Kamala Brewing / Whip In

Not Rated.
Kamala Brewing / Whip InKamala Brewing / Whip In
Based on:
22 Beers
69 Hads
Place Score: 94
Reviews: 48
Visits: 89
Avg: 4.23
pDev: n/a
Taps: 72
Bottles: 750
Cask: Y
Beer-to-Go: N
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery, Store ]

1950 S. Interstate 35
Austin, Texas, 78704
United States
phone: (512) 442-5337

visit their websiteWebsite view map and get directionsMap 

Place added by: BeerAdvocate

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Reviews: 48 | Visits: 89
Photo of LadyOfMuchBeer
4.88/5  rDev +15.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5

One of my go-to places in Austin every time I am in town. The craft beer selection is beyond great, they have a good wine selection, and there is always something great on tap it seems. They very often receive the more rare and limited brews as well. You can sit down and drink a great craft brew and get some amazing service. Bartenders remember the little details and are beyond friendly. They also do growler fills which is always a winner!! I hear they have really good Indian Cuisine, but I have never eaten here.

They almost always have what I am looking for!

They also sell growlers, t shirts, and other items.

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Photo of tjkinate
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I have to say that I am a San Diego native and I had to get used to the Austin beer selection.

The best part of Whip In is their draft beers. It is comprised of a revolving list that I would have to guess has 70ish beers on tap at anytime. Bottle selection is above average for Austin, but I still shutter, since compared to my favorite spots on the west coast it doesn't quite measure up. I don't hold it against this place though, obviously its not their fault.

What is also great about this place is that they are more than a beer store. They have a solid wine selection, in addition they are an Indian restaurant (which I have yet to try.)

The primary downfall I see at Whip In is the service, I just don't get it? I have been here a dozen times, half of which I have sat down to grab a pint. Every time I need to snag the bartender. I feel like I don't exist. Once I get served, I feel the service improves, but overall it feels like less than a friendly place.

*Update* 06/18/2012

After a few great renovations and an almost entirely new staff the Whip In has skyrocketed, becoming my favorite place in Austin. Great deals on local beers every night, great live music with an incredible staff.

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Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.19/5  rDev -0.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5

Located on the side of an interstate. Finally found it and wasn't sure what to expect from the outside. Walked in and was greeted and asked If I needed help. I proceeded to shop and the bottle selection was a little less then I hoped. However they had tons of locals on tap to get growler fills. Ranger Creek, Live Oak, Austin Beerworks, Thirsty Planet, 512, Jester King, exc. Also had some good belgians such as Triple Karmeliet and St Bernardus. Was able to sample a few beers and me and a buddy of mine each left with a growler. The employees seem to genuinely enjoy talking beer. A little pricey but the draft selection and the friendly and inviting service makes this a place I will be going back to again.

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Photo of kaidasz
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

really like this place, beers on tap, bottles in the fridge and killer indo-chinese food. wish we had this in houston, hell-need to franchise this idea!!!

taps-plenty of TX craft w/an emphasis on Austin, which i love as 512 ipa is must purchase for me.

bottles-jester king tends to be my reg as these are harder to spot on h-town specs other than downtown.

food-had a couple of plates there, all were good to great and will keep recommending based on overall vibe and service of their employees.

only downside is layout and a tad pricey, i can live w/it. bravo-whip in!

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Photo of jamescain
4.44/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5

I would consider the Whip-In as my parent's neighborhood bar. I like stopping by whenever I visit. The nice thing about the Whip-In is that it is a combination, bottle shop, restaurant, and bar. I have not yet had the food yet, which is Indian food; however I have heard that it is very good. Their draft beer is slightly pricy, especially their cellar section. I'm not complaining about it, if they take the time to cellar a keg properly, then the consumer should pay for that time and effort. The nice part of the Whip-In is the fact that you can open any bottle and enjoy it on the premiss for only an extra dollar. Their bottle selection is very good and will rival any establishment in the city. They also will fill any beer in a growler, other then the cellar selection I believe. The servers are helpful. the atmosphere is a little cramped because most of the place is a bottle shop, but there is outdoor seating and occasionally there is a band playing. Its a great place and I would highly recommend a stop if you're visiting.

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Photo of obrike
4.48/5  rDev +5.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.25

What can you say about this place that hasn't already been said?

If you live in or near Austin, enjoy craft beer, and like eclectic places, this is your spot.

I first started going here back in 99 (Heck, this is where I bought the infamous '97 Sam Adams triple bock).I lived in an apartment about a block away and would walk over, always looking for the "beer of the month" special. This was before the Whip In became the ultra cool "Indian food, live-music, awesome beer" mecca that it is now. One thing this place has always had going for it is friendly, knowlegable staff. That in itself is a great reason to go.

Now that it's expanded from a beer store to a bar/eatery, it has become an even cooler place to visit.

The prices may be just a touch over what you can expect at other places around town, but for a true Austin experience, it's not to be missed.

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Photo of coldmeat23
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Did we just walk into a bar? Or a liquor store? Or an Indian restaurant? Or a neighborhood bodega?
We just walked into all of these things at once!

Yes, it's a bottle shop/liquor store. Fairly decent selection here. You can definitely find a few rarities around. Unfortunately, you're NOT going to just stumble on them. They know that they are there and have them priced accordingly. Not that there is anything wrong with that, because I even picked up a couple things, it's just always a thrill to find that one vintage bottle at the back of the shelf, for the same price as the 'fresh' ones. It makes comparing/contrasting just a little more fun, I think, but I'm certainly willing to pay for the priveledge as well.

They also have around 60 taps, I'd guess. It's kind of hard to tell, because it looks like they just add another three or four tap lines whenever they find the money and space to add them. It's not just a tap wall, they are kind of spread around in little clustered groups.
Let it be stated, right here and now, that the taps that they have are pretty damn awesome. Lots of Texas love. A good deal of a belgian showing. Plus, various craft brews thrown in for good measure.
They even pull out some vintage kegs from time to time. While I was there, among other things, I had Live Oak Tree Hugger Vintage 2006(!!!). Damn, it was awesome!

They also have a couple of rows of items that you'd probably find at your neighborhood convenience store/bodega. Soaps, detergents, soda pops, ice creams, paper plates, trashbags, spices, incense, bread, etc.

On top of all of this, they are also an outstanding Indian Restaurant. From what we could gather, they are using as much local food stuffs as possible, which is awesome. Meats, eggs, cheeses, yogurts, produce and more are all locally sourced.

There were a couple of employees who seemed to have that 'why are you bugging me?' kind of attitude. Normally, this would be close to a 'dealbreaker' for me. I'm happy to say that the other multiple employees and Dipak himself, who runs the place, were all very nice and more than made up for it. Maybe they were just having a bad day or something.

Be prepared to spend a couple of bucks, but I strongly recommend this stop to beer geeks and food lovers alike. Plan on hanging out for a couple of hours while enjoying a few pints and delicious Indian food and generally having a good time.

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Photo of jl28r1
3.69/5  rDev -12.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5

Drove to Austin from San Antonio last sunday to pick up a growler of Live Oak HefeWeizen. I stopped at Whip-in because of the great reviews and it's location. My wife and I walked in around noon and we were suprised that we were the only customers in the place. It has a pretty cool layout with a long bar, nice dining area (though we did not eat) and lots of coolers filled with a very good craft beer selection. The problem that I had was the bartender/cashier did not at all make us feel welcome. My wife felt we were being watched as if we were shoplifters and I just got the feeling that the worker just wanted us to leave. Too bad, with better service, this place could be incredible. Don't see myself making a 2nd trip there, I would rather spend my money at a place that values customers more that Whip-in.

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Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

I sometimes drive up from San Antonio for the sole purpose of going to the Whip In. This place is a really awesome venue/bar/bottle shop! Always guaranteed to have something on tap and in the cooler that no other shops/bars have. Sometimes it can get a little cramped and wish the music stage and seating area were a bit larger. Service could be a little quicker and even a little more friendly sometimes, but there is a lot going on at this place. Food is pretty tasty, but a little pricey for the portion size. Also, them having a nice selection can come at a bit of a price as the harder finds tend to be a dollar or more two than other places. But, what's a buck or two when your going to a cool place that is always gonna have something you want to bring home with you! The final super cool thing, is that they have a few taps with some aged beers as well, like I said, there is always something to try!

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Photo of stephens101
4.36/5  rDev +3.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

Lots going on here. The space is a bit small and a little dark, but that's my kind of joint. If you're looking for something else there's a BJ's in Sunset Valley.

There are a few booths immediately to the right when you step in, and to your left is a bar that seats ten or fifteen. A few locals were having a few and shooting the shit. Behind the bar is a cooking area, apparently for the Indian food, and a nice selection of taps, for the good stuff.

As you explore further you will find some imported foodstuffs. Further exploration reveals the brews, with the majority of it in coolers. While the selection is good, it is not on par with Specs. That's not a big problem in my opinion, as this place has a cool vibe, and I seriously dig the variety and uniqueness.

P.s. If you're traveling from the north side of Austin at any time near rush hour, I would recommend skipping I-35 and taking Congress down and cutting through a back street over the Whip In.

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Photo of Fenris244
4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5

I went to whip in today solely because I had never been and I keep hearing about it!

The atmosphere was nice, the light was a little dim for my liking but after I saw some aged beer on one of the shelves I assumed it was for their sake.

The quality was great I could find alot of things there that most of the stores in my area won't carry and though specs has a greater selection for the most part whip in has more of the limited releases, oh an they also have taps, 60 taps and do growler fills which puts them above specs in my book.

The service was pretty good except the guy I who was helping me kept saying everything was "money" he was a cool guy but the repeated use of that term kept making me want to tell him to shut up.

I didn't eat any food but the value was great, I picked up done awesome vintage brews at a good price and I'm more than happy about it! I'll definitely be coming back

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Photo of LittleDon
4.58/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Summary: The prototypical South Austin establishment. Eclectic beerbar/convenience store with good to great selection and passable food.

I've been fortunate enough to be a South Austin resident for the past 15 years and have witnessed the transformation of Whip In. Early on, it was a not so typical convenience store with a good selection of beers in their coolers and a decent cigar selection to boot. These days, the cigars are gone but the beer selection has improved and the addition of 50+ taps has added a new dimension to the place.

For those from out of town, the vibe at Whip In is a third coast version of O'Brien's or Bukowski's. I recently stopped in to pick up a mixed six. When I walked in (about 4 pm) there were a (maybe not so) surprising number of after work patrons at the bar. Given what is available, it's not surprising.

The tap selection is phenomenal for the Central US, hell, anywhere outside of the great beer Meccas. Growlers are available for anything they have on tap. The bottle selection is good. The single selection looked depleted when I was there, but enough to choose to make me happy.

What makes Whip In truly South Austin is its eclecticism. It is an amalgam of beer and wine store, beer bar and, music venue, with enough convenience store thrown in to make it quirky and inviting. Where else in Austin can you listen to Suzanna Choffel while eating your Mary Louise butter brownies drinking Jester King Black Metal. About the only thing disappointing was the menu: good, but not great.

Would I go back? It's sad that we often overlook what is easily available to us in favor of that outside of our immediate grasp. I have had the fortune to travel all over the US and only now recognize that I should be spending more time drinking at places closer to home.

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Photo of champ103
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4

An excellent beer store/beer bar. As I walk in, it looks like a typical liquor store, with rows of wine, beer, and cooler space wrapping around the proximity. Though there is a bar and wood stools taking up the front left part of the store.

The selection is large. From what I saw, the bottle selection is typical of the better beer stores. Think Specs. Which is good, but the real treat is the large selection of taps. Many you can get as a growler. Lots of Texas micros like 512, Jester King, Live Oak. They expanded their tap selection recently and there are lots of good Imports and other US micros. There is a separate tap section for beers like 05 Sisyphus and some Divine Reserves. All the beers are fresh, or for the aged options, they are impeccably cared for.

The service is really good as well. The cashier/bartender is very knowledgeable on all the beers, and helpful with special releases. Overall an excellent store, and a great place to try what is new if you have time to sit at the bar for a minute.

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Photo of BgThang
3.35/5  rDev -20.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 1.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3

I have been to this place a few times. The first time was when they were still just a corner store that had a descent beer selection. The atmosphere was that of a bad cab with incense going and a bunch of gawdy things seeming to fill in every crook in the store. THings have changed quite a lot since then. THey have started serving food and beer on draught.

Good things about this place: They usually have the most current releases in Texas, they have special taps that have been cellared for a couple years, and they sometime release bottles of aged items

Bad things: Service with an attitude (What I have is the best in town and I will rape you cause I can attitude), You pay a premium for their aged beers and and well hell all their beers are a premium. Example $11 for 8oz of dr6 a year after release date on draught. I still have a case if dr6 so bite me, Atmosphere is still that of a bad dive bar, THe live music is so loud there you can hold a conversation unless you go outside

Overall if you can find what you are looking for elsewhere then go. If you are ina pinch and need something and willing to pay a premium for it then come here and bring your KY with you.

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Photo of bentwookie
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4.5

I love Whip In. The food is great and the beer selection is awesome. It seems like he always gets the hard to find beer first. Dipak is very helpful and nice. I really appreciate his bottled cellared selection that he releases around Thanksgiving every year as well as his awesome draught cellar list. It can get a bit crowded inside but lots of room outside if the weather is nice. In the future they will be brewing their own beers, which is exciting. I also really like that the will fill growlers up with any of their 45+ taps.

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Photo of bisonkron
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

This place did not look appealing to me from their website, but I wanted to check it out anyway. It was great. Not the greatest selection in town, but plenty of off beat varieties.

The staff was friendly and the patrons were great too.

They had live music, and to my great surprise, growing up and living in austin, they music was pretty good, and the volume was
just right.

The owner is very knowledgeable and friendly, but I always get a comment if I go in to look at whats on the shelves and leave without buying anything.

Its small, but it is definitely the place I am going to take guests that want to go to a bar in Austin.

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Photo of dnarx
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Ok, I am a complete novice, no doubt about it. I have only embraced my LOVE of complex, fantastically aromatic, and heavily hopped beer this past year.

I LOVED this place, it has a long bar with 60 beers on tap. Lots of local talent, and some aged brews including an awesome Divine Reserve 6, Sisyphus 2005.

They had growlers for taking tap brews home and I even had some fantastic Indian food from Mom, and she sat and chatted with me.

Since I was only in town for a couple of days I made my way to Whip In both, the owner recommended some brews on day two that were perfectly paired with what I indicated I like the day before. I am considering moving just to continue visiting this joint.

I think they are well worth a visit if you are in Austin!

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Photo of Longhorn22
4.72/5  rDev +11.6%
vibe: 5 | quality: 5 | service: 5 | selection: 4

I had heard the chatter about this place, and I wanted to give it a look. It has a sort of small parking lot, which is kind of inconvenient. I don't know if there is more parking in the back, but I had to wait for a bit to get a spot.

The atmosphere is very cool, and very laid back. There is a bar you can sit at and drink, I think they had about 12 bears on tap. To the immediate right there is a small restaurant, then there is 2 rows of wines. Behind that there is one and half walls of beers, and one aisle of beers as well. Someone here said that you can pull beers out of six packs and make your own. I wish I would have known that when I went, because I was eying some Inversion IPA, but it only came in a 6-pack.

Their beer selection is pretty large. It is nice because it is organized, and everything is clearly labeled. Their beers aren't past their expiration date, like some other places that offer that large of a selection. They have a large section of Belgian beers, and they were priced somewhat reasonably. I think I got a bottle of St. Bernardus and a bottle of Delerium for $10.

It is a fun environment, and the people seem nice and willing to help, and there is a pretty large selection. There still is more space for another aisle, it would be nice if they filled it with more beer!

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Photo of Mora2000
4.44/5  rDev +5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

This is a nice, newly renovated beer bar and beer store located right along Interstate 35 south of Town Lake. They have a pretty good selection of beers, maybe not the best in Austin, but definitely one of the best including a vintage shelf. They also have 15-20 taps with beers from Independence, 512, Live Oak and some out of state stuff as well. When I was there in mid-February they had 512 Whiskey Barrel Pecan Porter on tap for $5 for an 8 ounce pour. Not a bad price and not bad since kegs have pretty much disappeared from everywhere else in town. There is an inside bar and a patio to enjoy the beer on and there is also food, although I didn't eat. Nice place.

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Photo of vdread
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 5 | selection: 4

i stopped by whip-in after driving by it many times and hearing about the selection from friends. the selection was above average. had a lot of good stuff there that i haven't seen many other places. LOT of belgian offerings, lots of oskar blues, stone, dogfish head, and a lot of beers i've never seen in the area before (though admittedly i have only been in the area 6 months).

the chick up front with the dreadlocks was really helpful and when i asked about oskar blues and ten fidy she directed me to the 'beer guy' who was very helpful and answered all my questions about their rotating stock, what was coming up, what styles they like to carry. they were very friendly and the beer guy informed me i can break up any pack in the cooler and make my own sixer. he even went to the back for me to pull out a six of magic hat that wasn't on the shelves.

i ended up getting a four pack for about $9 which is about average considering the beers that i got. they even had singles of bud and bud light which i found pretty funny, however, they were on the bottom shelf and looked like they hadn't been touched in months.

there were a few aged beers. i didn't really look too hard at them but i saw some stone imperial russian stout and some 2005 great divide yeti. they even had a print-out taped to the cellar aged section listing when some of the newer editions would be released.

the music was pretty rad as well.

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Photo of Riccymon
3.53/5  rDev -16.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

While nearby yesterday, I stopped at Whip In for the first time to see what I'd been missing by doing my beer shopping mainly at Grape Vine Market and Spec's. Inside, the store/restaurant is dark and a bit cave-like. Through the convenience store portion of the building, a few sets of beer coolers and shelves hold some good offerings, but not much I can't find elsewhere in town. The number of Belgians available was probably the highlight. My hopes of finding aged beers weren't realized, as all I really saw were a couple bottles of 2008 Avery Samael's Ale. Ended up buying a 750 of Saison Dupont and a six pack of SN Stout.

Service seemed more like a convenience store than a beer store, but I didn't buy anything on-tap or order food, either. Prices seemed above average for both the on-tap beers and the bottles, maybe a dollar more per item than at other places.

I'm glad I finally got to Whip In, and I'd like to stop again for a pint and a meal.

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4

Well this is one of the wackiest places I've ever been too. Is it a convenience store? A beer store? A restaurant? A bar? Kind of all of them. Real bohemian look, feel & vibe. Staff is very friendly. About 8 or so beers on tap. They were open with their samples and pleasant in their tone.

The beer selection (store) was pretty good, not, great but good. I swear Texas remains a bit of a wasteland for great beer. Didn't have any food, so I can't comment. The seating area was very casual and quite eclectic.
I have to say, I am not sure I would head here for a dinner, but I would go for a pint and then perhaps shop for a bottle to take home. Having said that, I was intrigued by their Indian menu... Music was quite funky.

Bottom line, glad I stopped to see it. Not sure I would go out of my way there... If I lived here I would probably drop by from time to time. But the selection is not close to the selection of my home town store.

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Photo of derwestone
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%

I stopped by this place during a road trip from San Diego to east Texas and back. The overall experience was very enjoyable. The owner was working while I was there, and he seemed like he really enjoyed his place and job. They had about 8 beers on draft, and I ordered a Live Oak Hefe, which I enjoyed while walking around the store. There was a good mix of all different kinds of beer, and the owner was able to pick out some local Texas beers that I have been able to enjoy since the trip. After deciding on a couple of DFHs, three beers from the Great Divide, a 2004 Avery Beast, and some local beers, the owner was nice enough to refill my beer for free. I will definitely stop by this place again if given the opportunity.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.58/5  rDev +8.3%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Stopped by the Whip In on a Wednesday afternoon. Cute, indie-feel to the whole store, with food & beer behind the register and a seating area w/ a stage off to the side. Good wine and snack selection, too.

Very good quality store, nothing out of place and all the bottles seemed to be fresh (no dust collecting anywhere). The selection is amazing, perhaps even better than the Grape Vine Market, except for perhaps the German selection. Tons of american micro brews (Sierra Nevada, Great Divide, Dogfish Head, Real Ale, Independence, etc etc...), a larger Belgian selection than GV (lots of St. Bernardus), and (my favorite part) a cellared brews section, where they periodically release aged beer. Granted, this beer is at a higher price, but I happily snagged 3 bottles of 2004 Lost Coast Old Stock Ale.

Aside from the bottled glory, they have 16 brews on tap, including four Live Oak's and some aged beer, too (2006 Real Ale Coffee Porter). Happy hour from 4-7 gets you a $1 off per pint. Most beers were in the $4-6 range. Cashier/bartender was very friendly, and was happy to load up my beers into a crate and hold them behind the counter while I partook in a 8oz pour of Live Oak Primus Weizenbock.

Overall, a fantastic beer experience that I'll revisit many times during the coming years in Austin.

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Photo of jcruiser
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%

I live by Grapevine Market (the original) and shop there twice a week. I make it a point to go by Whip In in early December when they open their cellar and bring out the aged stuff.

Picked up a couple of bottles of 2004 Avery Beast bombers for x-mas presents. They must have most of the Anchor X-mas beer line up from 7-8 years past.

If you go to get the Beast, don't expect them to sell it to you on Sunday as it is 18% ABV.

Don't know how much more of it they have but it goes up in price every year.

They recently opened a restaurant in the store that smells really good.

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Kamala Brewing / Whip In in Austin, TX
94 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.