Surfside Tap Room taps into craft brewing craze

December 2, 2014


Surfside Tap Room joined the growing number of Oceanside based brewers and tap rooms recently when it opened at 507 North Coast Highway. 


The building was built in 1953 and according to Oceanside Historical Society records, it started out as Steen Motors, a Hudson car dealership.


Surfside Tap room was able to take advantage of some features left by the previous users of the building. The large storefront windows from the florist bring in lots of light and the roll up garage doors from the auto dealership are still in place on the side of the building.


The upper area of the Tap Room is open and airy with wood beer rails for people to sit against, drink a beer and enjoy the view. The open area, great lighting and great staff make Surfside very kid and dog friendly. I often see families and pets with their owners enjoying a cold craft beer.


The upper area also houses their unique tap system. They use a system called DigitalPour. The system shows what beers are on tap, the style, the ABV (alcohol by volume) of the beer and the content level of the keg. This is great for the owner and bar manager who can, even off site, see the state of their beer and recommend a switch out as needed. It is even better for the customer, as not only can you see this in person, but also through social media via twitter and Facebook as well as the company’s website They are the only tap room in North County using this system. This is great because you can be having lunch and planning your after-work get together and see exactly what is available and what has been added to the rotation.



The secondary section of the Tap Room, in addition to providing more seating, is used for a weekly event called “Take Over Thursday”. Each week a different brewer comes in and serves a selection of their beer in the lower tap area. At his event, you can usually taste limited or pre-release offerings. One of the upcoming brewers will be Sudwerk whose brewery is out of Davis, California. They are known for their award-winning lagers including Maibock and Dopplebock (Maibock is a light lager while Dopplebock is called meal in a glass),  something you do not see around here often.


Though Surfside Tap Room does not have kitchen, they do host some of North County’s best food trucks on Thursdays through Sundays. There is nothing better than being able to sit back have a large selection of beer to choose from and enjoy fresh Sushi from The Sushi Bus or Tacos from Sr. Grubby’s. They also have an open door food policy – at anytime you can bring food in to enjoy. Just grab some take out from any of the great downtown restaurants to pair with your beer of choice.


Surfside Tap room is definitely a fun and unique destination. We’re lucky to have it in downtown Oceanside.


Story and photos by Chris Messenger.



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