When I first moved to San Diego four years ago, I wasn't exactly crazy about it. I knew San Diego had Sea World. I knew it had a nice zoo. I knew the water at the beach felt warmer than it had in Santa Barbara. But that was about it. After 4 years down here, I've discovered that San Diego has a lot more to offer than I had originally thought. And if I had only known about the beer... As I learn more and more about the beer culture in San Diego, I want to leave this place less and less. There are so many amazing breweries down here and the best part about it is that they're some of the most innovative breweries in the world. Ballast is probably the best example for me, but there are a lot of other breweries down here that are never happy to settle with making a few "safe" beers. Despite trying a lot of beers down here, there are still a few breweries that I haven't tried yet. Green Flash, Lightning, Alpine, and a bunch more. Soon that will all change. On Saturday, I took one off the list- Coronado Brewing Company.
Coronado Brewing Company is located right on Coronado Island- a beautiful island across from downtown San Diego that is part naval base and part residential area and beach town. I hadn't heard much about their beers, but I saw one of them, Mermaid's Red Ale, at a restaurant in North Park and decided to try it.
The beer pours a deep ruby and chestnut brown color. The head quickly fades to a slight off white cap. Hops and malts definitely dominate the smell. So far so good.
Usually, I'm not a huge fan of red ales. I've had a few good ones, but for the most part, I've been pretty disappointed. This one didn't blow me away, but it was much better than most. It had decent complexity with notes of chocolate at the beginning and some smooth caramelized malts and then faded into a bitter hoppy finish. The mouthfeel was a little weak, but not bad. I think if nothing else, this beer opened my eyes to reds again. I'm definitely going to have to try a few more after this.
Final Grade: B