7. Pizza Port
Solana Beach and Carlsbad, Calif.
This is the pizza place that launched a small brewing empire. Unlike the other brewpubs on this list, however, Pizza Port's beer began as an afterthought. Back in March 1987, siblings Gina and Vince Marsaglia bought a struggling pizza place in Solana Beach, just north of San Diego.
The pizza was just fine, but Vince saw all the free space in the pizzeria's storage area and started brewing his own beer as a hobby. When capacity became an issue and friends started suggesting he sell some, the Marsaglias turned the first Pizza Port location into a brewpub in 1992. Four more locations and a bottle shop followed, as did the Port Brewing central operation and the Lost Abbey experimental brewing side project.
So what do we recommend? An open mind. Brewers are rotating beers out constantly here, and the varieties you'll find at Pizza Port won't necessarily be what Port Brewing or Lost Abbey send to the bottle shops. Take a look at the big board, help yourself to some BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger or Freshy Margherita pizza and enjoy.