Antonelli's Cheese Shop is partnering with Blue Owl Brewing to put on a once in a lifetime (or at least once in a year) tasting experience. This class will feature 7 cheeses, 4 beer pairings (mainly sours!), with 7 sundry cheese pairings (like Jams, Chocolates, Honey, etc.) to tie everything together. It's beer and cheese. No need to overthink it, it just works.
While news of the brewery has left craft beer fanatics salivating, not everyone on the Eastside has welcomed the news with such enthusiasm. Blue Owl has become the latest totem of the diverse neighborhood's struggle with gentrification. In an area where public housing stands in the shadows of ultra-modern homes, many neighbors have expressed concerns of rising property taxes and dislocation. Critics cite traffic concerns at the busy intersection and the lack of appropriate public input in the permitting process.
According to Holly neighborhood resident Matthew LaBarbera, the brewery's proximity to single-family residences is a very real concern: \"We've lived in this neighborhood for 19 years, and over the years we've seen some very serious accidents at the intersection. It has nothing to do with the fact that it is beer. My biggest problem is the traffic and parking ... It feels like it's going to overwhelm our neighborhood,\" he says.
A zoning change is not necessary for on-site brewing, but it is needed to sell beer for consumption or takeaway, i.e., a taproom. \"We want to have a small taproom for our brewery where we can sell our beer directly to the consumer,\" explains Young, adding that the restrictive covenants are a way to clarify the purpose of the taproom. \"Future leaseholders of our space will have access to full CS-1 [commercial liquor sales] rights, meaning a cocktail lounge could move in if we are no longer there. The restrictive covenants were our and our landlord's show of good faith that the intent is not to convert the space beyond our intent of a tasting room,\" says Young.
As a result of neighborhood conversations, Young and Shaffer have decided to postpone the request for zoning change to give the neighborhood the opportunity to see that the tasting room will not adversely affect the community. The tasting room will open regardless, but Blue Owl will not be allowed to sell beer samples or any beers to-go.
\"Our mission is to be a part of the neighborhood and be judged by our business practices and not restricted because our particular idiosyncrasies arising from the alcohol codes of Austin, Travis County, and Texas. Because of the highly charged political ramifications of development in East Austin, Suzy and I were admittedly out of our league. We were part of a larger context with the zoning change request, and we accept that and move on,\" said Young. \"We look forward to being a part of the dynamic Eastside and showing Austin what we're about with beer and a great business.\"
Another selling point is that the friendly staff really knows their beer. When they explain the process of sour-mashing, or describe the difference between an IPA and a pale ale, you can really feel the passion they have for what they do.
Expect smoked, grilled and fried fish collars, frog legs, rabbit legs, and the wings of quail, duck, chicken and turkey, all served family style with beer pairings, followed by dessert. All seating is communal, so expect to share a booth or table and make new friends. Tickets are $72 per person for this 5 course dinner with beer pairings for each course. Gratuity is included.
The idea for this unique brewery comes from Jeff Young and Suzy Shaffer, alums of Black Star Co-op. \"As many ideas do, this one developed over beers. It was a pretty simple formation: I wanted to start a business and Jeff was ready to start brewing on his own,\" Shaffer tells CultureMap.
The budding Blue Owl Brewing's initial lineup includes a starter pack of beers: Spirit Animal pale ale, Little Boss session wheat, Professor Black cherry stout, and Van Dayum! red ale. The difference between Blue Owl's beers and your typical ales is the sour taste, a coveted beer flavor that is rare and hard to achieve on a commercial level.
For non-beer nerds, a sour beer (typically one of the Belgian variety) is a brew that intentionally retains its sourness from the fermenting stage. The term \"sour mash\" refers to a specific fermenting process that is usually used in making liquors like bourbon, but in this case is used on beer. \"Sour mashing is a brewing technique that uses naturally occurring bacteria and yeast found on the grain to produce acidity and tartness into the resulting beer,\" explains Young.
\"Blue Owl does only sour-mashed beer and we have therefore designed the entire brewery around the sour-mashing process,\" says Young. \"I designed a specialized piece of equipment, the MIU (Modular Inoculation Unit, pronounced \"mew\"), that efficiently and consistently uses grain to sour our beers.\"
Canning operations at Blue Owl Brewing are also in full swing. Keep an eye out for Blue Owl on the shelves in early November if \"all goes well,\" says Shaffer. Whole Foods Market, H-E-B, and Specs are big-name distributors that have signed up to carry the beers, in addition to Whip In, Quickie Pickie, WhichCraft, and even Jester King Brewery. Six-packs will be priced around $10.
\"Dessert comes before dinner with this little slice of heaven in a glass. These Pastry Gose's have all the ingredients that you would use if baking it yourself. Be on the lookout for these limited variations. Our first batch is Sour Peach Cobbler, our take on a southern classic dessert. The peach flavor and aroma dominate as the cinnamon, vanilla, and salt build the filling and crust goodness. p.s. This beer has milk sugar.\" - Blue Owl Brewing
Every Thursday in June from 4 to 6 p.m. you can fill up a GALLON of beer cheaper than a gallon of gas. We stopped by this past Thursday to see it for ourselves, and lucky us, sours were $4.43 and non-sours were just $3.99 a gallon! 59ce067264