Having grown up in three and a half hours north of Austin, I have visited our state capitol many times; sometimes many times a year. Seeing the town grow through my younger, less judging eyes and now through my frank, I-feel-like-I’ve-seen-a-thing-or-two eyes, I can talk with most locals about how the town, I mean city, has changed. And beer has been apart of that change for many years. Though few of those old guard breweries still remain, Austin tells of a proud heritage of people who work hard to make a good product. Sure, the influx of money, those “damn Californians” and startups has brought new groups of people, lots of development and change to Austin, at it’s core there is still a group of folks with the mentality of just “givin’ a’damn.”
As times change, some newer upstart breweries perhaps may have their histories starting with “so it all started at startup weekend,” instead of “I couldn’t find beer I liked, so I started my making my own.” And while it maybe true that some of upstart breweries have better taprooms from the beginning with logo’d yard games, polished media and NEIPA’s, that doesn’t really mean anything more than they started during a different time.
The future is very bright in Austin’s beer scene. There are many breweries that are (and are not) paying attention to the trends and going full-steam ahead with focusing on making great beer, some even with logoed yard games at their pretty taprooms. From my perspective, instead of keeping it weird in Austin, I think Austin can safely say they are working on keeping things honest.
And I can’t think of a better way to be introduced to the city’s beer scene.
Well, that and a tall glass of Pilsner.