Although the temperature is heating back up to the low-80s this week, it’s still the season for dark beers — and Austin brewpubs and breweries are responding with an array of porters, stouts, barrel-aged brews and beers with winter flavors.
Here are some of the local beers to look out for this month and the next, too.
Austin Beerworks Sputnik: The one-time cans of the seasonal beer might be long gone, but you can still find Austin Beerworks’ beloved Russian imperial oatmeal stout on draft at bars around town, including at the Brass Tap Domain.
Tonight at 7 p.m., the beer bar is offering Sputnik, Sputniko, Battle Axe and Pearl Snap as part of an Austin Beerworks tap takeover.
Zilker Brewing’s Elfie Sunshine: The Coffee Milk Stout is a mainstay of the East Austin brewery, but Zilker has been riffing on it with a couple of additions to the taproom menu, including a version of it on nitro and an imperial coffee milk stout with cocoa nibs called Elfie Sunshine.
In it, according to Zilker, “expect everything you love about the original: the caramelized sugar, the creamy texture, and of course the locally roasted coffee (thanks, Wild Gift Coffee), just more of it.”
Independence Brewing’s Illustrated Man Dark Sour: Although this beer won’t be ready for full-scale release in cans until next month, there will be a pilot brew version of it in the Independence taproom. The Illustrated Man is tart, with blackberries, raspberries and boysenberries adding extra flavor to the dark-hued ale.
Get a pour of it starting at 4 p.m. on Thursday.
Black Star Co-op Moebius: The brewpub put out a call to action at the end of last week, asking for customers to stop in and prevent a possible closure. A good time to be there is on Jan. 17, when the house beer Moebius is tapping as a Woodford Reserve Whiskey barrel-aged imperial stout.
According to Black Star, the rich and viscous “Moebius is a decadent beast of a beer” that clocks in at a robust 10 percent alcohol by volume. It taps at 5 p.m. next Tuesday.
Blue Owl Brewing’s Lord Admiral Gravitas: Remember Blue Owl’s Admiral Gravitas, a sour imperial oatmeal stout? This wood-aged version, which spent time in Balcones Brimstone barrels, takes the Admiral Gravitas up a boozy notch and has additional notes of oak, smoke and complexity.
The barrel-aged brew will only be found at the brewery taproom starting at 3 p.m. on Jan. 18, although the Admiral Gravitas is more widely available around town.
Uncle Billy’s Shakolad Chocolate Imperial Stout: This full-bodied stout full of cocoa nibs from Srsly Chocolate is Uncle Billy’s winter seasonal, and it certainly lives up to its name — Shakolad is Russian for ‘chocolate.’ The sweet addition has imbued the dark brew, at 9.5 percent ABV, with plum, dark cherry and cocoa characteristics and will have you yearning for those chilly winter temperatures again.
Red Horn Coffee House & Brewing Co.’s S.O.N. Double Stout with Coconut: The Son of Ninja series is just another example of the skill at the Cedar Park brewpub, which makes these rotating dark beers using an underutilized brewing technique called Parti Gyle.
This version is a double stout with a dash of lactose sugar to give it a smooth, sweet body. Don’t miss out on getting a pour of the 8 percent ABV brew because it won’t be around for long.
Pinthouse Pizza’s Fully Adrift Double IPA with Coffee: The beer might not be a seasonal porter or stout, but it’s got the coffee we like to have this time of year.
Stop into the Burnet Road brewpub on Jan. 21 for the second edition of the Pinthouse Pizza Fully Adrift Double IPA “Lost at Sea” series, which added a coffee infusion this go round. Starting at 11 a.m. that day, bottles of the beer will go on sale, and it’ll also be available on draft. Bottles are $14.99.