31 Dec Top 18 of 2018 – A Year of Houston Beer in Review
The Top 18 Posts of 2018
2018 was a hell of a year for Houston beer. Top 9 is cool and all, but 9 simply isn’t enough!
We saw a few names grow from home brewers to laying the foundations for what will become some of Houston’s newest breweries in 2019 with CoalFox and Astral.
And we saw a few Houston home brewers take beer nerds by storm with garage batches that’d rival the taprooms of the greats here in town, like Secret Beach, Laser, and Wooden Bus.
Houston beer even made it to the front page of The Full Pint! (Hell yeah!) And we began using our platform and audience to give a voice to anybody that wanted to share with a monthly post. We added Houston’s craziest beer photographer Josh Olalde to the team, a rad chick named Katie, and after a newborn sabbatical Nick’s back in the saddle again.
We worked on some stickers with Houston’s own Wiley, and we still owe him some beer!
Great beers were brewed, tasted, and reviewed, and we even started selling ad space as well as developing partnerships with folks around the country to help spotlight Houston beer in other markets. We now have some of the best beer of Austin and San Antonio available in Houston via Hop Drop – Weathered Souls, Lazarus, Prairie, Austin Beer Garden Brewing, and Pinthouse Pizza come to name a few.
So. Much. Stuff.
While 2018 was a killer year for Houston beer, 2019 is sure to be even more amazing.
Here are 18 of the best posts that you – our loyal readers – read, shared, and reposted the most
This one making the top 18 is an indicator of something we’ve been saying for a while. All that lining up for can release stuff is played out. People have jobs, kids, and so on, and while we can all be tempted into ticking “rare” beers, availability trumps exclusivity every single time. It’s in need of an update with the recent news of Houston Haze coming in 6 packs to a store near you, but it’s New Year’s Eve, and we have food to cook (and a few store-bought beers to drink)!
Both interesting and ironic. Ironic that Top 17 of 2017 made the 17 spot – let the illuminati whispers begin. Also interesting that this was such a highly read post because it contains all of the highest read posts within. This is all too meta.
drink make good beer. It’s wild how each time we sit down and do an interview that these people make us feel like family despite telling us they’re super nervous, and Sydney and her family were no different. These are the most fun posts we put together, and it’s awesome to see Southern Yankee getting love on our site.
This one’s a bit of a shocker. The interview predates the haze craze that has made SpindleTap the polarizing topic of so many beer nerds’ conversations, and there’s even some bashing of hazy-IPAs. Hah! This goes down as one of the most fun interviews we did. We’ve gotta get an update on the calendar since so much has changed. If you’re reading this Garrison or Leo, let’s do it! If you’re everybody else in Houston that’s not those two, enjoy!
Ahh, YR. The nationally acclaimed best IPA in Texas. Yellow Rose was making the rounds long before the haze craze and rightly so. It’s an incredible beer. This one coming in at 14 is proof that the Houston beer culture is embracing hype beers but isn’t built on them. We love to see that.
Not only will these guys deliver the beer you want to your door, they’ll do it in the same day. None of this online subscription stuff where you wait for a month for your beer, or you get some random stuff. God, Hop Drop is a life saver. They’re cool dudes too. They recently celebrated their first birthday, so we did a quick follow up with them, and it’s worth a read.
The beer for the home team. With their prime EADO location within walking distance of BBVA Compass, Toyota Center, and Minute Maid Park, it’s no wonder (see what we did there) that 8th Wonder is associated with a day out at the ball game, and it’s no wonder people want to read about it. It’s one of our favorite spots to grab a beer before the game, or even during the game when our World Series Game 5 tickets were stolen – sore subject ask Chris or Tony next time you see them out.
This one’s a no-brainer. Craft beer ain’t cheap. This is the culmination of Houston’s best beer spots and their specials. Duh… This one’s constantly being updated, so if you know something we don’t, shoot us a line!
Rumors suck. We like to use our platform to squash them and politely discourage the mill from producing them. Some folks don’t like that we do that, and while their criticism has been vocal, they’re not only the minority, but they’re also likely the culprits, so we DGAF. 🙂 Cranky Britches rumors halfway came true, but not at all like the rumors would’ve had us all believe. That’s why it’s important to get the story from the horse’s, or in this case owner’s, mouth.
Yet another social media uproar of rumors that we wanted to get to the bottom of. Brian’s not just disappearing into the sunset, and No Label’s not being bought out.
Shiner’s been doing some creative new stuff in the last year. From their attempts at a hazy IPA to a s’mores beer, they’re still craft, and apparently they’re still important enough for people to want to read about even though this was a pretty boring post and one of the first we ever did. Reading it is a little embarrassing, but it’s top 18!
These always cause some panty bunching. We grabbed every can, bottle, and crowler of Houston stouts that we could easily get our hands on, and we sat down with Jon Denman at Drink of Ages Pub for a blind tasting. We even grabbed a rando that none of us knew for the sake of fairness. It was glorious. The results were half shocking and half duh.
Who has done the most for Houston beer in the last year? No, for real. Tell us. Then vote. Then look at the results to see if your vote was of the majority. <– That’s what a bunch of y’all did, and we’re thankful for it. This year when we do it, we’re going to add a twist that’s sure to make things interesting.
Because “Hey Siri, ‘find good beer near me.'” doesn’t work real well. This map is in sore need of an update, but it’s super time consuming to keep up with it and all the writing, coordinating photo shoots, interviews, so on. We’re always open to the idea of some help if you’re a decent writer and knowledgeable beer drinker!
Crawfish season is short lived but long remembered. The backyard get togethers that happen around these little mud bugs just wouldn’t be the same without some cold beer. I guess that’s why people want to find the best beer pairings.
This one’s an oldie but a goodie. It was the first time we did something like this, and so much has changed in the Houston beer landscape that we’re going to have to do it again. However, it’s still an interesting read.
This one being so high on the list is another indicator that the Houston beer market is far from maturity. Not everybody knows what a sour beer is, or what a crowler is, or how a sour beer isn’t the same as a skunked beer. This is proof that there are many, many, many that don’t know.
We’re constantly working on this page because it’s clear that it’s important to y’all. We’re also behind. But it’s almost time to crack open a beer, so maybe we’ll get to it tomorrow.
With topics like skunked beer becoming a perennial, and other taken for granted topics like proper glassware making the top of the ranks, it just goes to show you how far Houston beer has come as well as how far it has to go.
We’re getting there – hell, depending on how you measure, we’ve been there and done that! But more on that in 2019.
As always, thanks for reading and sharing. We love you.
Here’s to more releases, more shares, meeting more of you in person, and maybe even adding a few more writers to the team. Beers to you, Houston! Be safe!🍺