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How Breakaway Brewing is Elevating the Gastropub Experience in San Antonio

Chris Pal-Freeman sat down with Eat Drink Local Texas to discuss Breakaway Brewing, a cycling-themed gastropub he co-founded with his wife. He explained the history of the brewery, its menu items, and its focus on perfecting its beer and food. When asked what makes Breakaway Brewing stand out, Chris highlighted its elevated gastropub food, signature burgers, and unique flavors in their beer.

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San Antonio, Texas - Breakaway Brewing is a cycling-themed gastropub in the Government Hill neighborhood of San Antonio, Texas, playing with plenty of flavors in the beer and food they pair together that patrons aren't going to find in the average brewery. Breakaway Brewing was something owner Chris Pal-Freeman had been working on for about 25 years. As he and his wife Jean have moved from state to state, Chris' brewing has changed in each location, resulting in Breakaway Brewing, which has been a good melding of all the places they've lived in.

Breakaway Brewing menu with selection of craft beers and prices listed

"All my styles are mostly my own," Chris discussed his brewing process. "But if I'm leaning anywhere, I lean back to the Pacific Northwest because I cut my teeth brewing when we were in Portland, Oregon."

Breakaway Brewing is a brewery, first and foremost, with beer styles that fit everyone. The beer is indeed for everyone since it's not every day a patron will find chocolate raspberry brown ale or a blackberry pilsner.

"I play with flavor and not by the rules," Chris explained. "When people say they don't like beer, they just haven't found the right one. I take that as a challenge to make a beer for everyone."

Three assorted beers on a bar counter

One shouldn't forget the food menu items, which adds to the definition of Breakaway Brewing - a place that focuses on good beer and quality food. A fine example of such delicacies is the polenta fries served in place of standard French fries. These sublime snacks are made of polenta with parmesan and cheese woven into them and then deep-fried, creating crispy and light results. The fries, paired with one of Breakaway Brewing's signature burgers (which consists of a delicious blend of sirloin, short rib, and brisket in one patty) or a gourmet grilled cheese, are just a few of the ways the establishment showcases how everything they do involves a dash of elevation.

Chris hopes this will lead to Breakaway Brewing being the neighborhood meeting place. The owners have made some conscious decisions based on this goal, such as creating what some can describe as a living room area where patrons can enjoy an intimate space one would find in their own home while enjoying a fresh, cold, delicious beer straight from the tap.

"There's sofas, chairs, small bistro tables - kind of a flexible living room space people can gather," Chris described the layout. "The place where families come in, pull games down, and play on the weekend."

It's a flexible space where everybody can enjoy their food without worrying about the lack of space most businesses have due to dining tables taking up most of it. Breakaway Brewing is more comfortable with its lounge area vibes that create Government Hill's next hangout spot. Chris and Jean are in no rush to become huge and would instead concentrate on the neighborhood as it continues to change its scenery with the apartment complexes and new businesses that come in now and then. It's a nice area to be in as they remain a constant in the ever-changing neighborhood.

Address: 1518 E Grayson St, San Antonio, TX 78208


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