This is a guest post by J. Darris Mitchell.
2823 St Louis St, Dallas, TX 75226
I went to Dallas, so I went to Deep Ellum Brewing Company. You’ve probably heard of them. They have the cute little smiley face with a bottle of a beer for a mouth for a logo. I’d certainly found myself sipping one of their brews before, but going to the birthplace (Lazarus pits?) where the yeast that make their delicious beers are spawned is worth a visit.
Deep Ellum Brewing Company is located in the—big surprise—Deep Ellum district in Dallas. I sought it out because one, I like good beer, and two, I wanted an escape from bars and didn’t have the cash or energy to pony up and sit for a tattoo. It kind of feels like the backyard to the entire district. It has a courtyard I insisted in sitting in that’s covered in AstroTurf and filled with yard games. With multiple benches and awnings and steps made of wood it kind of felt like where avatars from Fortnight would go to unwind. The music was absolutely perfect for me, which can only mean their DJ probably needs to get with the times because it’s rare I like a soundtrack for my beers as much I did at Deep Ellum.
I started my taste adventure with a Cherry Chocolate Double Brown Stout. I would say that this beer is quite simply everything promised. It’s a smooth, hearty brown ale with the bitter notes of chocolate and the sweetness of cherries. Get one! I loved it.
Their Dream Crusher is a great choice for the hopheads in the audience. It has an awesome citrus attack and a malty backbone to support the 100+ IBUs. Honestly finding out the this beer had that many bittering units was a surprise. Normally I balk at beers claiming to be that bitter, but the Dream Crusher’s body held its own to its hoppy head. My dear friend Cole described it best, “It’s good.” Another beer drinker was perhaps was more creative. “It’s like driving through Fredericksburg, kind of bitter but nice and fruity.” Those from Frederisckburg, I assure you he meant this as a compliment.
One beer I was less than impressed with was the Local Legend. It had decent flavor, but for something billing itself as a milk stout, I expect a smoother and less watery mouthfeel. As it warmed, the taste improved, but the texture just didn’t work for me. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great, not overwhelming or underwhelming. Those drinking with me agreed it simply “whelmed” us.
Next up was the Cadillac Bandito, a fruity imperial, Mexican style lager. This is becoming one of my favorite styles of beer, especially as summer approaches. Each time I’m served a Mexican lager I prepare myself to drink a tasteless Dos Equis, and each time I’m surprised to find the brightest notes of a crisp lager combined with more mature flavors. The Cadillac Bandito is fruity, perhaps peachy, but reminded me of sake in all the best ways. It was strangely familiar yet new and delicious. Yes please!
Onwards we drank to the Deep Summer. This beer is the flavor of summer in a bottle. It tastes most of all of hibiscus which—as a homebrewer who likes to make hibiscus mead—I am totally OK with. It was refreshing, unabashedly floral, a bit sour, but just great for a dude who doesn’t like anything too sour. Good one. Surprising.
The last beer of the night was my favorite. The Numb Comfort is so good it’s worth swearing over. A beer like this is all about the complexity of the malt, and it had it. Maple syrup and the taste of oak barrel made me wish I’d been drinking this all night. Good thing I wasn’t though, at 11 percent, this beer will kick your butt. Still, it was everything I want an insane barleywine style ale to be. If you like ‘em dark and strong, this one’s for you.
About Deep Ellum Brewing Company
In 2011, Deep Ellum Brewing Company set up shop in the Deep Ellum neighborhood of Dallas, Texas – the first craft brewery to open in Dallas in over a decade. Since then, Deep Ellum has become as well known for its innovative brewing and exceptional quality as it has for its healthy disdain for the status quo. Like the notorious neighborhood it calls home, the brewery is bold, fearless, and unapologetic. The idea of “blending in” was never part of the plan – at the bar or on the shelf. In 2019, Deep Ellum brought their uncommon flavors to Fort Worth with the opening of Funkytown Fermatorium. With a commitment to staying true to their reckless streak, their rough edges and their roots, Deep Ellum has quickly grown to become the 3rd largest independent craft brewery in Texas and the 65th largest brewery overall. Led by its flagships, Deep Ellum IPA and Dallas Blonde, the brewery has amassed an extremely devoted fan base across Texas and beyond.
J. Darris Mitchell is a sci-fi writer from Austin, Texas. He’s drunk beers in 10 countries and on 4 continents and has been drinking fine beers in Austin longer than most of local craft breweries have existed. When not writing, he often spends his weekends brewing beer in his backyard with his darling wife, his two year old son, a fat cat, and six chickens. You can follow him on Twitter @joedarris.