southwest Archives – PorchDrinking.com
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.
Many of the beers produced in the Southwest region don’t make it too far out of the region for a variety of reasons; rarely do you see Texas craft beer anywhere but Texas. Regardless, some of the best craft beer scenes exist in this region, further evidenced by continual Great American Beer Festival wins. At the festival this year, New Mexico brought home seven medals, Arizona won eight and Texas brought home sixteen, including eight first time winners. The Southwest Regional team got together to decide on the best of the best — no easy task! So, here is The 2019 Best of Southwest Craft Brewing
Outside of Austin lies what many locals call the prettiest little part of Texas: Hill Country. Small rolling hills break up the endless blue sky and Texas scrub provides shade to white-tailed deer, armadillos, and the hordes of tubers leisurely floating down the San Marcos River. Many Austin based companies will provide tubes and transportation for easy access to San Marcos’ best-known attraction. Visitors shouldn’t stick to the water; getting out and exploring Hill Country charms is best done on dry land. Some of the best boozy attractions in the state are scattered around Hill Country from the elite Jester King Brewery to the only sotol distillery in the United States, Desert Door. With over twenty-five breweries in Hill Country, visitors will find plenty of delicious reasons to keep exploring the surrounding scrubland.
Los Ranchos de Albuquerque in New Mexico is a small village that maintains the charm of rural living despite being surrounded by the city of Albuquerque. Steel Bender Brewyard is the first licensed (and only) brewery in the village and it has positioned itself as a community gathering place for a variety of occasions including ordinary after-work happy hours and celebratory milestones from baby showers to retirement. Using seasonal fruits from local orchards for their barrel program and creating “from scratch” pub fare in their full kitchen, there are many reasons why Steel Bender Brewyard should be added to your next beer journey in New Mexico.
Santa Fe, New Mexico, was the first capital city in North America. In this historical place with centuries of traditions, there’s a small-scale independent brewery that offers playful twists to classic beer styles. Chantal, their robust French saison, shows this brewery’s passion for brewing.