Okay, so I’m cheating a bit…(which is a sentence I’ve used way too many times in my life). This article is supposed to be about my adventures in Tucson and the brewery I’m writing about today is actually located in a town called Marana. But it’s a suburb of Tucson, located less than 20 minutes northwest of downtown. So I’m counting it!
Anyhoozle, Button Brewhouse had its grand opening in September 2017. The microbrewery is named after the owners with the most adorable names in the game: Todd and Erika Button. Don’t be fooled, though. Their operation is anything but cute. The Buttons spent years laying the groundwork for their business by collaborating with established Tucson breweries to make excellent small batch beers that got pretty much universal acclaim from the local beer community. They built an operation up from legitimate brewing expertise, a solid business background and a savvy crowdsourcing campaign that paid off thanks to the relationships they forged in the Tucson indie beer scene.
And that’s what Arizona craft beer is all about, fam. Sure, the quality of beer is the first thing that most people discuss when they’re sipping our local brews. But the sense of community that our state’s brewers, brewery owners, beertenders and customers share is the reason I got into this game. And the Buttons embody that sweet spot that lies between quality and community. They opened their brewery with a series of exceptional beers that had me and all the rest of their customers raving.
Their Volstead Pilsner is a lager made in the pre-prohibition style with American malts and American hops because ‘Murica! If you think drinking a pilsner is gonna taste like Budweiser then you clearly don’t know what a good craft pilsner tastes like. This beer is crisp and clean with a nice malt undertone and a fruity feel to it that launches it way above any light macrobeer you’ve ever drank.
In keeping with the light styles with a ton of flavor, the Tor Auf Berliner Weisse is served with raspberry syrup, which is the traditional German style for this kind of beer. It’s a slightly tart, wheaty beer that is complemented perfectly by the sweetness from the syrup. It’s a great beer with an even better name that I totally understand because I’m pretty sure I can speak German when I’m drunk!
We get a little bit more into my comfort zone with the Chiltepin Red Ale. It’s a malty beer with a nice, strong burn that coats your tongue. It isn’t overwhelming to the point that I didn’t want more. But that’s just me. Tread lightly if you don’t enjoy spicy beers. Though if you live in Tucson you probably love eating tacos with super spicy salsas purchased from a bunch of unlicensed taco carts run by my Cousin Chico. So you should be fine.
I moved on to the Tropical Monsoon IPA, a beer with a fruity and super juicy taste. It packs in a ton of flavor while still being very smooth. I realized at this point that I was gradually approaching the neighborhood of Drunkenville so I decided to grab one last taste and head out.
I’ll drink anything and I love every style of beer but if I had to choose a favorite it would be dark brews. So I was quite happy to finish off with the All Souls Stout. It was a roasty beer with a very nice coffee and vanilla taste to it. They also offered a nitro version of this stout that I didn’t drink because I personally don’t like beers on nitro because it kills all the things I love about them. Nitro is the “my ex-girlfriend” of beers.
I had to head out to my next Tucson event that was taking place at a historic downtown hotel so I bid farewell to the Buttons. I was thoroughly impressed at how strong their initial beer selection was. Other Arizona breweries in planning could stand to learn from them and how they were ready to pour exceptional beer right out of the gate.