Thursday, April 18, 2024

Vector, Pro Brew Supply/Southern Roots honored with 2024 'Crushie' awards

Image credits: Craft Beer Marketing Awards, Vector Brewing, Pro Brew Supply/Southern Roots Brewing Co.

Pro Brew Supply of Haltom City with Southern Roots Brewing Co. of Waco (and Waxahachie), and Vector Brewing of Dallas and were honored today for their marketing efforts at the 2024 Craft Beer Marketing Awards (CBMA).

Known more familiarly as "The Crushies," the CBMAs debuted in 2020. The aim of the event is to "recognize the pinnacle of craft beverage marketing and the brilliant teams and individuals who create them." This is accomplished by way of judging over 40 categories covering branding, label design, logos, packaging and more.

Contestants compete both regionally and internationally, with Platinum and Gold Crushies going to regional winners, and a Global Crushie signifying the international achievement.

Local winners are summarized below. For more on the 2024 Crushies, click here to visit the official competition website.

Pro Brew Supply, Haltom City with Southern Roots Brewing Co. of Waco
  • Platinum Crushie for Expanding Possibilities Dry Hopped Saison in the Best Fun & Feel-Good Branding / Cause-Related Product or Campaign: Craft Beer category. This collaboration beer was brewed to support American Foundation for the Blind (AFB).
Vector Brewing, Dallas - Craig Bradley, Creative Director
  • Global Crushie for Anchovy Pail Ale in the Best Can Label Design (16-32oz): Craft Beer category.

Cheers and congrats to Pro Brew Supply with Southern Roots, and Vector Brewing!

Monday, April 8, 2024

Funky Picnic closing brewpub in Fort Worth

A pour of Funny Accent, a spot-on ESB offered by Funky Picnic ( © Brian Brown/Beer in Big D).

Fort Worth will be a little less funky come the end of the month, as Funky Picnic Brewery & Café has announced it will close after nearly 5 years in business.

Founded by Samantha Glenn, Collin Zreet, Jenni Hanley and John Koch, Funky Picnic opened in June 2019. This, after the team spent a number of years building its brand by way of local homebrew competitions.

In terms of approach, Funky Picnic took the idea of being a true brewpub to heart, with its beer and food offerings getting equal billing. Everyday pairings were further enhanced by the fact that the business was the only one of its kind in the area with an Advanced Cicerone on staff (Zreet). And, while beer recipes were ever-rotating in line with consumer expectations, one could always count on a reliable pour in the form of Funny Accent, a spot-on stylistic ESB.

According to a social media post, difficulties with rising costs and other economic factors influenced the decision to close.

"Over the past year and a half...we have seen rising operating and material costs from inflation while consumer habits have shrunk back on their spending due to the current economy, leading us to sales now lower than what we saw in both 2023 and 2022. We have put everything we have (money, emotions, time) into keeping these doors open, but it no longer makes viable sense."

Funky Picnic will remain open until its final service on Saturday, April 27.

Friday, March 29, 2024

Rollertown breaks ground on new Frisco HQ

Logo courtesy of Rollertown Beerworks. Insets © Brian Brown/Beer in Big D (click to enlarge).

Officially kicking off a project first announced in November 2022, Rollertown Beerworks of Celina broke ground today on what will become the company's new headquarters in Downtown Frisco.

The principals at Rollertown include Jonathan Rogers, co-founder and CEO, along with Ben Rogers and Jeff "Skin" Wade, co-founders and hosts of The Ben & Skin Show on 97.1 The Freak. They were joined at the event by Frisco city leaders and a list of sports and entertainment celebrities who also happen to be Rollertown investors:

Dirk Nowitzki, formerly of the Dallas Mavericks.
Travis Frederick, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys.
Torii Hunter, formerly of the Minnesota Twins.
Matt Kemp, formerly of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Dude Perfect, Frisco-based Sports and Comedy Group.

As for Rollertown's future home, it will be built on 2.9-acre tract at the northeast corner of Main St. and John Elliot Parkway. Buildings will be designed with an industrial look meant to play off their proximity to the BNSF railroad, while also paying homage to mills that once occupied the land.

Exterior views of the brewhouse, taproom and event lawn (Rollertown Beerworks, City of Frisco, PGAL).

Among the features are over 6,350 square feet of air-conditioned indoor hospitality space, including a two-level taproom with large porches and multiple bars, a 4,320 square foot outdoor beer garden, a 25,200 square foot great lawn connecting Frisco’s historic grain silos to the taproom’s porches (fronted by an 800 square foot performance stage), and a 15,000 square foot production hall featuring three different sized brewhouses (30-bbl, 7-bbl, 1-bbl).

"We are absolutely thrilled to be planting our flag in what is consistently recognized as one of the finest cities in the country," says Jonathan Rogers. "To join the family of companies based in Frisco that includes the Dallas Cowboys, the Dallas Stars, the Frisco Roughriders, the PGA of America, and Keurig Dr Pepper among many others is a true honor.”

Interior views of the two-story taproom (Rollertown Beerworks, City of Frisco, PGAL).

Rollertown Frisco will be equidistant from Toyota Stadium and Frisco’s Historic Downtown. This family and dog-friendly venue is meant to be a cornerstone of Frisco’s Downtown development plans and a beacon of community engagement.

“We’ve been brainstorming for years about how to find the best project for the silo tract to incorporate into our plans to redevelop historic downtown,” says Mayor Jeff Cheney. “We believe Rollertown Beerworks fulfills our vision to bring destination entertainment to the heart of our city. Research shows our residents want live music, brewery experiences, and historic downtown settings – all while being family friendly. Rollertown delivers."

Look for Rollertown Frisco to open in the summer of 2025.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Total solar eclipse brews and views at NTX bars and breweries

Image by kjpargeter on Freepik.

Unless you've been living under a rock of galactic proportions, you know a cosmic event of some significance is coming up on the calendar. A total solar eclipse is set to occur on Monday, April 8, with much of North Texas positioned in the path of totality.

Naturally, watch parties will be taking place at breweries and other craft beer-centric locales across the region. Most, but not all, events will have solar glasses on hand for attendees (quantities may be limited), while some will even be serving up special beers to mark the occasion. And, judging by a beer name appearing more than once, a certain song by Soundgarden is sure to be spinning at solar soirees around town.

In addition, those raising a "Toast to Totality" can pick up commemorative merchandise from the Texas Craft Brewers Guild. Click here to view exclusive items designed by DeuxSouth Creative of San Antonio.

As for all the happenings going down in D-FW, check the listings and links below for details. Note, tickets are required for some events.

The brews:
  • Black Hole Sun Blackberry Berliner Weisse - 3 Nations Brewing Co.
  • Black Hole Sun Black Lager - 903 Brewers (available now).
  • Black Hole Sun Black Pilsner - Three Empires Brewing Co.
  • Brownie Totality Coffee Milk Stout - On Rotation (releases April 6).
  • Darker Shade of Ellum - Westlake Brewing Co.
  • Day Ruiner Barrel-Aged Blonde Barleywine - Martin House Brewing Co. (releases April 5).
  • In the Path of Totality Hazy IPA with Eclipse Hops - Celestial Beerworks.
  • Maximum Totality Cascadian Dark Ale - Autonomous Society Brewpub (releases April 5).
  • Moon Pie Full Grown Man - Tupps Brewery.
  • Path of Totality Stout Aged on Hazelnut, Coconut and Vanilla - 903 Brewers (available now).
  • Sunburst Wheat - Lakewood Brewing Co. (available now).
  • Total Eclipse of the Hops IPA - Intrinsic Smokehouse & Brewery.
  • Totality Black IPA - Railport Brewing Co. & Southern Roots Brewing Co.
  • Umbral Shadow Golden Stout with Pistachios, Marshmallows, Chocolate, Coffee and Vanilla - Keyworth Brewing Co. (releases April 5).
  • Umbraphile Golden Stout with Coffee, Vanilla and Chocolate - Division Brewing (available now).
  • Yellow Haze of the Sun Hazy Pale Ale - Odd Muse Brewing Co.

The views: