Friday, October 5, 2012

Record Number of Texas Breweries Attending 2012 GABF

There will be a record 578 breweries serving 2,700 beers (the biggest selection ever) in the festival hall at the 2012 Great American Beer Festival (GABF). There are 676 breweries entered into the competition with 154 first-time entrants.  84 categories of beer will be judged, covering 135 beer styles, as well as the GABF Pro-Am.

Texas has its largest showing ever with 30 breweries listed, up from the previous year of 22.

(512) Brewing Company - Austin
Adelbert's Brewery - Austin
Austin Beerworks - Austin
Black Star Co-op Pub and Brewery - Austin
Circle Brewing Company - Austin
Cornel's Brewing Company - Beaumont
Deep Ellum Brewing Company - Dallas
Flix Brewhouse - Round Rock
Fredericksburg Brewing Company, Inc. - Fredericksburg
Freetail Brewing Co. - San Antonio
Hops & Grain Brewing - Austin
Humperdinks Restaurant and Brewery - Dallas 
Independence Brewing Co. - Austin
Jester King Craft Brewery - Austin
Karbach Brewing Co. - Houston
Live Oak Brewing Co. - Austin
No Label Brewing Co - Katy
North by Northwest - Austin
Pedernales Brewing Company - Fredericksburg 
Peticolas Brewing Company - Dallas
Rahr & Sons Brewing - Fort Worth
Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling - San Antonio
Real Ale Brewing Company - Blanco
Rogness Brewing Company - Pflugerville
Saint Arnold Brewing Company - Houston
Southern Star Brewing Company - Conroe
Spoetzl Brewery - Shiner
Thirsty Planet Brewing - Austin
Uncle Billy`s Brew & Que - Austin
Uncle Billy`s Brew & Que - Austin (Lake Travis)

Four breweries from Texas took home medals last year, including a Silver to a brewery on its first appearance at the festival:

Gold (American-Style Amber Lager): Uberbrau - Humperdink's Restaurant and Brewery
Silver (English-Style Summer Ale): Peacemaker - Austin Beerworks
Silver (Kellerbier or Zwickelbier): Bottle Rocket Lager - Uncle Billy's Brew & Que on Lake Travis
Bronze (Belgian-Style Lambic or Sour Ale): Barton Kriek - North by Northwest

The map of the 2012 GABF convention floor is available on the website. The brewery tasting booths are arranged by region of the country and the attending breweries from Texas are in the Southwest section. If you have any specific breweries and beers that are a "must try", I strongly suggest you download the .pdf file and print the the map and mark the location of those booths. It can be overwhelming and chaotic in the convention center (particularly if this is your first time) and you will definitely miss out on some great beers if you just wander up and down the rows (save that for after you've got to the ones you wanted).  Have a smartphone? Make sure you download the free GABF app for iPhone and Android.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Growler on Board

Here's something handy for people that drive around with growlers in their car. The Growler on Board Beer Transportation Unit not only keeps your growler from rolling around in your trunk or the floor, the low density foam that its made of also helps insulate it. According to the website, it can hold standard 1/2 gallon growlers as well as the 2L swing top style with handles and the holes in the bottom of each cavity can be used to hold the growler upside down for drying. The price is $29.95 and available online or at a few retailers.

Don't forget to grab one of the handy warning stickers as well to inform other drivers of your precious cargo.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

BeerFeast 2012 at Flying Saucer Sugar Land

The Flying Saucer's Sugar Land location is hosting their inaugural fall beer festival, BeerFeast 2012, on Saturday, October 27th from 1:00pm to 7:00pm.  BeerFeast 2012 will feature more then 40 breweries and 60 different craft beers including rare and limited releases tapped on the hour.

Tickets, which include tasting glass and tasting card good for 12 samples, will be available at a discounted price of $25 beginning on Sept 13th and increase to the full price of $30 on the 27th.  A very limited number of VIP tickets will also be available for $65 which includes tasting glass, tasting card, early admission to the festival at noon, food vouchers for attending food trucks, a BeerFeast t-shirt and a brew caddy lanyard to hold the tasting glass.  VIP ticket holders will also have a separate line for the hourly rare beer tappings and access to them 10 minutes early.  Additional tasting cards will be available for purchase by both regular and VIP ticket holders for $6.

More information and link to purchase tickets will be available soon on the BeerFeast2012 website.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

No Label Brewing 1st & 2nd Anniversary Party

Tickets are now on sale for No Label Brewing's 1st & 2nd anniversary party being held on Sept 22nd from 6:00pm ~ 10:00pm. Tickets are $25 each and include a glass, beer, food and live music as well as a chance to win special prizes.

2012 BrewMasters Craft Beer Festival

The 3rd annual BrewMasters Craft Beer Festival in Galveston takes the place this Labor Day Weekend.  Over 400 craft beers will be available, including one of a kind and hard to get brews in the Taste It First section. In addition to sampling beer at the BrewHaHa Grand Tasting, there are other events such as beer and food pairing, beer and cigar pairing, pub crawl and live music throughout the weekend. See the website for tickets as there is a variety of packages and options (in fact, its almost a little confusing).

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

2012 Texas Craft Brewers Festival

The 2012 Texas Craft Brewers Festival is taking place on Saturday, October 6th at Fiesta Gardens in Austin and tickets are now on sale.

A General Admission ticket is $20 which includes a wristband, six 4-oz sampling tokens and a Commemorative TCBF tasting cup. A VIP ticket package is also available which includes a 2-hour meet & greet session with brewers before the festival begins, first access to special limited beers, a festival t-shirt, festival pint glass (upon exiting festival), wristband with six 4-oz sampling tokens and commemorative tasting cup.

A list of participating breweries and available beers will be released closer to the day of the event.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Beer Festival and Food Pairing at the Houston City Club

The Houston City Club in conjunction with BeerLovers.com is hosting a beer festival and food pairing event on Thursday, July 26th from 5:30pm to 10:00pm.

Representatives from local Texas breweries will be on hand to answer questions and talk about their beer and the Club's Executive Chef will be preparing bite-sized food items paired specifically for the beer being served. There will be a speaking lineup as well including Brock Wagner from Saint Arnold, Ronnie Crocker from the Houston Chronicle and author of Houston Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in the Bayou City, and also representatives from several of the new Houston breweries such as Fort Bend, City Acre, and Town In City.  There's also some great door prizes such as beer gift baskets, private brewery tours, a "design-a-beer" opportunity offered by Bufffalo Bayou and the Club is offering a trip to Barton Creek in Austin.

The event is open to the public but you must RSVP due to limited space (call 713-840-9001 or email Yvette.Matchette@ourclub.com).

Open The Taps Anniversary Party

Open The Taps (a grassroots organization dedicated to changing Texas beer laws and regulations) is celebrating its first anniversary with a party at Petrol Station on Saturday, July 21st from Noon to 6:00pm. Live music, special cask beers and Petrol Station's new kitchen should be up and running. Come find out what the group has been up to over the past year and their plans for the future.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tickets for 2012 GABF on Sale July 31

The 2012 Great American Beer Festival takes place from October 11th to the 13th and members of the American Homebrewers Association and Brewers Association have the opportunity to buy tickets first beginning at 11:00am CST on July 31st. The remaining tickets then go on sale to the general public on August 2nd. If you're considering going, you need to buy your tickets the day they go on sale as they've been selling out faster every year.  Almost all tickets were gone last year in 10 days. If you're not already a member, I suggest joining the American Homebrewers Association before July 27 so you can participate in the Member Only Pre-Sale and attend the Member-Only session on Saturday. Tickets are $65 each for the evening sessions on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and $55 for the Saturday afternoon session.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

#IPADay Returns on August 2nd

Started last year by Ashley Routson and Ryan Ross, #IPADay was originally inspired by similar wine events such as #ChardonnayDay and #CabernetDay. Ashley, also known as The Beer Wench, saw it as a way to help make craft beer more accessible to the masses and promote craft beer in general. #IPADay returns on Thursday, August 2nd and you can participate by simply enjoying an IPA (perhaps while introducing a non craft beer drinking friend to the wonderful world of craft beer) and tweeting about it with the #IPADay hashtag.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Tickets on Sale for Denver Rare Beer Tasting IV

Tickets for the Denver Rare Beer Tasting IV, an awareness event and fundraiser for the Pints for Prostates campaign are now on sale. The event takes place during the Great American Beer Festival on Friday, Oct. 12th from 1:00pm ~ 4:00pm at the Wynkoop Brewery in Denver.

The price has increased this year to $100, but each attendee receives a commemorative tasting glass, t-shirt, program and pen as well as a three issue trial subscription to All About Beer Magazine. I've attended the previous three events and although the price has increased each year, I still think its worth it. The money goes to a very worthy cause and you get the opportunity try rare beers and meet the brewers who made them. The list of beers that will be served is not available yet, but is typically released closer to the day of the event.

*** UPDATE 08/01/2012 ***
From Pints for Prostates Facebook page:
The Denver Rare Beer Tasting IV is completely sold out! We are looking forward to reaching men through the universal language of beer on Oct. 12 and appreciate the loyal support of craft brewers and beer fans.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Hubbell & Hudson's 3rd Annual Beer & Cheese Festival

On Saturday, June 30th, Hubbell & Hudson is hosting its 3rd annual Beer & Cheese Festival.

The Beer & Cheese festival is a great way for Houstonians to become acquainted with new and unique pairings of different styled beers and cheeses. Throughout the event, beer and cheese experts will be available to answer questions. Featured local Texas Breweries include Rhar & Sons (Fort Worth, Texas), St. Arnold (Houston, Texas), Karbach (Houston, Texas), Independence (Austin, Texas) and Southern Star (Conroe, Texas).

The event takes place in the store located at 24 Waterway Avenue in The Woodlands from Noon to 5:00pm and admissions is granted with any cash donation to Montgomery County Youth Services.

I attended the Beer & Chesse Festival last year and although it got a pretty crowded in the store, it was still a good event that helped promote craft beer and demonstrate its versatility.  If you're going to be up The Woodlands, I definitely suggest checking it out.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

2012 Houston Beer Festival

Everyone remembers the first Houston Beer Festival last year, whether you actually attended it or not. Thanks to Facebook and Twitter, you were able to experience the complete fail as it was happening. With all those very public issues and problems, many were quite surprised to see that the organizers had began planning for a festival in 2012 almost immediately after the first one ended. At least they'd know what not to do.

I wasn't at the festival last year, but I attended this year to help setup and work in the Independence Brewing booth.  And although I was a little concerned that we'd encounter some of the problems reported at the previous festival and other recent festivals in Austin, I really didn't see any of the issues that caused such an uproar last year. During setup there was some confusion about where specific vendors were supposed to be located and the beer for a few breweries remained locked in a refer trailer until after the gates were open because no one could find the person who had the keys, but everything eventually got sorted out. There were entrance gates all around the park and other then the initial surge of people when the gates first opened, the lines appeared to be pretty short and everyone seemed to be entering pretty smoothly. Water stations and bathrooms were in abundance and there was definitely lots of cups, ice and more importantly, beer. The booths for all the Texas breweries were located in a part of the park that was separate from the main festival area (you had to cross under Rusk to get to it) which was good and bad. It was cool in that it gave that area the feeling of a being at a small Texas craft beer festival, but I wonder how many people may not have even known that section was there or bothered to wander over to it in the hot sun. In the main festival area, the brewery booths and the other vendor booths (food, games, jewelry, etc) were mixed together which made it more difficult to find the breweries. In between Brewery Ommegang and Brooklyn Brewing was a booth for a dog poop scooping business. Nothing against their business, but its not exactly what I'd expect to see when attending a "beer" festival.

Look, as long as Bud Light is being served and Beer Pong is featured, this festival is never going to appeal to the beer geeks out there. However, it was a great festival to introduce new people to the wonderful world of craft beer. There were a lot of people that came to the booth who were already familiar with the beers, but there was also a lot who were trying craft beer for the first time and liking it and that's a good thing.

Below are a few photos I took around the festival during setup and after it was in full swing. Feel free to leave comments about your experience if you were at the festival as well.


Texas Breweries Area
Texas Breweries Area
Line at Independence booth
Texas Breweries Area

Monday, May 14, 2012

American Craft Beer Week

American Craft Beer Week kicks off today with events in all 50 states. From simple tastings to beer dinners to beer festivals, America is celebrating its continuing love and support for Craft Beer this week.  The official website has a list of events in your area, but also check with your local beer bars and breweries as all events may not have been added. And don't forget to sign and proudly display your copy of the Declaration of Beer Independence.  If you're an active user on Untappd, be sure to check in this week while enjoying an American Craft Beer to receive the special badge.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Local Craft Beer and Burger Pairing at The Counter

Earlier this year, I posted about the The Counter featuring a special Beer and Burger Pairing Menu. At that time, I also indicated that I would have liked to see more local craft beers used in the pairing. I received a pretty quick response on Twitter from them after my post indicating they would use more local beers in their next pairing. It looks like they held true to their word as I just received notice that their Beer and Burger Pairing Menu for May and June features four beers from No Label Brewing of Katy, TX:

Pairing 1
Burger: Beef mini, shaved cucumber, kalamata olives, feta, tzatziki sauce
Beer: El Hefe - A traditional German Hefeweizen.  This beer is light and refreshing with strong notes of banana, cloves, and citrus. Pairs well with the fresh summer flavors of this Greek inspired mini-burger.

Pairing 2
Burger: Beef mini, carrot strings, shiitake mushrooms, red bell pepper, scallions, kung pao sauce
Beer: Pale Horse Ale - Pale Ale with a significant amount of malts and hops.  The hop bite accentuates the kick in the kung pao and the bitterness in the malts balances the earthy meatiness of the shiitake mushrooms.

Pairing 3
Burger: Beef mini, lettuce blend, tomato, sharp provolone, fried onion strings, sun-dried tomato vinaigrette
Beer: Mint IPA - This IPA has 11 hop additions using 5 different hops. The bouquet is of strong citrus and pine with a hint of spiciness and soothing mint at the back end.

Pairing 4
Burger: Beef mini, thinly shaved celery, blue cheese, fried onion strings, buffalo wing sauce
Beer: Ridgeback Ale - Dark American Amber with strong flavors of roasted malts. The bitter notes from the malts pairs nicely with the tanginess of the blue cheese and spiciness of the buffalo wing sauce.

The new pairing menu runs from May 3rd to June 28th, but is only available on Thursdays. The owners of No Label Brewing, Brian and Jennifer Royo, will also be on hand at The Woodlands location on May 10th from 6:00pm - 8:00pm and the Washington Ave. location on May 24th from 6:00pm - 8:00pm to answer questions and talk about their beer.

Buffalo Bayou Previewing Summer Ale at Cinco Drinko Party

If you didn't get a chance to try their beer at the recent Texas Beer Festival (or if you did and want more) Buffalo Bayou Brewing Co. will be previewing their summer ale this Saturday during Berryhill's Cinco Drinko event at their Post Oak location. The festivities begin at 2:00pm with live music and discounted food from Berryhill.

Buffalo Bayou Brewing is one of the newest craft breweries to open in Houston. Having only been open since December last year, they're already making a name for themselves by producing unique beers such as their Gingerbread Stout and Chai Porter along with their year-round beer called 1886.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Camp Beer XI - Ciders

For the first time, beer will not be the center of attention at Camp Beer. With the hot summer days quickly approaching, ciders will instead be in the spot light. The craft cider market has also been on the rise lately and can be a refreshing alternative to a cold beer on a hot day. Tickets are $55 each and are available for purchase online starting at 9:00am Thursday, May 3rd. A list of the ciders being sampled and more information about the event is available on the Camp Beer webpage.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Specialty Beer List for Texas Beer Fest

The second annual Texas Beer Festival is only days away and the list of specialty beers has been released. One change for this year is that the entire list of speciality beers will be available from the start of the festival instead of tapping different beers at set times throughout the event. This definitely makes it easier to try the various speciality beers, but also mean that there will probably be a rush on some of them at the start of the festival. You will no doubt need to get there early if there is a specific beer(s) that you want to try. However, that's a pretty impressive list of beers and you can't be too disappointed if you miss out on trying one or two. And don't forget, that doesn't include all the regular beers being poured at the brewery booths. Its clearly going to be long day. Pace yourself and drink plenty of water.

Texas Specialty Items

Saint Arnold - Bourbon Barrel Imperial Stout
Buffalo Brewing - Black IPA with Jaggery, Coconut and Thai Chiles
Karbach - Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter Firkin
Southern Star - Walloon Dry Hopped with Crystal Hops Firkin
No Label - Don Jalapeno
Real Ale - Fireman's 4 (Firkin)
Real Ale - Real Heavy 2011
Rahr and Sons - Regulator Dopplebock
(512) - Whiskey Barrel Aged Double Pecan Porter
Deep Ellum - IPA (Firkin)
Independence - TBA (Firkin)
Independence - Epanoui
- followed by Braggot
Jester King - Black Metal Stout (Firkin)
- followed by Beer Geek Rodeo (Firkin)
Austin Beer Works - Golden Fist
Ranger Creek - Strawberry Milk Stout
Rogness - Yogi Chai Amber

Out of State Specialty Items

Dogfish Head - 120 Minute (2 ounce limit)
Avery - Samaels (2 ounce limit)
Stone - Smoked Porter with Vanilla Bean
- followed by Vertical Epic 11.11.11
Brooklyn - Companion
- followed by Mary's Maple Porter
- followed by the Dry Irish Stout
Sierra Nevada - Big Foot 2012 (2 ounce limit)
- followed by Hoptimum
Oskar Blues - Deviant
Santa Fe - Happy Camper (Firkin)
Clown Shoes - TBA (Firkin)
Utah Brewing - Outer Darkness Imperial Stout
Left Hand - Sawtooth ESB
Lindeman's - Pomme
Rogue - John John Dead Guy Ale
New Belgium - Lips of Faith

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Girls' Pint Out at Saint Arnold

On Wednesday, April 25th, from 6:00pm ~ 8:00pm, Saint Arnold Brewery will be host to Girls' Pint Out benefitting Bel Inzio, an organization that helps disadvantaged women develop self-confidence and life skills through fitness and nutrition.

Tickets can be purchased online for $17 per lady (with $5 of that going to Bel Inizio) and includes a commemorative pint glass and a fresh-baked Slow Dough Bakery pretzel. They will also be accepting donations of new and gently used running shoes and sportswear. Raffle tickets will also be sold for the chance to win hand-crafted, limited-edition Bel Inizio bracelets and Girls Pint Out t-shirts will be on sale.

Sounds like a great way to get more women interested in craft beer and support a worthy cause at the same time.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Get Your Tickets for the 2012 Texas Beer Fest

Have you bought your ticket for the 2012 Texas Beer Fest yet? If you have, congratulations on your good decision making abilities. If you have not, why not?! All you people that complained it was too far away (in Humble) last year have no excuses this year. The organizers couldn't have secured a better spot then Discovery Green in downtown Houston. The festival is on Saturday, April 28th and there's still time to buy tickets (including the VIP Upgrade Pacakge) at a discounted price from the website or else you're going to end up paying full price at the gate (you know you're going to end up going because all your friends are). And if you're waiting for a last minute deal on tickets to show up on Group On, I assure you, there won't be. Still need some incentives? See if this helps:

  • Over 70 Breweries will be in attendance, including many new-to-market and recently debuted Texas breweries whose products are not easily found in the Houston area
  • the Great Brewers Specialty Beer Wall will be tapping hard-to-find craft beers and beers brewed specifically for the Texas Beer Fest
  • Houston Chronicle’s Ronnie Crocker will be signing his new boock Houston Beer: A Heady History of Brewing in the Bayou City (Texas) (The History Press)
  • eight representatives of Houston’s diverse local craft food industry and food truck culture such as Bread and Batter Baking, CafĂ© Luz, Coreanos Houston, Les Givrals, the Little Baker, Rockwell Tavern, Sammy’s Wild Game Grill, and Wicked Whisk Catering
  • entertaining mix of performers featuring: Handsome Ransome’s indie folk rock with a message, Fish Fry Bingo’s raucous 5 piece hillbilly jug band, Houston’s own award winning Brant Croucher and finally Curtis Grimes (who has performed on NBC’s The Voice, all over Texas, and with artists such as Jack Ingram, Justin Moore, Eli Young Band, Leann Rimes, Josh Abbott, and Kevin Fowler).
  • and finally, because 25% of net proceeds will be donated to the Houston Food Bank

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Marquee Bar Now Open in Whole Foods Bellaire

Whole Foods Market is continuing to insert beer and wine bars inside their stores and the newest one, The Marquee in the Bellaire location, is now open for business. Featuring 8 beers on tap with a focus on local craft breweries, you can slip by for a pint and a nosh of Whole Foods Market fare while shopping or get a growler filled to enjoy at home.  They'll be celebrating the grand opening on April 20th from 4:00pm ~ 7:00pm with local beers paired with small bites and local Brew Masters will be on hand to answer questions and talk about their beers.

I definitely like what Whole Foods is doing, but I need places like Macy's and Target to follow their example.  I'd be much more willing to go shopping with my wife if I was able to follow her around with a pint in my hand.

Top 50 Craft and Overall Brewing Companies for 2011

The Brewers Association just released its annual lists of the Top 50 Craft and Overall Brewing Companies in the U.S. based on 2011 beer sales volume. With it's headquarters in San Antonio, the Gambrinus Company, owner of such brands as Shiner, Bridgeport, and Trumer Pils, earned the top Texas spot at number 4. However, with the exception of Shiner, their brands are actually brewed outside of Texas. Saint Arnold Brewing moved up this year to number 43 from 48 and is followed closely by Real Ale Brewing at number 45 who moved up from number 49.

As of March 26, 2012, the Brewers Association is aware of 250 brewery openings in 2011 (174 microbreweries and 76 brewpubs) and 37 brewery closings (12 microbreweries and 25 brewpubs).

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Oysters, Brews and Blues

The website indicates there will be a limited number of tickets available at the door for tonight's Oysters, Brews and Blues celebration at Goode Company’s Armadillo Palace on Kirby Drive.

The evening will include a discussion from Robb Walsh about Texas appellation oysters followed by an opportunity to try the oysters along with local Texas craft beer while listening to one of the top harmonica players, Sonny Boy Terry.  No Label, Saint Arnold, and Southern Star will be on hand to discuss their beers and help you pair them with the oysters.

Tickets are $50 and proceeds from the event benefit Foodways Texas and the Coastal Conservation Association’s marine oyster habitat program.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Second Annual Pints for the Planet

On Wednesday, March 28th from 7:00pm ~ 9:00pm, Saint Arnold Brewing will be host to the second annual Pints for the Planet which benefits the Whole Planet Foundation.   Founded in 2005, Whole Planet Foundation is a Whole Foods Market foundation that funds poverty alleviation worldwide where the company sources products.

The nonprofit’s mission is to empower the poor living in developing-world communities with microcredit and the chance to create or expand a home-based business and lift themselves and their families out of poverty.

Tickets, which include hors d'oeuvres and a commemorative pint glass, are available for purchase online for $25 each with 100% of the proceeds going to the foundation.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Lagunitas Events During SXSW to Benefit Blue Dog Rescue

I typically just post about beer events and news in and around the Houston area as that's where I live. However, Lagunitas Brewing Co. is hosting a series of events in Austin during the SXSW Music Festival that I'd like to pass along as they not only feature good beer but also benefit a local Austin animal rescue society:

SIX -- “Sonoma Grown” Showcases will be presented at venues all over Austin benefiting Blue Dog Rescue. In addition to sponsoring the showcases, Lagunitas Brewing Company El Presidente, Tony Magee will be in attendance and playing finger pickin’ blues from the 20’s and 30’s. Not only will folks learn about cool ways to help in Austin’s animal rescue scene, but also rock to great Sonoma County bands, and meet the owner of Lagunitas, who’s been brewing craft beers since ’93. Come on by, we’ll be tappin’ special kegs, tappin’ our feet, and howlin’ at the wind…

Here's a list of the venues they'll be at and the Lagunitas beer that will be featured:

Thur, Mar 15th – 11am ~ 5pm at Easy Tiger
(KEG: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, Dogtown Pale, Doppel Weizen, Gnarleywine, Imperial Red. CASK: WTF?, Hop Stoopid)

Thurs, Mar 15th – 7pm ~ 2am at Opal Divine’s Freehouse
(KEG: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, Dogtown Pale )

Fri, Mar 16th – 1pm ~ 6pm at Star Bar
(KEG: Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, WTF? BOTTLE: IPA, Dogtown)

Sat, Mar 17th – 11:30am ~ 5pm at The Draught House
(KEG: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale, Dogtown Pale, Doppel Weizen, Gnarleywine, Imperial Red. FIRKIN: WTF, Hop Stoopid, Maximus, Imperial Red)

Sat, Mar 17th – 10pm ~ 2am at Rattle Inn
(KEG: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’, Dogtown , WTF? BOTTLE: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’, Dogtown)

Sun, Mar 18th – 11am ~ 3pm at Zax Restaurant & Bar
(KEG: IPA, Little Sumpin’ Sumpin)

Looks like a great opportunity to enjoy some good beer while helping out a worthy cause.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Rice Village Pub Crawl Featuring Four Houston Breweries

The Rice Village will be host to a pub crawl this Saturday featuring four Houston area breweries, including the two newest, Buffalo Bayou Brewing and Karbach Brewing.

Start at any of the 5 participating locations. Kahn’s Deli, The Gingerman, Hans Bier Haus, Kelvin Arms and Little Woodrows, have a beer and receive a “Pub Crawl Passport”. Do the same at each of the following locations and get your passport stamped. Before 9PM bring your completed passport to Hans Bier Haus. If you are among the first 100, you get a bag full of Beer schwag.

All the locations area walking distance from each other and it looks like the weather should be perfect for it.  My only question is why is Kenny Powers on the poster?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Beer and Burger Pairing at The Counter

The Counter, a burger joint where you custom build your burger, is featuring a Beer and Burger Pairing Menu from February 28 through March 18 at both locations. The burger and beer pairings combine a flight of four mini beers with four beef mini burgers for the reasonable price of $13.

Newcastle (Brown Ale) paired with a beef mini, with swiss cheese, sauteed mushrooms, applewood smoked bacon, roasted garlic aioli.

Saint Arnold (Amber Ale) paired with a beef mini, organic mixed greens, fresh mozzarella, bruschetta mix, balsamic glaze, basil pesto.

Longhammer (IPA) paired with a beef mini, lettuce blend, roasted corn and black bean salsa, jalapeno jack cheese, fried jalapenos, chipotle aioli.

Widmer (Hefeweizen) - paired with a beef mini, with brie organic greens, julienned basil, tomato, apricot sauce.

Although I would like to have seen more local craft beers then just Saint Arnold, I certainly applaud their effort.  After March 18th, the pairings will still be available but only Thursdays.

**Update - The Counter responded on Twitter to my post and has indicated they plan on using local beers when they debut their next pairing in April.  Awesome!

The Beer Experiement at Fitzgeralds's

Houston is the first stop of the Food Experiments 16 city national tour, a competition for amateur chefs that has a unique ingredient selected for each city that must be used in the dish presented.  Beer is the ingredient that the competitors will need to use for the event being held at Fitzgerald's on Sunday, March 4th from 1:00pm ~ 4:00pm.  Any type of dish can be entered, as long as it includes beer.  Judging of the entries will be done by Chris Shepherd (Chef at Underbelly), Adam Dorris (Chef at Stella Sola) and Jenny Wang (Producer of Southbound Foods).  The winner will receive a trip to New York next December courtesy of Brooklyn Brewery to compete against the winners from the other cities participating.  Tickets to attend are $10 and available for purchase online which includes beer from Brooklyn Brewery and the chance to sample the entries.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Saint Arnold Launching Endeavour On Leap Day

Saint Arnold Brewing is set to launch their newest year-round beer, Endeavour, on Wednesday, February 29th. Endeavour is a Double IPA based on Divine Reserve 11 that was released last year. To kick off the new beer in style, they've got the Alamo Drafthouse's Rolling Roadshow coming out to the brewery that evening to show the timeless classic "Spaceballs". Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online but they will ONLY be doing check in between 6:00pm and 6:45pm, so you need to ensure you're there on time. Also, don't forget to bring your own chair if you dont' want to sit on the ground and your own food if you're going to get hungry.

In addition to the big launch party at the brewery, they will be hosting events around town to introduce everyone to the new brew:

Feb 29th - 7:00pm - Flying Saucer (Downtown) - Endeavour Tapping
Feb 29th - 7:00pm - Petrol Station - Endeavour Tapping
Mar 1st - 7:00pm - Canyon Creek - Endeavour Tapping
Mar 2nd - 7:00pm - Rockwell Tavern - Endeavour/DR 11/Bitter Belgian/Elissa & Special Food Pairing
Mar 2nd - 5:30 PM - Ginger Man - Endeavour Tapping
Mar 3rd - 7:00pm - Chuggin Charlies - Endeavour Tapping
Mar 6th - 7:00pm - Flying Saucer (Sugar Land) - Endeavour/DR11 Side-by-Side

Beers, Boots and (Mud)Bugs Texas Beer Fest Pre-Party

Join the organizers of the 2012 Texas Beer Fest for a Texas Independence Day Crawfish Boil Pre-Festival Party on Saturday, March 3rd at Liberty Station. In addition to mud bugs, they will also be featuring the following special tappings:

Saint Arnold - Farmer’s Brown aged in a Chardonnay cask
No Label - Elda M. Milk Stout
Saint Arnold - Divine Reserve 11 (bottle)

The party starts at 1:00pm and lasts until the cows come home. For more information about the actual festival, please visit www.texasbeerfest.org.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Behemoth Beer Week at Flying Saucer

The Houston Flying Saucer has decided to release a few beers out into the wild that have been aging in their beer cellar. Each day this week a different rare and vintage beer will be tapped:

Feb 13 - Real Ale - Sysphus (2007)
Feb 14 - Brooklyn Brewing - Chocolate Stout (2010)
Feb 15 - Sierra Nevada - Jack & Ken's Ale (2010)
Feb 16 - Stone - Double Bastard (2008)
Feb 17 - Moylans - Barleywine (Cask)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Camp Beer X - Sourpalooza

Sourpalooza, the tenth edition of Camp Beer from Live it Big, has been announced and will take place on Saturday, March 10th. The list of beers being served includes (in no particular order):

Crooked Stave - W.W.B.O.
Crooked Stave - W.W.B.R.
Crooked Stave - Pure Guava Petite Sour
The Bruery - Saison Rue
Russian River - Supplication
Russian River - Consecration

Jolly Pumpkin - Bam Noire
Jolly Pumpkin - La Roja
Jolly Pumpkin - Luciernaga
Telegraph Brewing - Reserve Wheat Ale
Rodenbach - Grand Cru

As always, the Beer Master of Anvil Bar & Refuge and soon to be open Hay Merchant, Kevin Floyd, will lead the crowd through the tasting with information and anecdotes about the beer and breweries.

Tickets go on sale Friday, February 10th are available for purchase through the website for $55 each.  However, you've got to be quick as past events have typically sold out within hours.

** Update: Tickets SOLD OUT in only a few hours ***

Friday, February 3, 2012

2012 Texas Beer Fest Pre-Party at the Ginger Man

Tickets for the 2012 Texas Beer Fest went on sale earlier this week and now the organizers are holding a pre-party to help raise aware about the festival at the Ginger Man on Saturday, February 4th beginning 7:00pm. This is a great opportunity to learn more about the upcoming event, particularly the volunteer opportunities.

The TxBF has also partnered with Duff Distribution which allowed them to purchase 6 casks, 3 of which will be making an appearance at the pre-party with selections from Texas brewers that you cannot find anywhere else:

Austin Beerworks - Fire Eagle that was dry hopped with Warrior in the tanks and Amarillo in the firkin,
Karbach Brewing - Herkules Dry Hopped Hellfighter Imperial Porter
Southern Star Brewing - Centennial dry hopped Pine Belt.

And there will also be special pours of 15th Anniversary from Real Ale and Czar Imperial Stout from Avery Brewing.

In addition to great beer, there will be live music from the Brandon Matthew Band and bagpiping from Clif Wigington, Manager General of Texas Beer Fest (trust me, its worth going to the party just to see Cliff play the bagpipes). Representatives of Open The Taps will be onsite, tasty treats from Happier Desserts and Oh My Gogi food truck will be available and merchandise with the new logo and slogan for the 2012 Texas Beer Fest will be on sale.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

February Glass Nights at the Ginger Man

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

1st - Peroni
8th - Duvel Para Art Glasses
15nd - Independence
22nd - Karbach

The glasses are available starting at 6:00pm 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.

Monday, January 30, 2012

No Label Brewing Beer Dinner at Baker Street Pub

The Baker Street Pub & Grill out in Katy is hosting a Beer Dinner featuring No Label Brewing on Monday, February 20th. For the low cost of $35 per person, you'll receive a four course meal paired with beers from No Label and even get to try their new Jalapeno Ale. The menu hasn't been released yet, but you can make reservations by calling the Bakerstreet pub.

Tickets on Sale for the 2012 Texas Beer Festival

The 2012 Texas Beer Fest will take place on Saturday, April 28th and tickets are now on sale.  The current price is $17 for an entrance ticket (which will increase closer to the date of the event), a set of 12 food and beer tickets will cost you $12 and a special VIP upgrade package is available for $38.  See the Ticket Information page for additional information and buying instructions

This is the second year for the Texas Beer Fest which was held last year at the Humble Civic Center Arena (read a recap of the festival here).  About 1,500 attended the innaugural event, but many who didn't said it was because it was too far away (it was near the George Bush Intercontinental Airport people, not halfway to Dallas). Well, to appease those complaints, this year the festival is being held at Discovery Green in downtown Houston. Further details about participating breweries, food vendors, etc will be released in the coming weeks, but circle the date on your calendar or go ahead and buy your tickets now (and take advantage of discounted prices). The location couldn't be better and the weather should still be great for an outdoor event. If you want to have even more fun, offer to be a volunteer. Its a great way to meet people and become more involved in the craft beer community.

A pre-party is also taking place on Saturday, February 4th at 7:00pm at the Ginger Man. Special Texas beers will be on tap, live music from Brandon Mathews Band with special guest Brant Lee Croucher, food trucks and more.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

AHA Rally at Saint Arnold

Saint Arnold Brewing is hosting an American Homebrewers Association rally on Sunday, February 26th from 1pm ~ 3pm. Entrance to the event includes beer samples, brewery tour and a chance to win prices from the AHA and Saint Arnold.

Entrance is free for current AHA members and non-members can gain entrance by joining for a discounted rate at the door. Space is limited and you are asked to RSVP online if you plan to attend.

To learn more about the American Homebrewers Association and what a membership can do for you, see the Membership Benefits on their website.

Friday, January 27, 2012

A Celebration of Dark Beers at Petrol Station

In celebration of Stouts and Ports, the Petrol Station is once again hosting a "Once you go black, you never go back" celebration on Saturday, January 28th. So far, they've announced on their Facebook page the following beers will be available during the event:

Stone - 15 th anniversary double black ipa
Stone - IRS
Avery - Mephistopheles
Great Divide - Belgian Yeti
Flying Dog - Gonzo Imperial Porter
Rogue - Double Chocolate
Rahr - Barrel-aged Winter Warmer
Buffalo Bayou Brewing co - Imperial Gingerbread Stout

In addition to the above beers (and probably others that haven't been mentioned yet) there is also a special tapping of various cask-conditioned beers:

2pm - Independence Brewing - Convict Hill Oatmeal Stout
3pm - Saint Arnold - Whiskey-Aged Imperial Stout
4pm - Real Ale - 15th Anniversary Russian Imperial Stout
5pm - Clown Shoes - Vampire Slayer

If that's not enough beer for you, you can also join the special bottle share starting at 1:00pm. However, you need to bring a bottle of a rare dark beer to participate. For everyone else, the party begins at 2:00pm.

The results of the homebrew contest will also be announced during the event. The entries were narrowed down a few weeks ago to the following 7 finalists:

Brian Barran, Matt Foster, Kevin Butler, David Rogers, Lisa Norberg, Kyle Preston / Chris Keller and Allen Schneider.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Open The Taps Fundraiser at Southern Star Brewing

Open The Taps (a grassroots organization dedicated to changing Texas beer laws and regulations) is holding their first fundraiser of 2012 on Sunday, February 12th from 2pm ~ 5pm at Southern Star Brewing in Conroe.

Only 100 Tickets are being sold for the event which will be available for purchase online to current members of the Open The Tap organization starting on Friday, January 20th.  Any remaining tickets will then be released for sale to the general public over the weekend. Tickets are $30 each or 2 for $50 (when purchased together) which will get you the following:


• A brewery tour & tasting.
• Food from Coreanos Texas Food Truck.
• Music from local band Folk Family Revival.
• The chance to bid on special items from local breweries and businesses.
• 1 raffle ticket (additional raffle tickets will be for sale at the event - $2 per ticket or 3 for $5).

The proceeds from the event will help fund their mission to bring change to Texas craft beer laws in the 2013 legislative session.