When you think of Texas what comes to mind? Cowboys? Tumbleweeds? Bar-b-que? You probably don’t think of beer unless you are reminiscing about Lone Star. Well, it turns out Texas has an emerging craft beer market which just so happens to go well with the aforementioned bar-b-que.
After our down time in New Mexico we headed to our favorite Texas city of Austin. The home of the Texas Longhorns and the capital of Texas. On our last trip to Austin we were able to try quite of few brews but not at the actual brewery. Maria and I spent a lot of time at The Ginger Man tap house (A must visit), but this time we were ready to see what brew pubs and breweries we could find.
Our first stop was Uncle Billy’s Brew & Que where it’s all done with “smoke and beers”. The great thing about Austin is all the outdoor seating and Billy’s featured a great picnic type environment on their patio. Maria refuses to eat BBQ anywhere other than Kansas, Texas, and the Carolina’s (which we have yet to visit) so she was really excited to finally sink her teeth into some smoked meat. Along with our meat tray we sampled some beers and I settled on the Double IPA while Maria went with a seasonal Black Ale. The beers were good and meat was great, coupled with the vibe at the place and location we would say this is a must visit when you come to Austin.
After BBQ we roamed our way downtown to see what we would stumble across. After crossing the river we came across Frank Hot Dogs | Cold Beer which is a hotdog lover’s dream that had a nice bottle selection to go with their Austin Beer Works taps. (Not to mention stellar design from a local design group Helms Design-also responsible for Austin Beer Works and a few other craft beer brands) We grabbed a beer and a tried the Frankencookie which the menu describes as a “Warm house made chocolate chip, pecan, walnut, cranberry and bacon cookie with scoop of Amy’s coffee ice cream and candied bacon crumbles”. Yes please! It was definitely as good as it sounds.
If you’ve been to Austin before you know 6th street is where the action is at. Although it is known more as one big shot-filled frat party lined with all the clubs and bass you can handle there are a few excellent craft beer spots including, Lovejoy’s, an excellent tiny brewpub that certainly doesn’t fit the 6th street mold. It is a punk/rock venue that essentially brews in a closet and makes some great beers. It’s actually very reminiscent of a fantastic Lawrence, KS spot, The Replay, which is part of it’s appeal to us and is the official spot for the local Hash House Harriers, which fellow hashing friends, Lycktonite and ExCeSs were very pleased to discover. I had a AJ Porter that was delicious.
Earlier in the night we were informed that the first Saturday of every month Independence Brewing holds a free beer event at it’s brewery and it just happened to be the next day. So we drove Stanley out to check it out and were stunned to see a line wrapping around the block. Maria wrote about our time at Independence Brewery earlier in the week, so you can check it out as to not repeat ourselves with how much fun we had that day. Because if there is one thing we absolutely love, it’s drinking beer outside with other craft beer friends. Free beer, well now that’s even nicer!
The rest of our week has been spent eating our way through Austin. There are food trucks everywhere and it really is a foodie’s dream land. From BBQ to Torchy’s Tacos, Flip Happy Crepes, Fried Avocados and Homeslice Pizza we are enjoying it all!
Over the next week/end we have plans to visit at least 6 more breweries in Austin, Saint Arnold’s in Houston and Spoetzl in Shiner, so stay tuned.
To read about our first time in Austin, unattending SXSW, check out our previous site TrippinWithStanley, where we cover all sorts of our RV (“pre-roamingpint”) shenanigans.