AUSTIN BUSINESS JOURNAL: Sneak peek: St. Elmo Brewing aims to quench Austinites' big thirst for craft beer at south-side outpost

Michael Theis | Nov 4, 2016

St. Elmo Brewing Co. is the newest entrant to Austin's burgeoning craft beer scene.

Founded by Austin Beerworks alumni Bryan Winslow and Tim Bullock, the brewery will begin operations with a soft opening on Nov. 8, followed by a grand opening Dec. 3. But it held a private reception Thursday night to give friends and supporters a sneak-peak at the new facility, which is located in a South Austin industrial park at 440 E. St. Elmo Road.

 St. Elmo Brewing Co. held a soft-opening party on Nov. 3rd. - Michael Theis ABJ

St. Elmo Brewing Co. held a soft-opening party on Nov. 3rd. - Michael Theis ABJ

So far, St. Elmo's two founders have spent about $900,000 to start the brewery — plus, according to Winslow, the typical "blood, sweat and tears" required to launch a business.

Winslow, brewmaster and bar manager for the new outfit, said St. Elmo plans to produce about 700 barrels of beer in its first year and sell all of it on site. If things go well, he plans to expand in year two into keg sales for local bars and restaurants. Retail distribution is not on the planning board yet.

"The goal is draught sales next year, but only if the taproom demand can be managed as well," he said. "We couldn't bottle here because we just don't have the space. But never say never."

The company plans to take advantage of the 2014 Austin law that allows breweries to sell individual pints for on-premise consumption. St. Elmo's pints — with a regular rotation including a Kolsh, an American pale ale and a dry stout — will set you back about $5 a pop. They'll also be serving coffee, and in-house mineral water and sodas.

The taproom itself is a sleek beer hall, accented with white tile and featuring a 22-foot handmade bar top. The brewery will also debut in partnership with onsite food truck Soursop, owned by chef Teddy Bricker, serving a rotating menu of dishes inspired by the cuisine of Southeast Asia, according to the restaurateur.