Austin is a city of patios, and this guide highlights a few of our favorite breweries around town where you can have a beer outside.
photo credit: Nicolai McCrary
Hold Out Brewing
From the folks that brought you Better Half, Little Brother, and Brew & Brew, Hold Out Brewing offers a variety of beer styles, from hazy IPAs to to dry-hopped porters. They also make a really tasty smash burger if you want to give your beer a little company.
The Austin Beer Garden Brewing Company—better known as ABGB—puts out consistently high-quality beers out of South Austin, even earning “Brewpub Of The Year” for three consecutive years at the Great American Beer Festival. They have really solid food as well, from pizza to muffalettas, and a nice, big patio.
The Brewtorium, the Central Austin brewery/restaurant, has an enormous indoor beer hall and two spacious beer gardens with picnic tables. They’re known for their German-style beers like pilsners, lagers, and Kölsch. There’s basic pub fare like burgers and reuben sandwiches, but then there’s also Flammkuchen and “Bratchos” (potato chips topped with crumbled bratwurst, beer cheese, curry pickled onions, and cilantro).
This small brewery on the East Side has become a hot spot for lunch, dinner, and everything in between, in large part due to their large patio. By day, they operate as almost equal parts coffee shop and brewery. Their kitchen serves some surprisingly good tacos and tortas, as well as smaller snacks like fried chickpeas and queso fundido.
photo credit: Nicolai McCrary
This small brewery near Mueller makes a lot of different beers, but Oddwood really excels with their pilsners, IPAs, and saisons. It’s a fairly quiet neighborhood spot with plenty of comfortable seating and they even have video games available. The food here is simple, but complements the beers well, with things like calzones and bar pizzas.
St. Elmo is one of our favorite breweries in South Austin, excelling at just about every style that they try, from hazy IPAs to raspberry sours. It’s also home to the very popular Spicy Boys food truck, specializing in fried chicken.
Live Oak is one of Austin’s oldest breweries and probably known best for its hefeweizen— which has consistently been ranked as among the best in the world—but they also make a really fantastic pilsner. There's a 13-hole disc golf course and a German food truck for when you inevitably get hungry.
photo credit: Raphael Brion
Austin Beerworks is one of the most popular breweries in Austin, with a huge variety of beer styles and an equally large taproom and shaded patio. Their mainstays are pretty widely distributed around town, but they also do a lot of experimental brewery-only releases. Austin Beerworks also runs a food truck serving tacos, Tex-Mex, and burgers.
Jester King makes some of the most uniquely-Texas beers in the state, in large part due to their open-air fermentation that collects wild yeast from their sprawling property out in the Hill Country. As a result, no two batches are ever the same, and many border on the edge of sour. The space feels more like a park than a brewery, with walking trails, free-roaming goats, canopies of trees, and picnic tables spread all across the grounds. They have a kitchen as well, with things like pizza and sourdough bread.
Opening their doors just a few days before the start of 2020, Hopsquad in North Austin is a relative newcomer. It’s also home to Dough Squad, a food truck serving Neapolitan-inspired pizza.
As Austin’s first dedicated sour brewery, Blue Owl Brewing in East Austin brews just about every style of beer with a distinct tart finish. That means sour pale ales, IPAs, lagers, and even stouts.
Zilker is another craft brewery on East 6th that’s become almost as popular as any of the nearby bars. They make a lot of great beers but their hazy IPAs are among the best in town. They’re also home to the Spicy Boys food truck, specializing in fried chicken with Asian-inspired flavors.
In addition to offering up some pretty solid pizza, Pinthouse operates as a brewery, now with four locations around Austin. They brew a variety of styles, but are probably best known for the Electric Jellyfish—a hazy, NEIPA that until recently you could only get on site. Now it’s available in cans, but you can still make a visit to eat some pizza and drink on one of their patios.
The beers at Central Machine Works are solid, but we usually find ourselves there for the huge outdoor space and the large warehouse that was previously used to build WWII airplane parts. The patio is even larger than the building itself, with abundant picnic tables, fire pits, and benches. They also have a kitchen, selling bar staples like pizza and burgers.