You won’t believe this! Okay, maybe you will. There’s another brewery in Walnut Creek. We just finished recapping Rotator Brewery a couple of weeks ago, and now here I am to tell you about the San Diego-based Mike Hess Brewery that is situated in The Orchards shopping center on Ygnacio and Oak Grove!
The Mike Hess Brewery website isn’t working yet, so I can’t link you. But I stopped by to check it out and got a few pictures! The space has lots of seats inside, but the outdoor seating is the place to be. It is partially covered, and they often have live music on the weekends.
I really like the simple, sleek interior, and they had a spacious, cozy outdoor area with couches and a TV. They do host a trivia night every Wednesday, which should be fun, and they really pulled me in when I found it is a dog-friendly place! Bodie is getting old, but he would enjoy a sit on the patio. They don’t serve food, but you can order from the plethora of restaurants in the shopping center and some will bring it over to the brewery (Mod Pizza, Burger Lounge, etc. to name a few).
One cool thing that Mike Hess Brewery has done in the past is run “HessFest,” a charity fundraiser ever year. We can only hope they’ll bring the event up north with them, as Walnut Creek could use a few good brewfests! Go check out Mike Hess Brewery when you can!
Pyramid Alehouse was a long-standing favorite in downtown Walnut Creek, but has recently given way to a new barbecue joint called Sauced.
The owners are cousins (one raised in Pleasanton, one in the South) and imported everything from the South – from the wood used in the restaurant to the menu and drinks. Their goal is to bring authentic BBQ to Northern California, but they did not bring southern pricing to the table.
Where the old Pyramid brewery tanks were is now a huge, open bar and that seating area looks massive with the new layout. They do trivia on Tuesday and Bingo on Wednesday each week, and the dining area also has plenty of space for big groups.
I had the brisket which was served with apple coleslaw (very good) and a slice of corn bread with whole kernel corn (authentic and tasty) plus two drinks. It was rich and I had a food coma for a few hours, but maybe the drinks attributed to the feeling.
The food and ambiance is good; my son ordered a Cubana, which includes a fried pickle in it and two sides, the cost $20. The BBQ I have had outside of Austin, TX would cost much less and is just as good, but we can’t all go to Austin for some down-home BBQ and I am sure our rents are much higher, thus Sauced is local and may be the next best thing if you are hunkering for BBQ.
They do have a great bar area, tons of mico-brews to choose from and a daily happy hour. It is a great place to gather with friends and enjoy a game. Pyramid left some pretty big shoes to fill, considering its popularity, so time will tell if Sauced can keep the seats filled. I do hope they continue the live music on the patio in the summer and would love to hear what you think and if you know of any other great BBQ spots!