Brewery Snapshot: Landlocked Ales

The west side of Denver seems perpetually underpopulated by breweries, particularly in light of Caution’s 2018 closure. However one bright spot remains in Landlocked Ales, which opened in 2017 near Wadsworth Boulevard and Hampden Avenue. The brewery offers a comprehensive lineup of beers that will likely satisfy most palates, served in a standard suburban taproom. Perhaps not worth a special trip, but not bad if you happen to be in the area or coming back from the mountains on US 285 (Hampden).

BEER LINEUP: The tap list includes typical representations of most major styles, and the beers I tried were pleasant. Nothing on the list was particularly experimental (the most adventurous beer was a winter warmer), but everyone ought to be able to find something to enjoy.

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ATMOSPHERE: In typical strip-mall setup, the taproom features a bar, some tables and an opening to display the brewing equipment. On our visit the place was quiet, with small groups of young and middle-aged people chatting or watching sports and occasionally grabbing a bite from the food truck. It seemed like most people were one-and-done, with constant turnover. In other words a pleasant, if unremarkable space.

SERVICE: Our servers were friendly, attentive 20190112_181830_hdrand eager to share their beer with us. Service is bar-only.

NEIGHBORHOOD: As you might imagine from the location, the area is saturated with strip malls which are surrounded by suburban houses and apartments. Landlocked is clearly either a neighborhood stop or driving destination and not really walkable. There might be some shops or restaurants in the surrounding area worth stopping in for some shopping or a bite since Landlocked does not have a kitchen, and there’s plenty of parking.

STANDOUT BEER: Ghost Porter. Landlocked takes pains to communicate that this beer in no way involves ghost – or any other – chili and really it’s a straight-up porter, though more robust than many. The mahogany-colored opaque beer has little head but a relatively thick viscosity that yields to deep roasted-malt flavors with noticeable chocolate notes. The overall richness makes it a heavier porter, almost heading into stout territory, and on a cold and snowy winter day it was perfect.

Weekend Beer Update

This weekend comes jam-packed with anniversaries and ugly sweater parties, plus a few culinary events and – if you are willing to brave the elements a bit – the monthly brewery bus tour. Cheers!

Friday 7 – Sunday 9: Up in Brighton, Something Brewery celebrates their third anniversary with a weekend-long party focusing on unique beer releases including a cookie-themed lineup on Friday and barrel-aged beers on Saturday.

Saturday 8 – Sunday 9: One of the newest entrants into the brewery20181201_180521_hdr.jpg scene celebrates its first anniversary this weekend. Alternation Brewing Company will mark their first anniversary with bands, food, and their first foray into canning and bottling.

Saturday 8: Time to break out the hideous Christmas clothing for what has become an annual tradition: The Ugly Sweater Christmas Party! Kicking off the season, Westfax Brewing Company starts the fashion freakshow at 11 a.m. with some free glassware plus food and of course a prize for the ugliest sweater at 1 p.m.

Saturday 8: Things will also get ugly at Landlocked Ales in Lakewood, as they host an ugly sweater charity 5k run along with an ugly sweater party and contest. The entry fee gets you a bunch of swag and supports Drink for Pink Colorado, or you can just come to drink some beers and gawk at the sheer ugliness of it all. Note: The race is a ticketed event.

Saturday 8: On a nicer vibe, Dry Dock Brewing Co. also gets into the holiday spirit with a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. In addition to the festive pair, Christmas carolers will help set the holiday mood.

Saturday 8: Not to be left out, Strange Craft will hold their own ugly sweater party starting at 6 p.m. and will also celebrate the anniversary of Wit’s End Brewing Company, which merged into Strange last year.

Saturday 8: It’s also anniversary time for Station 26 Brewing Co., which celebrates five years of brewing with two special releases, live music, and food.20180129_163411_HDR

Saturday 8: The anniversary-filled weekend continues with Lone Tree Brewing’s seventh, featuring special beer tappings, food, and a casino night benefiting Freedom Service Dogs.

Saturday 8: Up in Longmont, Grossen Bart Brewery turns four with special beer releases, music, giveaways and even face painting.

Saturday 8: Also up north, Asher Brewing Company in Boulder holds their ninth anniversary bash with pours of their organic beer (it’s Boulder of course!) along with food and a photo booth.

Saturday 8: The final up-north anniversary this week is Funkwerks’ eighth, where they will release two special beers for the occasion, with a free cheers at 5 p.m.

Saturday 8: Back in Denver, Our Mutual Friend Brewing Company celebrates six years with special bottle and tap releases.

20170211_211127Saturday 8: For foodies, Fermaenta Brewery will host an all-day beer and cheese pairing that matches four of their beers with four cheeses selected by a Certified Cheese Professional (sort of like a Cicerone of cheese). Note: This is a ticketed event.

Saturday 8: For those with a sweet tooth, Fiction Beer Company Fiction Beerpairs four of their beers with chocolates custom-designed by Chocolate Lab all afternoon. Note: This is a ticketed event.

Saturday 8: If all of these options have your head spinning, then take the easy route and latch on to the West Side Brewery Bus Loop, which this month includes Joyride Brewing Company, Call To Arms Brewing Company, Westfax Brewing Company and Zuni Street Brewing Co. As usual, a $5 ticket gets you a ride on the bus from brewery to brewery and those who complete all four get a free future beer. Start at any of the participating breweries and, no surprise, the theme of the month is ugly sweaters.

 

Weekend Beer Update

It seems like all of this weekend’s activities have bunched into Saturday, but that also gives you the pick of various anniversaries, festivals, and other fun & games.

Saturday 23: Escape to Hawaii at Call Arms Brewing Company’s Call To ArmsRumpus & Chill event featuring Hawaiian-themed food, music and special beer tappings.

Saturday 23: Help Lakewood’s Landlocked Ales celebrate their first year in business with food, music, beer releases, and a cornhole tournament.

Saturday 23: Chain Reaction Brewing Company makes it four years this weekend with a party that includes special beer releases and food made using their beers.

epic.jpgSaturday 23: Not to be outdone, Epic Brewing Company will celebrate five years with a 90’s Dance Party and a staff firkin competition. They will also have games and raffles throughout the day.

Saturday 23: Finally, the granddaddy of them all celebrates 39 years! Boulder Beer Co. will have live music and let you taste the beers of tomorrow with a dozen experimental beers from their pilot system.

Saturday 23: Govnr’s Park fires up their Beer Fest for the ninth year with 100 beers for you to sample from 1 – 4 p.m. Note: This is a ticketed event

Saturday 23: Heading out of town, the Rocky Mountain Beer Festival brings a couple dozen breweries to Louisville to pour their best, accompanied by live music, food, and lawn games. Note: The event is free but beer tasting requires ticket purchases.

Saturday 23: All the way up in Greeley the WeldWorks Invitational Beer Festival will pour about 100 beers from 40+ breweries. Note: This is a (pricey) ticketed event although proceeds go to charity.