Breweries Culture Houston Beer Month

True Anomaly and Senate Avenue Bring Additional Notoriety with Awards from 2024 Texas Craft Brewers Cup

The greater Houston area came back from 2024 Texas Craft Brewers Guild Brewers Cup with enough awards to fill up a large trophy case. Among the litany of gold, silver and bronze Bolo ties signifying the excellent craft beer brewing in our own backyards were two issued for special achievement in the State. 

Senate Avenue Brewing brought home the gold Bolo in the first ever Legislative Pro-Am hosted by the Craft Brewers Guild. The award had 16 breweries enter in conjunction with the Texas House Representatives from the brewery’s respective districts. Senate Avenue worked with Representative Lacey Hull and her staff on the submission for District 138 to choose a style of beer that was most representative of the people that live in the district. which skews heavily of Latin descent. The idea that was chosen was aptly named House District 138 Mexican Hot Chocolate Stout. Owner Andrew Mitcham credits his staff, especially Kitchen Manager Jessica Cerro, for their contributions for the recipe. Cerro, a native of Acapulco Mexico, contributed by offering her family’s storied recipe for Mexican hot chocolate to be the basis for the stout. 

Owner Andrew Mitcham – Photo by Jackie Von Panda

Mitchem also credits brewer Adam Millard for helping come up with a unique stout recipe to work along with Cerra’s hot chocolate to create the winning submission.

“Adam brewed it, then it went to fermentation. Towards the end of fermentation, we started to add the spices to it like cinnamon, vanilla, cocoa nibs and a little bit of cayenne. We were a little nervous about adding too much cayenne because we didn’t want it to be like our pepper beer, so we added half of what we would normally add for cayenne and it ended up being the perfect amount.”

Andrew Mitcham
Photos courtesy of the Office of Representative Lacey Hull 

Representative Hull commented as well on the award, saying “I was excited to collaborate with Senate Avenue on creating this Mexican Hot Chocolate Stout as our House District 138 entry to the inaugural Pro-Am competition! I am proud to represent HD 138 that encompasses west Houston and Jersey Village, one of the most diverse districts in Houston and the state. Senate Avenue is a great small business partner not only in this (competition) but in our community”. Representative Hull went on to add, “I look forward to continuing to work with them (Senate Avenue) and hopefully defending our title next year!”

Photo courtesy of True Anomaly Brewing

Not to be outdone, True Anomaly Brewing has quickly established a dynasty of sorts in the state by winning not just four total Bolos in this year’s competition (three gold and one bronze) but most importantly repeating as Brewery of the Year in the 600+ Barrel Group. This is True Anomaly’s second time being named the 600+ Barrel Brewery of the Year and also their second in a row. Per the Texas Craft Brewers Guild website, the criteria for winning Brewery of the Year are based off of each medal awarded at the Brewers Cup, with one point for a bronze Bolo, two points for a silver, and three points for a gold.  

True Anomaly won four medals at this year’s Brewers Cup, including three gold and one bronze Bolo. The winning beer submissions this year for True Anomaly were a gold Bolo for White Dwarf (American & European Sour), a gold Bolo for Flanders Redux (Wood & Barrel Aged Sour & Brett Beer), a bronze Bolo for Sea of Waves (also Wood & Barrel Aged Sour & Brett Beer), and finally a gold Bolo for Fireflies (Experimental, Hybrid & Specialty Beer). This after True Anomaly won 5 total Bolos in 2023 (three gold and two silver).  Co-Owner of True Anomaly Michael Duckworth attributes the accolades to the work of the entire team, especially considering many of their accolades are in categories for beer styles that are often time intensive to produce and are difficult to master to an award-winning level.  

With a new production facility and tap room under construction currently with hopes to open to the public later this year, the future is bright for True Anomaly. With a bright future and being two-time defending Brewery of the Year in the state comes high expectations. Duckworth added that he felt the brewery was more than up to the task of continuing to produce excellent beer, but also continuing to challenge itself to not accept the successes of the recent past.   

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