For some, fall means airing out the mothball smell from their sweaters or snuggling up with a warm bowl of soup. For us, it means getting our beer on.
The weather may be cranky but it opens up a world of possibilities, from the brown ales and stouts we sip on a cold, rainy night to the patio pounders we down when its sunny — and that’s without even mentioning the autumn seasonals. Try them all this month at San Antonio’s best brew-centric bars.
The four locations of this mini San Antonio chain carries brews from cult out-of-state makers like Tallgrass and Prairie Artisan Ales, but they specialize in Texas beer. A rotating draft wall ensures there is always something new to try, from light lagers to bold porters. If you like one of the beers you try in the bright, light-filled spaces, you can even purchase a growler to take home.
Burleson Yard Beer Garden
Enjoy fall’s crisper weather at this funky haunt on the Near East Side, outfitted with a rainbow of metal lawn chairs and stools. Local suds are the main event, but the joint easily settles drinking arguments with a fun menu of cocktail favorites like piña coladas and chamoy margaritas.
Caddyshack fans will recognize the inspiration behind this dive, a ragtag combination of driving range, entertainment complex, and bar. In keeping with the spirit of the classic Bill Murray comedy, there’s nothing fancy on the menu. After all, sometimes folks just want to down a cold one while playing a couple rounds of Golden Tee.
This unassuming spot, located on the Far West Side, is just as much of a community hub as it is a bar, with live music and bring-your-own vinyl nights filling the weekly event schedule. The 29 tap menu (okay, one is a root beer) covers a wide variety of styles, from light hefeweizens and shandies to hoppy IPAs. Can’t decide on which to choose? Order the flight with four five-ounce pours for only $8.
Flying Saucer Draught Emporium
We know this beer nerd haven isn’t locally owned, but with more than 100 beers on tap, it has earned its place on any hophead’s list. The encyclopedic approach means the drinkery has something for every taste, from a Bud Light can to an IPA from Tampa’s highly respected Cigar City Brewing to a bottle of rare Chimay. The food is everything one would want with a pint: pizza, hot wings, and loaded nachos.
Southerleigh Fine Food & Brewing
Les Locke, the head brewer at this Pearl anchor, makes some of the most daring beers in town, with unexpected flavors perfectly paired with chef Jeff Balfour’s creative comfort cuisine. The sours are particularly notable, with vegetables and herbs adding extra oomph to the THOT (That Heirloom Over There) gose and cucumbers freshening up the delightfully named kettle sour, Koalas, Cocker Spaniels, and Unicorns.