San Diego Brewing Co., considered one of San Diego’s original breweries located at 10450 Friars Road in Mission Valley, has changed ownership after opening thirty years ago.
Founders Lee Doxtader and Scott Stamp opened the Mission Valley Brewpub in 1993 as one of the first brewing establishments in the county. During the business’s three-decade career, Tyson and Kristina Blake started working there in 2003 and eventually married each other and opened several businesses in San Diego, including O’Brien’s Pub, West Coast Smoke & Tap House, The Pub at Lake Cuyamaca, and Kegseeker. Now, the husband-wife team is taking over the brewery where they first fell in love.
The duo is partnering with Bob and Lisa Townsend, who took over San Diego’s 85-year-old Chicken Pie Shop in 2016, to obtain full ownership of San Diego Brewing Company, effective November 1, according to San Diego Beer News. The team plans to operate the business as-is until early next year. Then, they will temporarily close for interior renovations, adjusting the dining room layout, food and drink updates, and adding an exterior patio. The new ownership teams plan to reopen the brewpub in mid-2024.
“The bar, restaurant, and bathrooms will be getting a much-needed facelift,” Tyson tells San Diego Beer News. “Expect an updated look with uplifting lighting and interior design celebrating all things San Diego. We see the brewpub’s beer offerings getting revitalized with new house beers sharing space with tried-and-true SDBC classics, plus collaborations created with other breweries and cans for sale to go. We see the liquor license being greater utilized with cocktails on draft and the debut of the newly trademarked San Diego Hard Seltzer Co. We see a more attractive food menu and lots more. The sky’s the limit.”
When San Diego Brewing Co. reopens next year, customers can expect a reimagined menu that features pizza, crafted shareables, handhelds, and other family-friendly options. As for beer, Head Brewer Matt Navarre will offer customer-focused tastes, hop-forward IPAs, and crushable lagers. A new 10-barrel brewhouse will be located in a separate space and secured for off-site grain and keg storage, which is expected to increase the amount of beer produced by SDBC.
“This project is about taking a local gem and making it better,” Lisa Townsend tells San Diego Beer News. “That’s what we did with the Chicken Pie Shop. It was suffering greatly when we took it over and being run by people who didn’t have skin in the game…and you could tell. When you have a place that’s run by people who have something on the line, you can tell that, too.”