Half Moon Bay Brewing Company
390 Capistrano Rd
Half Moon Bay, California
Visited in July 2007
From one Half Moon brewery to the next, this one was in a bit more scenic spot than northern Indiana. Half Moon Bay Brewing is right on the coast in northern California not too far from San Francisco. It offers a beautiful dining area, a bungalow-feeling bar, incredible service, and one hell of a crab bisque.
Apart from that, I don’t remember all that much. I was too engrossed with the final Harry Potter novel. I mean, Harry was escaping from the Malfoys, come on!
Now that I’m writing this, I realize that this is the second brewpub on the coast of the Pacific Ocean that I visited! But this place was very different than Beach Chalet in San Francisco. It’s a high-class social hang-out with dancing and live music. It was packed the night I was there. It’s very nice, but very expensive. It definitely seems like one of the places to be on any given afternoon or evening. Separate sides of the restaurant are dedicated to quiet, high-end dining and the bar area with line dancing and more.
The food here was very good, but very over-priced, in my opinion. Most of the menu consists of whatever fresh fish is in that day, and seems to change constantly. I think I spent something like $15 on a tuna salad sandwich and a few fries. Now don’t get me wrong, the sandwich was quite good, but it sure wasn’t $15 good. Also, the seafood bisque is delicious, but it costs about $6 for four mouthfuls.
The beer list is pretty big and features many homebrews. I tried a summer ale and a stout, both of which were very pleasant and very drinkable, but nothing that I couldn’t live without tasting again. In short, if you’re in the area, this place has the best beer. If you’re not in the area, it’s not really worth the drive out just to drink or eat. But throw in a night of dancing or a day on the beach or ocean, and this becomes the perfect ending to a great day.
As for the service, I happened to be reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows at the time, and everyone kept talking to me about it and giving me pleasant conversation. I wanted to substitute the seafood bisque for my fries, even if it cost a little extra, but was told that’s not a substitution they allow. But the waiter brought me out a cup anyways, and then also gave me fries with the sandwich, for no extra charge. Needless to say, he got a good tip.