4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Hot Gouda and cold IPA

Venissimo Cheese at Bottlecraft

Gourmet grilled cheese and beer
Gourmet grilled cheese and beer
Place

Bottlecraft North Park

3007 University Avenue, San Diego

Since I live in the area and regularly “research” craft beer, I probably visit North Park’s Bottlecraft shop more than the average customer. While the Venissimo counter has been selling globally sourced cheeses out of the back of the shop for almost two years, for the most part I’ve managed to focus on browsing for brews.

If you can look past the beer, you’ll spot a Venissimo Cheese counter in the back of Bottlecraft North Park.

However, if you’ve ever been to a Venissimo Cheese counter, you know this couldn’t last long. Venissimo (which added a fifth location when Liberty Public Market opened in March) doesn’t just sell a glorious curated selection of cheeses. It’s very friendly about allowing customers to try samples, with the hope that you’re going to find your dairy sweet spot and become hooked. Maybe it’ll be something delicious from the Basque region or sheep’s milk with a streak of mold. While its North Park kiosk may not offer as large a selection as its original Mission Hills location, there’s still plenty there for a thirsty beer writer to home in on and refine his palate.

Sponsored
Sponsored

Recently I walked into the shop as a hungry beer writer, and that’s when I finally took a shot at one of the counter’s grilled cheese offerings. Actually, its cheese sandwich offerings, as there’s an option to get a cold sandwich. I can’t imagine why someone would do that when grilling is an option.

Sandwiches cost eight bucks if you go with the standard offerings. For example, there’s brie with fig jam, cheddar with spicy apple jam, or alpine cheese with onion confit. Since the shop keeps cured meats around for its selection of cheese and charcuterie boards, there are also a couple of options with speck or soppressata. I opted for the latter, served with sweet Gouda.

For $1.50 you can upgrade to a premium cheese selection, and I imagine sorting through available alternatives for any of the above would be satisfying. Sadly, I was pressed for time, so settled on the stock Gouda, grilled on Bread & Cie sourdough.

Another Gouda might have been better, but I have zero complaints with the sandwich given to me. The cheese was gooey, the bread toasty, and the soppressata was savory and delicious. Nor can I fault the draft beer menu offered by Bottlecraft to accompany the sandwich — since you pay for your cheese at the beer counter, you may as well wash down your sandwich with a beverage. I went with an eight-ounce (half pour) of a passion fruit IPA. In the unlikely event one of the shop’s 12 taps doesn’t appeal to you, there are about 700 bottles to choose from with a small corkage fee.

Which means my beer runs may start taking a little longer. Properly pairing beer and cheese takes a little forethought and consideration. But pairing beer and cheese shops under one roof? That’s a no-brainer.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

La Jolla Institute for Immunology studies the affects of Alzheimer’s in women

“Women have different vulnerabilities to AD, and also different protections against it.”
Gourmet grilled cheese and beer
Gourmet grilled cheese and beer
Place

Bottlecraft North Park

3007 University Avenue, San Diego

Since I live in the area and regularly “research” craft beer, I probably visit North Park’s Bottlecraft shop more than the average customer. While the Venissimo counter has been selling globally sourced cheeses out of the back of the shop for almost two years, for the most part I’ve managed to focus on browsing for brews.

If you can look past the beer, you’ll spot a Venissimo Cheese counter in the back of Bottlecraft North Park.

However, if you’ve ever been to a Venissimo Cheese counter, you know this couldn’t last long. Venissimo (which added a fifth location when Liberty Public Market opened in March) doesn’t just sell a glorious curated selection of cheeses. It’s very friendly about allowing customers to try samples, with the hope that you’re going to find your dairy sweet spot and become hooked. Maybe it’ll be something delicious from the Basque region or sheep’s milk with a streak of mold. While its North Park kiosk may not offer as large a selection as its original Mission Hills location, there’s still plenty there for a thirsty beer writer to home in on and refine his palate.

Sponsored
Sponsored

Recently I walked into the shop as a hungry beer writer, and that’s when I finally took a shot at one of the counter’s grilled cheese offerings. Actually, its cheese sandwich offerings, as there’s an option to get a cold sandwich. I can’t imagine why someone would do that when grilling is an option.

Sandwiches cost eight bucks if you go with the standard offerings. For example, there’s brie with fig jam, cheddar with spicy apple jam, or alpine cheese with onion confit. Since the shop keeps cured meats around for its selection of cheese and charcuterie boards, there are also a couple of options with speck or soppressata. I opted for the latter, served with sweet Gouda.

For $1.50 you can upgrade to a premium cheese selection, and I imagine sorting through available alternatives for any of the above would be satisfying. Sadly, I was pressed for time, so settled on the stock Gouda, grilled on Bread & Cie sourdough.

Another Gouda might have been better, but I have zero complaints with the sandwich given to me. The cheese was gooey, the bread toasty, and the soppressata was savory and delicious. Nor can I fault the draft beer menu offered by Bottlecraft to accompany the sandwich — since you pay for your cheese at the beer counter, you may as well wash down your sandwich with a beverage. I went with an eight-ounce (half pour) of a passion fruit IPA. In the unlikely event one of the shop’s 12 taps doesn’t appeal to you, there are about 700 bottles to choose from with a small corkage fee.

Which means my beer runs may start taking a little longer. Properly pairing beer and cheese takes a little forethought and consideration. But pairing beer and cheese shops under one roof? That’s a no-brainer.

Comments
Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

La Jolla Institute for Immunology studies the affects of Alzheimer’s in women

“Women have different vulnerabilities to AD, and also different protections against it.”
Next Article

San Diego Symphony brings Sibelius to Escondido

A Vast Similitude
Comments
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close