RecommendationSara Peterson, Co-Founder of Scout Coffee, recommends drinking cocktails at Sidecar Cocktail Co. in San Luis Obispo as part of the Dirt Road Travels city travel guide to San Luis Obispo.

San Luis Obispo, California

Sidecar Cocktail Co.

"A family owned business that's very into the craft cocktail scene."

Central Coast Brewing
Baywood Ale House
The Station

Sidecar Cocktail Co.

"A family owned business that's very into the craft cocktail scene."

"A cafe where everyone feels welcome, and feels like it's their place."
Recommended by:
Sara Peterson, Co-Owner
Scout Coffee

Sara's Take

"I would get cocktails before dinner at Sidecar. That's another family owned business and they're very into the craft cocktail scene. They're very creative, they give great service and their staff is amazing."

My Story

"I got a job at Sidecar about 5 years ago, just to pay bills while I was getting ready to go to the police academy. One of our regulars took me out to dinner one night and said, 'Look, no offense to the cop thing, but this is what you should be doing, making cocktails. We'd be willing to back you.'

That put the wheels in motion and I started calling family and friends and scraped a bunch of money together to buy Sidecar.

I just love all this. Cocktails are an American invention. It's one of our only truly American inventions that we can claim, and I think it revolves around that early American spirit of just going after it, mixing it up, stirring the pot, you know? 

America is always described as a melting pot, and that's exactly what a cocktail glass is. 

It's a place where you can put a bunch of random stuff that seemingly might not go together and every once in a while you come up with an amazing cocktail. There's no end to the possibilities. If it grows in the world, if the flavor is out there, you can play with it, and that's just exciting to me. It's fun."

My Advice for Others

"If you're coming into an industry, put yourself in a position where you can continue to be passionate about that industry and surround yourself with people who are going to be able to guide you on all the things you don't know. 

I was a kickass bartender, but I didn't know my ass from my elbow when it came to business, and we've learned some crazy hard lessons as a result of straight-up ignorance on my part. 

Just because you're really good at something doesn't mean you're going to be really good at the business side, so find someone on the other side of the aisle who you can team up with and allow that person to have an influence on you."

Cocktails in San Diego at False Idol Hemingway and Whiskey at The Good Lion in Santa Barbara More to Do in San Luis Obispo

My Local Musts

"There are great cocktail bars along the California coast. The Good Lion in Santa Barbara and False Idol in San Diego are two of my favorites." 

Sidecar Cocktail Co.


Sidecar Cocktail Co.
Josh Christensen, Owner
Sidecar Cocktail Co.
San Luis Obispo
Central Coast Brewing
"They've got great beer."
Baywood Ale House
"For such a small town, we've got amazing spots like beers at the Baywood Ale House."
The Station
"Save a little time for wine tasting at The Station!"
Sidecar Cocktail Co.
"A family owned business that's very into the craft cocktail scene."

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