Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Brewery Project: Rock Bottom Downtown San Diego

While the food and beer are generally the same at each Rock Bottom, the look and feel to the Downtown San Diego location is decidedly different.  I originally paid them a visit here.  A large bar dominates the lower level of the brewery restaurant, with additional seating sprinkled around the main floor.  A small bar with more seating is located upstairs, overlooking the aforementioned space.  Not as family friendly as other locations, in my opinion, the layout here better matches the nightlife that San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter is known for.  Familiar with each core beer they offer, my eye was drawn to the current cask beer on their beer engine.  A sign read, "Smoked Porter aged 8 months in a Woodford Reserve barrel  ABV 7.5%".  Naturally, this was the choice I made.  The pour was a deep, dark mahogany with an ample head.  The taste was dry, bourbon hitting you right up front, smooth, almost a little thin, and had a strong, boozy finish.  What I didn't detect was any smoke.  Perhaps the bourbon barrel aging masked any smoke the beer originally had.  There was a lot going on in the glass, but it was an overall good beer.  Making the beer even better was its modest price of only $3.75.  I'm always looking for specialty or seasonal releases, so to find one of this caliber, at this price, made me very happy with this stop.  I'm look forward to seeing what other innovative beers they come up with in the future, and will definitely be back to try them!

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