OK, so equating a bar to your child's education probably isn't the best comparison, but you didn't come here for parental advice, either. But it's possible to live in an upscale suburban neighborhood like Castle Hills, a master-planned community in eastern Lewisville, while still finding a local watering hole that serves up beer from the area's best local brewers. That's where Kegs & Mugs comes in.
This isn't the first craft beer spot to make Castle Hills its keep. TKO Libations spent two years in the Castle Hills Village Shops before closing in January 2020. But their location was buried deep within the winding neighborhoods of Castle Hills, and on our visit in 2019, we noted an "almost zero chance a beer-lover will just casually stumble upon this place" unless you knew someone who lived in the neighborhood.
Inside, the main bar occupies the back wall, while a long bar-height table neatly bisects the rest of the dining room. Light fixtures over the center of the dining room are made from empty beer kegs, while walls of windows on two sides keep the space bright. A couple of large TVs will surely garner the attention of sports fans on game days. Kegs & Mugs isn't a dimly lit dive-bar bar, but a place where you can bring the family, which fits into the area's demographic.
publishes their tap list online and updates it in almost real-time. At a glance, you can see if your favorite pint of suds would be available, along with a visual representation of the keg's status. The digital tap list also powers the menu board over the bar, with the same color-coding status of the kegs, and it's so brilliant that we wish every restaurant that serves beer would use it.
IPAs dominate almost a third of Kegs & Mugs' tap list, but there's plenty of choices to satisfy all comers. Summer isn't normally stout season, but we couldn't resist opening with a Viva La Beaver (7.5% ABV) peanut butter milk stout from California's Belching Beaver Brewery. There's a lot of complexity of flavors, and the 7.5% alcohol content makes this creamy stout more drinkable in the warmer months.
With our dark beer needs satiated, we stayed lighter and local for the rest of the evening. Hop & Sting's Miracle Wheat with Blood Orange (5.5% ABV) has a citrus flavor that shines more brightly than Revolver's Blood and Honey, while their Funkadelicious (6.3% ABV) sour neatly balances tart berries with a subtle hint of vanilla.
Burgers are a safe but smart choice. All of them come on a slightly sweet Hawaiian-style bun, and the fries, while being the slightly thicker wedge cut variety, were battered before frying, which resulted in a very light and crispy fry that had us coming back for more.
There's no reason that a local beer bar can't find a home in the suburbs. Chain restaurants aren't the entire norm when you leave the city, and it's possible to find gems where you may not expect them. Suburbanites still need good beer on occasion, and we're glad to see spots like Kegs & Mugs filling this gap nicely.
Kegs & Mugs, 615 FM 2281 (Old Denton Road), Suite 100, Lewisville, 4 p.m. - 10 p.m., Monday-Wednesday, 4 p.m. - 11pm Thursday, 11:30 a.m. - midnight Friday - Saturday, 11:30 a.m. - 10 p.m. Sunday.