Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Members-only Tickets for GABF Selling Fast

The Brewers Association is reporting that nearly 70% of tickets for the Members-only session on Saturday afternoon of the GABF have been sold during the Pre-sale for AHA members. In addition, the four-packs for members are sold out as are tickets for the Members-only entrance for Thursday and Friday night (public entrance tickets are still available though). A few hundred tickets till remain for the Farm to Table Pavilion. The remaining tickets go on sale to the general public June 30th.  It looks like the 2011 GABF is on its way to another record sell out.  I wouldn't wait to buy your tickets if you plan on going.

*** Update 6/30/11 ***

Tickets are now on sale to the general public, but tickets to the Saturday Members-only session are now sold out.  Click to here to purchase tickets for the remaining sessions.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Texas Craft Brewers Guild Announces Texas Craft Brewers Festival

The Texas Craft Brewers Guild, who's membership consist of the breweries and brewpubs of Texas, has announced the Texas Craft Brewers Festival will take place on Saturday, September 24th at Fiest Gardens in Austin, TX. This is the first beer festival organized by an actual brewers association in Texas in quite a few years (for those that remember the last one, that logo may look a little familiar). There's not a whole lot of information released about the event yet other then the creation of the official Facebook page, so this is mainly just a Save The Date announcement.

2nd Annual Beer & Cheese Festival at Hubbell & Hudson

I don't get up to The Woodlands very often, but this would be a great reason to. Hubbell & Hudson, a culinary world market and bistro located in The Woodlands Town Center, is hosting their 2nd Annual Beer & Cheese Festival on Saturday, July 2nd from 12pm ~ 6pm. Live music will be on the patio while beer and cheese experts will answer questions and help you pair up artisan cheese with craft beer. There will also be demonstrations by Carmine Chiricio in the cooking school on making and using mozzarella cheese. Its free to attend, but you will need to prove you're over 21 to sample any beer.

If you're not heading out of town for the long weekend, I would definitely check it out. And if you've never eaten at their bistro, then I highly recommend you try it. They have some of the best steaks I've ever had. Its a great place to catch dinner before seeing a concert at the Cynthia Woods Pavillion.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Real Ale Beer Dinner at Benjy's on Washington

The Benjy's on Washington Ave is hosting a Beer Dinner with Real Ale Brewing on Thursday, July 28th. The cost is $65 per person (plus tax and tip) and includes six courses paired with beer from Real Ale (see menu to the left). Brad Farbstein, owner of Real Ale, will also be on hand to talk about the beer and answer any questions.  Call Benjy's at 713-868-1131 to make your reservations.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pre-sale Tickets for 2011 Great American Beer Festival

One of the perks of being a member of the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) is the opportunity to buy tickets to the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) before they go on sale to the general public. The members-only pre-sale starts at 10:00am MDT on Tuesday, June 28th and includes the opportunity to buy tickets to the Farm to Market Pavillion as well. Members should have received an email message with instructions and a link to purchase tickets. If you're not currently a member, you can still quality for the pre-sales event by joining the AHA before June 26th (click here for membership info and benefits). The remainder of the tickets will go on sale to the general public on Thursday, June 30th.

Considering the GABF has sold out for the past four years (and did it earlier then ever last year), I wouldn't hold off on buying tickets if you're thinking about attending. The session that typically sells out first is the members-only session on Saturday afternoon which is when the winners of the competition are announced. I think the Thursday evening session is the best as all the beer is available and most of the brewers are usually around and still energetic. And if you are going, don't forget to pick up a ticket for the Denver Rare Beer Tasting as well.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Denver Rare Beer Tasting III

In 2008, Rick Lyke, a veteran beer and wine journalist, was diagnosed with prostate cancer after a friend who was recently diagnosed with it urged him to get tested. After undergoing treatment, Rick decided to make more men aware of the risk of developing prostate cancer and the simple blood test that can help detect it by using the universal language of beer and formed Pints 4 Prostates. After organizing several small events at bars around the country, he set his sights on something larger and organized the Denver Rare Beer Tasting to take place during the 2009 Great American Beer Festival in Denver. I attened that first event (recap here) and the second one held last year. Now on its way to becoming an annual event during the GABF, the Rare Beer Tasting III is schedule for Friday, Septh 30th from 1:00pm ~ 4:00pm at the Wynkoop Brewery (the same location as the first two).

If you plan on attending the GABF, then I highly recommend taking in this event. Not only does the money raised go to a very worthy cause (100 percent of the net proceeds from the sales going to Pints for Prostates), but you will also get the opportunity taste some very rare beers (beers not even available at the GABF) and meet the brewers that created them (list of attending breweries and beers is still being finalized). Tickets are $80 each and go on sale Sunday, June 19th at noon.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mid-Summer Beer Dinner at Vic & Anthony's

Vic & Anthon'ys Steakhouse has announced a Mid-Summer Beer Dinner to showcase some of the new beers from their recently expanded craft beer selection.  The dinner will take place on Friday, July 8th at 7:00pm with a very reasonable cost of $55 per person (plus tax and tip) for 5 courses paired with 7 beers (see full menu to the left.  Contact Staci Chambers at 713-228-1111 for reservations. I wouldn't wait too long though, only 50 seats are available and beer dinners at V&A's typically sell out.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Texas Beer Dinner at Haven

Haven has announced a Texas Beer Dinner featuring Southern favorites on Wednesday, June 22nd at 7:00pm. The cost is $50 per person and the meal will be served family style out on their patio. They'll be serving fried chicken, ribs or brisket, tomato cucumber salad, new potato salad, corn on the cob, okra and peach cobbler. There will also be plenty of beer on-hand from Southern Star and Real Ale. Its not a typical beer dinner that features individual courses paired with specific beers, but offers some great food alongside locally brewed Texas craft beer.

Since this follows only a couple of days after Father's Day, it would make a great treat for Dad. To make reservations, call 713-581-6101 or send an email to

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Petrol Station Competes for Most Bitter Bar in America

The Petrol Station is currently competing with other beer bars across the country to be named Stone Brewing's Most Bitter Bar in America:

One national winner will be named, along with a winner for each state, and one per region. Winners will receive the undying glory of being named "Most Bitter Bar" for the period of one year.

In Texas, the Petrol Station is competing against the Flying Saucer locations in Houston and Garland as well as the Meddlesome Moth in Dallas. How can you help them win this prestigious honour? Simple, go hang out at the Petrol Station (something you should do anyway) and order a beer brewed by Stone Brewing between 12:00am on June 4th and 11:59pm on June 11th. They're also opening for a special lunch on Thursday, June 9th (yeah, thats right, open for lunch on a weekday) and serving Double Dry-hopped Ruination, SSR, Cali Belgique, IPA and Belgo-Guardian with pulled pork sandwiches, chorizo mac-n-cheese and more.

Brooklyn Brewery Beer Dinner at Kenny and Ziggy's

Kenny & Ziggy's is the latest eatery in Houston to offer a beer and food dinner. The NY Deli Restaurant will be offering five courses paired with beers from the most famous brewery in New York, the Brooklyn Brewery. The cost is $65 per person and it takes place on Thursday, June 9th at 7:00pm.

First Course
Hot New York Pretzel Stuffed w/ House Cured Corned Beef and Swiss emanthal cheese - Brooklyn Lager

Second Course
Wild Mushroom and Barley Soup - Pennant Ale

Third Course
Homemade Celery Tonic Sorbet - Local 1

Fourth Course
Braised Hungarian Short Ribs w/ Yukon Potato Shiskas and Garlic String Beans - Brown Ale

Fifth Course
Chocolate Bobka Pudding with a Rum Caramel Sauce and Mexican Vanilla Ice Cream - Black Chocolate Stout

Monday, June 6, 2011

Secrets of the Brewluminati

Over the past few months, Independence Brewing has been quietly releasing monthly one-off brews under the series named Brewluminati. The secretive and often elusive beers have mainly been available at locations in Austin, but they've also been spotted around Houston more recently. So far in the series there's been a Scotch Ale called “Kill Shot”, an Imperial Porter named “Stoned Crow” and a ESB/Dark ale with the name “Thinker’s Ale”. The fourth release, brewed using Maris Otter malt and Sorachi Ace hops, has been named “Gold Deluxe” and should start appearing on tap shortly. The first samples of it were handed out during the monthly Tour and Tasting at the Brewery this past weekend and it was met with rave reviews from those lucky enough to get a chance to try it.  Each beer is only brewed once and when its gone, its gone, so definitely don't hesitate to order it if you see it on tap. Further information (well, sort of, but not really) can be found on the Brewluminati website.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

June Glass Nights at Ginger Man

The Ginger Man has released their list of Glass Nights for the month of May:

1st - Sam Adams
8th - Newcastle
15th - Ommegang (Witte)
22nd - Ommegang (Rare Vos)
29th - Duvel (Special edition Duvel Parra glass)

The glasses are available starting at 5:30pm and only one glass per person with purchase of the beer of the day. As always, the glasses are subject to change and only available while supplies last.

Drink Local for the Month of June

The Beer Mapping Project (a GREAT website for finding beer when travelling) has issued the following challenge for the month of June: only drink beer produced in the state where you are currently drinking. In other words, if you’re planning to stay in Texas for the entire month of June, then you can only drink beers brewed in Texas. If you travel to Colorado for the weekend, then you can only drink beer brewed in Colorado while you’re there. Its all just for fun but the idea is to show your support for the local craft breweries. Considering HB602 was just killed in the TX Senate by objections raised by ABInBev, its never been a better time to show your support for all the Texas breweries. And with all the new breweries that have been opening, you certainly have a pretty wide selection of beers to choose from. If your favourite bar, restaurant or package store doesn’t carry Texas beer, then politely ask if they will start. If you decide to take on the challenge and use Twitter, include the tag #statebeer when tweeting about it to show your support. Are you up for the challenge?