Since 1988, SLO Brew has contributed to Highway 1’s craft beer scene as well as its music scene. The old SLO Brew location in downtown San Luis Obispo served pints of its beer and welcomed bands and musicians from far and wide to play its storied stage. Today, the experience has moved out to The Rock, a rambling multi-use spot on the edge of Edna Valley that continues the tradition.
The Rock is the site of all brewing for SLO Brew, which cooks up 5,000 barrels per year. It’s also a restaurant and taproom with roll-up doors in the style of a traditional beer garden. The surrounding property offers lawn games, corn hole, picnic tables with umbrellas, and a pop-up outdoor stage where local musicians play on weekends. On the east end of the building, a sizable indoor stage hosts touring bands and musicians for ticketed concerts throughout the week. (The venue can host 500 people for concerts with superior acoustics and the largest LED screen between San Francisco and Los Angeles.)
For regular hanging around time, The Rock brings a relaxed vibe, dialed-in beers, and delicious food to Edna Valley. Expect easy-drinking beers like tropical hazies, lagers, blondes, hefeweizen and a long list of IPAs on the menu. Some of these are seasonal, like the Reggae Red Wheat Beer, the Blueberry Blonde, and the Holidaze IPA, made with spruce tips. The brewery also produces special releases and collaboration beers, including a kettle sour and a double IPA. For bites at The Rock, the menu includes high-flavor pub food that’s flawlessly made. Order pizzas, starters, burgers and sandwiches, salads and tacos, all of which pairs perfectly with SLO Brew beer. Kids love it here — you’re likely to see a young soccer team celebrating a win, or a pack of friends playing yard games. It’s also a welcoming spot for dogs on leash.