05/21/15 1:00pm

Lightning Logistics and SpindleTap Brewery, 10622 Hirsch Rd., Northside, Houston

Beer and trucking: 2 great Texas pastimes will unite under one roof this September, once the brand new SpindleTap Brewery opens up its brewing operation and tavern inside the brand-new tilt-up warehouse at 10622 Hirsch Rd. built for trucking company Lightning Logistics (pictured here under construction in a photo from February). SpindleTap’s facility is taking up 10,000 of the building’s 70,000 sq. ft., reports the Houston Business Journal‘s Joe Martin. (It’ll also include an outdoor patio space and possibly a dog run.) Much of the remainder of the building, which is located just south of Little York, a superblock east of I-69, will serve as headquarters for Lightning Logistics’s 250-truck fleet.


10/02/14 1:15pm

Smoke Over New Karbach Brewery, Dacoma St. at Karbach St., Dacoma, Houston

If you’re wondering, like the person who took this photo earlier today, what the story is behind the smoke seen here coming out of the top of the new Karbach Brewing Co. building under construction at the corner of Karbach St. and Dacoma St., just west of Mangum Rd., there’s no need to worry: A small fire at the the construction site was put out quickly a short while ago with minimal damage, according to a company rep.

Karbach was rated last year as one of the fastest-growing craft breweries in the U.S. The new 2-story, 19,000-sq.-ft. brewery building adjacent to its existing facility was designed by Three Square Design Group, and will include a public tap room and kitchen, along with a special-event space upstairs.

Photo: Swamplot inbox

Your Beer Is Safe
08/22/14 1:30pm

Brewery Incubator and League of Extraordinary Brewers Brewpub, 907 Franklin St., Suite 150, Downtown Houston

“Never would a game of strip Twister be so badly regretted,” writes Lucrece Borrego in announcing the sudden closure of her innovative Downtown food-business incubator turned brewery-incubator business on the ground floor of the Bayou Lofts building at 907 Franklin St. An eviction notice the two-time startup-startup starter was handed by an attorney representing her landlord as Borrego was cooking for a steak-night “bottle share” event last Friday cited several reasons for the termination of her lease, most of them focusing on items encountered in a common-area hallway outside the business: empty beer kegs and boxes (Borrego says they were left after deliveries), “personal items” (likely including a motorcycle, a source tells Swamplot) — and a live game of naked Twister.

“Indeed,” Borrego writes, “I had agreed to host a naked game night: a completely private event that takes place at bars all over Houston regularly. We covered all the windows and had someone working the door. Only one thing went wrong.


Downtown Brewery Startup Space Evicted
06/24/14 1:45pm

2505 Mason St. and 115 Hyde Park Blvd., Avondale, Houston

2505 Mason St. and 115 Hyde Park Blvd., Avondale, HoustonA reader sends Swamplot photos of this TABC notice posted on the door of 2505 Mason St. in Avondale. That’s the side address of the Pictures Plus framing company and Hyde Park Gallery building, whose entrance is around the corner — and under the David Adickes sculpture of a bewhiskered telephone (at far left in the top photo) — at 115 Hyde Park Blvd. The notice announces a Brewheme Brewery coming to the property, and lists 307 Fairview as the applicant’s address. That spot, one block up and 2 blocks over, is the home of Montrose bar Boheme.

Photos: Swamplot inbox

Pictures Plus Beer?
06/19/14 10:45am

Future Home of Allen's Landing Brewing Company, 3540 Oak Forest Dr., Oak Forest, Houston

Does beer taste better in glass or metal containers? The draught beers of a new craft brewery will soon be bubbling in yet another cleaned-up metal structure in Houston — this one the former Fredrick’s Auto Repair in the southern edge of Oak Forest. 3540 Oak Forest Dr. will soon be home to the brand-new Allen’s Landing Brewing Company, the company announced on its Facebook page.

Photo: Allen’s Landing Brewing Co.

Opens in Front
06/18/14 10:00am

REFORMED OIL WORKER TYPES GIVING UP PUMP JACK, OPENING NEW BREWERY NEAR THE WILLOWBROOK MALL Future Home of 11 Below Brewery, 6820 Bourgeois Rd., HoustonWhy are the owners of the microbrewery set to open later this year in this industrial building in the Four Season Business Park at 6820 Bourgeois Rd., a mile southeast-ish of the Willowbrook Mall, calling themselves the 11 Below Brewing Co.? Should their beers be served that cold? “Start with the oilfield, and move to the brewing industry, just like our founders,” the company explains on its Facebook page. “There’s 42 gallons in a barrel of crude oil, but only 31 gallons in a barrel of beer. See what we did there?” You should also see that the original name, Pump Jack Brewing Co., encountered some “trademark drama,” according to the founders, prompting the change. [11 Below Brewing] Photo with superimposed logo: 11 Below

05/14/13 10:00am

A new site plan from Town in City Brewing Co. was approved by the planning commission last month, finally clearing the way for that brewery that would be made out of a trucked-in kit to be put together. The microbrewery, taproom, and outdoor garden on this lot near 1125 W. Cavalcade in Sunset Heights were all supposed to be done by now — or so brewers Justin Engle and Steven Macalello were telling their investors in November, when the Houston-fabricated steel parts first came rolling onto their 9,714-sq.-ft property. But the required 25-ft. setback from a major thoroughfare like W. Cavalcade threw a wrench in their plans.


02/28/13 3:30pm

A SETBACK SETBACK FOR HEIGHTS MICROBREWERY Justin Engle and Steven Macalello want to build a microbrewery at this 9,714-sq.-ft. lot that they own on Cavalcade near the intersection of Main, Studewood, and 20th St. in the Heights; Swamplot reported in November that Engle and Macalello were constructing a tap room, brewery, and beer garden from a trucked-in kit of Houston-fabricated steel parts; they told investors then that they would be open by now. So where’s the beer? The brewers write on their blog that the city rejected their plans on account of the 25-foot setback requirement from a major road like Cavalcade: “Essentially,” the brewers write, “Planning and Development staff would rather have us create a sea of concrete and asphalt in front of our building, than let us preserve green garden space inside urban Houston.” But an update yesterday suggests that the taps just might flow, after all: “In a last minute meeting with City Planning and Development staff and director, we went through all of the plans and their pros and cons,” they write. “As a result, our architects have a lot to do.” But the brewers do say they think they’ll soon have something the city will be ready to approve. [Town in City Brewing Co.; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Town in City Brewing Co.

01/14/13 1:07pm

A NEW MOON TOWER PHASE It just takes awhile to remake a potty-mouthed wild-game hot-dog shack, but East Downtown’s Moon Tower Inn has finally reopened after 15 months — with some historical upgrades to the decor at 3004 Canal: “The new tap wall, kitchen and brewhouse are made from shipping containers and reclaimed building materials. For example, [Co-owner Brandon] Young says that the metal siding used to be a barn on the Stephen F Austin University campus, and there are wooden planks from a Louisiana slaves’ quarters.” [Eater Houston] Photo: Marty E.

11/07/12 1:02pm

Here’s the lot in the 1100 block of West Cavalcade, a few hundred feet east of the intersection of Main, Studewood, and 20th St. in the Heights, where a new microbrewery calling itself Town in City Brewing Co. (after a previous name, Yard Sale Brewery, got nixed) plans to build a beer campus from kit parts. The kit arrived on a flatbed truck a week or 2 ago: a collection of steel parts from Houston’s Rigid Global Buildings, selected with help from Rigid’s catalog by the Town in City brewers:


04/09/12 11:24am

MOON TOWER INN’S BICYCLE PARKING SCORE Whenever it gets around to reopening as a brewery, Second Ward hotdog HQ Moon Tower Inn will still have only a single off-street parking spot — thanks to an accommodation agreed to by the planning commission. Owner Evan Shannon agreed to provide rack space for 40 bicycles instead of the 5 additional car spaces that would have otherwise been required at 3004 Canal St. Helpful in securing the exception from the city: a few bike-riding employees — and plenty of on-street parking in the food stand’s mostly industrial neighborhood. [Houston Chronicle; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Marty E.

02/17/12 10:47am

WTF IS TAKING THE SHIPPING CONTAINERS SO LONG AT THE MOON TOWER INN An only slightly cleaned-up report on the progress of the brewery and shipping-container redo at the Canal St. bar, straight from the Moon Tower Inn Facebook page: “as you all should know, we’re late for everything and some time’s we just plain don’t show up. but DO NOT WORRY, moon tower will be OPEN SOON. using new technology (shipping containers etc) is tricky business and moves a lil slow with our fine city. so, we’re not gonna say exactly when we’ll be back open yet ’cause we’re ass holes like that and we like the suspense. but, our brewery equipment is damn near built and the containers for the kitchen and bar are being fitted at a welding yard and are almost ready to bring on-site! so… everything’s a go! SEE YOU THIS SPRING . . .” [Moon Tower Inn on Facebook, via Eater Houston; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Eddie S.

01/05/12 10:45am

MOON TOWER INN’S NEW SHIPPING CONTAINER BEER COOLER A few details on the brewery redo taking place on the hotdog reinvention grounds of the (currently shuttered) Moon Tower Inn at 3004 Canal St. in the Second Ward, from blogger Leslie Sprague: “One of the two new shipping containers being used to renovate the old space, to expand the kitchen and the tap wall to 42 taps, will be a walk-in cooler for cold storage. The brewhouse will be set-up in part of the office space, behind the old ordering counter. I wasn’t even aware there was an office. They have a 3 1/2 barrel brewhouse on order from Portland Kettleworks and are expecting delivery in mid-February. That’s definitely cutting it close to the planned February reopening.” [Lushtastic] Photo: Marty E.

10/24/11 5:42pm

More details about City Acre Brewing Co., the brewery the owners of this home adjacent to the Eastex Freeway just south of Parker Rd. plan to open late next year: Chron beer blogger Ronnie Crocker says Matt Schlabach and Meredith Borders had envisioned turning their 2,700-sq.-ft. home at 3421 Folger St. into a brewery when they bought it back in July 2009 for $210,000. The freeway-side oddity took 6 years to build and was completed way back in 1983. Schlabach’s vision: a bar taking over his foyer and guest bedroom in front; customers lounging on couches upstairs, sitting at tables on the front porch, or milling about the garden acreage.


09/27/11 2:28pm

This metal-sheathed warehouse at 2032 Karbach St. in the industrial area off Dacoma St. near Dyer Stadium used to be home to craft and imported beer distributor C.R. Goodman. Now a bunch of former Goodman employees have transformed it into the Karbach Brewing Company brewery — which held its inaugural tour over the weekend. Among the commitments of Karbach and its brewer, former Flying Dog CEO Eric Warner: Keeping their 5 craft brews in metal. Karbach beers are available only at area bars and restaurants so far (delivered in kegs by the company’s single delivery truck); starting in January 3 of them should be available for purchase in aluminum cans, too.