Take a virtual look around Peticolas Brewing's new taproom in Dallas

Peticolas Brewing Co. is one of Dallas' most popular craft breweries, but if you've ever tried to visit, you know how difficult that can be. For the five years it's been in operation, Peticolas has traditionally been open to the public twice a month, usually on the first and third Saturday of each one.

That all changed this year when Peticolas opened a new taproom at its facility in the Design District. It was unveiled Dec. 31 at the brewery's anniversary party. It opened to the public Jan. 12.

Take a virtual look around:

Founder Michael Peticolas and his team spent several weeks reconfiguring and updating the brewery to give it more of a bar feel where people can come and enjoy beer four days a week. Not only will the taproom afford Peticolas and his staff to connect with consumers on a new level, but it also allows drinkers better access to its beers, which are notoriously only available on draft.

"This will give us the ability to do something that we've wanted to do for a long time, which is serve up some of our rarest and most desirable beers," Peticolas says. "Our aged beers ... our anniversary beers ... none of those beers have ever been sold to a retailer. The only way you could get those beers was at a festival or if you came to the brewery and we happened to have it on."

When Peticolas opened in late 2011, Texas law prohibited breweries from selling beer directly to consumers, which meant owners had to search for loopholes to bring customers in the door. Many local establishments promoted weekend tours for a $10 entry fee that included "complimentary" beers. In 2013, however, legislation changed to enable sales of beer at breweries. Those that opened after that change did so with a retail component; many older breweries added one.

Peticolas' bar has 16 taps for rotating brews plus one cask beer that will be always be available. In terms of updates, the brewery's merchandise room has been redone, the communal room now has TVs and a sound system for music, and the second story is now furnished with wood floors, railings and seating. There are also now windows from the taproom into brew house, so patrons can see where the magic happens.

Peticolas believes he'll increase the amount of beer the brewery turns out annually as a product of having a taproom, but insists the move is about giving drinkers what they want.

"It's more to give access to our beers to our consumers ā€” the folks who ask about it, to the people I field phone calls from that say, 'Hey, I'm in from Georgia and want to swing by.' Or the people who just walk in here randomly thinking we are open," he says.

"I want to make myself available to them because there's really no better way to experience our beer than here at the brewery."

Starting Jan. 12, Peticolas Brewing Co.'s taproom will be open Thursday and Friday 4 to 10 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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