Texas Ale Project is a veteran & family-owned and operated craft brewery that opened in November 2014. David Stevens has been a successful Texas entrepreneur for most of his life and today he leads up Business Development for the brewery. Kat Thompson, CEO, and her husband, Brent Thompson, Head Brewer, are also a military family.
Brent served on flight decks in the Navy for four years after high school and worked hard to save up money to go to college when he returned to the US. He successfully put himself through college almost solely from the money he earned from the Navy and through a few other jobs. He had dreams to one day build a business he could call his own, and so did Kat. Entrepreneurial roots run deep in both Kat’s and Brent’s families. They met in Dallas at a summer job both while in college. About 7 years later, they found themselves wanting to start a brewery together. It was almost an accident that they brewed their first batch of beer, called The Amateur Leprechaun, an Irish Red Ale, in a graduate school beer club competition at Cornell University in New York. This is where Kat was getting her MBA at the time, and they quickly fell in love with the idea of creating a product that all their friends could enjoy and share. This sparked an almost immediate passion for brewing; they drafted a business plan, started heavily researching, and set out to fundraise for the brewery all in matter of a few months from brewing their first batch of beer.
The family wanted to brew beers that they loved to drink themselves, and they wanted to make sure their finished ales demonstrated their passion for quality. “It’s important,” said Kat, “that we’re always making a quality beer that our entire team is enthusiastic about and one that customers greatly enjoy once they try it.”