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saint_arnold_mural-300x300-1Every brand has an ultimate goal: loyal fan base and following. You can usually identify if a brand has reached the ultimate following by whether or not people get tattoos of their brand, e.g., Apple, Harley Davidson, or even Mario. …I got a Sonic the Hedgehog tattoo when I turned 18… long story. It’s that loyal fan base and evangelism that helps establish a company as a force in the market. On a local level, Saint Arnold Brewing Company has reached that level. How? Probably the same way the other companies did. Quality.

Brock Wagner, founder of Saint Arnold, told me that people often ask him what style or type of beer he makes trying to force a specific genre.  He simply responds, “we make good beer”.  And that they do. From this, Brock has a loyal group of followers that has thrusted Saint Arnold as the leader in the area. saint_arnold_dining-300x300-1These fans love to hang out at the brewery and many even offer volunteer time just to be a part. But now we have a whole new reason for hanging out at Saint Arnold: Lunch.

During the week, Executive Chef Ryan Savoie will be serving a fixed lunch menu. The menu is updated on the site and they even offer vegetarian days. For $17.55 you get a gourmet meal prepared fresh with quality ingredients. Chef Ryan is, first, a long time fan of Saint Arnold and his passion shows in the dishes he creates, often made with Saint Arnold beer. Oh, and you get a beer glass that you can have filled as many times as you like with whatever beer you chose, even their Icon.  That $17.55 is sounding a lot better now, eh? Think friday lunches with the team.

brock_wagner-300x300-1I was invited to to Saint Arnold to try the new lunch while dining with Brock himself. Brock is one of the nicest people you will have the pleasure meeting. If you take a tour of the brewery, you most likely get to spend some time with him as well. If you’re a Jim Collins fan, this guy is a Level 5, it’s quite obvious.

While I was their, I was served delectable carbonnade au flamande with a spring green salad. The instant I took a bite, memories of my trip to Ireland (where Stef and I were married) were stirred. I could taste the perfect nuance of Saint Arnold’s Santo, as beer based dishes were common in Ireland. As we sat and ate, Brock entertained us with stories of the brewery, its fans, and even a fun story about Chef Ryan actually applying for a job at the brewery (unrelated to chef) many years ago. He then gave us a personal tour showing us where some of the specialty beers and experiments are cask aged.

Saint Arnold’s lunch is a great experience even if you don’t drink beer. Join the brewery for lunch and you are sure to be surrounded by great company as well. The dining area offers a great view of downtown. The brewery was surprisingly easy to get to and will be a destination for many lunches to come.

Cheers, and stay hungry Houston.