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Tustin Brewing Company
Active Beers: 52
Beer Ratings: 174
Beer Avg: 3.61
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: Y / Beer-to-Go: Y
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
13011 Newport Avenue #100
phone: (714) 665-2337
(Place added by: BeerAdvocate)
Ratings & Reviews
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| Reviews: 31 | Show All Ratings:
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 5 | selection: 3.5 | $$
I am glad that someone submitted a picture as I am not sure that my words could do it justice. The exterior was made to resemble a castle with the Newport Avenue-facing side looking like a castle wall and the entry, through the parking lot, looked like a tower with a cupola. The entry opened onto a lobby with cases of logo items flanking either side. The entry also had a conical ceiling with a cupola at the top, creating a bright entryway. The long, straight bar was off to the left, past the m.d.s. also left. The back bar consisted of the brewhouse and four (4) "Fermentors". Take note, FerMentor Lew! The right side of the space was a sea of standard tables and chair along with a beautiful brick wall with both monitors and logos. Our server was the highly enthusiastic Mike H. (no last names, IAW Sonny Barger's comments in the recent documentary, "Gonzo").
Beers: All were identified in terms of OG, vice ABV. You'll have to do the math. Golden Spike Light Ale (1.051); Lemon Heights Hefeweizen (1.052); American Pale Ale (1.057); Red Hill Red (1.064); Blimp Hangar Porter (1.055); and Old Town IPA (1.064). The IPA was out on my visit, but the APA was plenty hoppy to keep me happy.
08-20-2008 20:50:11 |
More by woodychandler
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3 | food: 4 | $$
Before heading over to watch fellow BA PMR brew some beer and share in his incredible stash of brews, I hooked up with BA Swillinbrew and decided to hit up a few local establishments.
The first of which was the Tustin Brewing Company. The exterior is rather unique and very hard to miss. A large white rotunda rises out of the corner of the parking lot and is capped with a dark slated Witches hat style pointed roof - this is definitely not your usual run-of-the-mill looking Shopping Mall Brewpub. Parking was easy enough, but all of the bays seemed to have green painted curb stones with either 30 minute or 1 hour parking restrictions, so check beforehand if you plan to stay here for a while.
The entrance lies at the base of the rotunda, just to the right of the equally strange looking and demure Olivias Doll House Tea Room to the left, feels like being in fairyland at times. An outside drinking area lies off to the right of the entrance and has good selection of tables, chairs and sun screens.
Inside the scorching heat of the midday SoCal sun was replaced with a cooling Air-Conditioned interior that was darkened. Once past the entranceway it opens up into one large room which serves all of those that wish to stay inside rather than sit outside. The Brewery seems huge, and is easily spotted off to the left, lots of stainless tanks and vessels squeezed behind the bar and in front of what looks like a refrigeration plant of some kind. All this runs down the whole left hand side wall. Twenty or so stools line the front of the wooden bar. A walkway is demarked in front of the bar with a waist height wooden wall that also has stools. This wall divides the bar area from the rest of the room to the right hand side which has many tables and chairs all neatly laid out, clearly this is an area devoted to those that want to eat. Right at the back the entrance to the toilets sits off to the left and the Kitchen area takes up the back wall in front of the seated area making the servers job that bit easier. Interior décor is very open and spacious; the walls are bar brick and are decorated with large colorful logo pictures of the house brews on offer. Two large paintings of Old Tustin look down on the interior from each end of the hall like seating area, and a healthy dollop of large screen TVs add the requisite sports projection.
We decided to sit at the bar, right in front of a Homark Handpump, sadly the Beer Engine was not in use but on occasion it is. Beer range was marked up on a chalkboard high above the bar; Golden Spike Light Ale, Lemon Heights Hefeweizen, American Pale Ale, Red Hill Red, Blimp Hanger Porter and Old Town IPA. The specialty beer of the month was Double IPA, both Swillinbrew and I sampled a taster, seemed a little sweet at first but finished with an enjoyable hoppy orange trait. Cant say I tried all the brews, we were just having the one, so I opted for the Old Town IPA, enjoyable stuff and it drank equally well alone and with food. The beers are Ok and seem to do the job though. Also serves Guinness and Wyders Pear Cider for those that way inclined.
Food Menu is pretty cool, with some unusual listings but I went straight for the French Dip Sandwich, plenty of thinly sliced beef and the Steak Fries that came with it were excellent, they even had Malt Vinegar for them!
Atmosphere seemed a little quiet, but it was early in the day, and I actually enjoyed the peace at the bar. Beer seemed so-so and the food was good. Service was OK, it was quite and the server still managed to pull two regular IPAs instead of one regular and one Double, but all in all a decent place to hang out, and Ill be back to try the other brews for sure.
Thanks to Swillinbrew for the ride out here.
05-28-2006 20:21:02 |
More by TheLongBeachBum
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3.5 | $$
Update 8/30/09: The beers and the selection have taken a turn for the better. Belgians beers are available in the bottle, and when you have guest taps like La Folie, Pliny the Elder, and White Oak instead of macro light beers, that makes the beer geek happy inside. They have been experimenting with new beers, such as a Belgian Pale Ale, a vanilla porter, and are currently aging a barleywine in whiskey barrels. More importantly, the few experimental beers I've tried recently have been quite good. As for the regulars....
I drove down here to Tustin today to give this palce a look. It's located in a faux-French themed shopping center near Irvine and Newport. I walked in for lunch and saw that the place was bustling with diners. A bar lines up along the left side of the building from the enterence where you can see the brewing kettles.
They offer six house brews to go along with Guinness, Wyder's pear and rasperry ciders, Bud Light, and Coors Light. (Update 6/21/08: They had Stone IPA, Ruination, and Racer X on-tap as guest beers, what a turn of events!) I ordered their porter and was satisfied, though it was nothing special. Ditto their hefeweizen. Their food was filling and satisfying, making me forget that I came here for a beer in the first place.
Not a bad place for a lunch break, though the beer lacks in quality. Still, it's a good drinking environment and does the job of breaking up boring, bland fast-food from the weekday routine.
08-31-2009 00:38:56 |
More by DoubleJ
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2 | service: 2 | selection: 2 | $$
*** If your car breaks down at Irvine and Newport, then stop in...otherwise move along ***
Located in the wallet shakin' area of upscale shops of Irvine, Tustin is a restaurant first, bar second, place to eat third, bookend to a parking lot third and a sorta brewpub fourth.
Walking up there is a gated outdoor area with a swag merch hocking area inside and a stainless steel brewpub with bar to the left with a restaurant to the right.
Service was lacking even on a Tuesday night.
Beer selecton was a hefe, pale, IPA, guest Sierra Nevada Porter, scrod brewpub beers and a 10th Anniversary that was a bitter metallic red.
Good for being in biz 10 years, but this is not a brewpub concern for the owners.
Could you take your Mother here? Yes, but not my Mother...she likes half decent service and half decent beer.
1- Instruct waitstaff to use coasters
2- have a good beer for beer customers like me
3- brew a better beer for a 10th Anniversary than a basic sorry red
sory for the honesty
08-23-2006 08:39:19 |
More by blitheringidiot
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
I went here with my girlfriend and her dad and some of his friends today after a bike ride. It was packed inside, so we chose to sit out on the patio.
The inside is your fairly typical brewpub type setup with lots of TVs, a long bar, and a pretty decent sized seating area. The decor is fairly classy, I guess, for what you'd expect from a brewpub. That said, it is Tustin.
The house beer list is not huge, but they do have some very nice guest taps, including Pliny, Blind Pig, Racer X, Hop 15, and some others that I can't recall. They also had a handful of their own beers on tap.
The food is, for the most part, your typical bar food, but pretty tasty. I enjoyed the Teryaki burger and was quite pleased with it.
The service was very good, especially considering how packed the place was.
The only bummer was that their house beers are not the greatest, but still decent beers to sit down and enjoy with some friends. And, I'd much rather come here than go to BJ's, for example.
It's not necessarily a destination, but a nice little spot to pop into.
01-04-2010 06:36:51 |
More by womencantsail
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 1.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Visited at least half a dozen times over the last couple years now. I thought I had a review of this place already, maybe it was flagged (?)
The place is large on the inside and there is always a place to sit, even if it's at the counter that seperates the bar from the dining area. I've never had an issue getting a seat outside on the patio either. Parking can be a bitch though. Inside can get loud and there are a number of tv's playing various sports channels. The radio is on most of the time.
Quality, selection, and the food are all about equal in the sense that there is enough to pick from that you'll find something you like. The plate of fries seems to be the best deal for snacks/appetizers in terms of quantity of food and quality of food. The nachos were pretty crummy last time.
Service, hmm, what to say. There used to be this girl that happened to be bar tending every time I went in. She was fine with serving samples. I didnt bother her and she didnt bother me. It's not like I was taking up her time with conversations and lots of questions. It worked out well. Nowadays I seem to get this guy that is slow as hell. 10-15 minutes to even acknowledge that I'm there, another 5-10 minutes to actually pour the beer I order, and 20-30 minutes to get food. The second to last time I was there (with womencantsail) I ordered a glass of beer and he ordered a soda while waiting for a plate of nachos. The nachos arrived about 30 minutes after being ordered, at which time the soda and beer were poured, just as we were getting up to leave.
The last time I was there (Friday 2/18/2011) the service was a little faster, so only 10 minutes to get his attention and only 5 minutes to actually pour the beer, but then the bill came. OK, so there is no price listed anywhere for samples but why were they $1.50 a week ago and now $2.50? That and there were too many on the bill as well. So when I asked about it a manager was sent over. I tried to politely ask about why the price of the samples had gone up but got a very defensive and agitated response about how if you go anywhere else it's $2 for 2oz and they're giving me 3oz for $2.50. That's not what I asked. So after telling him that he changes his story to "well you ordered the guest beers." 2 of the 3 samples were Tustin beers. Then it becomes "well you ordered the high abv beers." OK, the 3rd Nipple Tripel is 9% granted but the Pom Bomb is 4.5%. And the 3rd beer, which was a guest beer, was 8.8% (Stone collab Scotch Ale). So that excuse is the most believable but still, it took 3 lies before he came up with something plausible. And even then that comes out to $10 per 12oz beer at that rate.
0% tip. Actually we debated walking out on the bill when we saw the extra samples added in there and at the jacked up rate.
Not writing the place off entirely but they can expect not to receive a single penny in tip until they get their act together. And even as tickers it's not like we're taking up a lot of their time or resources. If they served us promptly we'd be in and out in 20 minutes or less. On top of that we usually order 3-4 samples and a pint. Between 2 people that's 2 beers.
Still better than Toronado SF (for service) but then I guess any place where they don't actually hold you up at gun point is better than that, so that isn't much of a compliment to Tustin.
I will add that the crappy service has only been in recent months and only at the bar. When eating and sitting at a table the service has been just fine.
02-21-2011 01:03:31 |
More by t0rin0
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 2 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3 | food: 3 | $$
Visited on Monday, April 14th, 2008, about 3:00pm.
The business is located in a French Normandie by way of Disney themed shopping center. Parking wasn't a problem. The interior is a nice faux old timey vibe with lots of wood. You knew there were about a half dozen flat screens beaming ESPN, didn't you?
The bar is quite long and sports a hand pump, but there was nothing on cask the day I visited.
My friend and I were seated and treated to friendly, even chatty, service form an awesome waitress whose name escapes me. She ran the whole room (about six tables out of forty or so had guests) and visited often. She was knowledgable about beer, which is a nice bonus.
We only ordered dessert and beer (having unwisely eaten at a nearby pizza'n beer joint about five miles away), which was of fine quality if a hair pricey.
Their beers were about average for a brewpub, with nothing standing out as particularly good or bad.
The service and the physical space were very nice but the beer was not quite as good as average. I can't recommend it as a brewpub, but it may be a nice place to dine.
04-16-2008 00:31:00 |
More by charlzm
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4
The first thing you notice in approaching this establishment is that it looks like a castle. It sits in a little strip mall with barely enough parking to accomodate the several businesses there. It's nicely styled in rock to look somewhat medival. When you enter, you notice how nicely the wooden bar, tables and the railing separating the eating room from the bar, tend to shine brightly in the lighting. The brewing system is well visable from the bar (it's right there in front of you) and adds to the ambiance. The IPA is very good. The pale and porter are OK, and from the sampler we tried, everything they brew seems to have a pleasant and consistently good taste. The service is good and expedient. We especially liked the clam chowder in the bread bowl. This is one of the better brew pubs in Orange County.
01-01-2004 18:27:16 |
More by ChappyCubsFan
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | $$
Pretty standard brewpub atmosphere. Long bar, many tables and numerous TVs throughout. Not terribly impressed with the beers, all fairly middling though one of the IPAs was a little better than average.
Service was OK, not too good really, but as it was my only visit, that didn't bother me too much, just chalked it up to the time of day/server that was there, etc.
It wasn't too crowded so we had most of the bar to ourselves, watched some of the Tour de France that was showing. Not sure how this place gets when it's crowded but they have ample space.
Hard to describe this place, basically about as average in almost every category as it gets. The atmosphere, beer quality, selection and service were all standard and didn't stand out in any way, good or bad.
Not going to go out of my way to recommend this place, but there may be a tasty brew or two on tap if and when you visit.
11-16-2011 05:24:10 |
More by colonelforbin
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Okay, I live 2 blocks away from here so I'm finally going to review it.
Upon walking up to the entrance, you're greeted by a spanish villa type of a turret, very nice. Inside it's spacious, clean and has a good california pub feel to it. It doesnt hurt that the waitresses are pleasant to look at and there are plenty of big screens.
The service was okay. I never had to wait for anything and was kept happy. However, i've emailed this place several times about their beer selections and never received a reply. The selection of beer is okay and hits most of the american styles, pale, IPA, wheat, red, porter and sometimes a stout, barelywine or double IPA... too bad most of their beers are nothing to write home about, yyet nothing to really complain about either.
The food is really good and is your expected pub fare ie fish & chips, burgers, sandwiches, salads, etc. My food has always been fresh, hot and the price is really reasonable. I do like the atmoshpere here. However, i'd come more often if the beer was better. Like I said, it's not bad, but when i also have BJ's, Oggi's, and Back Street brewing within 3 miles of my house, i have to choose them first for my brewing consumption.
EDIT: Visited twice, in Nov 08 and Jan 09.
Selection up to 4, Quality up to 3.5, service up to 3.0.
What a turnaround this has become. They got a new brewer who turned these around, then he recently left and another brewer took up the torch and cranked it up. The house beers are getting a few tweaks, more special brews and the guest taps are now off the hook. They consistently carry the beers you would only see at Hollingshead. On tap they've had Hop 15, My Bloody Valentine, brews from the Bruery, Alesmith, Port/Lost Abbey and they recently had a Russian River NIght with Pliny the Younger and Elder, Blind PIg on tap, and Consecration in bottles. The taps keep rotating and they're just off the hook. They're really trying to turn things around and they're doing a great job!!!
09-13-2005 21:49:45 |
More by SwillinBrew
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Tustin Brewing Company in Tustin, CA
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