Despite being just a short drive from downtown New Braunfels, Guadalupe Brewing has a rural, rustic feel to it, cultivated in part by its rather cool new log-cabin-esque taproom with a shaded beer garden and large dedicated children’s play space. Dating back to 2009, Guadalupe is clearly an established part of the local community – visiting on a Thursday evening the taproom was packed with families eating (they have their own kitchen), drinking and hanging out. Indeed, with so much space, approximately 20 taps to choose from, and a range of local ciders, wines, spirits and even frozen margaritas, Guadalupe is a great example of a full-service community brewpub.
This was our second visit, and we were impressed with the nicely designed lacquer-wood taproom as well as the range and number of beers on offer. Flights of four aren’t cheap at $14, but the majority of these are pretty boozy beers, although there are a few lighter session options available. On our first visit to Guadalupe, we were very excited at the prospect of tucking into some of their complex, award-winning high-octane brews and weren’t disappointed by their four-times US Open Gold Medal recipient Scotch Ale – full-bodied, sweet-malted and traditional, and weighing in at a well-hidden 8.17%. While I was a bit overwhelmed by the sweetness of some of their other specials, including the Creamsicle Belgian Dubbel and Show De Bola Honey Ale, I am the first to admit that I don’t have the sweetest tooth so am probably missing out on an acquired taste! Their big, bold IPAs were much more for me, particularly the Imperial Red which we tried on our second visit – a mighty, malty beast of 9.1% all rich, full dark amber. I also liked the peaty-liquorice Double Black IPA, deeply hopped Guadalupe IPA and smooth, nutty Brown Ale, but the real surprise for a brewery serving such boozy beers was how good their Belgian Pilsner was, light, sweet and flavoursome – highly recommended!
With so many beers on offer, Guadalupe again fully engages a local audience by offering something for everyone, and Guadalupe are firm believers in supporting their local community, hosting charity fundraising events and partnering with other local businesses. If you do like sweet beers, there are brews with Texas honey, bourbon-chocolate, sweet cream and spiced pumpkin to excite your palate – a veritable buffet of dessert beers! Guadalupe’s beers are, being truly local, almost exclusively available from their taproom, so stop in or risk missing out!