|  | 

Beer Festivals

My first 5 stops at Untapped Houston, 2016 edition

Let’s dive right into this: Untapped Houston is back at Discovery Green on Saturday. I’m going, and you should, too. This will be the festival’s 4th year in Houston, and it’s gotten better every year. It’s very well run, the location is awesome, and the weather should be great. They’ve got you covered on food and music, too.

The highlight, of course, is the beer. This year’s beer list, unsurprisingly, is impressive, varied, and huge; I counted nearly 300 beers and ciders. Yes, I counted. Yes, I made a spreadsheet. Duh. A good beer nerd has to have a game plan for an event like this. I don’t quite have mine finished, but I do know what my first five stops will be.
hou_full_851x315

Jester King

This is becoming an annual tradition. For the third year in a row, my first stop will be Jester King, and my first beer will be 分 桃, aka Fen Tao, their peach sour. I’m once again predicting that this will be the first beer at the festival to run out. I’ll say it’s 50/50 to even survive the VIP hour from 3:30-4:30 (that’s your cue to get VIP tickets). I’m also excited to try Space Waves, their recent collaboration with Jolly Pumpkin. It’s a JK farmhouse blended with their own cherry sour (Montmorency vs. Balaton), with a salty twist.

Saint Arnold

Houston’s best brewery always brings good stuff to Untapped, but this year they’re going all out. Four vintages of Pumpkinator, three Bishop’s Barrels, two Divine Reserves, and a Raspberry AF in a pear tree. 2016 Pumpkinator, which debuted just this week, will surely be popular. I’m most excited for Raspberry AF, their Boiler Room berliner weisse with raspberries. It’s delicious, and at 3.7%, it’ll be the perfect break beer/thirst quencher.

Peticolas

This Dallas brewery is the most welcome surprise on the list for me. The only other time I’ve seen their beer in Houston was at the (late, great) Draft Fest at Guadalupe Plaza Park in 2012. All these years (and awards and raves) later, Peticolas still doesn’t distribute to Houston, despite our social media pleas. I’m excited to try all three of the beers they’re sending to Untapped: Velvet Hammer (an imperial red), Ghost of Alfred Brown (their English brown ale with ghost peppers), and Sit Down Or I’ll Sit You Down (their highly regarded double IPA).

The Bruery

No, I haven’t stopped nerding out about the fact that my favorite U.S. brewery is now in Houston. I’ll take a second to wish they’d diversified their lineup for Untapped, since all three beers (Melange 14, Mash & Vanilla, and Poterie) are at least 13.4% abv, but that’s a nitpick. All three are crazy delicious.

Real Ale

It should come as no surprise that my pick for the best overall Untapped lineup comes from the best brewery in Texas. They’ve got the whole spectrum covered: sessionable & pale (Hans’ Pils), sessionable & dark (Coffee Porter), hoppy (Axis, their killer new IPA), classic Belgian (Devil’s Backbone), sour (Tenebrae Aeterna, their spectacular barrel-aged sour porter), and rare (a special rye-whisky-barrel-aged version of their 20th Anniversary Rye Double IPA). That is how you structure a festival lineup. I expect to spend a lot of time at the Real Ale table.

So that’s my top five. There’s a ton of other great stuff, of course. Hell, it’s kind of mind-blowing to think that I’ve made it this far without mentioning luminaries such as Brash (EZ7, Cortado), Odell (Jolly Russian, Friek), Founders (KBS), Avery (Lillikoi Kepolo, Rumpkin), Boulevard (Tank 7, Love Child #7, Rye-On-Rye), Alpine (Pure Hoppiness)… you get the point. I’ll also be making a point to check in on some of Houston’s newest breweries: SpindleTap, Under The Radar, and Eureka Heights. Make sure you try Eureka Heights Mostly Harmless. I’m kind of obsessed with it.

See y’all on Saturday

5-stops-at-untapped-2016

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Beer nerd. Erstwhile beer blogger. Mexican Houstonian.

Related Articles

  • Houston Firkin Fest 2016: A Firkin Good Time

    Houston Firkin Fest 2016: A Firkin Good Time

    Sponsored by Saint Arnold, Real Ale, Freetail, Deep Ellum, and Texas Beer Bus, and run by the Texas Craft Brewers Guild, the third annual Houston Firkin Fest on June 18 represented the creative depth of some of Texas’s best breweries. After being moved from its original date in April due to a threat of severe

  • Houston Firkin Fest – Preview

    Houston Firkin Fest – Preview

    The third annual Houston Firkin Fest will be held on April 30 at Hennessey Park next to Saint Arnold brewery. So, what exactly is a firkin? According to Webster Dictionary a firkin is, “a small cask used chiefly for liquids, butter, or fish.” It is also a specific size holding 72 imperial pints or 10.79

  • Flying Saucer’s Gose Tasting

    Flying Saucer’s Gose Tasting

    Ever since my first taste of Bayerischer Bahnhof’s Leipziger Gose, I’ve absolutely loved the gose style of beer. The mingling of salt and coriander with a sour wheat base is interesting and delicious, and the low alcoholic content is a perfect touch allowing extra enjoyment of more goses. So when I heard that the Flying

  • GABF Wrap-Up: How did Houston fare?

    GABF Wrap-Up: How did Houston fare?

    After an incredible week in Denver for my third Great American Beer Festival trip, I’m currently in my traditional week of complete sobriety, chugging iced tea and enjoying all the wonders of a life without beer. And the only downside is I really want to try the Saint Arnold Bishop’s Barrel 11, which hopefully will

  • Untapped Festival 2015 – All the beer. All the music. All the sweat.

    I guess third time’s a charm: after being plagued by weather problems the past two years, 2015’s Untapped Festival was a perfectly sunny sweat-drencher. The weather wasn’t the only thing Untapped got right this year: from beer selection to musical talent, this year’s line-up did Houston proud. I got there a little later than I

POST YOUR COMMENTS

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Name *

Email *

Website

Houston Beer Guide

Please excuse our enthusiasm. We're not professional journalists, we're just passionate beer lovers. Our goal is to give Houston's beer community a voice. We hope you'll listen.

Writers

  • alice-roach
  • chris-white
  • cody-lee
  • greg-manuel
  • jackaround
  • kenneth-krampota
  • mel-vega
  • tim-spies

Editors

  • fountain5
  • jose-cubria
  • katie-frink