Want to experience the latest craft brew craze? Then go to Lone Star Taps & Caps owned by father and son Sam and Rick Ali, in North East Castle Hills located off Hwy 121 and Josey Lane! It’s a very inconspicuous shop, tucked away in a strip mall with various restaurants and other businesses. I remember looking at the sign posted on the window when it was under construction, and my husband and I saying, “Really? A craft beer bottle shop located here?”

A few weeks later, I read an article that said it was now open for business…so after dinner one night, a bunch of us stopped in to check it out. Our group ranged from beer “aficionados” to light beer (only) drinkers to “I never drink beer”; obviously, a challenged group when it came to choosing our tastings! But never fear! As soon as we walked in and stared blankly at the massive beer menu, Sam Ali, came to our rescue. He explained the different varieties of beer, and walked us through the process of choosing our selections, telling us which beers we would enjoy based on what we normally drank or didn’t drink for that matter!

Finally, after much deliberation in choosing the “perfect” flights, we all sat down with our beers in front of us, and began to take in the shop’s atmosphere. It was bright, loud and crowded (standing room only by this point)…but in addition, it was LIVELY! Everywhere you looked there were people of all ages (of legal drinking age of course) sipping, enjoying and talking about BEER! It wasn’t your typical “bar” experience however, as there were no pool tables, bar food OR even a bar to sit at! Just some simple wood and metal tables with uncomfortable stools and a few barrels to stand around. We later found out that this was intentional, as the whole point of Taps and Caps was to get customers in the door to taste a few beers, then bring some home to enjoy later…not to “hang out” in the shop all night drinking! Most of these craft beers had double or even triple the amount of alcohol that “regular” domestic beer has, so it must be drank with respect.

Ok, now on to the beer itself.There are 50 (yes 5-0) different taps of craft beers and ciders to choose from! The neat thing is, although they offer different beers from all over the world, they concentrate on beers from Texas! A couple of the brews are made right in our backyard in Lewisville/Castle Hills! “Tasters” are $1.00-$3.00, with the majority costing $2.00; a flight consists of 4 different beers. A pint costs anywhere from $2.00-$11.00.Tasters and pints can be consumed on site…but then there are the 32oz containers and 64oz “growlers”, along with various packaged beers, that are only “to go”. As you can guess, these “to go” beers are priced accordingly, depending on which one you choose.

I had the pleasure of visiting with Rick Ali, and I asked him why he decided to open up Lone Star Taps & Caps in the Castle Hills area…his answer was simple: “I live in Castle Hills, and I have family and friends here! I wanted to open up a shop near my home!” And we are glad he did…with such a unique concept, it’s nice to know that our neighborhood is special, and will be well served. Thanks Rick and Sam!

For more information on Taps & Caps visit their website! www.YourCraftBeerHeaven.com