3 Punk Ales Brewing Co., Chula Vista

They've only been fully open a very short time, but already 3 Punk Ales is making a splash. The newly opened tasting room is nicely decorated (the accent wall is devoted to punk bands). It has several large communal tables, space at the bar, and seating at the now-traditional garage door windows to the street. The brew deck is visible through the floor on one side of the room, almost like the Mike Hess North Park location (but smaller). 

In the pre-opening phase, this place was known as "Thr3e Punk Ales". There are still some echoes of that way of writing the name in their web presence, but all the newer instances of the name (including the sign above the door and the website) say "3 Punk Ales." The first way was clever, but I guess it must have caused some confusion. The Untappd search function gets you to their beers with both ways of writing the brewery name.

Don't let the "ales" part of the name get in your way, either: On my visit, only three of the five beers on the board were ales. I thought the Mexican lager was pretty good of its kind (though I'm not a fan of lagers), and apparently it is by far their biggest seller. (I asked what makes a lager "Mexican" but my bartender couldn't give me a convincing answer; according to this article from Draft Magazine, it is crispness and a lack of fruity esters that distinguishes Mexican from other lagers.) Thr3e Punks' pilsner is interesting, too: it is hopped to a much higher level than a traditional pilsner and tastes much more like an IPA. Both were well made, as were the other three beers I tried. I got to talking with my neighbor at the bar so I didn't get around to rating on Untappd.

My overall impression is that 3 Punk Ales is making solid beers; they have the advantage of having guest brewed out of Finest Made Ales in Santee for a while under their own brand (selling both kegs and bottles) while the Chula Vista location was being prepared, so they are fully ready to go now that they are at their home base. The number and variety of beers on tap is going to grow over time (they are set up for 20 lines, including several nitro lines and a beer engine for cask beers). The tasting room is well designed and large enough to generate quite a bit of business. From all signs, Chula Vista has already embraced them. Together with also-new Chula Vista Brewery just down the block, 3 Punk Ales joins Bay Bridge Brewing and Novo Brazil as the only breweries in Chula Vista--so far!

http://www.3punkales.com/     259 3rd Avenue, Chula Vista, California 91910

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