Photo courtesy of Shiner Beer.

One of the most iconic Texas breweries, Shiner Bock has created a culture around its brews for nostalgic and unfussy drinkers. And now even San Antonians who aren't drinking alcohol can be part of the Shiner gang.

On November 20, the brand (made at Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, Texas) announced its first-ever non-alcoholic series, Shiner Rodeo (styled Rode0).

It all starts with one beer: Rodeo Golden Brew, which according to a news release, will still taste like a Shiner beer even without the alcoholic kick — totaling less than 0.5 percent. (That's about as much or a little more than kombucha.)

"Styled after a classic American lager, this light and refreshing brew offers crisp and malty notes that are perfectly balanced by delicate esters and a gentle hop profile," it notes.

Rodeo Golden Brew will be available by January, when many people who are usually beer drinkers are experimenting with a pause — sometimes as "Dry January." The brewery will expand the line in the following year, including a red amber beer.

The release also pointed out a trend in 2023, which saw non-alcoholic sales rise more than 17 percent in Texas. This was a significant jump, but still less than in the rest of the country, where they rose 23 percent overall. It must have been enough to inspire change at a more than 100-year-old brewery — Shiner Bock's timeline places its first drops since "about" 1909.

This news comes six months after Spoetzl Brewery announced a new onsite distillery, K. Spoetzl Distilling Company. This addition enabled Shiner Bock to expand its portfolio to vodka, gin, moonshine, and eventually barrel-aged spirits still to come.

"Fans of Shiner have consistently requested non-alcoholic options to complement our more traditional beers," said Director of Brewery & Distillery Operations Tom Fiorenzi in the release. "We're proud to introduce the first of three non-alcoholic brews to our fans. Brewed using the same method as our iconic Shiner beers, the Shiner Rode0 line is authentically Shiner, just without the alcohol."

Ad Placement 300x100
Ad Placement 300x600

CultureMap Emails are Awesome

San Antonio's famous Western museum reprises art sale with history of pieces under $1k

art on the horizon

As it closes out 2023 and prepares for the future, the Briscoe Western Art Museum has an exciting lineup of events over the next few months. The marquee event is the annual Night of Artists exhibition and sale in March 2024, which transforms the museum into a vibrant showcase of contemporary Western art and culture.

Marking the Briscoe's 10th anniversary as a public institution, the Night of Artists brings together more than 280 new works by more than 85 artists. Starting with an Annual Briscoe Bison Society Collectors Summit and opening weekend dinner, the museum becomes a stage filled with the talent, passion, and vision of today's leading Western artists.

From paintings and sculpture to mixed media, the diversity of contemporary Western art will be on full display — non-collectors may view this as a good opportunity to check out new art before it disappears again into private collections.

Collectors will have a chance to participate in an auction (with estimated prices as low as a few thousand dollars and up to $50,000) and a popular "Luck of the Draw Sale" that makes things a little more accessible with fixed prices. The 2023 gallery featured prices as low as $650, and it appears that many pieces did not sell — so competition may not always be fierce.

What visitors will see
The event catalog features a dynamic range of contemporary visions of the American West. Viewers can expect to see works from artists like Teal Blake, who leverages his knowledge of ranching and cowboy culture to create intimate paintings of cowboys and ranch life.

Visitors will also find Gladys Roldan-de-Moras' passionate images of Spanish culture, Liang Yong's historically accurate Native American portraits, and Kevin Red Star's modern interpretations of heritage and identity on display.

Beyond appreciating the artworks, Night of Artists offers a feast for the senses. The opening weekend includes an elegant preview dinner and live auction, followed by Saturday's grand exhibition opening reception. For Western art enthusiasts, collectors, and the culturally curious, the Night of Artists is a premier destination event.

"Night of Artists highlights the continued vibrancy and relevance of Western art," said Briscoe president and CEO Liz Jackson in a press release. "Thanks to Night of Artists, talented artists, and dedicated enthusiasts, the museum is one of the preeminent homes of Western art in the world."

Following the opening weekend on March 22 and 23, the Night of Artists public exhibition and sale runs March 24 through May 5, 2024. Right now, the museum is asking interested parties to save the date; Tickets are not yet available, but they are expected to sell out.

More opportunities to experience the Briscoe
You don't have to wait until next year for a taste of the Briscoe's offerings. The museum has a slate of exhibitions and programs lined up for the end of 2023.

  • Now until January 22, 2024 — Photographer Anouk Masson Krantz's exhibition "American Cowboys" includes evocative images of real-life cowboys.
  • November 30 — The Briscoe will screen the documentaryExposing Muybridge, about pioneering photographer Eadweard Muybridge.
  • December 3 — Cowboy Santa visits the museum on a free-entry day filled with crafts and a scavenger hunt.

Hill Country's famous Salt Lick BBQ smokes out new location in Fredericksburg


A storied Central Texas barbecue joint is heading for the hills. Driftwood institution the Salt Lick BBQ is set to open a new outpost in Fredericksburg along the Highway 290 Wine Trail. Although an exact timeline has yet to be announced, day trippers can look forward to sopping up the restaurant’s signature vinegar-based sauce by the end of 2025.

Though the business lends its name to two satellites at the Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin airports, the upcoming outpost will only be the third full-sized eatery in the mini-chain. The current Dell Diamond Salt Lick in Round Rock replaced a shuttered Capital of Texas Highway location, but a planned restaurant in Grapevine was never executed.

According to a release, the 9,000-square-foot eatery will feature all the classic menu items of the flagship, including sandwiches, sides, and meats by the pound. There’s no word yet on whether diners will be able to take advantage of the popular family style option featuring all-you-can-eat brisket, sausage, and pork ribs.

Photo by Mackenzie Smith Kelley

The rambling restaurant will be part of an upcoming mixed-used development, The Sycamore. The 117-acre plot will cluster retail and hospitality concepts around a large central promenade, The Ellipse. The football field-sized stretch will flaunt landscaping, creek beds, and a bandstand to be used for seasonal programming.

Rendering courtesy of SA Partnership and Norris Design

Most tenants will be announced closer to the opening date, but developers promise a range of food and beverage options and retailers selling hats, boots, clothing, and jewelry. The Salt Lick will be joined by Salt Lick Cellars —a tasting room for The Salt Lick’s wine portfolio — and a still unannounced new concept from Salt Lick owner and pitmaster Scott Roberts.

“We could not think of a better place to plant our roots than in Fredericksburg,” said Roberts via the release. “We have found the perfect partner in The Sycamore and can’t wait to see the whole project come to fruition.”

2 downtown San Antonio bars deck the halls for festive Christmas pop-ups


First order of business: Rehearse saying, "Let's circle back to that in the new year." Or, if your work schedule doesn't allow such seasonal procrastination, start punctuating your speech with the odd "cough, cough." Everyone deserves to get lost in the indeterminate haze of the holiday season for at least one day.

For those who need a little help shedding workaday stress, two Christmas pop-up bars will do the trick. Miracle is returning to Downstairs at the Esquire Tavern for a second year, while tropical-themed Sippin' Santa will debut at Hugman's Oasis. Both concepts opened November 24 and run through December 31.

Miracle has been a Yuletide tradition since first popping up in New York City in 2014. Since then, the pop-up has grown into a seasonal franchise with over a hundred international bars. The San Antonio edition debuted at defunct bar Jet-Setter in 2019 before hopping over to Esquire in 2022.

Guests can look forward to gloriously gaudy decorations and kitschy glassware filled with seasonal flavors. Signature sips this year include the Carol Barrel, a fizzy koala-garnished quaff with Applejack, banana liqueur, and navy-strength rum; and the Snowball Old Fashioned, a gingerbread take on the classic served with round ice.

Companion concept Sippin' Santa is new to San Antonio. Though it started in 2015, the pop-up has gained steam since partnering with tiki legend Jeff "Beachbum" Berry in 2018. Now, the series boasts over 50 annual locations in North America.

While still Christmas-themed, Sippin' Santa adds a touch of island exotica, festooning palms with holiday baubles. The drinks keep the spirit with novelty mugs shaped like sharks, coconut shells, and hot tub-soaking Saint Nick.

Highlights include the North Pole Bowl, a potent mix of rhum agricole and Jamaican rum; the Holiday on Ice with vodka, cold brew, and ancho chile liqueur; and the Ho Ho Hot Buttered Rum with spiced honey.

The festivities occur during both bars' normal operating hours, but reservations are gobbled up quickly. Locals can book Miracle here and Sippin' Santa here.