Hello Beer, my old friend!

This past weekend was my boyfriend’s birthday and as usual, we headed to a brewery to celebrate.

Since we were driving down from Santa Barbara, we made plans to hang with some old friends and try some of the local Ventura breweries.


Ventura is about a 2-hour drive north of LA. It is a small sleepy town known for its great surfs, Mission San Buenaventura, andddddd…I think that’s pretty much it… I use to go to the Ventura Mall. Mmmmmhhhhhhh.

The Brewery


FOOD TRUCK: YES (they should get more than seafood though)


The MadeWest is settled in a business area of town in an all too familiar white, square, industrial complex that so many breweries seem to inhabit.

However, MadeWest proved not to be another cookie-cutter brewery. It has a hipster vibe with a lot style and great beers to go along with it, foremost the most important thing.

MadeWest Brewery Flight

So a flight includes four tasters at $2 p/c. I know I should be writing about the beer but I found the beer tray to be really modern and different. It was refreshing to see a square beer tray and not a paddle. The small clipboard holding the beer list is really charming vs. the standard soggy piece of paper we are given to write down one’s beer choices. Kudos for presentation.

Now to the good part. The beer. I’m a dark beer drinker so anything that reads porter, black, and stout I will try.


However, I was really hesitant to try the Prospect mainly because the vanilla bean is one of the main ingredients. As much as I love dark beer, I’m just not of fan of dark sweet beer. (Sorry Mother Earth Brew!)

Whatever, I stopped being a boujee beach, took a couple whiffs, didn’t smell much of the vanilla notes so took a sip and to my delight, the floral notes were not overwhelming. My face didn’t pucker and cringe from the sweetness and I actually ended up going back to the Prospect for a sip every now and then. I started to doubt if there was any vanilla in there.

Overall, it was a good full bodied porter. Maybe the vanilla was used to level out the coffee acidity and give it a smooth light chocolatey taste. If so, it was really good. If not, sweet beer drinkers will be very disappointed.

Porter And IPA

The Porter was not as flavorful as the Prospect porter, but still rich to enjoy, It also said vanilla is an ingredient, but still I didn’t taste much of it. The aroma was a nice light chocolate-caramel.

As it says in the description, the IPA is a typical West Coast style IPA and that is very accurate. It has a nice bitter taste and just enough of a fruity flavor. Definitely a good beer for hot days.

Altogether, MadeWest has solid great beers. Is it worth visiting? I say it is. The head brewer has made great recipes, especially for those who love IPA’s and clear beers. I am excited to see how far the brewery goes and as of this writing, it just completed its 1-year anniversary. Yay!


I can’t get over of how clean-lined this brewery is. It’s just really pretty. I just love breweries who really put an effort to have a cohesive style, especially those who add character to their breweries.

After a while, the paddle, the chalkboard, and wood can get tiring and it’s hard to distinguish breweries from one another.

MadeWest, though, will definitely not be fogged up with other microbreweries. Here are…

6 Design Elements I Really Liked About MadeWest Brewery

1. The outdoor concrete front patio. So simple, yet not seen much in breweries, especially, not those located in business districts. What many breweries do with outdoor drinking areas is close off spaces with a dinky rope or rail. Nothing pretty.

MW’s is nicely LEVELED, railed, lighted by large lightbulbs, patio heaters are available, and right off to the side, food trucks pull up to serve guests.

MadeWest Brewery Back

2. The mural. Inside on one of its walls is a top-to-bottom image of a brewery system hand painted by the MW Director of Marketing. Very minimalistic but stunning.

MadeWest Brewery Front

3.  The beer menu. I’ve seen very very few breweries use the marquee board to display the beer menu. They’re not used much because they cost a bit of money, whereas chalkboard is cheaper.  I like the use of it here and they’re far easier to read.

Instagram @madewestbeer

4. The private room. I love everything about this room. It’s a room that can be reserved for private parties in the brewery. I love the black color, it makes it pop, the clear door opens like a garage door and the neon MW sign. Loveeeee!!!

5. The white. Again, very simple but different is the white scheme. The white tables, white industrial chairs, and backsplash subway tiles behind the counter, altogether is just stunning. It’s a very modern clean look, but at the same time, it feels fresh and warm.

6. The beer list. Many times at the breweries I constantly have to look at the beer menu to remind myself what ingredients the beer contains, the ABV, and the name. I have horrible vision so sometimes I can’t see the small writing.

Well, fear not bad-eye-sighted people, at MW they have these horizontal flip books with all the beer information. It was very convenient to have. As someone who lives in the beer capital, San Diego, why haven’t I seen this? It’s one of those things I didn’t know I needed and now, I am going to require everybody to have.

MadeWest Brewery Beer List

The MadeWest Brewery Co. has delicious beers with great vibes and a sleek, smooth warm design that will make Chip & Joanna Gaines flip over.









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