One of the biggest weeks of the year for Austin beer lovers has finally arrived, with beer dinners, tap takeovers and all-around sudsy revelry in store through Nov. 1. And it’s going to be another doozy.
As the packed schedule for Austin Beer Week suggests — it’s available in full here — you’re in store for some careful planning so that you don’t miss any of your must-attend events. They all sound so good, don’t they? If you’re having trouble deciding what’s worth it and what can be skipped, consider this post your guide to the boozy week ahead.
Friday, Oct. 23
Austin Beer Week’s Kickoff Party at Craft Pride. Look, there’s just no other way to welcome your liver to the 6th Annual Austin Beer Week. Rainey Street’s Texas-focused beer bar will have a variety of special beers, including last year’s Saint Arnold Pumpkinator, Buffalo Bayou Pumpkin Spice Latte and (512) Whiskey Barrel-Aged Double Pecan Porter. The festivities start at 6 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 24
UPDATE: This event has been moved to Nov. 14. (512) Brewing’s 7th Anniversary Party. Although Draught House’s 47th anniversary celebration has been rescheduled for Nov. 7, (512) Brewing isn’t letting the threat of a promised deluge steal their anniversary thunder. Good thing, too, with all those firkins, barrel-aged brews and other goodies promised.
The ABGB’s Fermentation Fest Drei. So far this celebration of all things fermentable — which will include a beer, cheese and chocolate tasting; a stein lift contest; lots of live music and pig roasts; and other fun activties — hasn’t gotten washed out yet. Fingers crossed it stays that way.
4th Tap’s Launch at Black Star Co-op. Austin, meet our latest brewery co-op. The other brewery co-op in town (OK, it’s technically a brewpub) is hosting them and their flagships, including a tamarind wheat ale, a grapefruit IPA and a sorghum-based gruit, so come and toast their arrival. Black Star will have free glassware, deals on taster flights and more.
Everything East at Hi Hat Public House. Only beers from East Austin, where this beer bar is located, are being highlighted at this event. Which is not to say other parts of town aren’t cool, but they don’t have Zilker Brewing, Hops & Grain, Austin Eastsiders, Live Oak Brewing or Blue Owl Brewing, do they?
Sunday, Oct. 25
Decktoberfest at Red Horn Coffee House & Brewpub. Celebrate Red Horn’s new outdoor deck with Oktoberfest beers, like Thirsty Planet Smittlefest and Hops & Grain’s O-Fest, in what may well be the last chance to have them.
Odell Beer Dinner at Hopfields. The beers should be enough to lure you to this six-course feast, which promises the likes of Piña Agria, Brazzle and the Fernet Porter, but the food menu looks pretty delicious, too. Call (512) 537-0467 to reserve. $85.
Monday, Oct. 26
Metal Monday with Real Ale Brewing at Craft Pride. Having 10 Mysterium Verum offerings from Real Ale being tapped during a night of metal music over the loudspeakers is definitely cause for exuberant dancing, but please, no moshing.
Tuesday, Oct. 27
Star Bar’s Big Beer Event. 2014 Epic Big Bad Baptist, Avery The Beast, Mikkeller 2014 Black Hole and many more where those came from. Star Bar isn’t kidding about big beers, folks.
Austin Beerworks Restaurant Crawl. ELM eateries Italic and Arro, within walking distance of each other, are teaming up for this restaurant crawl. You’ll enjoy a couple of Austin Beerworks beer and food pairings at each place, and the cost includes a custom T-shirt. $25.
Wednesday, Oct. 28
Beer Panel: The Future of Craft Beer. Chip McElroy of Live Oak Brewing, Rhett Keisler of Revolver Brewing and Anna Kilker of Guadalupe Brewing will talk about the future of the industry at this Craft Pride discussion you’ll want to hear — with a beer in hand, of course.
Alamo Drafthouse Rolling Roadshow at Independence Brewing. “The Pineapple Express” paired with Independence’s limited release Hop Brownie sounds like a match made in high heaven. Other beers on hand include a couple of taproom exclusives. $14.18.
Thursday, Oct. 29
Jester King’s Funk ‘n Sour Fest. This tart tradition pairs up local or regional restaurants with beer, wine and cider producers from around the world, such as Contigo with Blue Owl Brewing and Lenoir with La Cruz de Comal Wines. This year, try as many of the pairings as you like. $85.
Friday, Oct. 30
New Belgium Beer Class at School House Pub. How does New Belgium’s Le Terroir always come out tasting so good? Find out at this educational tasting. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot.
Hans-A-Thon Jr. at the Brew & Brew. Real Ale Hans Pils in a cask, in cans and on draft. Are you ready?
Devil’s Night Pub Crawl with Austin Homebrew. This 6-hour crawl to some of Austin’s landmark pubs, including the Ginger Man, Flying Saucer and Scholz Garten, will conclude with a visit to the House of Torment, but hey, it also includes a free shirt, lots of beer and a space on Austin Homebrew’s party bus, making your terror totally worth it, right? $35.
Circle Brewing’s Pre-Halloween Party. Two special casks will be pouring in addition to Circle’s 4 year round brews, 2 seasonals and 3 nitro beers. It’s time to drink with zombies, witches and pirates, oh my.
Saturday, Oct. 31
Blue Owl-O-Ween Pre-Party. Blue Owl’s brewmaster, Jeff Young, will be in costume while giving you a brewery tour, and that alone might be worth it. But the brewery will also have their easy-drinking sour-mashed beers pouring and a couple of Halloween surprises in store. $20.
Halloween Cask-O-Lanterns at Black Star Co-op. Crotchety Dockhand, Black Star’s chocolatey coffee porter, is being served from the heads of jack-o-lanterns.
Hops & Grain’s 3rd Annual Halloween Party. For many Austin beer lovers, it just isn’t Halloween without Hops & Grain. Come decked out in your costume and enjoy up to four pours of Hops & Grain beer in a souvenir glass. There will be a live DJ and food from Kick Drum Burgers. $16.73.
Independence Metal Mayhem Show. You’re pretty much getting exactly that — lots of metal, lots of mayhem — at Independence’s live music-focused Halloween bash, which features the shrieking stylings of Independence brewer Oscar Martinez’ metal band, Manifest Insanity. The brewery’s seasonal, Reaper Madness Black IPA, will be pouring in abundance. $5.
Sunday, Nov. 1.
Austin Beer Guide’s #CraftSlacker Bike Pub Crawl. Wind down from the beer-heavy week with this bike ride to some favorite Austin beer haunts, including the Draught House, Black Star Co-op and Billy’s on Burnet.
The details on all of these events are at austinbeerweek.com.