Navigating beer festivals can be daunting. With dozens of brewers slinging styles from every corner of the beer world, it’s easy to get lost. Austin Beer Week, a nine-day celebration of all things local and boozy, is no exception.
Fortunately, you don’t have to be an expert to have fun during this event. Whether you’re new to Austin’s beer scene or a certified cicerone, there’s plenty to do and see during local beer’s biggest week.
For Craft Beer Newbies
Tried your first Fireman’s 4 last week and now you’re looking to learn more? Here are some Austin Beer Week events that’ll get you on the fast track to beer appreciation. You’ll be searching for firkins in no time!
Oct. 23 @ 5 p.m. – Austin’ish Tap Wall at Red Horn – Live up north and can’t get to the big Craft Pride kick off? Cedar Park’s newest beer bar is having a shindig of their own. Offering variety, local flavor and a rep from Circle Brewing on hand to answer questions, Red Horn’s kick off will be a fantastic introduction to craft beer.
Oct. 24 @ TBD – NXNW Tailgate at the Beerliner – Local brewpub NXNW is bringing their accessible, easy drinking brews to a UT tailgate. They’ll even be tapping a cask of their Sunbreak IPA with experimental hops for the more daring beer newbies. Trying craft beer while hooking horns? The best of both worlds.
Oct. 29 @ 7 p.m. – (512) Tap Takeover at Hopfields – A combination of classic (512) beers and special creations, this event will give attendees a bit of everything. Hopfields‘ rock solid food menu doesn’t hurt either.
For Everyday Enthusiasts
You’ve done the brewery tours, started buying bombers and have graduated to the craft beer section of your local H.E.B. It’s time to take your knowledge up a notch with some events perfect for the everyday craft beer fan.
Oct. 25 @ p.m. – Guided Flight by the Founder at Hops and Grain – Josh Hare, founder and head beer geek at Hops and Grain, will be dropping knowledge via a flight of four barrel-aged beers. Combine that with food pairings supplied by Micklethwait Craft Meats, and you have a tasty way of learning more about flavor, aroma and texture. Reservation required. All tickets come with a commemorative glass.
Oct. 26 @ 6 p.m. – Metal Monday at Craft Pride – Rock out with Real Ale as they take over Craft Pride’s tap wall with ten varieties of the exceptional Mysterium Verum series. If you’ve never tried an MV beer, this is a must-attend. Metal blaring in the background and a rock-related movie playing on the patio makes the event even more badass.
Nov. 1 @ all day – Recooping with Agent Cooper at Black Star Co-op – Recover from your Halloween weekend with “hair of the dog” at Black Star Co-op. Not only will they be screening a Twin Peaks marathon, but they’ll be tapping Agent Cooper, a cask-conditioned cherry porter.
For the Experts
If you’ve hosted a bottle share, cellared a stout or learned the mysterious complexities of brettanomyces yeast, congrats. You’re a certified beer geek! Whether you’re hunting for rare beer whales or looking for special events to tantalize your palate, these events are guaranteed to satisfy.
Oct. 23 @ 5 p.m. – (512) 2015 WBADPP Release Party at Craft Pride – Austin beer geeks know the abbreviation by heart. The whiskey aged version of the immensely popular 512 Pecan Porter is a must-try, and Craft Pride will be the first place in town to tap it. Plus, you’ll be first in line for the big opening shindig. Best of both worlds!
Oct. 25 @ 3 p.m. – Sour Mash Home Brew Class at Blue Owl – What do you do once you’ve tried every beer under the sun? Make your own! Not only will you get hands-on experience working with sour mash, you’ll be visiting one of Austin’s newest breweries. Pro tip: If they’re serving it, try the Professor Black. It’s exceptional. Tickets here.
Oct. 27 @ 5 p.m. – Hops and Grain Beer Pairing Dinner at Hi Hat – When it comes to combining gourmet comfort food with an exceptional beer list, few do it better than Hi Hat. This five-course dinner paired with some of Hops and Grain’s finest brews is any foodie’s dream. Beef cheek sauerbraten never sounded so good. Reservations required. Call Hi Hat directly to reserve a spot.
Oct. 29 @ 7 p.m. – The Funk n’ Sour Fest at Jester King – Pair the reigning king of ATX sours with a curated selection of artisan food stuffs, and you have an event for the ages.
Oct. 30 @ 6 p.m. – Jester King 2015 Estival Dichotomous Cask Night at Billy’s on Burnet – When the reigning king of ATX sours and farmhouse ales does a tapping, beer geeks come running. Fruit forward with big melon notes, this saison will be a treat to try, especially on cask.
If you’re into beer, you need to be here. These events are fun for brew fans of every experience level. Cheers!
Oct. 23 @ 6 p.m. – Austin Beer Week Official Opening Party at Craft Pride – The launching pad for a week of boozy, beer-soaked fun, Craft Pride’s official opening party is going to be one for the ages. While details are sketchy as of this writing, I know it’ll be an amazing time.
Oct. 24 @ 1 p.m. – Draught House’s 47th Anniversary Party – One of the best beer parties of the year, the elder statesman of Austin beer bars promises to celebrate in style. This year’s event will feature a pig roast and lobster rolls to go along with a tap wall full of special guest taps.
Oct. 24 @ all day – Fermentation Fest at The ABGB – Celebrate all things fermented during this day-long beer bash. In additional to some special pours, The ABGB will be roasting pigs, serving brats and playing polka. They’ll also have their annual “Halfte-Masskrugstemmen,” a contest of who can hold a 1/2 liter of beer at shoulder level the longest. Prost!
The full list of Austin Beer Week events is still being finalized as of this writing. The complete list and calendar with updates is available at austinbeerweek.com.
@BillTuckerTSP wants to know:
What event will you be attending during Austin Beer Week 2015?