Just over two years have passed since the most recent round of commercial microbrewers began opening in the North Texas area, and 2013 is ending with a surge of new craft breweries. With beers from Grapevine Craft Brewery already on tap in a few Dallas locations and the grand opening of Lewisville’s Cobra Brewing scheduled for later this month, launching this week in the tiny town of Justin is a new venture named Rabbit Hole Brewing.
Located minutes away from Texas Motor Speedway, Rabbit Hole Brewing is technically the second brewery to open in Denton County. It is the typical dreaming-homebrewers-gone-pro story, the local homebrewers in question being Matt Morriss and Tom Anderson along with their friend Laron Cheek. Although without commercial brewing experience, Morriss and Anderson are two of the four founders of the long-standing homebrew club “Horsemen of the Hopocalypse” operating out of the Tarrant County area.
Through a series of personal and business connections, the amateur brewers (and rabid hockey fans) actually connected with former Dallas Stars player Mike Modano, who not only became a fan of their beer but also an investor. Rabbit Hole’s “561” kölsch-style ale is named to honor Modano’s NHL record of 561 lifetime goals made by an American-born player, and Modano himself tried to get his favorite beer into his Dallas restaurant Hully & Mo before it closed last year.
If you haven’t already figured it out, the “Rabbit Hole” and related imagery are references to the literary classic Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and are used to convey a devotion to a unique and eccentric take on their favorite beer styles. Besides the 561, initial beers planned are an English IPA named “10/6” after the price on the Mad Hatter’s hat as well as an English/American “fusion” brown ale called “Rapture.”
Rabbit Hole plans an official launch event this Saturday at the Oak Street Drafthouse in Denton, moving later the same day to the nearby East Side Social Club just off the square. Unfortunately, I have not yet had a chance to try any of Rabbit Hole’s commercial products but having enjoyed Morriss and Anderson’s high-quality homebrewed beers off and on for the past several years, I have high hopes for this latest microbrewing newcomer.
Rabbit Hole Brewing
106 East 6th Street
Justin, TX 76247