As Taylor Ziebarth relaunches Oddwood Ales, originally a side label of the Austin brewery Adelbert’s, as a standalone business with its own brewery and taproom, distinctive microorganisms remain front and center.
There are plenty of places to eat along the dirt-path-framed expanse of Austin’s Rainey Street, not to mention the streets just off of it. Tacos, sausages, Indian food, burgers, noodles … the list goes mouthwateringly on. Makes sense, then, that Craft Pride has such a singular focus: Beer.
Austin’s (512) Brewing Company was founded in 2007, at the front end of a wave of new brewery openings in the Texas capital. The brewery has benefited both from Austin’s thirst for local product and from its burgeoning community of brewers.
The original plan was to build Jester King in an industrial part of Austin, but when a local farmer just outside the city offered his 200-acre farm as a brewery site, the three managing partners accepted. Today, Jester King is producing some of Texas’ most intriguing beers in a style that seems more suited to Belgium than the American Heartland.
For about a half-decade now, rapid expansionism has defined the United States craft beer market. But with the recent announcements of market retreats by many large and mid-sized breweries, the needs of beer drinkers will soon fall once again to local brewers.
Co-op breweries, with their minimal costs, democratic involvement and intensely local feel, look a hell of a lot like craft beer’s militia. They represent a community no longer simply using its buying power to steer the market, but one empowering itself to join the fight.
Austin is home to the state university, some legendary BBQ, musicians, artists and other assorted weirdos. Which is to say, it’s a city that’s perpetually overrun by professional drinkers of every sort.