October 15, 2012

Lakewood Brewing Company

I wanted to give a quick shout out to Lakewood Brewing Company, a new brewery located in the northeastern suburbs of Dallas. I went on their tour the weekend before last and although the tour isn't very exciting (it's the usual ten minute here's-how-we-make-beer speech) it's a lot of fun and their beers are delicious. $10 gets you four ten ounce pours over three hours and a nifty pint glass.

What I like most about Lakewood, aside from their delicious beers, is their very smart business model. Rather than just make a flurry of new beers of questionable quality, they make a very limited and precise set of beers. Their core beers are: Hop Trapp, a Belgian IPA; Rock Ryder, an American wheat-rye beer; and Temptress, an imperial milk stout. They do make some seasonable beers, such as a Vienna Lager for oktoberfest and an upcoming pumpkin dunkelweiss for the later fall. Although you might think such a small line up would make it hard to compete against breweries putting out a dozen different beers and a constant flow of limited releases, what Lakewood very smartly does is release different versions of their beers that can only be found on tap at certain events or locations. So you might Hop Trapp on cask with an extra hop added to the cask, Rock Ryder infused in-line through the draft line with prickly pear, or the Temptress with an in-line infusion of coffee. They are good about spreading out these special releases between their tours, beer events and some of the local growler fill spots (of which there are very few). It's an easy way to get that "limited release" vibe without having to design and brew several limited or seasonal releases on a small system. In my opinion it's an excellent business model for new breweries.

If you find yourself in Dallas looking for a good beer or two, you could do a lot worse than a Lakewood brew.

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