Film on Tap: Pass the Bubbly


The HighballFilm on Tap is a column about the many ways that beer (or sometimes booze) and cinema intersect in Austin.

Pursuing multiple and consecutive careers in film, water and craft beer can be quite challenging to juggle more often than not, so I'm extremely appreciative for the patience, understanding and support that Slackerwood founder Jette Kernion has given me over the last six years. One of the columns that I've been most proud of is "Film on Tap," launched during Austin Craft Beer Week in October 2011.

Born out of Slackerwood's "How to Drink Like an Austinite" guides, I've enjoyed sharing memorable experiences of well-crafted beer and film -- as well as skillfully mixed cocktails and film curation.

While waiting out the torrential rains last Saturday evening, I enjoyed a delectable cherry-infused bourbon Old-Fashioned at The Highball and observed the crack bar staff as they served theatergoers, bar patrons and karaoke enthusiasts. Of all the bars and restaurants in town, there's probably no crew that can match the high frenetic pace and demands of a diverse crowd in the skillful manner that The Highball team handles nightly.

Walt Powell of Flix Brewhouse

Not all our "Film on Tap" memories are joyful, as it will be two years next week since the untimely passing of fellow craft beer enthusiast and friend Walt Powell, co-founder of Flix Brewhouse. A fellow lover of craft beer and film, Walt was committed to bringing together the best of our shared passions. If you've not ventured to Round Rock for a screening at Flix, be sure to rectify that soon and raise a pint of Saison de Walt in his honor.

Speaking of saisons, be sure to try the French {Hop} Connection while at Alamo Drafthouse this month. This special collaboration beer with Odell Brewing Co. in Fort Collins, Colorado gave members of the Drafthouse team including John Gross an opportunity to brew with the big boys. I've tried this lovely French saison that was dry-hopped with delicately fragrant Alsatian hops including Aramis and Triskel, and highly recommend for saison fans.

Check out a snapshot of the brewing and dry-hopping process below:

While our "Film on Tap" column will no longer be published on Slackerwood, I'll be keeping it alive and taking it offline as I did for the 2012 American Craft Beer Week with a screening of Beer Culture at North by Northwest Restaurant & Brewery. "Film on Tap" will now have a new home as a film series at Independence Brewing Co. in south Austin.

A recent co-presentation with Other Worlds Austin of Star Wars fan films at Independence Brewing Co. for "May the Forth" was well attended, with plans for another special OWA film event in the works for October.

You can expect more fun film programming at Independence Brewing Co. as yours truly is managing the taproom as well as handling event booking and community outreach. Local filmmakers interested in screening their films should leave a comment below.

[Photo credits: "Bar Manager Heather Smith," courtesy of The Highball, "Walt Powell of Flix Brewhouse" by Debbie Cerda]

Walt Powell

Thank you Debbie for remembering Walt. He'd be proud of how Flix Brewhouse has grown -- tripled in size in two years -- and a lot of that was based on his planning. We miss him every day and my favorite beer (because it's damn good) is the Saison de Walt. Drink good beer, for Walt!