Located in Outer Sunset, San Francisco
The soft opening of Sunset Reservoir Brewing (SRBC) was a huge success; the weekend opening emptied over 70 kegs of beer and local residents lining outside the door for a peek at the new neighborhood watering hole.
As a Sunset resident, I was also curious on the whatabouts of this friendly spot and was received with good graces by my host and head brewer, Aaron Weshnak. As we walked in, Aaron was out back working on some of his latest batches and playing catch up after the busy, but successful, weekend. "So we ran out of the DIPA in the first couple days and I've been rushing to get some quick alternatives on the menu," mentioned Aaron.
They say, the "devil is in the details" and from the onset many elements stand out. The interior decor is spacious and comfortable with large tables and booths for big groups, and an overlooking second floor veranda for hosting private parties. At the bar, we tasted delicious homemade maraschino cherries and blood oranges that compliment their cocktails and on the menu, a combination of Latino American fusion and upscale bar food.
If you're not aware, Aaron was a longtime brewer at the world-famous Russian River Brewing Company in Santa Rosa (known for their American sours and varying IPAs) before coming to SRBC and thus bringing his knowledge of decent IPA recipes. With a happy-go-lucky attitude and wearing his old brewing shirt, he's so passionate and enthusiast about his craft and was soon talking about mashing temperatures and favorite yeast strains (it's the 1728- Scottish ale yeast for those curious).
Apart from his favored IPAs, Aaron is also exercising his own creative offerings. There's a Sour Wheat that all the rave right now; made from their sourdough starter from Devil's Teeth Bakery down the street, it's tart upfront and mellows out into actual sourdough flavor, finishing at a drinkable 6.44% ABV. "Similar to how imperial stouts are favored during an east coast winter, I want our beers to be light and drinkable during the milder sunny weather we get year-round," explains Aaron.
Apart from his personal resolution, the Sunset has been in need of a hangout spot for some time now. Owned by Hilary Cherniss, who originally started Devil's Teeth Baking down the street, SRBC fulfills a gap in the community for those looking for a simple weekday meal and drink without crossing over to 19th Street. People in this area are highly loyal and exemplary in their sense of community. "If you put out a great product, people will buy it," says Aaron and surely that's been true given the success in spite of minimal marketing efforts.
Moving forward, this will surely be one of my staples and a fun low-key place to take visiting friends who always question, “What’s in the sunset?” I wholeheartedly recommend this so check them out.