8,000-square-feet of craft beer bliss lands downtown on Monday, January, 22 with the opening of The Bell Marker. Replacing The Beer Company at Broadway and Sixth, the modern American brewpub is named for the mission bell markers found along the historic El Camino Real. The Bell Marker is the first local project for Artisanal Brewers Collective (ABC), which runs several beer-focused bars and eateries in the Los Angeles area.
At the helm of the copper clad 15-barrel brewing system is San Diego-born Noah Regnery, whose previous tenure at Pizza Port San Clemente was marked by “Small Brewpub of the Year” and “Small Brewpub Brewer of the Year” wins plus numerous beer medals from the Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup. Regnery returns to San Diego from Central California’s Hollister Brewing Company.
His beers for The Bell Marker will mainly focus on classic American, English, German styles, with occasional Belgian representation. On tap for the opening will be a house Cream Ale, Hefeweizen, Pale Ale, IPA and Brown Ale, with the rest of the draft handles filled by guest breweries. Later this spring, the brewpub plans to launch a series of monthly charity beers which will donate $1 of each sale to rotating charity organizations. The Bell Marker will also have a full bar, with a cocktail list by Dan Sutherland that features classic cocktails inspired by everything from historical figures to San Diego pop culture.
The California-rooted menu from culinary director Trevor Faris includes creative pizza variations — from a Squash Pie with fresh cream, winter squash, red wax gouda, pomegranate molasses and red onion to the Fennel Sausage Pizza made with crushed tomatoes, Impossible plant-based meat or pork fennel sausage, mozzarella and shallots. Starters range from Ricotta Fritters with housemade ricotta and chili jam to Mushroom Paté with pickled mustard seeds, horseradish cream and toast, while sandwiches and larger entrees include a Shrimp Roll made with chilled jumbo shrimp, lemon aioli, celery and dill to Cassoulet with heirloom Tarbais beans, long-roasted tomatoes and sauce verte and Chicken alla diavola garnished with a pickled pepper relish and served over a spicy Italian-influenced stew.
The 212-seat restaurant, designed by Ricki Kline of Ricki Kline Design + Build, showcases the brew system, beer bar and open kitchen behind glass; the layout also includes a 44-seat planked maple bar and a private event space. Operating daily from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., The Bell Marker plans to launch lunch service next month.