Dog with a Blog #5

Written by Bella – Fetching Lab CCO

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You ever look at a dog and wonder what we’re thinking?  Well wonder no more!  Crack a beer and get comfortable because I’m going to let you inside the mind of a yellow Labrador retriever and the CCO (Chief Canine Officer) of a brewery.

 

 

First, a poem…

“Old mother Hubbard went to the fridge to get herself a beer

But when she got there, all the Fetching Lab was gone.

So she went to the store, to buy more.”

 

We Labs are smart, but I never said we could rhyme.  Not only does it sound better in its original language, but I’ve seen some of the things you humans write.  Let’s just say “you haven’t mastered the English language yet either.”  All these deep thoughts and expressions I put down on paper really have me pondering the happenings here at the brewery.  Forgive my self-indulgent look of deep introspect and self-reflection, but we dogs must have these moment in order to successfully run a brewery you know!

Speaking of business, you have probably noticed that there was a “season” when you couldn’t find our beers on the shelves of your favorite beer store or on tap at your favorite bar.  Well, those “dog days” are over!  We are back in production and beer is not only flowing at the brewery, but out of the brewery and to your favorite spot to drink (Watering-Bowl?).  So look for Fetching Lab and if you don’t see it, “bark” at your local beer buyer (ask nicely, and don’t bite).

Not only are our products back in town, but we now have Eric Andreas and Aaron Brown helping us get the job done!  That’s right.  I hired a couple of beer pros to help Theresa and Brett.  As it turns out, they not only know how to throw a tennis ball, but they know how to sell beer too.  Yup, these guys have upper management potential written all over them!

Besides hiring a couple more “human ball launchers” that know a thing or seven about beer (Get it… “Seven”… because in dog years, one is seven.  Get it?), our Growler Adoption program continues to bring happiness to lonely half gallon jugs of glass and to the people who take them home filled with Fetching Lab beer.  And, while we were fortunate to have not sustained any damage during the flood, not all of our brewing and beer drinking friends were as fortunate.  So, this Saturday when I am opening the brewery from 1-5PM, and will be donating $1.00 from every beer sold to help our community with the relief effort.  We’ll have Adolph’s BBQ, Bobby Territo will be playing music for us, AND we have a new beer!

Midnight Watch Porter is a 6.2% English Style Porter.  We’re experimenting with different varieties of this which will show up later down the road, but this is very dry, roasty, full-flavored, medium bodied, well-rounded porter.  Geez… I’m panting just thinking about it.  Come out to the brewery this Saturday and drink for a good cause with the Bay Area Mashtronauts homebrew club and Girls Pint Out.  Of course you can bring your four-legged friends, but the more two-legged friends you bring, the more we can help those who need it.

So as you can see, I’ve had a lot on my mind, but it’s all been great!  We’re selling beer all over Houston (check out the “Find Us” and “Events” tab on the web page), we have two new great humans, the brewery is open this Saturday, Growler Adoptions are up, we’re drinking for a cause this weekend, and we have Midnight Watch Porter.  Makes you wonder why they refer to “the dog days” as a negative thing?  Hmm.  I guess I have more pondering to do.  Keep drinking; I’ll be in my study.

 

“Woof”

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Bella’s good will tour with Oberon

rideBrett here, Head Brewer of Fetching Lab Brewery.  On Saturday, Bella told Oberon (our Head of Marketing) to gather the crew and do a good will tour of some of the north Houston breweries that we haven’t had a chance to visit since they opened or moved to a new location.  Oberon, being the manager that he is (we don’t call him 33% for nothing), delegated the planning of the trip as well as this write-up to me.    

 

 

I decided it would be best to start off on the far north side and work our way down so we loaded up the truck and headed to B52. 

b52It turns out this was one of Oberon’s favorite stops of the day.  All the breweries had great beer but this one had TREES!  He personally marked and claimed many of them as his own.  Built on several acres of forest a stone throw away from Lake Conroe, we were all amazed at how much this place could pack in.  They had an amazing location with some of the most well balanced brews of various styles including some amazing Barrel Aged brews that we have ever had. The staff gave Oberon the royal tour of their facility as well as letting us (his human food tasters) sample a flight (wing?) of their brews.  Oberon was so excited about the place that we stayed about an hour longer than we expected.  Oberon felt right at home here.

southern starBut, a good will tour cannot end with only one stop so we packed up and headed out to visit some old friends of ours at Southern Star Brewery.  We have followed them since they first started up and they have a special place in our hearts.  When we first conceived Fetching Lab back in 2009, Southern Star was the first brewery to open their doors to us and answer any and every question we had.  This gave us the confidence we needed to proceed with our plans.  Needless to say, we were all excited finally get a chance to see their new location.  This state of the art facility is amazing!  If you want to see what a well-planned and smooth running brewery looks like, just start there.  Well done. Once again, the staff gave us the VIP tour and we had a blast.  I also had a chance to drink a bit of their Blood Belt Pale Ale, a crisp orange on top of a malty pale ale.  Yum.  Sadly, Oberon was not allowed in but instead stayed in the park and practiced his sleeping skills in the shade.  You know he feels comfortable when he can take a nap in a new location, he tends to fall asleep at the job.  copperhead

Packing up the crew, ignoring the kicking and screaming request to stay just a little longer, we slithered our way over to Copperhead Brewing.  This wonderful little gem of a brewery showed off its best to us.  A relaxed, dog friendly locale with a fine beer spread and most importantly to people who grew up in Texas… an air-conditioned tap room.  You can tell from the little touches like the handmade stain glass windows to the surprisingly open floor plan in the brewery, that these folks put a lot of thought and effort into their craft.  We spent quite a bit of time talking to the staff and sampling the local offerings.  I was personally addicted to the Medusa!  It is one of the perks of such a tour that you get to hang out with people who speak the same language and enjoy life.  Oberon met some new friends and everyone had a good time. 

hollerThe next brewery we wanted to give a shout out to is Holler Brewing Company.  We found John and Kathryn hard at work slinging pints and taking care of business.  Their brewery is a well-crafted blend of modern architecture with an open floor plan that was easy to find.  We enjoyed a full round of their beers which are well worth the trip. I personally loved their Looyah Tooyah Imperial Milk Stout and the Belgian IPA.   This hard-working pair took time to show us around their brewing facility.  Thank you very much, we must come back soon.   

Our final stop was a quick trip to Platypus Brewing. We are sorry we didn’t get any pictures here. This was our first introduction to their brews and they delivered.  They are in an old metal fabrication facility that had then been turned into a Hip-Hop club prior to becoming a brewery.  This was evident in the wrap around, red velvet lined stair cases that bracket the brew house.  It is what all of the fashionable breweries should aspire to.  Very schwank!  Seriously… excellent beer and food from very friendly folks.  The building history was fascinating and we could have spent all night talking and tasting more of their brews.  Unfortunately, it was getting late and we needed to head back to give our report out to Bella so we loaded everyone up to make the long drive back down to Alvin.  Oberon took nap #5.   

recoveryOberon is back home now recovering from the whirlwind tour he (had me) plan out. He gives all of these breweries his print of approval. 

paw

 

 

 

His only regret … that one oak tree he did not have a chance to claim at B52.