Saturday, March 30, 2019

Four North Texas breweries earn medals at 2019 Aro Rojo

Image credit: Competencia Internacional de Cerveza Aro Rojo.

Four area breweries and a local gypsy brewer have been recognized south of the border at the 2019 Aro Rojo International Beer Competition.

Held March 26-28 in Tampico, Mexico, the Aro Rojo event aims to be an international platform for recognition of beers from around the world. In addition to those sent in from the competition's home country of Mexico, beers were submitted from South and Central America, South Korea and the United States. Entries were evaluated according to the 2015 Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) Style Guidelines.

As for North Texas, a total of five medals were awarded to local breweries, with an additional medal of note bestowed upon a beer Dallas-based BlackMan Brewing created in collaboration with Costa Rican brewer Treintaycinco - Fabrica de Cervezas. Each of these honorees is listed below, while a complete list of winners may be found by clicking here (image at link expands to a slideshow).

Bankhead Brewing Co., Rowlett
  • Silver for Whoopee! in the Czech Premium Pale Lager category.
  • Bronze for Devil Wagon in the Munich Helles category.
  • Silver for Smoking Lit in the Historical Beer: Lichtenhainer category.
Cowtown Brewing Co., Fort Worth
  • Silver for Everybody's Doing It in the American IPA category.
HopFusion Ale Works, Fort Worth
  • Gold for Coco Anejo in the Winter Seasonal Beer category.
  • Bronze for Friday IPA in the American IPA category.

Cheers and congratulations to all!

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Noble Rey closing Dallas brewery and taproom

Image credit: Noble Rey Brewing Co.

Following a late December bankruptcy filing aimed at restructuring its debt, Noble Rey Brewing Co. has announced it will close both of its Dallas locations as of April 1.

Noble Rey debuted on the local scene nearly four years ago, opening a production facility on Farrington St. in July 2015. The company then went on the become the first area brewery to open a satellite taproom, after establishing a presence in the Dallas Farmers Market in November 2016.

More recently, Noble Rey had begun marketing its brand to European markets via a partnership formed with Neodif of France in January 2018. Through that arrangement, recipes for Vertigo Double IPA and Sex in a Canoe American Light Lager were licensed for production and distribution overseas.

According to a press release, the business is being sold to new ownership by way of the bankruptcy court, with the buyers expected to take over by mid-April.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

False Idol now brewing under license at Oak Cliff

Image credit: False Idol Brewing.

False Idol Brewing will introduce its brand to the North Texas market this week, after entering into an agreement to have its products brewed under license at Oak Cliff Brewing Co. of Dallas.

According to founder Dominique Van Ausdall, the decision to license the brand was was made to get False Idol beers into the glasses of consumers sooner rather than later. And, while beers will be brewed at Oak Cliff for the time being, all recipe formulation will be handled by the team behind False Idol.

This approach is meant to be short term while details are being squared away on the company's facility at 7924 Maplewood Ave. in North Richland Hills. Progress is being made, though, as a TTB permit is already in hand and equipment has been secured from recently-closed Good Neighbor Brews of Wylie.

As for False Idol's first offering, the group will debut with Side Hustlin' New England IPA. The beer is set to premier this Friday, March 15, during at event at Oak Cliff's taproom in Tyler Station. From there, kegs from a full-size, 30-barrel batch will be distributed to select growler shops around the Metroplex.

Further out, False Idol also expects to have beer available on tap during LUCKapalooza V, the annual music and beer celebration hosted by LUCK. Those festivities take place on April 14 at Trinity Groves in Dallas.

Deep Ellum launches Oklahoma distribution

Image credit: Deep Ellum Brewing Co.

Making its first foray outside the State of Texas, Deep Ellum Brewing Co. of Dallas has announced it will begin shipping products to Oklahoma.

Set to occur this month, Deep Ellum's expansion into the Sooner State is made possible by new partnerships with Capital Distributing of Oklahoma City and LDF Sales & Distributing of Tulsa.

“We are extremely excited to be a part of Deep Ellum’s first brand launch outside of Texas,” says Gordon Green, general manager of Capital Distributing. “Their brand portfolio performs very well and Oklahoma consumers will enjoy these great beers.”

According to a press release, beer drinkers in Oklahoma will soon be able to purchase Deep Ellum's core offerings on draft and in six-packs of 12-ounce cans. That lineup consists of Dallas Blonde, Deep Ellum IPA, Neato Bandito and Easy Peasy IPA. Those four beers will also sold together in the brewery's Mixed Tape 12-pack.

In addition, select specialty beers will be available on draft during the launch, including Local Legend, Deep Ellum Lager, Play Date Sour Blonde Ale and Dreamcrusher Double IPA.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

North Texas Craft Beer Conspectus - March 7, 2019 edition

Image credits: Parker County Brewing Co., Deep Ellum Brewing Co., BlackMan Brewing,
Walking Beam Brewing Co., Brutal Beerworks.

This edition of the Conspectus features a fresh set of updates related to new and future brewing operations, as well as news on national and international recognition received by local brewers.


Parker County takes prize at New York competition

Parker County Brewing Co. of Willow Park was honored last month at the 2019 New York International Beer Competition. The event, which took place February 10 in New York City, drew over 600 submissions from 14 different countries.

Fawn, the brewpub's barrel-aged imperial oatmeal stout (released in January), won Double Gold in the American Style Stout category. Only five beers entered in the competition received the Double Gold designation, a prize level awarded based on a unanimous decision by the judges.

BlackMan Brewing wins additional awards in Central America

Following up recent wins in Costa Rica, Barrett Tillman of BlackMan Brewing has garnered additional recognition for Smoking Lit, a lichtenhainer he brewed in collaboration with Treintaycinco - Fabrica de Cervezas of Costa Rica. In addition to winning gold in the Sour Styles category, the beer was named Best of Show at Barrilito de Oro 2019 - Micro Brew Fest Panama.

Deep Ellum, Walking Beam debut operations out west

Two new entities have opened in the western portion of the Metroplex, with Deep Ellum Brewing Co. introducing its Funkytown Fermatorium to Fort Worth on March 1, and Walking Beam Brewing Co. opening its doors in Bridgeport on February 23.

As of now, Walking Beam is serving house brews, while the Fermatorium is pouring Deep Ellum standards as it works to develop a portfolio of Fort Worth exclusives. On the culinary side, each provides on-site food service, with hand-crafted pizzas being the primary offering at both locales.

Brutal Beerworks now TABC-approved

Set to become the first brewery in North Richland Hills (NRH), Brutal Beerworks obtained its permit from the TABC on March 1. The company's location is currently under construction at 8446 Boulevard 26 in NRH, with an opening targeted for May. Once up and running, Brutal will operate under a brewpub license, which allows for the sale of beer-to-go.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Toasty Bros. debuts brand with Damage Dealer

A pour of Damage Dealer from Toasty Bros. (Photo: © Brian Brown/Beer in Big D)

Fresh off a late February label approval, Toasty Bros. released its first beer this past weekend, tapping Damage Dealer Double Stout at Denton County Brewing Co. on Friday.

Toasty Bros. is a Denton-based firm currently brewing its products under an alternating proprietorship agreement with Hop & Sting at Grapevine Craft Brewery. Brian "Toast" Tiensvold is the man behind the beer, with local pride being a guiding light for the business.

"The plan is to brew one small batch at a time and sell the beer primarily in Denton," says Tiensvold. "There may be a few exceptions, but we want to grow a local following. The idea is to become what I call a 'community-supported mom and pop brewing company.' My wife and I love this city...we live here, work here, and play here, and we want to open up a taproom here in the city someday."
Image credit: Toasty Bros.
As for Tiensvold himself, he's not new to the North Texas scene. Most recently working as a brewer at Denton County, Tiensvold also spent time at Whistle Post Brewing Co. of Pilot Point. In addition, he's an alumnus of the Home Brewers League at Barley & Board, having tapped his take on a French-style saison (called Maison Saison) last July.

For Toasty Bros.' initial offering, Tiensvold chose an imperial stout brewed with six different malt varieties. The result is a complex brew featuring layers of dark roast, coffee, and baker's chocolate that finishes dry and chewy with an abundance of black patent bitterness. In other words, it's a beer that harkens back to a time not so long ago when stouts tended to be big and bitter, rather than sweet and, perhaps both literally and figuratively, half-baked.

Next up, Tiensvold has a pair of IPAs in the works, as well as an "easy drinking ale" called Long Tacky Old Slacks (with both original and dark versions). Expected release dates for those and other beers to come can found on the company's website, located at

In the meantime, another keg of Damage Dealer will be tapped on Friday, March 8, at The Bearded Monk. Billed as a meet the brewer-type event, Tiensvold will be on hand to talk all things Toasty Bros., while raising a toast to the area's newest brand of beer.