From the early days, and long before Americans had ever heard the term “craft beer,” settlers in the Bayou City excelled in the art of ales, stouts and lagers. In 1913, it was a Houston brewery that claimed the distinction of “the world’s finest bottled beer” after winning an international competition in Belgium. The unfortunate rise of Prohibition put the industry on hold, but recent years have seen a strong resurgence. At the beginning of 2008, Saint Arnold Brewing Company was the only craft brewery in Houston. Just a few years later, there are five and counting within an hour’s drive of downtown. Journalist and “Beer, TX” blogger Ronnie Crocker chronicles Houston’s long and surprising history of brewing, tracing everything from the grand legacy of Anheuser-Busch to the up-and-coming craft beer makers and those brewing it right at home.
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