Blistering heat AND a torrential downpour couldn’t stop the fun at the 2013 Texas Craft Brewers Festival Saturday, as more than 35 breweries brought out roughly 130 different beers to share with thirsty festival goers.
That number was up a whopping 40 percent from 2012 when 28 breweries were in attendance at Fiesta Gardens for the event.
Some of the Lonestar state’s most buzzed about brews were in the mix at the fest this year, including (512) Whiskey Barrel Double Pecan Porter, Jester King Atrial Rubicite, Lakewood Temptress and Saint Arnold Pumpkinator. But it was also a great opportunity to experience offerings from new breweries, like Cycler’s Brewing from the Houston area.
For some, the festival was a chance for big debuts, and we as attendees were certainly not disappointed. A sample pour of Austin Beerworks‘ newest release in its Heavy Machinery series, a Wet Hop IPA, was especially satiating during the interlude of extreme heat and humidity before the rains came. Although, it’s no surprise that the beer was excellent, considering Beerworks flew in the fresh hops straight from Oregon the day they were picked from the vine.
Hops & Grain brought out a slew of quality suds, including their new Volumes of Funk Barrel-aged Barleywine, which at 10.2 percent ABV, was certainly a morning pick-me-up. But the main event came at 4 p.m. when they tapped their new Greenhouse Baltic Porter dubbed La Tortuga. The brew was tapped right as the skies opened up, but the more
alcohol dependent intrepid attendees braved the rains and stayed in line while others huddled under the pavilion.
Other standout brews from the day included Ranger Creek‘s Bourbon Barrel-aged Southtown IPA, Buffalo Bayou‘s Watermelon Wit, Liveoak‘s Dunkelweizen, and Karbach‘s Cherries of Fire Bourbon Barrel-aged Imperial Porter with Cherries.
Check out the photo gallery below for some of our favorite moments from the festival. Bonus points if you can decipher between pre-rain sweat and post-rain dampness.