One Houston brewery has an extra reason to root for the Houston Astros as they go bat to bat with the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series this week.
Oh, sure, Karbach Brewing wants the Astros to win as it is, as the home team. But the brewers there — who make an Astros-themed beer sold at Minute Maid Park and elsewhere, including Austin — have also made a bet with New York's Blue Point Brewing. Blue Point makes a Yankees-inspired brew called the Pinstripe Pils.
Can you guess the friendly wager? If the Yankees win the ALCS, Karbach will have to make and serve the Pinstripe Pils in the Houston brewery and taproom. Conversely, if the Astros earn the pennant, then Blue Point will have to produce and provide Crawford Bock (named for Minute Maid's Crawford Boxes, a home run-friendly section of the park) in New York.
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Karbach's head brewer, Chris Juergen, said the bet has been a few weeks in the works, even though the Astros and Yankees didn't know they were playing each other until last week. He was in the Yakima Valley of Washington during the hop harvest, picking out Karbach's supply. At a hop farm with Blue Point brewmaster Rob Capitelli, he had a feeling he knew where the postseason was headed.
He and Capitelli "started talking about the possibility of an Astros-Yankees playoff series," he said. "We both felt like a friendly bet was in order. Since Crawford Bock has been a great partnership for both Karbach and the Astros, and Blue Point has a similar situation with the Yankees, we agreed that the loser of the bet should have to brew the other team’s beer while wearing a jersey from the victorious team."
The Astros pulled off a win at Yankee Stadium yesterday and now lead the series 2-1, and Juergen is feeling good about Karbach's chances with the boozy bet.
"It looks like there will be Crawford Bock flowing in New York City," he said.