I’m a fan of beer, but only good beer. To me, I will drink water over “beer” such as Corona or Bud Light because the water may just happen to have more flavor. When I drink beer, I ignore calories and carbs and enjoy the tastes and textures just as I do while drinking wine. One of the best experiences is trying out microbrewery beer. Texas has many microbrew and craft brewed beer offerings. Of them, these are three of my favorite Texas microbreweries:
Two Rows Brewpub, a Great Texas Microbrewery
Two Rows is a chain of two brew pubs with unique beer offerings at each restaurant, overseen by different brew-masters. There is a location in the Dallas/Fort Worth area as well as one in the Houston area. The Houston area Two Rows has some amazing beers of which I have had a chance to sample a number of. The Dark Star Lager is excellent and their Barleywine will knock you on your rear if you aren’t careful. I recommend trying the beer sampler to start with. It gives you a chance to sample a number of beers in small quantities before committing to pints. If you want to try larger quantities on a budget, both the Allen, TX and Houston, TX locations have some serious specials on the TwoRows brews in stock, including dollar pints on certain days or nights during the week.
Beer Availability: Variety of beer is always changing. Beer can only be bought in the store or through TwoRows catering service.
Locations: 711 Central Expressway, Allen, TX and 2400 University Ave, Houston, TX
Best Bet: TwoRows Barking Fish Porter, Dark Star Lager and Oatmeal Stout
Fredericksburg Brewing Company, for Delicious Microbrew Beer in Texas
Fredericksburg Brewing Company is the oldest brew pub in Texas, opening right after brewpubs became legal in 1994. They have won numerous awards for their beers, including a 2008 win for a Helles, or Bavarian lager. Nestled in the historic town of Fredericksburg, this microbrew pub in Texas is the perfect fit with this town settled by German immigrants. The facility has an actual “biergarten” as well as sleeping facilities. They offer Bed and Brew packages that include a 4 pack sampler of the Texas microbrew beer offerings the company makes as well as a full menu of delicious food.
Beer Availabilty: Varies depending on season. Beer can only be purchased through the brew pub. Public consumption is allowed in Fredericksburg so enjoying one of the microbrews while walking is allowed.
Location: 245 East Main Street, Fredericksburg, Tx
Real Ale Brewing Company, A Best Bet Microbrewery in Blanco, TX
My first taste of Real Ale was at my new favorite beer joint in Houston, the Petrol Station. I told the bartender to surprise me and he produced a glass of Real Ale’s “Real Heavy” for me to try. I was blown away by this scotch ale. The flavor was amazing and I could tell it was made nearby simply by the freshness of the beer. I asked about the brewery and was told that it makes the beginning of a three day weekend a treat and doing a Friday tour of the Real Ale brewery, followed by a weekend in the hill country was the best thing in the world. I’ve since had a few other offerings from the Real Ale brewing company since I can purchase their year-round offerings at local grocery and liquor stores. The Fireman’s #4 Blonde is an excellent summer beer, offering a lighter body and lower alcohol content yet still being very tasty, including a nice natural citrus note thanks to the hops.
Beer Availability: Seasonal and Year-round offerings. Bottles and Draft, some draft-only offerings. Available in select Houston, Austin, DFW and San Antonio locations.
Location: 231 San Saba Ct., Blanco, TX
Best Bets: Real Heavy, Fireman’s #4 Blonde Ale, Shade Grown Coffee Porter