Guest article by James Lipari
With the new year approaching, I asked several Austin breweries to gaze into their crystal balls (or planning software, whatever), and tell us what magical things we can expect in 2020. Here’s the inside scoop on what they told us.
St Elmo Brewing Company
One of my favorite bottle releases of last year was Barrel Aged Bottle Month in February, and St Elmo is going to do it again in 2020!
Although the exact list hasn’t been released, my favorites last year included a Rye Whiskey Barrel Aged Imperial Stout named Rye Fieri and a Balcones Rum Barrel Aged Coffee Cream Ale named El Duderino. See what they did there? Similar flavors to a White Russian, preferred drink of The Dude…have you even seen The Big Lebowski? Seriously?
440 E. St. Elmo Road G-2 – Website
➡️ Keep reading: St Elmo Brewing Co: Newest Beer Lover’s Hotspot in South Austin
Special bottle releases is something Lazarus Brewing does on a regular basis, putting out beautiful bottles of beautiful beer. This will increase in 2020 now that the Cool Store renovation has been completed. The pretty barrels in there will become pretty beers for us to enjoy in the coming year.
Look for the Revelations in Oak series of super small-batch brews that get their names from books in the Bible.
1902 E. 6th St. – Website
Blue Owl Brewing
The great little brewery that takes classic styles and sours them, creating unique, tasty treats, is doing what a lot of breweries are starting to do. Blue Owl Brewing is releasing a Mexican lager…but it’s gonna be sour! Nobody is doing that.
That’s right, we can expect a sour Mexican lager with lime and sea salt named Viva Lima this spring. We can also look forward to Dayum! Wild which will be part of the Wild Blue Owl series. This will be a sour red ale with Montmorency cherries. Look for it in January 2020.
2400 E. Cesar Chavez St. #300 – Website
➡️ Keep reading: Blue Owl Brewing Pours Fresh Take on Austin’s Beer Scene
In 2020, Whitestone Brewery will continue rolling through its “Beyond the Blonde” series.
The series takes the Long Gone Blonde and creates several different infusions, including a Coffee Blonde, Holiday Spiced Blonde, Pomegranate, Blueberry and Cherry, and a dry hopped Blonde. Wow, that’s a lot of blondes!
Each infusion has limited supply and is only available in the taproom.
601 E. Whitestone Blvd. #500, Cedar Park, TX – Website
➡️ Keep reading: Whitestone Brewery Crafts Quality Beer in Cedar Park, TX
The team at Nomadic Beerworks is always rotating tap offerings, and always has something interesting. Nomadic released a new beer every couple of weeks in 2019 and has no plans of slowing down.
A couple releases on the horizon are a Tart Cherry Sour and a Pineapple Coconut Milkshake IPA. Think piña colada, but don’t think about that horrible song because you’ll never get it out of your head.
Better to think about is the collaboration Nomadic Beerworks has planned with Central District Brewing called “New Kids on the Block.” It’ll be a variation on the California Common style, which they’re calling a rustic amber lager.
3804 Woodbury Dr. Suite A – Website
The Brewtorium Brewery & Kitchen
The fine folks at The Brewtorium are brewing an over-the-top Triple IPA to celebrate their 100th batch, and we can expect to enjoy it sometime in February 2020.
The Brewtorium will also be bringing back its Tiny Boombox, which is a Mango Pink Guava Passionfruit Sour. There are beers aging in barrels, as well, that will release throughout 2020.
6015 Dillard Circle A – Website
I’m very much looking forward to the opening of the Celis outdoor music venue. Although this development has had its share of delays, we should be able to enjoy some live music along with the beers sometime in 2020. The crystal ball is still partly cloudy on this one.
10001 Metric Blvd. – Website
➡️ Keep reading: Celis Brewery: Austin’s First Craft Brewery Reborn
Last Stand Brewing Company
South Austinites should be happy to know they’ll soon have the new Last Stand Brewing location right on South Congress. The rest of us will have to drive, and I definitely will.
The central location will have a fully functioning brewhouse and kitchen, as well as a coffee program for pre-beer hours (full disclosure: I didn’t know there was such a thing as “pre-beer hours”). Last Stand is still in the permitting phase, but definitely plans to be open in 2020.
7601 South Congress Ave. Building 6 – Website
St Elmo Brewing Company
Who doesn’t love a good crawfish boil? You can satisfy that craving at St Elmo this March, right at the beginning of the crawfish season.
The Tour de Carl will happen again in April 2020. As described on Facebook, this bike ride “is a casual ride through Austin with stops at some of our favorite spots to drink our beloved Carl.” I don’t know how I missed this last year!
Another blast will be had at the Cinco de Mayo party, when St Elmo will release a Mexican lager. I probably don’t have to tell you what day that will be on.
➡️ Keep reading: St Elmo Brewing Hosts Free Bluegrass Music Every Week
Coming in 2020, Lazarus plans to expand its Music For Listeners program during SXSW. Last year, 30 bands from all over the world performed over the course of four days. This year, Lazarus is adding an extra day (so even more bands!) And the music is still free.
The brewery’s third anniversary party will be Jan. 11, 2020, and they’ll be pulling out all sorts of things they’ve been saving. Maybe put that date on your calendar, and I’ll see you there.
Also, word on the street is Lazarus may be opening a second location. As soon as I have something to tell, you can believe you’ll hear it here! In the meantime, spread the rumor, why don’t you?
Our friends up in Cedar Park have several parties planned for 2020, including a fourth anniversary party in January, a big St. Patrick’s Day shenanigan shindig, and a Fourth of July celebration. All will include special beers, live music, and fun for the whole crew.
Is it too early to be talking about Oktoberfest? Not at all! Whitestone will be throwing down its Bavarian bash in late September.
While working on the details for a second anniversary party this spring, The Brewtorium is introducing new regular events like a Swingin’ Sunday series with live music and all-day happy hour on Wednesdays in 2020.
The Brewtorium will also have a barrel release party for its Whiskey Barrel Aged Disco Baltic Porter later this winter. I bet that’ll make you wanna dance.
With so many fun things awaiting us in the Austin beer scene in 2020, you’ll find plenty of reasons to drink local! Maybe even hop on the ATX Beer Bus with me? Do it!
@theAustinot wants to know:
What’s your favorite local brew?
James Lipari is a Certified Cicerone®, avid homebrewer, and lover of all things beer. You can find him in brewery taprooms and beer bars around Austin, and across the country.