BIG BEND BREWING CO
Visiting Big Bend Brewery in Alpine, Texas was an experience. It had everything we look for in a brewery: cool, in this case industrial, setting; friendly, beer-enthusiastic pourers; and, of course, good beer.
We arrived on beautiful Wednesday afternoon and found a fairly rowdy scene, although not so crowded that we couldn’t get our own dog-friendly picnic table on what seemed like a section of their concrete loading dock. The loading dock sat outside the tasting room, which was really just a section of the big warehouse where they produce the beer. Sorry: we were enjoying ourselves so much that we forgot to take pictures of the place.
The pours were generous. Ok, after our initial tasting, they were just regular pints, but they kept giving us beers on the house. My wife was driving so I was ordering her halves for each of my pints; they would charge me for the pint, but not the half. Toward the end of our stay, as they were closing, they simply topped off anyone’s beers who was still drinking, for free. It was very welcoming and a nice way to promote the beer. I made sure I bought a case while I was still able to find the beer in Texas (they do seem to have pretty decent distribution, at least in western Texas).
We expect the cool vibe comes from the founder and initial brewmaster, Steve Anderson, who, sadly, passed away in December, just three years after opening Big Bend Brewery. Steve was an active member of the Austin punk music scene in the ’80s as a member of bands such as Toxic Shock and Scratch Acid.
Anyway, this place is definitely worth a visit, particularly considering it’s in a really cool town on the doorstep to Big Bend National Park.