Thunderhawk Alements, is a see-sight brewery that operates on a one-barrel electric system, serving a variety of stylistically and creative beers brewed by two childhood friends. Its tasting room surrounds a bar with exquisite old artwork. The indigenous antique, table, and games setting in Thunderhawk Alements will have you lost in a beautiful vintage world.
Located on 8675 Miralani Drive, San Diego California, Thunderhawk is one of the best beer establishments in the wider San Diego area. When it was launched, Thunderhawk joined Miramar’s growing Miralani Drive Brewing, opening from noon to 10 p.m on Friday and Saturday, and noon to 8 p.m on Sundays. The founders Jonathan Barbarin and Bill Lindsay have been good friends since they joined pre-school. Snapshots from their childhood are displayed as part of the extensive Thunderhawk decor.
The cool vibes, good music, good company, and good beer makes Thunderhawk Alements legendary and a place you would certainly love to visit again. The setup is quite thoughtful and has ample space. Opposite the bar, there is a beautiful wall of windows that give the customers something to contemplate about. Behind the bar area is a brewing system with One-barrel bringing in the fantasy of being in a brewery. The small area inside has a few seats and a magnificent outdoor space with a corn hole and overhanging set up that brings the homely feeling while sipping on your cold beer one summer afternoon.
The two friends started their business journey seven years before opening Thunderhawk Alements. They began home brewing and this encouraged them to develop recipes that they felt the need to share with friends whenever they had a party. The first core beer that made them turn heads (in a good way), was the Honey ginger Saison with oak palate which was brewed out of a wedding reception request. They named the beer “Torreyana” from its Torrey pine spice.
A joke that started with a plane flying above them when home brewing with their friends gave birth to the name “Thunderhawk”. This became their brewing heritage. The name was unique and no brewery had such a name. Thunderhawk Alements opened with only 8 types of beers. The first three comprised the single pale ale which was of different hops, one of them featured a coffee ale consisting of beans from the famous Bird Rock Coffee Roasters. The last 2 beers featured a traditional beer style than the coffee pale ale, both had the German and British sunken Weiss. Inspired by the beer travels, both beers had a couple of styles that Jonathan and Bill discovered. The two beers were amazing in Europe. They earned the name “Dunkel Weiss” but known as dark Hefeweizen on European menus to make it recognizable to beer lovers.
In the first year of business, Barbain and Bill planned to produce over 200 barrels where each barrel took its time in a very small electric rig brewing. Most of the beers brewed were to be served in bars and other in-houses with reduced keg distribution. The Thunderhawk Alements tasting rooms offered non-alcoholic beers for designated drivers to have a good time with house-brewed beer made of roots and cold-brewed coffee. Designed to allow expansion of the brewhouse, the next move would involve converting the brewery to a solar-controlled brewery. Solar panels are cheaper and convenient making them a bonus to the business.