Local brewer's passion to pour pays off - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Local brewer's passion to pour pays off

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Craft beer made by small, independent and local breweries is the new brew of choice in North Texas.

Although craft beer sales nationally topped $12 bill last year, Texas has been slow to the table when it comes to micro breweries because of strict liquor laws.

Dallas didn't have single micro brewery in 2010. Then Michael Peticolas came along.

"When I started this, Dallas didn't have a micro brewery and it was the largest city in the United States without a micro brewery," he said.

Peticolas gave up his day job as an attorney to start Peticolas Brewing Company.

"I had received a business plan to invest in a brewery," he said. "And then one night, we were sitting around discussing it. She turned to me and said, 'Why don't we do this ourselves?'"

His first challenge was to change the city law to allow him to manufacture beer in the design district.

Then Peticolas relied on volunteers and his own sweat to brew 800 barrels of his four beers last year, selling only to local bars and restaurants.

But his passion to pour has paid off.

This year he's on tap to brew 2,500 barrels or 75,000 gallons with no loans to pay back. And his English pale ale called Royal Scandal was the Great American Beer Fest's gold medal beer after being on the market for only 40 days.

Last March, Dallas city leaders changed the law to make it easier for others to open micro breweries as well. The city is now home to four.

"The opportunity was just begging to be taken advantage of at that point," said Jordan Moon, co-founder of the Dallas Brew Scene.

While craft beer only accounts for 10 percent of beer sales, Moon and Peticolas believe beer drinkers want to support their local brewer.

"It seems like every day I wake up I hear about another brewery is in the planning or opening up," Peticolas said.

While most Texas micro breweries import their barley, hops and yeast, what many brewers will argue really makes their beer is the water. Peticolas said North Texas has some of the best mineral quality for certain types of beers, mostly ales.


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