Wednesday, October 18, 2017

5 Stones Artisan Brewery Reopens in New Braunfels, Other San Antonio-Area Breweries to Keep An Eye On

Posted By , and on Wed, Oct 18, 2017 at 8:00 AM

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click to enlarge JESSICA ELIZARRARAS
  • Jessica Elizarraras
Brew Updates
By Jessica Elizarraras & Jeremy Banas


San Antonio’s brewing industry just keeps on growing. Though we’ve seen some changes like the re-organization of Branchline Brewing going from a stand-alone operation to being brewed at Alamo Beer Co., overall San Antonio keeps chugging right along. In the next six months, we’ll see three new breweries begin operations in the Alamo City. Here’s what we know about Künstler Brewing, Brew Monkey Beer, and Roadmap Brewing.

Künstler Brewing has been a labor of love and more. Owner/head brewer Vera Deckard and her husband Brent started down this path in 2014 with the same hopes and dreams as other brewers: making quality beer. Bringing a passion for brewing that started at home, and after overcoming various legal issues with their previous name and some community opposition, the Deckards are just about ready to serve up their tasty brews.

Shooting for a November opening, Deckard and her husband have just begun brewing on their new Brewbuilt brand system in anticipation. Their lineup will include IPAs, English styles, Belgian and German styles made using local ingredients such as honey, herbs, cactus paddles and various peppers.

After a year of renovations to their South Flores location, the décor is pays homage to both Old and New World taverns. With a focus on traditional German fare, the neighborhood brewpub will feature plenty of outdoor seating, a large community table inside (as well as many tables) and, with a nod to its German background, even a deli display case. Piped-in music will grace the main hall, creating a relaxed atmosphere, while the auxiliary room off of the main tap room will feature multiple TVs, old-school arcade, and roll up garage doors giving a livelier vibe. Located at 302 East Lachapelle, Künstler will feature a variety of styles that are sure to please most palates.

Construction on Islla St. Brewing Co.’s frame is set to begin in the coming weeks, but San Antonians already got a taste for the microbrewery opened by brothers Josh and Joaquin Peña. The Corpus Christi natives are bringing in a little bit of sabor to area breweries with their 1,200-square-foot brewery inside the LocalSprout Food Hub on 503 Chestnut Street.

Opened as a homage to their coastal roots and their grandfather Ricardo Peña, Islla St. Brewing will feature beers such as a Chola Blonde, named after a cheeky tía; a 1606 Belgian saison named after their home on Islla St. in Corpus; a Mexican Hot Chocolate stout that nods to the family’s New Year’s Eve traditions; and a Suavecito 37, smooth brown ale with hints of pecan.
“We bumped into Stephen Paprocki (of Texas Black Gold Garlic) and he’s been a real advocate for us going into the space,” Joaquin said.

Paprocki will expand his footprint at the food incubator as well by adding a kitchen, which will be used to host beer pairings with local chefs.

Though a little farther off, San Antonio will welcome two more breweries in 2018: Roadmap Brewing Co. and Brew Monkey Beer Co., both of which have Texas transplants behind them. With an approximate opening date of late May 2018, Roadmap Brewing Co. is the is the brainchild of Pittsburgh native Dustin Baker, who took to San Antonio after several visits with his wife to visit his sister.

Baker, who, like many, caught the brewing bug after a homebrew kit was gifted to him.

Once in the Alamo City, he felt the urge to open his own brewery, seeing a bustling, but still largely untapped market. After months of looking for a location, Baker just took possession of the keys to his location at North Alamo and 8th Street. Baker came upon his brewery’s name after talking with his architect and wishing there was a roadmap to opening a brewery. He’ll be working with a seven-barrel system from Alpha Brewing Operations. Roadmap will keep 95 percent of their brews on site, with the other 5 percent distributed within only a few blocks of the brewery. Roadmap will feature nine beer taps and a cider, as well as offering plenty of space for an indoor beer garden with games like corn hole. Look for year around offerings to include a kölsch, pale ale, saison, and porter.

Opening a few months later in the fall of 2018, owner and head brewer *James Hansen is hoping to make Brew Monkey Beer a destination within San Antonio. The Californian began his brewing career cleaning tanks at Devil’s Canyon Brewing in San Carlos, and would eventually go on to handle production procurement and brewing for Gordon Biersch Brewing Company’s production facility.

Hansen met his wife, a native of San Antonio, in San Jose and after many trips to visit her family, fell in love with the Alamo City. Not long after relocating, he hatched his plan for Brew Monkey Beer, a name derived from a system he used to work on that was described as being so easy a monkey could use it. Hansen plans to take his decade-plus industry experience and put it to use on a 10-barrel ABS Systems brewhouse that will be located off DeZavala near I-10. The 3,500-square-foot brewery will include a dog park and plenty of outdoor seating.

Hansen plans to have 10 house beers, including a cream ale, steam beer, session IPA and Irish stout, along with several seasonal offerings. Hansen doesn’t plan to keep all the brewing knowledge to himself — he plans to eventually create multiple brewing educational programs for homebrewers and those just looking to learn more about the malted beverage they love.

*The article has been updated with James Hansen's correct name.

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