Sunday, September 22, 2019

Westlake Brewing Co. makes its debut in Deep Ellum

 Westlake was first established as a company in 2015. Its road to realization included an Idiegogo campaign
that raised nearly $15,000 for the project's development (Photo: © Brian Brown/Beer in Big D)

Deep Ellum may be developing into a beer and cider destination all its own, now that Westlake Brewing Co. has opened its doors at 2816 Commerce St. The new entity joins neighbors BrainDead Brewing, Deep Ellum Brewing Co. and Trinity Cider in the Dallas entertainment district, with the four companies all lying along a half-mile stretch.

Led by founder Art Harvey and director of operations Bill Parker, Westlake began serving customers on Wednesday. The brewery is operating on a soft basis as it prepares for a mid-October grand opening, with soft pretzels, beer and sodas among the introductory offerings.

Initial tap wall selections consist of 10 beers crafted by head brewer Peter Hemmingsen (formerly of Bitter Sisters Brewery in Addison and Mountain Fork Brewery in Oklahoma). Those are broken down into core beers (four at present), along with a set of small-batch single-barrel creations only available in the taproom.

Westlake is operating in a 9000 square foot facility in Deep Ellum. The space houses the production and 
public areas, as well as a full on-site kitchen (Photos: © Brian Brown/Beer in Big D, click images to enlarge).

With regard to styles, a number of Belgian beers (grisette, saison, tripel, witbier, bière de garde) are in the mix to start, with others including an oatmeal stout, a barleywine and...yes...a hazy IPA. All were well-executed efforts, and most represented types of beer that are getting more and more difficult to find. My personal favorite among them was Leg Day, a Scotch ale, but it I was also pleased to see a "table beer" option, that being a farmhouse ale with an ABV of just 3.4%.

Eventually, upwards of 24 different beers will be available on a day-to-day basis at Westlake. Recipes may come and go based on feedback, but customers can expect the brewery to explore what's new and popular in the world of beer, while also serving up a variety of "refreshingly simple" standards.

As for when you can stop in and check out Westlake for yourself, the brewery is open seven days a week. Stop in for full pours, a flight, or grab some beer to-go in the form of 32-ounce cans and 750 mL bottles.

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