Go to any backyard BBQ in south Texas and you’ll likely see beers dressed in some form of chili-lime salt. Usually used on mass-produced lagers (especially those in a green bottle marked with two red X’s), dressing a beer has typically been a way to add flavor to mediocre beer, and the trend seems to be spreading. But what if a beer was intentionally brewed to compliment the addition while also tasty enough to stand on its own? That’s exactly what Cactus Land Brewing Co. set out to do with their Lucas Salted Pilsner, and based on the reaction from the locals, they’ve created the perfect beer to enjoy in the South Texas heat.
Once a phrase linked solely with Oatmeal Stouts, the term ‘breakfast beer’ is now applied to beers ranging from Milkshake and Smoothie Fruited Sours to Oat IPAs. Of course, what you may or may not consider to be a true ‘breakfast beer’ invariably depends on what you choose to have for breakfast, but the link between oat content and breakfastiness in a beer remains undisputed.
Austin Beerworks La Verdad is undoubtedly a champion of Texan Mexican Lagers. Its annual release heralds both Cinco de Mayo and the arrival of our sweaty summer season when lying by the pool or floating lazily down the Guadalupe is as much exertion as the weather allows any time after midday here in Central Texas. Now in its fifth year, the La Verdad was last year’s lockdown savior and kept us from parching even when we weren’t allowed in the water.
In Episode 38 of the “Boys Are From Märzen” podcast, Kindsey Bernhard converses with Pam Catoe, owner and chief contributor of Craft Beer Austin and Southwest regional editor for PorchDrinking.com.
The snow is melting. The sun is shining. Spring has sprung! Or has it? This time of year, the weather can never seem to make up its mind. One day could be a sunny day at the beach. The next, you may need to ask Noah to build another ark. Whatever the weather, you’ll need a beer to make it through. These six Arizona Beers are sure to help you withstand any weather.
Who doesn’t love a bake sale? All manner of excitingly delicious, affectionately prepared offerings to tempt the taste buds, with any guilty feelings of over-indulgence thoroughly negated by the knowledge that one is stuffing one’s face to fundraise for a most-worthy charitable cause. A winning fundraising formula employed by school boards, scout troops and religious institutions across the nation, the bake sale has taken on a new and exciting beery form, courtesy of the Texas Craft Brewers Guild.
All craft beer heads remember the glory days of in-person bottle releases and time spent waiting in line with like-minded and equally dedicated beer fans. Coolers opened to reveal rare finds that would be shared amongst the crowd to make the wait more enjoyable for the craft beer elite. While times have certainly changed, those memories remain. San Antonio, TX-based Weathered Souls Brewing Company’s latest members-only beer release is reminiscent of those glorious whales that would breach within the crowd dedicated enough to be First In Line.
When we think about women in beer, it’s important to remember that beer is an industry like any other, made up a wide range of roles and responsibilities. Increasing representation of women in beer and creating an equal working environment means encouraging and supporting women in all areas of the industry, including fields that aren’t specific to beer itself, because the very nature of genuine diversity involves ensuring it exists across the board. One area women are making huge strides, both in numbers and in prominence, is the arena of beer writing. Once just as male-dominated as the brewhouse, the field of beer journalism has opened up significantly in recent years, with women putting themselves forward, and supporting and enabling their peers through a network of mentorship, collaboration and education. One of the women leading this particular charge has been PorchDrinking’s own Southwest editor, Pam Catoe.
A tourist walks into a bar in Phoenix and says, “Hey, Barkeep, what are some iconic Arizona beers?”
The bartender says, “Well how much time have you got?”
The Phoenix brewery scene has become a staple of the valley’s tourism industry. From bar crawls in Scottsdale to valley-wide brewery tours, there are plenty of beer options to choose from.
In Episode 28 of the “Boys Are From Märzen” podcast, Ruvani de Silva of PorchDrinking joins Kindsey Bernhard.
Texan Fruited Sours tend to fly deeply, almost suspiciously under the radar. Not because we’re not proud of them – on the contrary. The truth is that they are so lip-smacking-tasty that we want to keep them all to ourselves. Choosing just one Fruited Sour from a truly dizzying array of outstanding options was a small challenge in itself, but when we heard about new kids on the block Urban South HTX’s ultra flavor-dynamic collaboration with Pennsylvania’s Imprint Beer Co., we heeded the call. Spilled Schmoojee was the result of their collaboration.
As the rest of the country slides into winter, Central Texas is still very much in fall mode – and a very welcome fall it is after a scorching summer locked down without the reprieve of our pools and swimming holes. Fall in Central Texas is full of fluctuation – you may need three different outfits in one day, with the temperature taking on the desert-like tendency to drop dramatically once the sun goes down. For weather like this, we brew up a fine selection of Dark Lagers – beers versatile enough to warm us when we’re being whipped by the wind but light enough to refresh us on those remaining sun-drenched days.
Put on that tracksuit, strap on the fresh kicks and queue up “Don’t Stop the Rock”–it’s about to get hype in here. When one of the top breweries in Texas announces a new year-round addition to their lineup, you gotta make some noise. Already providing multiple hopped-up offerings across the spectrum, Real Ale Brewing Co. still managed to drop something fresh that hits all the right notes with their Boombox Double IPA.
Typically the ladies of Pink Boots Society (PBS) come together at the Great American Beer Festival for the Annual Hop Rub. The tradition began in 2017 when PBS partnered with Yakima Chief Hops (YCH) to bring the best of their hop harvest, carefully laid out on tables for attendees to smell, touch and taste, with the goal of selecting the annual Pink Boots Society hop blend.
You probably don’t need and don’t want a reminder, but Thanksgiving is next week. Which means that it is basically 2021, because we all know how fast this time of year goes by. While I’m a firm believer that it’s “always Stout season,” breweries are starting to release all the Stouts that we can handle over the next few weeks! That might be one of the only silver linings to end 2020. Travel plans and family/friend hangouts have likely been postponed, for the better. Be mindful about supporting local as the weather continues to challenge outdoor options for your favorite breweries and restaurants. Some of our local favorites are present this week, so here is What We’re Drinking.
Sometimes you need a beer, and sometimes you need to treat yourself to something special. This Wild Brew Spelt Saison, the result of a 2013 collab between Oklahoma’s Choc Beer Company, the Fellowship of Oklahoma Ale Makers (FOAM) and Prairie …
One takeaway from 2020 is that when it comes to surviving an apocalypse, we all need a reason to keep going. For many of us, beer has been a saving grace in this most trying of years but back in 2009, cult horror-comedy movie “Zombieland”’s Tallahassee (aka Woody Harrelson) got his motivation in the form of a Twinkie – the classic American cream-sponge cake produced by Hostess. These “spongy, yellow, delicious bastards” have, in turn, inspired a Halloween tag-team brewing project from Lakewood Brewing and Intrinsic Smokehouse and Brewery – a salute to the “Zombieland” opening scene in their home town of Garland, TX. In the “Zombieland” franchise, the Twinkie acts as a beacon, a signifier – a sign that survival is indeed possible. And when the world is coming to an end, there are certainly worse things to do than hunt for your favorite snack.
It’s no secret that beer nerds love apps – especially apps with badges, rewards and that all-important score board so you can keep track of what your friends are up to. In response to the devastating effect that the pandemic, lockdown, and some extremely tenuous and controversial decisions by the State Governor and the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, the Texas Craft Brewer’s Association are fighting back with their very own Texas Brewery Explorer app.
With National Voter Registration Day just behind us and a mere seven weeks until the 2020 Presidential Election, there couldn’t be a more appropriate time for a brewery to highlight the need for all U.S. citizens to get out and vote. 903 Brewing, based in Sherman, Texas, is in the process of brewing its second bipartisan call-to-action I Voted beer. The blueberry-raspberry-cherry Berliner-Style Weisse follows the raspberry-blueberry sweet Cream Ale that kick-started the project during the May Primaries.
The I Voted beers sport equally red-white-blue packaging and are designed to encourage voters of all persuasions to make themselves heard on Election Day. With the original batch of I Voted having sold out swiftly, 903 is releasing an expanded run of its new Berliner-Style Weisse. The latest release will hit supermarket shelves in mid-October in time for early voting, and should be available for Election Night consumption.
As the days slowly blend together, it’s easy to forget about all of the events we’ve missed. Special occasions that have flowed by us without any pomp and circumstance. Its understandable to mourn these events, even in the midst of greater suffering. One of these events was South By Southwest, the two-week arts, culture and technology conference in Austin, Texas. Not only is SXSW a great party, but it is a crucial publicity moment for businesses big and small. One of the many new products that was set to debut during SXSW is the beer Dark Matter, a collaboration between Austin institution Jester King brewery and Chicago coffee shop Dark Matter.