16 Jul 4th Annual – 2019-2020 Houston MVB Winner
This Was the Tightest Voting Yet
To begin with, several breweries got active in the voting this year, and that resulted in a very competitive race and over 3,000 votes. It was super fun watching the lead change hands and get DM’s asking for updates left and right.
Then, as if it weren’t close enough with 10 and 20 vote leads between the top spot and second place, we goofed on the closing date of the voting! We were drinking beer. Sue us. Hah!
In the final 24 hours of voting, everything flipped. A few breweries that weren’t even in the top 10 began seeing an influx of voting, and a few that were at the top began to slid down slowly as the 2019-2020 MVB rose up the ranks. Ironically, this was the first year that every brewery didn’t get even a few votes.
As the scene in Houston continues to grow, evolve, and push one another to innovate in new ways, it seems like we’re getting close to reaching market maturity.
Sorry to keep you waiting. Just like every other year, we end up with a ton of duplicate and fake votes because beer people are so passionate about their favorite spot. It’s annoying having to validate all those addresses, but to be honest, it’s funny and a bit heartwarming. Seeing the passion of these folks reminds us of why we put so much effort into covering these people that keep our beer fridges full!
You Came for the MVB Winner, Though
10 11 Below (32 votes)
They’ve been dabbling heavily in crispy bois lately, and it seems to be paying off. It doesn’t hurt that they’ve also got some banger IPAs, a ton of noteworthy seasonal releases, and a BA Stout release that everybody lines up for annually. Read their interview from a few years ago to see how far they’ve come.
“First tried their beer about 3 years or so ago at the brewery. It was great! I feel like they’ve made leaps and strides on getting into the stores and expanding the types of beers they have made this year and sell in bulk! Still trying to get my hands on the Taco Tuesday!”– Jordan F.
9 Megaton (51 votes)
Wastelanders showed up for the first time this year. Something tells us that this Kingwood bunker brewery will probably be rising in the ranks next year. Their beer and following has come a long way since they first opened their doors, but the standout thing about Megaton seems to be their ability to overcome adversity while serving their community much more than beer.
“They have helped out our community in our time of need. My neighborhood flooded twice last year (including myself) and those that really needed assistance received help from them.”– Cali W.
8 Southern Yankee (55 votes)
The epitome of a family business, Southern Yankee has a loyal following that calls their 1960 taproom home. Their diverse offerings and “where everybody knows your name” vibe sure don’t hurt. Read their interview from right before they opened up to see how far they’ve come.
“They treat you like one of their family. Everyone knows your name and whether it’s your first time there or your hundredth, they treat you like family immediately and make you feel welcome. Great beer, good atmosphere and delicious food.”– Michael F.
7 Urban South HTX (61 votes)
The latest Hypesters to weather the H-Town humidity to bring us some refreshing beer, this transplant brewery from NOLA is full of promise and familiar faces. Their slushy-like, heavily-fruited sour beers have USPS workers doing double time with all the beermail, and it seems their loyal fans showed up for them a little bit. They’re not even a year in and made it into the top 10. Read their interview from right before they opened up to see what’s changed in their short history and where they’re headed.
“This brewery came out the gate swinging at the beginning of the year. Spilled series is incredibly creative and they still crush the basics with their lagers and IPAs. Looking forward to seeing even more innovative brews from these guys!”– Anna J.
6 Running Walker (67 votes)
Another Houston-area brewery that seems to be turning a corner after a somewhat slow start, Running Walker’s new and diverse offering of beer brought out the voters. They were one of the first breweries to spike up, but they ran out of steam.
“The team at Running Walker marches to the beat of their own drum. They don’t seem to be concerned with being the popular kid, choosing rather to brew from the heart and produce some damn good beers. In an age where everyone is seeking recognition in the social world by coattailling the last big thing, Running Walker holds true to following their own trail. They are focused on making great beer that is enjoyable to drink and not just because someone else said so.”– Scott W.
5 Fulbrook (70 votes)
Fulbrook’s one of those breweries that instantly jumps into the top 3 on day one. While their new ownership is steering the brewery in a slightly new direction, their loyal fans show up every year.
“I love there wild style of beer flavors and the brewers are great people I can call my friends. Everytime I go I have a blast and enjoy the beer.”– Jake M
4 Baa Baa Brewhouse (163 votes)
Baa Baa’s family-like love for their fans was reciprocated with the votes. Baa Baa is in the top 3 every year, and they spent some time up there this year as well. They just lost steam after a few days despite many voters touting, “They upped my trading game.” Their upgrades have allowed them to do weekly releases, and they sell out every time thanks to all of their nationally-awarded beers. Check out their interview from back when they only had 4 taps and see how much they’ve changed since then.
“They make the best beer in multiple categories, it is highly tradable, they are currently ranked 5th on Untapped just surpassing Great Notion yesterday and they participate in every charity initiative put forth.”– Michelle L.
2019-2020 MVB Top 3
3 Klaus (527 votes)
Klaus probably spent the most time at the top, flipping back and forth with No Label. No Label is one of Houston’s oldest and biggest breweries, so that’s quite an accomplishment for the little German brewery off of Jones Rd. Their supreme German lagers and community-oriented approach has yielded a small army of very loyal, very passionate fans, and it’s so cool to see. “Best German biers I’ve had outside of Germany” was a common theme in their responses. When going out to breweries feels more normal one day, this is a spot that we wanna spend some more time at.
They give back to the community, have a passion to grow and invest in others. They also bring an amazing beer, German style, which is unique to the Houston area.– Dr. Jason B.
2 No Label (706 votes)
No Label was the 2018-2019 winner, and it’s partially due to their new owners reconsidering what it means to be one of Houston’s biggest. A handful of classics like Ridgeback, Brew of H, and Elda M, have been joined by a ton of new offerings like Sittin’ Sidehaze and other community-oriented collabs. Add all that to a slew of facility upgrades on the schedule, and a standout drive-through experience during all this COVID stuff, and that put No Label at the top spot for much of the voting. They lost their grip in the last 36 hours between Klaus and Ingenious, though. A few voters attributed their success to our very own Josh Olalde’s photos, but it’s so much more than that. Love it.
“No Label has gotten bigger and bigger but they’re always the same, laid back, welcoming, and inclusive brewery that they have been from the start. Every time I go there, I feel like I’m with old friends and they create such a great sense of community. Their beers are always consistent and great, their staff is the nicest, and it’s the one place I will always go to every time I come to Houston. It’s like a home away from home to me.”– Jessica S.
2019-2020 MVB Winner
1 Ingenious (854 votes)
The absurdly creative brewery in Humble is being rewarded for their creative concoctions. Sometimes the beer doesn’t even sound like beer with names like Peach Cobbler Double FroYo. Recently with their latest sparkling seltzers, sometimes it’s not even beer! Their constant heart for the community seemed to be what voters loved the most, but the crazy beer certainly doesn’t hurt. No matter what we write, shoot, design, etc., we’ll never try and take the credit for anybody’s success, but those new labels sure don’t hurt either.
Literally dozens of their responses listed something to the effect of, “I didn’t know beer could taste like this, and before Ingenious, I thought I hated beer,” but even more responses had to do with their community outreach.
Ingenious believes in the craft beer community. They invest time and money to give back to first responders and have shown to be extra responsible when looking out for the welfare of their customers.– Dean C.
Beers to you, Houston. 🍻