Lake Houston-area craft breweries close taprooms, offer beer to-go during coronavirus

Lake Houston-area craft breweries are closing taprooms during the coronavirus. (Courtesy Megaton Brewery)
Lake Houston-area craft breweries are closing taprooms during the coronavirus. (Courtesy Megaton Brewery)

Lake Houston-area craft breweries are closing taprooms during the coronavirus. (Courtesy Megaton Brewery)

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Ingenious Brewing Co. is brewing new heavily-fruited beers and bringing back some barrel-aged brews to sell in 32-ounce crowlers and four-packs. (Colleen Ferguson/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Back Pew Brewing is offering 32-ounce crowler cans and four- and six-packs for purchase through its online store for curbside pickup. (Courtesy Back Pew Brewing)
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Megaton Brewery patrons can come by during the new business hours and pick up pre-packaged crowlers of the brewery's staples. (Courtesy Megaton Brewery)
Lake Houston-area craft breweries are doing their best to adapt to new state- and county-wide mandates put in place to help curb the spread of the coronavirus—all while continuing to share alcoholic libations with the community.

Local breweries had to close their taprooms, slow or halt production, layoff employees and limit hours of essential employees amid the mandates. However, brewery owners said they will continue offering curbside pickup for craft beer enthusiasts.

Back Pew Brewing owner Bobby Harl announced he would close down the Porter taproom several days prior to the Montgomery County mandate. Now, the brewery is offering 32-ounce crowler cans and four- and six-packs through its online store for curbside pickup.

"I just think it made sense [to close the taproom], with everything getting progressively worse," Harl said. "And sadly, because people are still congregating, this [quarantine] could go on a lot longer than really is necessary."

With brewery owners not sure how long the restrictions could last, many are making the best of their closed taprooms by brewing new, smaller batches of beer. Ingenious Brewing Company co-owner Justin Gyorfi said he is brewing new heavily fruited beers and bringing back some barrel-aged brews to sell in 32-ounce crowlers and four-packs.


"We've kind of halted production from big batches [and going] back to how we really started when we were first opening," Gyorfi said. "They're real small, constantly changing batches to keep it exciting, to try to encourage someone to maybe come a couple of times instead of just once."

Megaton Brewery co-owner Chris Sarvadi said an extended closure could be major blow for the Kingwood brewery, as it is still in its first year of operation and it recently invested in a new canning system.

"We're in that kind of grow-out-of-it phase where if you don't grow you die, in a way," he said.

The silver lining of the situation is seeing the community come together again to support one another, Sarvadi said.

"Kingwood has been hit by two floods and now this," he said. "Every small business has been tested time and time again, and the community always comes back and says, 'Hey, we like you, and we want you to stay around.'"

Here is how you can get your favorite local brew from a locally-owned business:

Back Pew Brewing

26452 Sorters McClellan Road, Porter

281-608-7526

www.backpewbrewing.com

New hours: Mon.-Fri. 11 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat. 11 a.m.-4 p.m., closed Sun.

How to order: Order through the brewery's online store, go to brewery during new hours, call the brewery upon arrival and the order will be delivered curbside.

Ingenious Brewing Co.

1986 S. Houston Avenue, Humble

832-412-2142

www.ingeniousbeer.com

New hours: Mon. Sun. noon-6 p.m.

How to order: Call the brewery to order, go to the brewery, call again and the order will be brought out for patrons to pay curbside.

Megaton Brewery

808 Russell Palmer Road, Kingwood

281-973-9043

www.facebook.com/megatonbeer

New hours: Fri. 3-7 p.m., Sat. 1-7 p.m.

How to order: Patrons can come by during new business hours and pick up pre-packaged crowlers of the brewery's staples as well as some specialty brews. Crowlers are purchased and delivered in a drive-thru format.
By Kelly Schafler

Editor, Lake Houston | Humble | Kingwood

Kelly Schafler is the editor for the Lake Houston, Humble and Kingwood edition of Community Impact Newspaper, covering public education, city government, development, businesses, local events and all things community-related. Before she became editor, she was the reporter for the Conroe and Montgomery edition for a year and a half.



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