Shawn Ellis, left, co-founder of ShaKa Brewing, rings up a customer at the taproom, which is both family- and dog-friendly.

Clinking glasses, spirited conversation, boisterous laughter and perhaps the occasional dog barks are some of the sounds you’d probably hear on a Friday night if you stumbled across a certain warehouse unit in an industrial area of Sunnyvale.

That space is the home of ShaKa Brewing, which wasn’t always the packed community hub it is now. The brewery opened during peak-pandemic in December 2020 in a small garage space with no taproom. When asked why he decided to open a brewery during the pandemic while working a full-time job, co-owner and Los Altos resident Karl Townsend said with a laugh, “Stupidity.”


Ranging from caramelly notes to hints of bitterness, Karl Townsend explains the ingredients ShaKa Brewing uses to make its signature beers. 


Barley and hops are essential ingredients to make beer.


Karl Townsend feeds a dog at ShaKa’s taproom.

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