by Brad Pauly
on Monday, November 17th, 2014 at 10:00am.
Let's face it, we live in a great city. The Austin real estate market is booming, and over a hundred people decide to buy a home in Austin every day. When the weather cools down in ATX, one of the best places to find yourself is in a warm pub enjoying a perfectly brewed beer. If you missed Austin Beer Week (October 24-November 2, 2014), it’s not too late to get your beer fix! These Austin brewery tours are an awesome way to stay out of the cold while sampling some local brews.
Visit any bar in Austin and you’re bound to find selections from this local microbrewery named for our city’s area code. (512) uses local and organic ingredients to give their beers impeccable flavoring. Our seasonal recommendation: the (512) Pecan Porter. It is brewed with black and chocolate malts and locally grown pecans, making it a nice fit for chillier fall and winter days.
Adelbert’s Brewery 2314 Rutland Drive, #100 Tour dates: Fridays 5-8pm & Saturday 1-4pm Cost: $10-$13 No reservation necessary.
Relatively new to the Austin brewery scene, Adelbert’s specializes in old world Belgian-style ales. Adelbert’s even just released a Bière Brut called Sundowner, making them the first Texas brewery to produce this champagne-like beer that’s perfect for holiday meals and New Year’s Eve celebrations. Another bonus: they feature a rotation of on-site food trucks so you can enjoy amazing local food while sampling beer.
Austin Beerworks 3009 Industrial Terrace Tour dates: Tastings happen multiple times a week, just check the website. Cost: $10 for a pint glass and 3 fills. No reservation required.
Come for the beer, stay for the awesome atmosphere created by the quirky and colorful team. Characterized by the bold and clean taste of their product (not to mention the can’s design!), Austin Beerworks is committed to making sure their beers stand out. They’ll give you a friendly tour through the brewery and happily help you pick out a style that suits you best.
Jester King Brewery 3005 Fitzhugh Rd., Bldg. B Tour dates: 6pm on Fridays; 1pm, 3pm, and 5pm on Saturdays and Sundays Cost: Free. Beer available for purchase to drink there or to-go, but no obligation. No reservation required.
Located out west in the Hill Country, Jester King is a local beer you’re likely to hear about from beer nerds statewide. This farmhouse brewery is small but authentic--beers are made with native wild yeast and locally grown and malted grains. On top of being a great line of beer, the awesome artwork on the bottles’ labels basically make them collector’s items. Follow up your tour at Stanley’s Farmhouse Pizza, conveniently located next door.
Hops and Grain 507 Calles Street Tour dates: Wednesday-Friday at 5pm; Saturday at 1, 3 and 5pm. Cost: Free, but guests can buy beer canned or from tap. No reservation necessary.
Sustainability is key for Hops and Grain. That’s why they’re adamant about supporting local growers and producers while also packaging their beer in recyclable aluminum. Dog lovers will be pleased to know that the brewers also bake special dog treats from their spent brewing grains! Channel a cozy winter evening with the Porter Culture, featuring a perfect flavor panel of coffee, dark chocolate, and raisins.
Live Oak Brewing 3301 E 5th Street, #B Tour dates: Set on certain Saturdays, and require RSVP. Cost: $10 plus service fee. Reservation required, as spots fill up quickly.
Established in 1997, Live Oak is Austin’s oldest craft brewery. They derive their inspiration from German and Czech Republic brewing styles and can be found all over the state of Texas. The Oktoberfest is an obviously fitting choice for this time of year, but for another great seasonal option, try the Primus Weizenbock. This dark, malty beer features notes of chocolate, caramel, and toffee topped off by banana and vanilla flavors and aromas.
Thirsty Planet 11160 Circle Drive Tour dates: Each Saturday at 12, 1, and 2pm. Cost: Free with small tasting glass and three samples included. Guests can also pay $7 for a pint glass and three fills. Limited space; reservation required.
Thirsty Planet is another environmentally-conscious brewery, which is why it fits in perfectly in ATX. They irrigate their run-off water to feed their plants and plan to have solar panels installed on the roof. With their earth-friendly values and meticulously crafted beer, you’ll have nothing to feel guilty about when drinking Thirsty Planet. Try the full-bodied, toffee-noted Smittlefest for a genuine fall taste.
Have some time to kill and want to hit a few breweries in town? Check out Austin Brew Bus, which takes you to three breweries in one day, divided into North and West Austin locations.
Been on any of these brewery tours? Let us know what you thought in the comments!