A pub crawl and a special dinner that pairs food with craft beer and cigars are new to the Brewmasters Craft Beer Festival Friday through Monday, Aug. 31-Sept. 3, in Galveston this year.
But for many serious beer fans, the new brews will again be the main attraction. Among those on the “Taste It First” menu that deserve your attention:
The third-annual Brewmasters festival at Moody Gardens kicks off with a Friday night pub crawl for $25 and continues Saturday with the Brew HaHa Grand Tasting, which costs $35 and promises to let you choose from more than 350 beers. The stops include Brews Brothers, Brickhouse Tavern and Molly’s. Along the way, you can meet brewers from Saint Arnold, Clown Shoes and Indian Wells.
This main tasting event starts at 3 p.m. Saturday.
But anyone especially interested in Fort Bend and other Texas breweries should consider the festival’s “Texas Brewery Tasting Tour,” which begins at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.
This meet-and-greet-style event debuted last year and offers an opportunity to sample beers and chat with folks from the breweries in a setting quieter and more intimate than the sprawling main hall. The $25 tasting is ticketed separately, but those with a serious interest in the area’s emerging craft scene will find it worth the expense.
Other featured breweries from the Houston area will include Saint Arnold, Katy’s No Label and Conroe’s Southern Star. Cedar Creek, a new Dallas-area brewery, Rahr & Sons of Fort Worth and the Hill Country’s Real Ale round out the eight participants from Texas. Highlights include a cask of Southern Star’s new imperial IPA, a sour ale from Real Ale and a first taste of this year’s version of No Label’s popular Black Wit-O.
The Brewmasters Festival has expanded along with the local craft-beer scene. Greater Houston now boasts five craft breweries with three more expected to open by early 2013.
As Chris Leonard, the brewer at Fort Bend Brewing, said recently, “My favorite beer is one I haven’t had yet.”
This weekend in Galveston, you can see if the same is true for