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GO LOCAL. GO TEXAN. TEXAS FOOD, WINE, RESTAURANTS, RECIPES, GARDENING, STYLE & MORE MAY 2016 EDITION

CRAFT BEER: GIVING TEXAS A GOOD NAME TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE O COMMISSIONER SID MILLER


CRAFT BEER: GIVING TEXAS A GOOD NAME Craft beer is growing in popularity all across the nation, and it’s experiencing quite a growth spurt right here in Texas. By the end of 2015, there were 4,269 craft breweries in the U.S., which made up 12 percent of all beer brewed in the U.S. The Lone Star State is helping fuel these numbers. In Texas, craft brewing has experienced tremendous growth over the past 10 years. Today, 123 brew pubs and 108 breweries call Texas home. This growth was given a legislative boost with the passage of several bills back in 2013 that allowed breweries to sell beer at their locations for customers to drink on-site. Previously, the breweries could only sell 2


souvenir pint glasses during tours, which visitors could then use for free samples. Now visitors can still come in for tours, but they can also sit down and enjoy full pints right at the brewery. For a visual look at the spread of craft breweries across the state, check out this recent map by the Texas Craft Brewers Guild. To download a database of GO TEXAN members that are either breweries or brew pubs, head over to our Product Search page and type in “beer.” You’ll find at least 60 members. 3


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4TH TAP BREWING: BRINGING SOMETHING NEW TO THE TABLE 4th Tap Brewing Cooperative opened in early November 2015 on Metric Boulevard in north Austin. This area has quickly become known as Austin’s Brewery District. Founded as the first worker-cooperative production brewery in the state, and one of the first in the country, 4th Tap’s unique structure allows it to be 100 percent owned and managed by the people who work there. “There are so many great breweries right here in Austin that are brewing amazing representations of classic styles, and we didn’t want to add to the noise,” Founder and President John Stecker said. “We focus on the qualities within a style that we enjoy, and try to find local, unique or interesting ingredients to further lift those qualities up.”

absence of hops, we can and do make it with all native Texas ingredients,” Stecker said. “The rosemary and lemon peel added to a sorghum base creates a light, crisp, almost cider or champagne-like drink that’s perfect for the Texas heat.” Like a growing number of craft breweries, 4th Tap is a proud GO TEXAN member. “Partnering with GO TEXAN was a natural choice for us,” Stecker said. “We pride ourselves on being plugged into our local neighborhood and economy, and GO TEXAN helps facilitate and support that connection.” 4th Tap’s founders are all from Texas, and the brewery itself sits down the road from where two of the founders grew up in Austin.

“Most of us graduated from the University of Texas and have spent most, if not all, of our lives in Austin,” Stecker said. “This is our home, and we are proud to be able to brew and share beer with our neighbors “Our Sun Eater is a rosemary gruit, which and our town.” is a brew made with herbs, and due to the For example, the brewery uses tamarind to give their wheat beer a pleasantly tart finish that compliments the crisp dryness of the wheat.

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RECIPE: BASIC BEER BREAD This calls for 4th Tap Brewing’s Sun Eater Sorghum Ale and comes from Annie Winsett and her blog, Baking Outside the Lines. “To say this recipe is simple is an understatement, but it’s also simply wonderful,” Winsett said. “You only need a few ingredients, and you can make a healthy, tasty bread to pair with any spread. Sprinkle a little extra rosemary or spice of your choice on top, and you’ve got a fabulous loaf!” Yield: 1 loaf Time: 1 hour 15 minutes Ingredients:

Preparation: 3 cups Flour (all-purpose or white whole wheat) 1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. ½ cup Sugar 2. Prepare a loaf pan with nonstick 1 tsp. Dijon mustard spray. 12 oz. 4th Tap’s Sun Eater Sorghum Ale 3. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and Sun Eater Optional Ingredients: Ale. Mix well. ½ cup Nuts: almonds, walnuts or seeds 4. Mix in any of the optional 1 tbsp. Spices — rosemary, thyme or basil ingredients. 1 cup Cheese — Gruyere or cheddar 5. Pour the batter into the loaf pan, and bake for 55 minutes. 6. Let the bread cool, and enjoy! 7


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THE BACKYARD GRILL OF YOUR DREAMS There is never a dull moment at the Backyard Grill! From the 6-pound burger challenge to the Bucket of Destruction to the BYG Brew Crew, there is something to keep everyone coming back. Located in Cypress Fairbanks, one of the largest communities in northwest Houston, the Backyard Grill is known as the restaurant with the big tree in the middle of the dining room. Even with a large menu, the most popular eats remain craft burgers, chicken fried steak, fajitas and mesquite-grilled steaks. Unique daily specials showcase dishes made with local craft beers. “Although we offer more than 100 beers on-site, we are especially proud of our commitment to our Texas breweries and their selections,” owner Mark McShaffry said. “The craft beer demand is growing every day, and we are excited to bring as many flavors as possible to the table.” The Backyard Grill is proud to be a GO TEXAN member — not just once, but twice!

“We are not only a GO TEXAN member as a restaurant, but also with our Backyard Texas Sauce and Seasonings,” McShaffry said. “We proudly display the GO TEXAN mark on all of our products.” Not content to just serve food, the restaurant also offers full-service catering for weddings, holiday parties, and business, social and church events. Have your event under the big tree or hire their food truck or catering staff to come to you. Dedicated to their community, the restaurant works with the Cy-Hope charity for kids in Cy-Fair and local schools throughout the year to enrich the lives of children and families in northwest Houston. They also offer regular “Under the Tree” children’s events, featuring costumed characters, clowns and arts and crafts. The Backyard Grill is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner, plus breakfast on the weekends. Stop by if you’re in northwest Houston, or check out their website. 9


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U.S. CITRUS: ® MICRO-BUDDING ACCELERATES GROWTH FOR AN INDUSTRY The Rio Grande Valley has made a name for itself as the place to get fresh citrus in Texas. With its fertile climate, a small town in the middle of the Valley is set to get even more attention for its innovation. “I believe Hargill, Texas, will emerge as the center of a new citrus revolution in the country and as an answer to devastating diseases,” Dr. Mani Skaria said. Skaria’s company, U.S. Citrus, uses a new technology called micro-budding, which is a novel citrus propagation technique developed by Dr. Skaria. He is a retired citrus scientist from the Texas A&M University-Kingsville Citrus Center and recipient of the prestigious Pott’s award for recognition of outstanding service to the horticultural industry of South Texas. “The micro-budding process begins with rootstock, which is a small piece of an existing plant that is germinated in a controlled environment,” Dr. Skaria said. “Buds from existing fruit trees are then mechanically grafted onto the rootstock. In less than six months, the buds have

sprouted and are ready to be planted. The trees we send from our grove in Hargill are exactly the same as what we use for commercially grown citrus.” The citrus trees are grown for a year in Hargill and then boxed and shipped out with a guarantee to bear fruit within a year of arrival. Each plant is shipped in a wellprotected box, with instructions for plant care and some environmentally-friendly fertilizer for future use. “They make a perfect, high-impact gift,” Dr. Skaria said. In addition to a thriving mail-order company that “brings the grove to your doorstep,” U.S. Citrus opens its facility to educational tours for school-aged children and college students. For students too far away to visit the plant itself, Dr. Skaria offers a beginners course online that introduces students to a new way of citrus production. For more information or to buy your own citrus tree, visit their website. 11


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URBANherbal: IT’S EASY BEING GREEN Bill Varney started growing plants at the young age of 8. He started in the herb business in 1985 on Main Street in Fredericksburg and founded the award-winning Fredericksburg Herb Farm, which he later sold. Then he created what he calls “a wonderful herbal haven,” or URBANherbal. URBANherbal has a greenhouse, beautiful grounds with gardens, a boutique shop where Varney sells handmade herbal products, and a cooking school where he teaches students how to grow and cook with herbs. Varney handcrafts gourmet foods with herbs such as vinegars, seasonings, teas and flower waters, as well as skin care products, unique colognes and aromatherapy items, all of which can be purchased in his shop. Varney believes that a person’s life can be enriched through experiencing herbs in a variety of places — from the garden to the kitchen, from the bath to the medicine chest. He has always been inspired by faith, hope and love through his family, friends, church and customers. “We are always developing new products to enrich people’s lives through all of their senses: touch, taste, smell, sound and sight,” Varney said. For more information, see the Flipagram Varney created and their website. 13


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KIKI NEUMANN CREATIONS: TAKING HER CREATIVE LICENSE Houston resident Kiki Neumann is a self-proclaimed “Texas folk artist and urban street scavenger,” and the claim is wonderfully accurate. She has taken her passion for repurposing and upcycling cast-off items and created treasures that are sure to warm the heart. Two of her most popular lines use discarded license plates. In one line, Kiki features trimmed letters from these plates to create witty, customized plaques and wall hangings. The other line is an offshoot of her license plates signs — a collection of greeting cards using photos of these heartfelt designs.

become a preferred choice for birthday and celebratory cards. Tens of thousands of cards are being sold every year! The cards are mostly Texas-themed, so I have a huge audience of native and homesick Texan corresponders. I am beyond thrilled that folks are communicating in their own handwriting. Plus, lots of people have told me they’re framing my art to even keep the memories.”

Her business has evolved in many directions since it began as a way to make useful home and garden items from cast off urban “heavy trash” finds. Those who know Kiki personally wonder if she ever sleeps. Kiki built a one-of-a-kind art studio Her handmade license plate card line by herself that now houses six studios for features more than 60 images that spell out artists to rent. Taking up two of the studios unique ways to thank, encourage, motivate with her own projects, she dedicates one or inspire. The cards have caught on and highly unique studio solely to working are now available in Buc-ee’s flagship stores. with license plates as a medium for art. This studio was featured in a recent video “I created the greeting card line for interview on the Live Well Network. people to share a long-lasting message with loved ones and friends that would For more information on her delightful last beyond emailing and texting,” said and creative line of art, visit her website. Neumann. “Now, after 3 years, it has 15


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SPOT THE GO TEXAN MARK CHALLENGE Want a fun way to share the best of Texas with the world? It’s easy! GO TEXAN uses social media tools like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to post GO TEXAN events, share member news and increase awareness of the wide-variety of products grown and made right here in the Lone Star State.

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Challenge: If you spot the GO TEXAN mark, let us know. Send us a picture of the mark on a product, sign or printed materials, and tell us where you saw it. Be sure to use the GO TEXAN hashtag #GOTEXAN when you post, so we can easily share your message, or send us an email.


UPCOMING TEXAS EVENTS May 15: Bites & Flights, Fort Worth May 20-21: Piney Woods Wine Festival, Lindale May 20-22: Main Street Fest, Grapevine May 21: Sip & Shop, Bryan May 21-22: Toyota Texas Fest, Frisco May 27: Crawfish Festival, Fredericksburg June 10-12: Coffee Fest Dallas, Dallas June 17-18: Stonewall Peach JAMboree and Rodeo, Stonewall Aug. 27: 5th Annual Pearland Wine and Food Festival, Pearland View more Texas events here. 19


About GO TEXAN Launched in 1999 by the Texas Department of Agriculture, GO TEXAN, with its signature mark in the shape of Texas, celebrates, promotes and supports the business savvy and plainspoken grit Texas agriculture is known for throughout the world. Whether it’s grown, sewn or served up on a plate, nearly 27 million Texans shop, travel and dine out in support of Texas businesses, agriculture and communities, looking for the GO TEXAN mark to light the way. To learn more about the GO TEXAN program, call (877) 99-GOTEX or visit the GO TEXAN website. Tell others about GO TEXAN! One great and easy way is to forward them this electronic publication. All your friends have to do to subscribe is click here to subscribe, and they’ll start receiving the Go Local. GO TEXAN. free monthly e-zine. 20


Go Local. GO TEXAN. May 2016 ezine