"A lot of breweries tend to rely more on the hops. We’re not as focused on that,” Alex said. “It gives our beer a little bit more of an earthier, spicier flavor, but we can still play with different styles of beer just through that lens.”
Roughhouse also stands out from other microbrewers because of its cave brewing program. A small cave found on the ranch near the brewery was partially excavated and is now home to several barrels of suds kept stable with air-conditioning and humidity control.
Of note, a jug of fermenting serrano peppers placed on a nearby rock ledge in the natural cellar represents the beginnings of the brewery’s expansion into other product lines.
“I started deep diving into fermentation in general on the produce side, and so we’re doing a cave-fermented hot sauce,” Davy said.
The cave-aged beers are expected to be released in early 2021 and were created through a partnership with Jester King Brewery using its aged hops and coolship—an open air container—as part of the spontaneous fermentation process.
Spontaneous fermentation is achieved by letting whatever yeast or bacteria is present in the air to inoculate, or come in contact with, the brew while it cools, which meant it had to be completed by February 2020 when the night temperature still hovered below 30 degrees.
The best sellers according to the Pasternaks are beers produced in white oak barrels, called foeders, within the brewery using a yeast culture that includes yeast harvested on-site.
Offerings include farmhouse ambers, ales and witbier. The Rare Merit table beer and Modern Light IPA are two other popular selections.
The brewery also serves food curated by San Marcos butchery Three Six General, which produces locally sourced and humanely raised meats alongside artisan cheeses. Breads on the menu are made by Sour Duck Market in Austin.Roughhouse’s pastrami sandwich and TX Charcuterie Board are among the brewery’s most ordered menu items.
“This whole thing is built on passion and work, and it’s a ton of work,” Davy said. “But it’s extremely rewarding to have the community come out here and taste a product that you spent the majority of your life dreaming about.”
680 Oakwood Loop San Marcos, TX 78666
Hours: Thur., 4 p.m.- 9 p.m., Fri., 2 p.m.-9 p.m., Sat.-Sun, noon-9 p.m.