Weekend Beer Update

Looks like we’re headed for reasonably-good patio drinking weekend and there’s lots going on to make the most of it! From a number of anniversaries to diverse food-themed events there’s no excuse not to knock back a few brews.

Friday 17 – Saturday 18: Join Strange Craft for a celebration of their ninth anniversary. Friday will feature a special tap release, cellared bottle sales, a vertical tasting and food, while Saturday brings nine collaboration brews with other local breweries, t-shirt printing and food.strange-beers.jpg

Friday 17 – Saturday 18: While only clocking in at six years, Odyssey Beerwerks will also be pulling out all the stops for their anniversary with a special release and food on Friday, then multiple beer releases, barrel-aged tap beers, merch, music, food and even magic (2-5 p.m.) on Saturday.

Saturday 18: Also celebrating six years, Colorado Plus Brew Pub brings live music, over 20 house beers on tap, special sausage and a cornhole tournament.  The tournament comes with prizes, plus Colorado Plus will start raffling free shwag at 3 p.m.

20171110_210133_HDRSaturday 18: With the makings of a great combo afternoon, Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project, just down the road from Strange Craft, celebrates two years by showcasing new tappings and cellar beer releases, new merch, food, a beer garden and lawn games. Why not check out both anniversaries for a brew-full afternoon?

Saturday 18: Fire up the stove and cook a pot of your best chili for Living the Dream Brewery’s Beer Chili Cookoff. The fun starts at 2 p.m. with prizes for the best red and green, and naturally all recipes must include craft beer. See the event post for more info and the email address for questions and entry.

Saturday 18: If eating chili has put you in the mood for more heat, head to Alpine Dog Brewery for their annual Chili Pepper Festival where they’ll be infusing some of their standard offerings with different chilies and creating special chili brews, along with hosting a taco truck providing complementary flavors.two22-taproom.jpg

Saturday 18: For those who prefer things on the sweeter side Two22 Brew will host a Peach Festival with the release of their Peach Patio beer plus other beer infusions throughout the day. The theme is luau so Hawaiian-wear is strongly encouraged.

Saturday 18: Continuing the crawfish season, Denver Beer Co. will hold their eighth annual Crawfish Boil at the downtown location. In addition to the requisite crustaceans and sides Denver Beer Co. will release a special pilsner to accompany the Cajun flavors. Note: This is a ticketed event.

Kokopelli BeerSaturday 18: Get a preview of the newest Alamo Drafthouse in Westminster as Kokopelli Beer Company hosts a pre-opening party from 4 – 6 p.m. First 25 people get a free beer!

Saturday 18: Get bluesy with Halfpenny Brewing Company at their second Blues & Brews Night featuring Jeff White. It’s pretty much as advertised; music & beer!

 

Brewery Snapshot: Peak View Brewing Company

After being a brewery desert for so many years, DTC is finally catching up with the rest of metro Denver. The latest addition is Peak View Brewing Company, located just east of I-25 on Arapahoe Road. The brewery, which just opened in early April, is already packing in a full house to drink their impressive selection of  brews and is worth a post-work Happy Hour visit or a special trip for a longer drinking session. 

BEER LINEUP: In their short four-week existence Peak View had compiled a surprisingly diverse taplist, and more impressively almost all of them hit the mark. The brews cover the basic spectrum from a very light pineapple wheat to a dark brown and a stout. Additionally, Peak View is already branching out with things like a coffee cream, an orange saison, and a peach sour.

ATMOSPHERE: As one might expect for a DTC brewery, the clientele was mainly younger- to middle-aged professionals. On our early-evening visit the place was packed, with the garage doors open to the small patio. The taproom itself isn’t anything spectacular – the standard strip-mall model- but worked just fine for drinking beer.

SERVICE: The staff was exceptionally friendly and happy to hang out and discuss the beers in-depth, including recommendations and personal opinions. They demonstrated an impressive knowledge of the current brews along with others that have kicked or are preparing for release. Even during busy periods the staff took the time to inform patrons about beers while efficiently serving up fresh pours.

NEIGHBORHOOD: Peak View is located at the end of a strip mall in a complex with various other shops, bars, and restaurants on a section of Arapahoe Road filled with big box retailers and auto dealers. While not exactly a walkable area, you can easily combine a visit to Peak View with other errands or a lunch or dinner outing. Parking close to the brewery is tight but the surrounding area has plenty of spots.

peak-view-pils-hefe.jpgSTANDOUT BEER: Combining two of my favorite summer beer styles, the Papa J’s Pilzeweizen brought together the bite of noble hops used in typical pilsners with the banana and clove esters normally associated with hefeweizens.  The mostly-clear, golden beer had a light body and in my opinion the sweeter, fuller esters cut through the spice and bitterness from the hops for an easy-drinking, wonderfully-balanced brew.

Craft Beer Summer School

20180729_145939_hdr.jpgIt’s back for 2019! Twelve of Denver’s best breweries will make learning fun with this year’s edition of Craft Beer Summer School. Starting June 6th and running into September, you’ll visit a different craft brewery each week for in-depth education on ingredients, fermentation, adjuncts, international beer styles and more. The program is broken into three different themed tracks for various interests or you can take them all to become a true expert. Finally on September 7th Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project hosts a graduation party. Check out the website for full information on costs, schedule, and the three tracks. Participating breweries are listed below.

  • Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project
  • Spice Trade Brewing
  • Jade Mountain Brewing
  • Alpine Dog20180527_143822_HDR
  • Baere Brewing
  • Woods Boss
  • CO-Brew
  • Bruz Beers
  • Dos Luces
  • Jagged Mountain
  • Bierstadt Lagerhaus
  • Burns Family Artisan Ales

 

 

Weekend Beer Update

Whether by coincidence or careful planning around the holiday, this Mother’s Day weekend has few coordinated events. Most of the activity centers around feeding mom some beer, although a large number of breweries are doing special releases throughout the weekend. The weather looks good and patios are open, so there shouldn’t be any shortage of excuses to skip the craft brews.

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Peak View Taps

Saturday 11: Highlands Ranch is getting their own Beer Bus which stops at four breweries: Grist Brewing Company, Resolute Brewing Company, Lone Tree Brewing Company, and newcomer Peak View Brewing Company. Starting at 1 p.m., it’s the typical brewery bus deal – five bucks for a ticket and you get a free future pint when you complete all four breweries. Start your journey at any of the participating breweries. Note, the Grist location is the Park Meadows one.

Sunday 12:  Happy Mother’s Day! Bring mom out for beermosas and breakfast food at 105 West Brewing’s Mother’s Day Brunch in Castle Rock.

20180212_175021_HDRSunday 12: If mom lives up north, do brunch at Kokopelli Beer Company instead. They’ll have pancakes, fresh fruit crepes, mimosas, sangrias, specialty drinks, and Bingo. Game starts bright and early at 11:30 a.m.

Sunday 12: If mom’s more of a downtown gal, take her to Ratio Beerworks’ Cirque & Eclat Mother’s Day Brunch where they’ll serve up an all-you-can-eat buffet from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. along with plenty of Ratio beers of course. Note: This is a ticketed event.  If this all sounds too good to pass up, rumor has it you don’t necessarily have to be a mom to stop by and enjoy.

Brewery Snapshot: Grossen Bart Brewery

For non-German speakers, Grossen Bart translates to “Big Beard” and Grossen Bart Brewery carries that theme through their entire operation, from the taproom decor to the glassware and the website to the beer names. Fortunately they didn’t spend all their time and effort on marketing and conceptualizing. The overall impression of the taproom is a utilitarian but comfortable space with friendly service and solid beers. While that wouldn’t necessarily justify a special trip from Denver, Grossen Bart makes for a pleasant stop if you live in the Longmont area or happen to pass through.

BEER LINEUP: Despite the name, Grossen Bart is not a German-focused brewery and the tap list covers the spectrum of typical styles where you’ll find a kolsch, some ambers, and an IPA, along with several dark beers and even a barley wine. Unlike many breweries, Grossen Bart seems to avoid trend-chasing and I saw no sours, fruit beers, or hazy IPAs. Overall, our group enjoyed all of the solidly-made beers.

ATMOSPHERE: The taproom decor is kind of a mashup between industrial, rustic, and funky, with one wall given over to technicolor cartoons. Unfortunately rain prevented us from checking out either of the attractive-looking outdoor patios, but the spacious taproom allowed plenty of space to spread out. The general feel was relaxed and friendly.

SERVICE: Our server was friendly, enthusiastic and very knowledgeable about the beers. We really appreciated her help, as several of the beers have beard-related names without any description of the beer style.

NEIGHBORHOOD: Grossen Bart is tucked away at the end of a parking lot deep in an industrial park (look for the brewery sandwich board on the street). There’s not really a lot going on in the area except for lots of parking.

grossen-bart-mullet.jpgSTANDOUT BEER: Mullet. This copper-colored, slightly-hazy beer is difficult to categorize but very pleasant to drink. What stood out most was the enjoyable balance between the maltiness of the lager base and the noticeable but not overwhelming addition of hops. The low carbonation and medium body also contribute to making this an easy-drinking beer.

Happy National Homebrew Day!

Tomorrow is National Homebrew Day! Time to grab some supplies at your local homebrew shop and fire up a boil to make something tasty! Many craft brew supply stores are having special events and demonstrations so even if you’ve never tried it before, tomorrow’s a great day to learn first-hand what goes into making a great homebrew.

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The Brew Hut in Aurora will host one particularly large event: Big Brew Day. They invite current homebrewers to bring their equipment and do a boil from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m, or for anyone with an interest to come, hang out, swap ideas with other homebrewers and  learn from homebrewing demonstrations. As an added bonus they’ll have special sales on brewing equipment and ingredients.

Weekend Beer Update

Sunday is Cinco de Mayo, which of course means no shortage of Mexican-themed celebrations across the metro area and beyond. Additionally, there are plenty of other fun events from anniversaries to Derby parties and it looks the weather will cooperate for some patio beers, regardless of which craft brewery(ies) you venture out to this weekend.

Friday 3 – Sunday 5: Join Dos Luces Brewery to celebrate the Battle of Puebla all weekend with food, music, and plenty of chicha and pulque beers. The highlight will be the release of Moctezuma III, an imperial pulque, on Saturday. The Battle of Puebla has evolved into our current Cinco de Mayo celebration, which commemorates the victory of Mexican forces over the French in 1862.

Saturday 4: Though it’s a day early, Cerveceria Colorado’s combination Cinco de Mayo celebration and first anniversary party doesn’t skimp on the fun and games. In addition to several special releases, they’ll also have Mexican games, Mexican food trucks, piñata smashing and a photo booth.

Saturday 4: Saturday is also Derby Day and Epic Brewing Company will celebrate the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby with their Never Tell Me the Odds Derby Party. Throw on your best seersucker, prettiest dress, and wackiest hat to watch the Derby, drink Epic’s Mint Sour, and take some pictures in the photo booth.  The best Kentucky Derby attire and/or Star Wars costume photo strip wins free beer.

Saturday 4: Crawfish Boil season continues this weekend at Bruz Beers, where they’ll have crustaceans, sides and live music all day. You can buy tickets in advance to reserve your crawfish or just show up and take your chances.

Saturday 4: CO-Brew combines their four-year anniversary with a Cinco de Mayo party that includes music, a nacho bar and piñatas, along with the much-anticipated employee beer competition returns.

Saturday 4: If you’ve had your fill of Mexican celebrations, take a break at Prost Brewing and their Maibock Release/German Night party. In addition to the Maibock, Prost will have specials on their regular beers accompanied by food and music. German attire is suggested.

Saturday 4: Up north in Berthoud, City Star Brewing celebrates their seventh anniversary with music, food trucks, merch, cupcakes and of course beer releases!

Sunday 5: Celebrating the actual Cinco de Mayo, Lone Tree tanksLone Tree Brewing will hold a salsa and guacamole competition with prizes for your best recipes. They’ll also release a Strawberry Mexican Lager Margarita beer and have a food truck with a taco bar. Contestants need to email the brewery at info@lonetreebrewingco.com ahead of time with their name and type of entry.

Sunday 5: Continuing the Cinco de Mayo theme, Ironton Distillery will hold a Viva Cerveza party with guest taps of craft beers from Mexico.