Santa approved and elf tested, Houston is home to 20+ local breweries and many feature richly spiced brews to celebrate the holiday season. From gingerbread to chocolate/coffee and even Christmas tree flavored, local breweries are churning out some really cool seasonal beer selections you have to try.
For most of the world, Christmas comes once a year but BUFF brew knows that Santa comes whenever he likes, bearing gifts of fantastic flavor. Gingerbread Stout is a sweet, slightly roasty stout with big notes of nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves on the nose. They also have Merry Buffing XMAS IPA with fresh spruce tips. The beer smells like a Christmas tree in your glass - piney and dank with a subtle citrus nose. Fresh spruce tips give a strong pine flavor and Chinook and Amarillo hops meld to make the finish merry and bright.
Back Pew Brewing has two seasonal brews ready for the holidays. The Act of Balor Imperial Milk Stout is a keg only release and the Black Habit is just being put into cans. The German-style Schwarzbier has the look of a Sinner but the heart of a Saint. The beer is light and pleasant on the palate and the roasted grains bring a rich and complex character into the mix. Black Habit is lower in alcohol content, so you can easily indulge in as many rounds as you please.
Karbach Brewing Company has four different seasonal brews but one favorite is the “Yule Shoot Your Eye Out” brew. We double dog dare you to try it! The seasonal red ale is loaded with smooth caramel malt and a citrus twist. The popular brew is available until late December. The art on the can is brilliant and features the popular leg lamp from A Christmas Story movie.
No Label Brewing Company is celebrating the holidays with the Elda M Milk Stout. The beer is made with 10 different malts which impart rich flavors of toasted chocolate and a hint of coffee. The stout is creamy and sweet but not overly filling.
Saint Arnold’s “Christmas Ale” is a rich, copper colored, hearty ale perfect for the holiday season with a malty sweetness and spicy hop character. The generous use of five different malts is responsible for the full flavor and high alcohol level of this beer. You can also check out White Noise, which is available December - February. The crisp, citrusy Belgian-style Witbier is based on the original Celis White recipe with some oats added for a little extra body.
Under The Radar Brewery in Houston started with a $100 beer kit and is now one of the most popular spots in town! For seasonal brews, the Slam Dunkel as nice dark, caramel malts with a spicy yeast and a hint of hops. This Dunkelweizen is perfect for the cooler weather. Toast in the New Year with the seasonal Raspberry Love brew that includes tart raspberries for a light and refreshing holiday taste.
The seasonal beer at 8th Wonder brewery off Dallas Street is Astroturf. The Dry Hopped Cream Ale is a throwback cream ale dry-hopped with a healthy amount of Amarillo hops. The smooth, easy drinking beer is bolstered by a pungent floral, fruity and citrus aroma. Think of it like fruit cake in a glass.