The Former Home of Home Brewing Co.
Home Brewing Co. was a Homebrew Store, Brewery, & Tasting Room that served the San Diego craft beer community for 10 years (2012-2022).
We loved our jobs, and apparently people loved the way we worked. We were several times running the “Best Homebrew Store in San Diego” According to several reader polls. In 2018 we received the inaugural AHA Homebrew Shop Of The Year Award (for the entire USA). Just weeks before we closed, Yelp ranked our brewery as the best in California in terms of customer feedback/ratings. And we were on a handful of “best breweries you should be going to, but that you’ve never heard of” lists. The irony isn’t lost on us, but hey, it’s fun.
We closed our doors for the last time on May 22, 2022.
In those final weeks we were surrounded by hundreds of friends and colleagues that came by to show their support, share their stories and memories, and celebrate the friendships and community that we had the fortune of participating in.
We do not intend to rebuild and start over. It’s been a wonderful learning experience for us, but the process of brick and mortar retail & small business ownership is simply not something that we have much interest in pursuing at this juncture.
We appreciate the support, and look forward to learning where we all fit in from here on out.
We may turn this site into a compendium of beer and culture and travel curiosities, but we don’t know when or how exactly at this point.
One thing is for certain. We do not believe that everything is a commodity, and we do not feel a strong desire to turn our beer and travel experiences into a commodity either. So don’t expect that here.
If anything, this may become a good ol’ old school travel blog where George can post musings for his benefit and for his recollections only. Perhaps.
Below is the note we posted on the day that we knew we would have to close for good.
This is a feel-good story.
This is a story about a homebrew store that was opened on a hunch by someone with very little business experience, but a desire to learn, a passion for the hobby, and an appreciation for the beer scene that came before him. 10 Years later a lot has happened. I’ve learned far more than I could have imagined. I have worked with, and for, and alongside the most incredible and inspiring people I have ever known. I feel full of opportunity, creativity, and awe for what is to come.
First a little history: we founded in 2012. We grew to employ about 30-40 San Diegans from all walks of life, and we’ve been a stepping stone for many of them into larger roles at much larger companies than us. We received about 4-5 “Best in San Diego Awards” from the likes of City Beat, The Reader, Eater, & The WestCoaster. The American Homebrewers Association awarded us with the inaugural Homebrew Store Of the Year Award – a recognition for our contributions to the community at large and our pursuit to grow the homebrew hobby. We hosted regular neighborhood trash cleanups, and community events. Our business motto is: Save the Universe Through Homebrew. Why? Because we believe that focusing on the little things can make a big impact, and I believe that we have.
You may respond to this with sadness or concern or even anger. I want to offer you space for all of your emotions (I feel them all too), but mostly I invite you to see this as the beautiful and wonderful thing it is: an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been and where we’re going. Our society is unhealthily obsessed with constant growth and expansion and market dominance. It’s not sustainable, it’s not realistic, all good things come to an end. So view this as just part of that beautiful cycle. Don’t fight it. Celebrate with us (and buy LOTS of homebrew supplies off of us this week as well)!
I decided a while ago that something big needed to change for our 10 year anniversary. Not just for the business, but for my life. We’ve explored countless options, and had some viable opportunities lined up to make this all work out. We were going to sell either the entire company, or just my majority control, and see where the next 10 years would go under new leadership and fresh ideas. In the end, all of those options fell through – hinged largely on our landlord’s denial of all of the prospective tenants that we brought his way. So yes, I guess this story is a bit about a subset of unimaginative landlords that own properties in traditionally low income neighborhoods wielding feudal-like control over far more creative & industrious people’s ambitions to own and operate a business… but I’ll save that for the next time we sit down and get into our 3rd-4th beer… but I also promise that we don’t have to go there either – it’s just interesting to me, and I would not be honest if I didn’t share this observation either.
So let’s be stoked and extremely proud of everyone that has stepped through the doors at 2911 El Cajon Blvd either as an employee, a customer, a tourist, someone who was actually looking for the coffee shop next door, or that just came by to share a homebrew and chat or get advice.
Thank you all SOOOO much!
I am happy to have been able to serve you all in the homebrew community.
& The Entire Home Brewing Co. Team