Texas Craft Brewers Fest Profile: Huff Brewing Co.

IMG_4166The 2014 Texas Craft Brewers Festival is just around the corner. And, this year, it’s larger than ever with an impressive 57 Texas-bred breweries joining the lineup.

While VIP tickets are already sold out with more than a month to go before the festival opens  gates September 27 at Fiesta Gardens, general admission and designated driver tickets are still available for purchase.

With such a robust lineup, there are clearly many breweries making their debut at TCBF this year. Among them are some breweries we’ve already had the pleasure of featuring on Bitch Beer, like Save the World Brewing, Oasis, TX Brewing Company, Rabbit Hole Brewing, Solid Rock Brewing and Four Corners Brewing. However, there are still some shiny new names on the list hailing from all over the great state of Texas.

So, we decided to reach out to some of these breweries to get the scoop on who they are, what they’re all about, and what you can expect from them at the Texas Craft Brewers Festival. We kick off the first installment of this series with an interview with Christine Huff, Operations Manager for Huff Brewing Co. located in Bellville, TX.

Interview with Huff Brewing Co.:

1506967_595792497153413_185189982_nBitch Beer: Can you tell me a little bit about Huff Brewing Co.’s philosophy and the journey of starting it?

Christine Huff: Our brewery began in 2012. The brewmaster, Ryan, has been brewing beer for more than 10 years now, and he took the craft with him to different places we lived around Texas. The two of us moved to Bellville in 2012, which is where Ryan’s family lives. Before we even had all of the boxes unloaded off of the Penske truck, a batch of beer was made right in the place where Ryan began brewing years before. It was a pretty great moment because the whole family got into it then. Susan and Ricky Huff, Ryan, and me were unpacking boxes by day and stirring the kettle by night.

What happened then is beyond all of us. The recipes we brewed then had developed over the years, but suddenly we show up in Bellville and the beer just seemed to click with the place and the people. I think that whatever we gained then by being back with family was the missing link to getting the brewery going. Since then, we’ve all played to our strengths running the brewery.

I think the story of our beginnings sums up our philosophy of the brewery and brewing in general. While we’re definitely interested in beer and can talk about it all day, we’re always more interested in meeting people at bars and festivals and learning about who they are and what they’re doing there. Personally, I enjoy being a part of a business centered around creating a product that’s conducive to that atmosphere. This reflects that moment I spoke about when our beer and our family finally came together: so many things become good with the right people and the right beer–we brew because that’s always proven true.

BB: Where can people currently find your beers, and where do you hope to have them available in the future?

CH: Because we’re so small, you’ll find us close to Bellville (and, of course, in our taproom). We just expanded, though, and are visiting places between Houston and Austin. Right now we only distribute draft beer, but it’s been helpful to our mission because we get to go out, visit the bars, and drink with the people who are drinking our beer. We try to visit as many of those bars we can as many times as we can.

BB: How does it feel to be participating in the Texas Craft Brewers Festival this year?

CH: It’s amazing to join such excellent company for this year’s Texas Craft Brewer’s Festival. This may be obvious to everyone who will attend, but we’re no different–we love Austin, beer, and any event that celebrates this. This is also our first major festival like this, and we’ll be as excited to be there as anyone. I think Ryan already has his suitcase packed for the weekend.

BB: What should people expect if they come to visit your booth at the Texas Craft Brewers Festival?

CH: We’re a lager house, so expect what Ryan calls “subtle complexity” in our beer. We try to brew beers that are inviting, not challenging or overwhelming. The great thing about it is that we tend to have a pretty diverse group of drinkers; those who demand a lot of their beers enjoy finding some of the more recondite characteristics of our beers, while others who just want to enjoy a beer find our beers affable.

Also expect a group who is as happy to be there as you are. This will be the first time we’ve served our beer in Austin, so we’re all the more excited to share our craft with everyone there. We also love everyone we meet in Austin because it’s so different from where we’re from, so expect to tell us what you’ve been up to and about the things you enjoy.

BB: What other breweries’ offerings are you hoping to try at the festival?

CH: We’re really excited to drink beer from all of the Austin breweries. We don’t get enough opportunities to enjoy beer from breweries like Jester King and (512), who brew with a different focus than we do. We’re also looking forward to drinking with the brewpubs who get to join the Festival this year.

BB: Anything else we should know about Huff Brewing Co.?

CH: Know that we’re in the middle of what’s turned out to be a big year for the brewery. We spent the last two years brewing on a small pilot system, and as of this month we finished our first batch on our new 15-bbl system. It’s been very exciting, and we are looking forward to drinking in celebration. This year’s Texas Craft Brewer’s Festival seems like a good place for that.

Connect with Huff Brewing Co.

1506967_595792497153413_185189982_nWebsite: huffbrewing.com

Facebook: /huffbrewingco

Twitter: @huffbrewingco

Tomorrow we’ll continue this profile series with a look at Brazos Valley Brewing Company.


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