive at 11 am for a spot in any of the tours.
Tip #2: If you have more than a weekend in San Diego, take the tour on a weekday when it’s not so busy.
Tip #3: Be prepared to tell your tour guide your favorite types of beer, so he or she can provide some suggestions close to your beer tasting palate.