Brew a Beer for the 2015 Keep Austin Beered Pro-Am Competition

Published on March 31st, 2015
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Independence Brewing Company and the Austin ZEALOTS present the Independence Brewing Co. Pro-Am, part of the annual Keep Austin Beered Pro-Am Competition Series.

Brew a beer in BJCP sub-category 12A. Brown Porter or 12B. Robust Porter, and if you win, you and Independence Brewing Co. Head Brewer Brannon Radicke will brew your recipe and enter it into the 10th Annual GABF Pro-Am in 2015.

All homebrewing entrants must be members of the American Homebrewers Association (AHA) at the time the original homebrew entry is submitted for competition as well as when the Pro-Am entry is judged (late September, 2015).

AHA membership of the winning homebrewer will be verified by the AHA. You can never have been an employee on the brewing staff of any brewery, and you can never have been an employee of Independence Brewing Co. in any capacity (GABF rule).

To enter:

  • Brew a beer in Cat. 12A or 12B of the BJCP guidelines
  • Print and fill out the recipe form and bottle label form
  • Bring two bottles (11 to 16 ounce bottles), along with the recipe form and $5 cash per entry between May 1 – 9 to one of the drop-off locations:
    • Austin Homebrew Supply — 9129 Metric, Austin, TX, 78758
    • SoCo Homebrew – 4930 South Congress Avenue, Suite 307, Austin, TX, 78745
    • Austin Zealots Monthly Meeting – Saturday, May 9 (location TBA)

You must write your AHA number on your recipe form and bottle labels or it will be disqualified.

Additional Details:

Independence Brewing Co. will make all efforts to convert the recipe to a production level, but reserves the right to make reasonable substitutions. Independence Brewing Co. will make a reasonable attempt to schedule the brew session when the winner can participate.

The judges will select the best representation and the winner will be announced at the AHA Austin Rally on May 17 at Independence Brewing Co., and will be informed by email or phone. The judges’ decision is final.

The beer will be brewed on the 3.5 BBL pilot system at Independence Brewing Co. and every attempt will be made to enter it in the GABF Pro-Am competition (there is a limit on the number of entries). The beer will be available in our tasting room for purchase at a date to be announced.

The 2015 Great American Beer Festival (GABF) will be held in Denver from September 24 – 26, 2015. More details from the Brewers Association here.

Fine Print:

The winner of this contest must sign a licensing agreement, which limits and protects the way the GABF trademark is used, prior to the submission of entries to the GABF. GABF Pro-Am entries submitted by breweries will compete in a best-of-show style judging, during the regular GABF judging. The GABF Style Guidelines and GABF judge panel will be used for the judging.

Judges will determine the top three entries in the GABF Pro-Am Competition, which will be awarded Gold, Silver, and Bronze GABF Pro-Am Competition medals during the GABF awards ceremony. Medals will be issued to both the winning brewery and the winning homebrewer.

You can be disqualified at any point for not following all of the rules.

Questions? Contact our event organizer Debbie at debbie at or the KAB Pro-Am competition organizer Mark Schoppe at mschoppe AT

THANK YOU TO Austin Homebrew Supply and SoCo Homebrew. Please support these great local businesses!!

Published in categories: Contests, Events

Besides making it look better, how has our tasting room changed?

Published on February 20th, 2015
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While 2014 was the year we moved into our new production space and celebrated our 10th Anniversary, we are still busy making changes and we’re dead set on making 2015 even better! That’s what brewers do, we are constantly tinkering, adjusting, and improving.

At the beginning of 2015, we set the goal for improving our tasting room. Our mission was to create a better space for gathering to enjoy beer (aka hang out) and learn about beer through occasional beer classes, foodie events, film screenings, and other ideas we haven’t even imagined yet. We were fortunate to have a great designer and the support of a community-driven funding effort to help our cause.

While not every single design element was completed, we are very excited about the progress we’ve made in transforming our beat up old tasting room into a new space that is ready to host 10 more years of good times. We ask you, our guests and friends, to transition with us and give us feedback!

It’s hard to make changes – but after 10 years and some major legislative rule changes – we are excited to be able to offer a wider variety of offerings in our tasting room. You will NOT need to purchase a glass to enjoy a beer in our tasting room. Instead, we are proud to offer beer in 4 oz samplers or flights, 10 oz and 16 oz pours.  Because we’ve been known to draw a crowd, we will also sell our beer by the can (for quick service outside).

We are excited that everyone is excited! We are also nervous because we want this change to be smooth and our execution perfect. All we ask is that you bear with us if we are human (not perfect) and share your feedback as we embark on our new tasting room experience.


The new pricing allows for samplers of our classic and limited releases, both 10 oz and 16 oz of our classic and limited releases, and 10 oz pours for any beer that is over 8% ABV. No longer are you beholden to a strict buy the glass scheme. We encourage visitors to sample flights as well as full pints!

Here is a link to our menu and pricing for Feb 21st.


One of the things we heard the most from people last year is that they wished the tasting room would be open more often, especially on the weekends. We listened! Our new tasting room hours (commencing on Feb 21st) are: Thursdays: 4-8 pm, Fridays: 4-9 pm, and Saturdays 1-7 pm.


This month we will be showing off our Lupulust Tripel and Hoppy Diver Session IPA. We will post about special casks we tap from week to week. We are also very excited about the 3.5 bbl pilot brew system that we’re installing to offer unique beers for the tasting room later in the spring. We will always have something worthy of making a trip to the brewery for you to try.


We love our dogs, and yes, we are guilty of wanting to bring them everywhere (we get it). The rules are that all dogs must remain on leash, and dogs are not allowed in the production area. this means the outside area, and you will not be able to bring your dog on a tour. If your dog loves to go everywhere you go, then please, bring what you need for your dog (water bowl, leash). And please respect other guests by keeping your dog on a leash.


Any outside alcohol – it’s against our permit!

Outside glassware – since we are not selling a glass, we don’t need you to bring a glass. We have plenty! We are now charging for beer by 4 oz, 10oz, 12 oz, 16 oz offerings.

Sad faces – the brewery is a happy place. Please consult a team member if you need a free high five!


Aside from the time we changed our pricing from $5 a glass to $7 a glass back in 2008, this will likely be the craziest change for our most loyal friends. While I am old enough to remember this, most of you are not. The brewery has to change with the times and we know deep down y’all want us to be able to pay our bills and keep making great beer! Our most frequent guests should check out our Mug Club, which offers superb discounts and member benefits. Word to the wise, no need to bring your glass from now on.






Published in categories: Events, Uncategorized

Tasting Room Renovation Crowdfund Update

Published on February 6th, 2015
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The back cabinets and lab have been demolished, and the mural has been temporarily relocated. The new tasting room walk-in has been installed as well as new dry wall, and our new bar cabinets are on their way!

We could still use your help — our crowdfunding campaign ends on February 10, and we still have quite a way to go! We are not quite 1/3 to our goal.

By contributing to this fundraising effort, you are helping us get this renovation “fast tracked” at a time when we are focused on costs associated to our new 60 BBL production capacity brewhouse.

Expanded hours, new pricing that will feature flight selections from 14 different taps! With the arrival of our 3.5 BBL pilot system in mid-spring, we will also be offering special releases that will only be available in our tasting room.

Check out our Indiegogo crowdfund campaign page for more updates. You can also follow the progress on our Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Published in categories: Expansion, Uncategorized

Support Independence Brewing Co. efforts to create a comfortable environment for our community

Published on January 17th, 2015

Independence Brewing has seen a lot of growth and changes since we started in 2004. We could not have grown the brewery and continued to do what we love without the support of the community.

As we enter this next chapter, we want to involve the community even more in achieving our goals. We’ve reached our major goal of installing a new brewing system, but we still have much to do. First and foremost, we want to make our tasting room a more comfortable environment for our friends and community to enjoy beer. Our goals are to increase the number of taps, improve the bar and tables, and most importantly, we want to recognize our supporters through this fundraising effort.

We’ve come us with some really cool ideas for how you can be a part of our new tasting room. From a special, limited release glass or t-shirt, a Mug Club membership, your name emblazoned on our wall of stars, a dedicated chair at the locals table, to the opportunity to brew a special release beer of your own. We hope you will support us in any way you can:

Published in categories: Expansion

Construction on Todd Lane

Published on September 19th, 2014
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Due to some construction in the area, southbound Todd Lane will be closed to through traffic. We apologize about the inconvenience! Here’s a map with the alternative route highlighted. Keep in mind, we make beer for a living, not maps, so excuse the quality!

If you are coming from HWY 71, southbound Todd Lane is closed. We recommend taking Woodward (south) to St. Elmo (east) to Todd (north) as an alternative route to the brewery for our events this weekend.

Published in categories: Uncategorized

Baking a Special Batch of “Hop Brownie” Brownies

Published on April 11th, 2014
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Hop Brownie Brownies - ingredients
Special thanks to our newest team member, Max Saballett, for baking up some brownies with Hop Brownie Brown Ale.

1 stick unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 eggs
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Hop Brownie Brown Ale
1/4 cup quality cocoa powder
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8×8 baking dish.

In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, sugar, vanilla, and Hop Brownie Brown Ale. Add the eggs and mix until combined. In another small bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, melted chocolate, baking powder and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients.

Pour the batter into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the brownies comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Let cool in the pan around warm or room temperature. Cut into squares. Makes about 12 brownies depending on what size you cut them.

Serve and enjoy (with a Hop Brownie Brown Ale of course)!



Published in categories: Recipies

Our first venture into cans: Independence Brewing releases White Rabbit White Ale

Published on February 26th, 2014
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White Rabbit White Ale 6-pack cansWe are excited to announce that for the first time Independence Brewing will be packaging our popular White Rabbit White Ale in cans. Previously only available seasonally on draught, the Belgian-style white ale is delicately spiced with orange zest, coriander, and peppercorns, bringing out a uniquely refreshing yet robust flavor.

The whimsical can design hints at Lewis Carroll’s classic Alice in Wonderland  twisted with the free-your-mind psychedelic rock of Jefferson Airplane (look closely for the “drink me” potion playfully referenced). Currently available in a six-pack format, White Rabbit cans can be found on shelves at select retailers including Specs, Central Market, Whole Foods, and HEB stores in Austin, Houston, College Station and San Antonio.

Timed with the arrival of spring and rising temperatures, the drinkable white ale is medium-bodied with a slightly fruity, refreshing tang and a clean, zesty finish. Earlier iterations of the brew paved way for Head Brewer Brandon Radicke’s recipe, with the first official White Rabbit batch brewed in May 2013. Inspired by traditional Belgian witbiers, Radicke used classic Belgian wit yeast to bring out subtle fruity esthers.

“We selected one of our favorite beer releases of last year, White Rabbit for our first can launch because of its innate drinkability and popularity,” states Independence co-founder Amy Cartwright. “Ideally portable for outdoor activities from tailgating to tubing, the new can design will allow locals and visitors to enjoy our beer anytime and anywhere.”

Help us celebrate the new can launch! Post your photos of the White Rabbit cans to Twitter or Instagram, tag @indybrewing and use #ChaseTheWhiteRabbit for the chance to win two tickets to the brewery’s upcoming psychedelic dance party in April as well as a White Rabbit swag bag.



Published in categories: Beer

Independence Expansion – Tanks Arrive

Published on January 11th, 2014

Well the Independence Brewing expansion project kicked into high gear when the long-awaited JV Northwest brewing system arrived at the brewery on January 7th. The first step was getting the massive tanks off of the long-bed trucks that hauled them all the way from Oregon. It was cold and drizzly which made the process that much more nerve-wracking.

With electricians working in the background, the main production floor pad was cleared and readied for positioning the brewing system vessels.


One by one, the massive tanks were slowly hoisted by a reach lift up the brewery ramp, into the new production area and carefully tipped up.

Then we worked on positioning the tanks onto the new production floor. With a couple of pallet jacks and a whole lot of man-power, the tanks were moved to the right spot.

One down, six more to go! It was an exciting day. Unwrapping the dirty plastic wrap that had covered our new tanks to reveal beautiful, new shiny stainless steel. We felt like happy kids on Christmas morning unwrapping presents, reveling in the site of our new system.

Special thanks to Eric Young, @AustinBeerGeek, for digitally documenting our big move-in day.

Published in categories: Expansion, Uncategorized

Independence Expansion Project – The Buildout

Published on January 7th, 2014
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While not in our nature, we have learned to be patient. It can take weeks of fermenting and aging before we can taste a new brew. However, the Independence brewing crew has had to endure a hell of a long wait for the arrival of our much-needed brewing system. The first of four trucks that will be delivering our new 60-Barrel JV Northwest brewing system rolled in with the cold last night. And there is a flurry of work to prepare to install our new baby!

If this is the first you’re hearing about our expansion plans, here’s a summary of what we’ve been doing the last year to get ready for this day.

Our new space - 10,000 square feet of happinessMarch 2013
We got the keys to 10,000 square feet of warehouse space that directly adjoins the back side of our existing production floor. The coolest part about getting this space is that we didn’t have to move to expand. We were running out of space and brewing capacity. The additional space gives us the room we need.


April-October 2013
Hurry up and wait. We worked with Studio 8 Architects and EEA Engineering to design and submit construction plans to the City of Austin in April. After several rounds of review, edits, re-submitting and waiting, we were given the green light to break ground in October.

Mid-October 2013
First things first, we tore into the concrete to prep the space for proper plumbing. Deep trench drains that only a brewer could really appreciate were dug. Then nice big drain pipes were set. We had to bring in harder dirt to fill in the drains to make sure the drains would withstand the weight of our new system and tanks. And after checking, and re-checking their work, major plumbing was completed.

Excavation begins

Major trench lines were dug in the new space.

Trench lines

Trenches were dug for major plumbing improvements

Trench Drain Plumbing

Major plumbing was installed

Mid-November 2013
We were ready to pour the concrete… it began to rain…and then got really, really cold. Lucky for us, the bulk of our concrete work was inside. We had to beef up our foundation to take the heavy load of our new brewing system, so an additional 10 inches of concrete slab was poured.

Concrete is poured

With major plumbing completed, concrete is poured

Concrete pad

Concrete pad for brewing system was poured.

December 2013
We managed to get our silo tipped up and set two days before Christmas. While the electricians and construction crew worked at a frenzied pace to finish major electrical, plumbing and building the boiler room by the end of the year.


It's big, it's white and finally erect...our new silo!

January 6, 2014
The first truck rolled in… bearing the future of Independence Brewing Co. Check back in to see our progress. 2014 is going to be a great year!

System Arrives

In the frigid cold, the first of four trucks rolled in

Published in categories: Expansion

Independence Pale and Convict Hill Stout are Good Food Award Finalists (and Great Tasting Craft Beers!)

Published on December 28th, 2013
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For the third year in a row, Independence Brewing Co. has been nominated as a Finalist for the Good Food Awards. Independence won a Good Food Award in 2012 and 2013 for Convict Hill Stout. This year, the craft brewery is a Finalist in the beer category for Independence Pale and Convict Hill Stout.

The Good Food Award Finalists represent the best from America’s growing movement of talented and socially conscious food entrepreneurs.  This year’s 1,450 entries—double the number since the awards launched in 2009—came from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The growth reflects the vitality of the country’s food crafters committed to the values of the Good Food Movement, using sustainable ingredients and supporting their local economies.

“The 200 Good Food Awards Finalists are leading a cultural shift away from business as usual,” says Sarah Weiner, co-founder and executive director of Seedling Projects, which organizes the awards. “They bring the dedication and integrity of true craftsmen to all they do. Their ever stronger presence around the country proves that it can be done—there is a different way to feed our communities.”

Independence Pale and Convict Hill Stout emerged as Good Food Award Finalists after a rigorous judging session led by 20 leading brewers, beer writers, and food writers. The top scorers were further vetted to confirm sound sourcing practices, sustainable techniques, and transparency in all stages of the supply chain.

“We are devoted to brewing boldly and creating original hand-crafted beer of uncompromising flavor and quality, while making our community a better place to live through sustainable practices and community development,” said Independence Brewing Co. co-founder Amy Cartwright. “Being a Good Food Awards Finalist for the third year in a row is a great honor and recognition of our efforts.”

100 Good Food Award Winners will be announced January 16, 2014, in San Francisco. Dr. Zeke Emanuel will be master of ceremonies; Nell Newman, founder of Newman’s Own Organics, will give the keynote address; and the awards will be presented by renowned chef and Seedling Projects board member Alice Waters.

Published in categories: Awards, Beer, Sustainability