As I travel around California, I am always on the lookout for entirely unique places. This is why I find so much enjoyment in spots like Salvation Mountain or even the Lucha Libre Taco Shop. I feel that creating something cookie-cutter is hardly ever worth it, which is why I fell in love with the Stone Brewing Co. in Escondido. The idea of a brewery and restaurant has been done hundreds of times; however, I don’t feel like it has ever been done as well as the Stone Brewing Co. does it.
As soon as you arrive, you will notice the sheer size of the brewery. From the entryway with hanging plants to the store and restaurant area, a considerable amount of attention was put into creating something that is both eye-catching and inviting. If you are planning on eating, make sure to put your name in before you explore as it always seems to be about an hour before you are seated due to how busy it is. Also, check in the store to see if there is a tour of the brewery that you can go on as those also go fast during peak times and they come with four samples of the beer. You can check out my brewery tour review here. After that, I highly suggest heading out into the patio to get a drink from the outdoor bar (even if you do not like beer, they also make their own lemonade) before heading out in the gardens to hang out.
By far, one of the best parts of the brewery is the extensive and beautiful gardens that they have in the back. You can walk along the ponds, see the small waterfall, and even check out the many different types of plants that make up the garden. They also have areas with outdoor seating so you can relax in nature and feel miles away from the hustle and bustle of the city. I like to just hang out back there as it feels so secluded and peaceful, but you are never more then a couple of minutes’ walk from filling up your drink or checking on your dinner reservation. This place is not just for adults either; every time I am there, I see many families hanging out in the gardens with the parents relaxing while the kids run around and entertain each other.
As a caveat, I have only eaten here twice so I have by no means had a full selection of the different foods they have to offer, that being said I have thoroughly enjoyed the meals both times. The restaurant is on the higher side of the price range, but it is justifiable as the food combines with the gardens to create a full experience. By far, the standouts for me are the pretzels they have as an appetizer, the mac and beer cheese, and the wild mushrooms over penne. They also have many foods that are made from the beers they brew, such as a soup and even a hot sauce that you can add to your meal. Like I said, it is a little pricey, but I have yet to feel like I was taken advantage of with the price to quality ratio.
All in all, I am a huge fan of the Stone Brewing Co. in Escondido. It is a great place to come with friends for a drink, the family for a nice break from the norm, or with your significant other for a great night out. I highly recommend it. Make sure to leave me a comment and let me know what you think.