By Kelly Baughman

The southernmost brewery in the state of Alabama, Big Beach Brewing Company, is more than just a place to grab a drink, it’s a destination. Located in the heart of Gulf Shores at 300 E. 24th Avenue, Big Beach Brewing Company features a 10 barrel brewing system that brews up some of the most unique and eclectic beers from ales to IPA’s to stouts and Belgian style beers.
Known as a “tank to tap” operation, the six fermenters on hand at Big Beach Brewing Company allow them to serve a variety of house made specialty recipes that come to you as fresh as you can get, all at the perfect temperature to give you the flavor and refreshment you expect when sipping the perfect beer.
General Manager, and son to owners Jim and Julie Shamburger, Ryan Shamburger, said, “This all started as a family hobby. My dad, sister, and I loved home brewing and coming up with new recipes. My parents love to visit various breweries while traveling, and thought it would be cool to have one in our town. Soon after that realization, Big Beach Brewing Company was born.”
And their dream that became Big Beach Brewing Company does not disappoint.
Check out the Taproom, a beautiful open air venue to sip, sample, and enjoy everything Big Beach Brewing Company has to offer. You’ll be cozy whether winter or summer with their comfortable seating, cozy fireplace, and four garage doors that can be opened to let the coastal breezes in when the weather permits.
There are 12 beers on tap, with a focus on craft beers. For those that don’t drink, but till want to tag along, Big Beach Brewing Company has some of the best homemade lemonade on the coast. And although they may not serve food, Big Beach Brewing Company encourages patrons to bring their own food or order in from one of the fabulous local restaurants that surround this beer oasis.
Whether you’re a light tasting beer fan, and IPA connoisseur, or a traditional ale fan, Big Beach Brewing Company has something for everyone. Ryan Shamburger said Brewmaster Rod Murray works hand in hand with owner Jim Shamburger to come up with a variety of unique brews, and has been instrumental to the delicious success of Big Beach Brewing Company.
Rod’s Reel Cream Ale is a local favorite and some of his other recipes are sure to leave a memorable mark on even the most judgemental beer palette. They include:
The Evacuation Plan American Blonde Ale is a golden-colored beer with a nice balance of malty sweetness with little to no hop aroma. It’s light without losing taste, and appeals to beer drinkers of all kinds. It’s 5.5% ABV, and it comes to you ice cold and delicious.
The Hundred Daze IPA is Big Beach Brewing Company’s flagship IPA, and is made for those who love the taste of hops. Citrus, apricot, passion fruit, and black pepper aromas introduce this moderately-strong American Ale. You’ll notice a strong, hoppy bitterness that will linger into the aftertaste and clean, supporting malt flavor allows the hops to shine. This one comes in with a 6.8% ABV, so be careful if you’re new to the IPA scene….you’ll feel these as they go down.
Dixie’s Hart Irish Red Ale is “reflective of our laid-back ‘Bama attitude” according to the Shamburgers, and is an easy-drinking pint with rich caramel and toffee flavors and a medium hop bitterness. Just slightly sweet, the balance of the beer is more malted than bitter, with just a touch of spice and a roasted dryness at the finish. At 5.0% ABV, it pairs well with many of the delicious seafood options you can order in from local restaurants while you sit and relax.
The Small Town Brown Ale is a caramel-centric brown ale and has a gentle, nutty sweetness with notes of toffee and chocolate from English Crystal and chocolate malts. The malt-hop balance of this brew makes it complex, but still sessionable. It comes in at a 5.1% ABV, and is a great choice for those who like beers like New Castle and Sam Adams.
If you love Big Beach Brewing Company’s beer and want to take some home, Shamburger said they’ve got you covered. “We offer bottles of beer to go called “Growlers”, and we also have the ability to pour and seal 32 oz. cans which we call “Crowlers”. We also have our beers on tap at the Flora-Bama and work hand in hand with them as “Bamas own specialty beer”,” Shamburger said.
In addition to these and many other beers to choose from, Big Beach Brewing Company has been celebrated as one of the best live music venues in the area and features some of the best acts in the Southeast for your enjoyment. Upcoming shows include:
Sugarcane Jane- Saturday, January 26th – 3:30-6:30 pm
Brent Burns- Sunday, January 27th – 1:30-4:30 pm
Molly Taylor &Denton Hatcher – Friday, February 1st – 7-10 pm
Dueling Pianos- Saturday, February 2nd – 4-7 pm
John Martin Davis Band- Friday, February 8th – 6:30-9:30 pm
And be sure not to miss Geeks Who Drink Trivia nights, for those who love live pub trivia with music rounds, picture rounds, and much more. You play in teams, it’s free to enter, and you can win amazing prizes like gift certificates or Big Beach Brewing Company swag. Think you and your friends have the brains and useless knowledge to reign supreme? Head down to Big Beach Brewing Company every Monday and prove it!
Upcoming Geeks Who Drink Trivia nights are January 28th, February 4th, and -February 11th from 7-9 pm.
Shamburger said patrons can expect the beers on tap to change with the seasons, and big things are on the horizon for Big Beach Brewing Company. “We are having a a Super Bowl party with live entertainment before the game, a big screen to watch the game, and plenty of specials. We are also planning a St. Patrick’s Day party, and will be participating in the Zydeco Crawfish Festival in April. The Waterway Village community is a cool little place that hopes to one day be a walk about entertainment district, and we plan on having a pedestrian walkway that will allow patrons to safely drift from one place to the next all while enjoying their favorite Big Beach beverage,” Shamburger said.
So whether you’re in the mood to hear some great music, flex your brain muscles in trivia, or just relax in a laid back atmosphere with a truly special brew in your hand, Big Beach Brewing Company is the place to be! Stop by and find out why the whole island is buzzing about this hometown oasis.
For more information on Big Beach Brewing Company, visit www.bigbeachbrewing.com or call 251-948-BEER.