Belton, TX is a small, quiet town about an hour north of Austin with some excellent food and beer offerings for visitors and residents. Until recently, though, it had no breweries. In 2018, that all changed. Bold Republic Brewing Company has been running strong and offering tasty craft beer ever since, even during these times of quarantines, lockdowns and social distancing.
What’s better on a Sunday afternoon than kicking back with a craft beer? This rye farmhouse ale by Birds Fly South will make you wish that every day was a “Rustic Sunday.” Read on to discover what makes this beer so approachable, crisp, and tart, and why it calls for soaking in every moment on laid back, lazy afternoons.
On a recent trip to Austin, Texas, my wife Jenna and I paid a visit to Roughhouse Brewing in nearby San Marcos. Alex Pasternak, co-founder and creative lead, was gracious enough to show us around the brewery during off hours and let us sample some Roughhouse beers, including their Sordid Nature Dark Saison.
For many of us beer aficionados, spending an afternoon at a brewery, brewpub or tap house is a common treat. A time to relax with friends and family while tasting the newest beers that may or may not be distributed. For people like this, myself included, it’s easy to forget that many breweries rely solely upon distribution.
Taprooms can be a cash cow for breweries. These direct to consumer sales increase profit margins by cutting out third-party distributors and retailers. Some breweries start and end their business model with a high-profit taproom, while others wait to use the taproom profits to launch distribution. Other breweries like Hedgehog Brewing in Cedar Park, Texas, save the taproom for last.
Fairhope Brewing has been on the map in Alabama since I moved here back in summer 2015. They are constantly pumping out a variety of styles and unique additions to their lineup. They have, however, always had one that particularly stood out to me: (Take The) Causeway Double IPA.
Ferus Artisan Ales is the newest brewery to open up in the ever-changing landscape of craft breweries in Alabama. Ferus is Latin for feral, with the name chosen to represent their passion for brewing sour beers and its connection to wild yeast that is used during fermentation. Down the line, they hope to increase production at their Trussville, Ala., location. Specifically, they want to focus on a variety of crisp Pilsners, hop-forward IPAs, flavored Stouts and barrel-aged beers. As a matter of fact, you may have already seen their names associated with collaboration brews like the beer they did with Edmund’s Oast, Order of Magnitude.
I’ve done my best this year. Sure, I may have had a few bumps in the road on my way to the Nice List, but what can I say? I’m only human. Besides, a few parking tickets never hurt anyone! Look Santa, I want to reason with you. I don’t need anything too fancy, so you can save the diamond earrings and shiny new cars for the real heroes out there. There is really only one thing I want to find in my stocking this year, and it’s a shiny new bottle of Shiner Holiday Cheer from Spoetzl Brewery. Now, they probably don’t sell this one where you’re from up North, so I’ll give you a few pointers to make sure you know what you’re looking for.
You’re looking to impress if you include the word “pure” in the name of a beer. Pure Tropics from Parish Brewing is one of the newer IPA offerings out of Broussard, LA and further proves this brewery’s superiority of the style.
The beast has awoken, and this time it has emerged in the form of Southern Prohibition‘s newest core IPA offering. Teenagers of the 1980s, you’ll recognize the name and label art as a Grecian-based beat ’em up arcade game produced by Sega in 1988. Game on!
For some, the arrival of autumn means football. For others, perhaps the ripening of the leaves on the trees—as their colors erupt in flaming reds, oranges and yellows. Others may slave over their Halloween costumes as soon as summer draws to an end. In the beer world, fall is synonymous with the most hotly contested debate in all of craft. Love it or hate it, the pumpkin beer season has arrived. Not surprisingly, breweries aren’t shy of taking a side in this contentious argument, with many taking a stance in the former camp. One of these establishments is NoDa Brewing Company, as it proudly releases its pumpkin Ale, Gordgeous onto its taps.
Athens, GA-based Creature Comforts has quickly grown into a regional powerhouse thanks to its mix of tart and bright Berliner Weisses, movie-star endorsed IPAs and commitment to the local community. And, until now, only beer drinkers in Athens have been able to pick up some of Creature Comfort’s more exclusive, taproom-only offerings that highlight their work in barrel-aging and mixed fermentation.
Starting this week, Creature Comforts’ will release DaySpring, a Grisette made with local wheat from DaySpring Farms, and Common Things, a mixed fermentation Saison made with local honey from the University of Georgia’s Honey Bee Program, in both their tasting room and to their distribution footprint in 750-mL bottles.
It’s time to take a vacation and hit the beaches! The beaches in Tampa Bay are known as some of the best in America. If you’re planning a trip to the Tampa Bay area anytime soon, you’re surely going to be seeking out some of the breweries to get your hands on some of the local craft beer offerings. Here are some of the breweries I think you just can’t miss if you’re around:
On a Saturday night not too long ago, a hell of a storm blew through San Antonio. Overnight rains are certainly welcome to the area, considering the region’s aquifer-based water supply is highly dependent on the spring rainfall. What wasn’t so welcome, however, was the wind that accompanied the storm. With gusts between 30 and 50 mph, it was strong enough to topple over a section of my fence, adding a totally unexpected chore to my weekend to-do list.
Some brewers pull inspiration from current trends and others seek to brew according to personal like and although neither is wrong, Barrett Tillman of BlackMan Brewing, he’s in neither category.
Insert the Hostel Cereal, a timidly tart sour ale, which according to Tillman “began as a study on famine, its cause and how people survive.” During his travels through Africa and staying at hostels, the breakfast that was served was a porridge, made from grains and topped with whatever fruit was available. This was Tillman’s inspiration for the Hostel Cereal.
Defining what makes a person a millennial has been an object of journalistic contention for years now. Is it a strong memory of 9/11, barely remembering the world pre-internet, or growing up watching single-camera sitcoms? May I humbly suggest adding one more to the list: you can identify as a member of the millennial generation if you have ever been personally victimized by a toxic black can masquerading as men’s body spray. Even if you never directly sprayed this shower-substitute on your skin in middle school, you have breathed in its foul fumes at some point during your adolescence. With scents like Apollo, Kilo, Phoenix, Tsunami and Maniac, body spray was aimed at moldable millennial minds hoping they could spray their way to cool.
Depending on who you ask, South by Southwest (SXSW) is either an adult Disneyland full of freebies, quirky popup experiences and endless live music or a modern scene out of Mad Max with throngs of tourists swarming the streets of downtown Austin, TX. Do you live for the crowds and discovering secret shows or do you hope that your local bar hasn’t been discovered? Either way, Austin breweries have you covered. Keep reading for a roundup of craft beer events at SXSW.
Yet another highly anticipated IPA release from TrimTab Brewing‘s Light Visions Series has just hit limited Southern markets. As a result, hop heads couldn’t be more excited. The name given is Helix Rising, a double dry-hopped hazy double IPA. TrimTab continues to do exciting things in the Southern IPA game, and this DIPA brewed with Chinook, Zythos, Simcoe and Simcoe Lupulin powder is a truly unique and welcomed addition to their increasingly successful repertoire.
My wife and I recently reached our milestone of traveling to all 50 states, ensuring we visit the local brewery in each of the places that we visit. While I am an avid meat eater, my wife is vegetarian. So, the places we choose to eat during our travels had to be well researched in advance to ensure they have a vegetarian menu that met the expectations of my wife, who can be quite a picky eater. Luckily, nowadays, that isn’t hard. Many breweries and brewpubs offer at least one vegetarian option on their menu, to various degrees of success and creativity.
Texas is officially the only remaining state that doesn’t allow beer-to-go sales from craft breweries. In 2018, the Texas Craft Brewers Guild formed a political action committee aimed at putting Texas craft brewers on equal footing with other alcohol beverage …