Big news for beer and wine drinkers in Tustin. Centro, a winery and microbrewery, is now open in Old Town Tustin.
The brewery-restaurant is owned by Pozzuoli Vineyard & Winery, which is located in Paso Robles. (How often do you see a winery that lists its two locations as someplace in wine country, and Tustin?) Pazzuoli opened a tasting room in Tustin a couple of years ago at 15481 Red Hill Avenue, and now has opened this impressive location in Old Town Tustin.
I'm a wine fan, but what really got me excited about this place is the microbrewery. They call the beer side of the operation Archaic Craft Brewery. I visited on opening day, and they had four beers on tap, but only one was created in house, and that was the Honey Kolsch. If the Honey Kolsch is any indication of the brews we can expect from Archaic, then this place will be great for beer drinkers. It was a great German style Kolsch, with good mouth feel and no harsh aftertaste.
This is a true family business, with Enrico Pozzuoli as the winemaker, and his son Sandro Pozzuoli handling the brewmaster duties. I spent some time with Sandro discussing the beers he is brewing. His knowledge was apparent, and I was impressed that, even though he wanted to roll out a beer or two more for the grand opening, he held back because they weren't yet where he wanted them to be. Look for an IPA soon.
I'm hoping they will expand the number of available beers on tap. Certainly, if they want to make this a destination for microbrewery crawlers, they'll need a greater selection. But how many beers can you really drink? For now, live with four, and go to Centro to check out the impressive modern/rustic interior.
As to the food, we tried the Margherita pizzza ($9) and the Hummus plate ($8) (we dug into hummus plate so quickly, we forgot to take a picture; picture above shows cheese plate ordered by another patron). Both were excellent. The pizzas are baked in a wood-fired oven. They also offer cheese plates, salads, paninis, and desserts.
Beers were $6 and $7 a pint, and the wine ranged from $10 to $15 a glass. Personal pizzas cost about $10 to $14. Some pizza is available by the slice for $4. If you like the beer, you can take a 32 or 64-ounce growler to go.
Centro is a great addition to Old Town Tustin. Be sure to give it a try.
-- Aaron Morris
140 E. Main Street
Monday - Thursday: 11:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Friday & Saturday: 11:00 a.m. - 11:00 p.m.
Sunday: 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.