Commuters whose drive into downtown Fort Worth involves traversing East Belknap Street may have noticed, during the past few months, construction on something called Cowtown Brewing Co.
On Friday, Cowtown announced on its Facebook page that it’s open. Opened at 3 p.m., about 10 minutes before I started writing this.
Cowtown’s big twist is that it was also offer barbecue. “Our craft beer and smoked meats are developed and perfected on-site,” says a message on the “about” section of the website.
“We’re a brewpub, actually, with a brewpub license,” head brewer Shawn Kidwell said in an August interview. “We’ll be brewing our own beer and out back we’ll have a smoker, and we’ll be doing a traditional Texas barbecue menu to go along with beer.”
The barbecue isn’t ready yet, according to a Facebook comment. But the beer is.
Kidwell says he started home-brewing about eight years ago, and became obsessed enough with it that four years ago he quit his job and went to brewing school. His background includes Grapevine Craft Brewery, where he was an assistant brewer for about a year and a half. He left to start developing Cowtown Brewing Co,
According to the brewery’s website, it currently offers a half-dozen beers but Kidwell said that there will be more.
“We will have 12 taps behind our bar,” Kidwell said in August. “I brew 16, 18 styles of beer. I’m hoping to have at least six of those ready to go by the time we open. Those beers will probably be our core lineup.” Other beers will be seasonals and annuals.
“Our main goal is brewing beer to serve here,” he said. “Distribution is a secondary benefit which we intend to pursue, but unlike a production brewery whose number-one goal is distribution, because our focus is on serving beer at our bar, we can pretty much do what we want.”
Beers currently listed are Spalt Bier, a German-inspired Altbier; Rhinestone Cowboy, a Kolsch; Sim City IPA; the Last Kaiser, an Imperial Marzen Oktoberfest brew; and two small-batch beers, Everybody’s Doing It, a New England IPA that’s double-dry hopped; and Amarillo on My Mind, another NEIPA, made with Amarillo hops.
It’s easy to see the brewery’s patio — and more important, its logo — from Belknap, in a section where traffic is one-way westbound. And from the brewery itself, it’s easy to see the buildings of downtown Fort Worth, as Cowtown is situated on downtown’s northeast edge, not far east of Tarrant County College’s Trinity River Campus and a lot of apartments (and, OK, a lot of traffic, too).
Not that this weekend looks particularly patio-friendly, given the weather forecast. But the patio does look welcoming, and by the middle of next week, patio weather should be back.
Cowtown Brewing Co. is at 1301 E. Belknap St. at the intersection with Hampton Street. Current hours are 11 a.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday. For more info, visit https://www.cowtownbrewco.com or follow @cowtownbrewco on Facebook or @cowtownbrewco on Twitter.