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20130511-163105.jpgThis weekend my husband and I had the rare opportunity to visit the new Stone Brewing Company’s facility in Liberty Station prior to it opening up to the general public.  I’m crediting good karma for the opportunity.  We haven’t helped any old ladies across streets recently but we must be doing something right!   My first impression on the looks of the restaurant?  Wow.  This is no ordinary bar/restaurant.

Excited much?

Excited much?

Those who love the Escondido location but hated the drive to North County will rejoice.  Similar in style but charming in its own right, this restaurant will appeal to the ever growing craft beer enthusiast locally and abroad.  I almost wished Ben and I could get married all over again just to have the reception here.  The realization we would never be able to afford it came about fairly quickly.  So fancy!

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Main dining room

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Side Dining Room

Bocce Ball!

Bocce Ball!

You know that favorite unknown band you loved growing up?  Then once becoming popular to the masses, suddenly they weren’t as exciting?  Well, Stone has fallen under that category for me the last several years.  I cannot deny the impact they have had on the craft beer industry, especially in San Diego.  Stone has paved the way for all my favorite small breweries that have popped up since they has seen success.  For that they should be credited and celebrated!  They may not have started the Beer  Renaissance, but no one can deny they have been and continue to be a major contributor to it.  Although the tap list of other breweries was ever impressive, both Ben and I felt the need to stick with Stone for the day.

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Stone Mixtape Ale Vol. 4- Photo Bombed!

This new facility will be great for the local San Diego economy.  The jobs alone the restaurant created is a huge plus.  The staff was very eager and plentiful.  It almost seemed like they were undergoing some sort of try-outs to make the team.  One waitress was almost in tears as she dropped a plate and a seared scallop rolled underneath our table.  Our table staff insisted on taking away and replacing our silverware after each course even though Ben relayed, “Don’t worry, she’s ghetto.”  I’m not a fancy girl.  I’d had rather the staff sit at our table to shoot the shit than constantly fill up my water cup when there is a jug already at the table.  That’s just me though.  I’m sure there are plenty out there that like to be catered to.

Overall the I would rate the food delicious, with the main entrees offering the most bang for our buck.  We ordered the quail appetizer which was described to us as being similar to hot wings.  Four pieces came out.  Hmmm…  Yes, it was becoming ever apparent this would be our “special occasion” spot and not one of our neighborhood hang outs.  I had the chicken schnitzel and Ben got the tilapia for our main dishes.  We split both and I had absolutely no complaints about either.  Very damn good.  I looked to the table next to me and I think I would have been disappointed with the Lobster Roll, but all the other dishes looked worth trying.

Almond Crusted Tilapia

Almond Crusted Tilapia

Chicken Schnitzel

Chicken Schnitzel

Blue Cheese dessert

Blue Cheese dessert

Will we be back?  Absolutely.  For us though, it would this will be a good place to celebrate a birthday or two or bring guests to from out of town.  If we stopped in casually it would be straight to the bar since beer prices were very reasonable.  I see this place being popular and very packed so I’m thankful we had the opportunity to visit before the masses.

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