Lone Tree Brewing Opens Thursday, 12-8-11
- December 06, 2011 -
Owners Jason Wiedmaier and John Winter are ready to open their doors and pour their beer. Thursday, Dec. 8th at 4pm, Lone Tree Brewing will be the newest brewery to open in
Colorado. Jason and John first met at Lone Tree Brewing homebrew and wine-making supply store in Aurora, where Jason was working. John said that he came in often for "supplies and advice". The two realized over, what else, drinking some beers, that they shared a similar passion for brewing and wanted to replicate what they had each experienced in Europe, a small, family-friendly brewery where they could produce small batch diverse beers to share with the community. Hence Lone Tree Brewing was born.
According to John, the process of opening the brewery has gone relatively smoothly. "The city of Lone Tree has been absolutely stupendous" he said. "And any issues we had were due more to just an education process that needed to occur, rather than anyone trying to put up roadblocks".
Lone Tree Brewing is working with a 7 bbl system, and has a full line of beers ready to tap when they open tomorrow. The beers are:
Puddle Jumper Pale Ale
Mountain Mama Helles
Toots Full-Bodied Oatmeal Stout
Normal hours of operation will be:
M-Th: 12:00 pm-8:00 pm
Fri: 12:00 pm-10:00 pm
Sat: 11:00 am-10:00 pm
Sun:11:00 am-8:00 pm
Welcome to the newest Colorado brewery!
Falcon Brewing Bids Farewell
- November 17, 2011 -
Falcon Brewing Company in Parker closed their doors Sept, 13, 2011, three days shy of their 3rd anniversary. Owners Jason and Gina Deese started in 2008 with partners, but Jason is in the military and was deployed to Afghanistan in 2009, then transferred to Arkansas in 2010. The brewery stopped brewing their own beer for awhile, serving other draft and bottled beer. Eventually they had another brewer come in and brew beer for them, but the whole operation become too difficult to run from afar, so they closed their doors.
The Deeses wish to thank all their loyal employees and guests. To read their farewell message, Falcon Brewing Company
Moonlight Pizza Pouring Their Beer
- November 09, 2011 -
Today at 3pm, Moonlight Pizza in Salida started pouring their own beer. There are 2 beers available now, including the "Moon Lite", a Cream Ale that will always cost you a mere $2.50. More beers will be on tap by the weekend. Stay tuned for more details.
*11/17/11 An update on this story: We just spoke with Scott Bouldin, owner and now brewer at Moonlight Pizza. Scott has been a homebrewer for about 21/2 years, and decided to combine his passion for brewing with his passion for pizza. He has 4 beers on tap now, including an IPA, a wheat, and an amber. His goal is to have from 5 to 7 beers on tap at any one time. "We are very excited about this", said Scott. "The response to our beers so far has been tremendous."
And for all of us, it just means more good craft beer to drink in Salida. Get on out and drink some!
Avery Brewing Plans Expansion
- November 01, 2011 -
With sales up 71% last year Avery Brewing knew it was time to start thinking about expanding from it's existing brewing site, where they have run out of space to put anymore tanks to keep up with demand. Rumors than began swirling that they may leave Boulder completely, due to the fact that the industrial zoning codes — where breweries, wineries, and distilleries are required to establish their production facilities — don't allow for the production of food and some inciting land and tax incentives from neighboring cities.
But this week Brewmaster, Matt "Truck" Thrall, told Colorado Craft Beer Radio that Avery is "under contract for land" in Boulder. They are hoping to build a 30,000 square foot brewery, 5,000 square foot restaurant, 1,500 square foot gift shop, and 36,000 square feet of office space.
Although they are still in negotiations to buy the land at 4910 and 4920 Nautilus Court, and the industrial zoning laws have yet to be overturned, they seem to have hit another hitch in the plan; a nearby day school is objecting the planned brewery. Their concerns will have to be taken into account when city planners do the site review for Avery's expansion proposal.
The city planners did recently recommend to the Boulder city council that the industrial zoning laws be amended to allow for food production.
For more on the zoning laws and the parent's concern's for students at Boulder Country Day School check out Boulder Daily Camera
Boulder Daily Camera is currently located at 5757 Arapahoe Avenue in Boulder, CO.
Grand Opening For Royal Gorge Brewing
- October 31, 2011 -
It's like coming home for brewmaster Jeff Lockhart. No, wait, it is coming home. Jeff is back in his old digs as brewmaster of Royal Gorge Brewing in Canon City, which was previously McClellan's brewpub that closed over a year ago. Jeff was the brewer at McClellan's, then left to oversee brewing at the new Royal Gorge Brewing. But his family was still in Canon City, where his wife is a teacher, so when Beth and Colby Katchmar reopened the McClellan's spot as Royal Gorge Brewing, Jeff was happy to come back and brew for them. "It's a good thing", says Jeff. "It took a long time to clear everything with the feds, but here we are."
The smell of beer brewing is present once again on Main Street in Canon City. The Katchmars, owners of Pizza Madness at 509 Main St., are excited about their new Royal Gorge Brewing Company just a few doors away. "The Brewery has great food, and we're just really excited to finally be brewing our own beer." This Thursday, November 3, is their Grand Opening, and they will be launching their first 4 beers.
IPA Jeff's IPA is designed around Australian Galaxy hops. "They have more of a tropical fruity, floral essence", says Jeff. "Hints of mango and passion fruit." He's using a Belgian yeast for this beer, and for quite a few of his ales. He feels like it's a good way to go with these new beers, and that the Canon City drinkers will appreciate it.
Kolsch The Kolsch is an easy drinking German Blonde Ale. It's clean and crisp like a lager.
English Style Brown Ale This brown ale is mildly bitter, and is made with the Belgian yeast also. It has lots of warm brown malt roastiness, more of a mocha character than coffee.
Rye Pale Ale Again brewed with the Belgian yeast strain, this pale ale has lots of hop content. The style is along the lines of an American Pale Ale, very clean. The big hop flavors are supplied by Northern Brewer's hops, Magnum, and Centennial Hops. Rye is 25% of the grain bill, and provides a strong presence with a crisp, clean finish.
Jeff is also brewing up a winter seasonal ale. A big brown that he calls his Gingerbread Ale.
Royal Gorge Brewing Company in Canyon City. More great beer to sample in Colorado. Such a chore.
Arvada Beer Co. Opens Their Doors
- October 25, 2011 -
Owners Kelly and Cary Floyd couldn't be happier. After years of planning, and signing a lease on a historic building in Olde Town Arvada nearly a year ago, the Floyds are finally realizing their dream of opening Arvada Beer Co. To be sure, they have had their share of issues to overcome in opening the first craft brewery in Arvada*, but now say that they just want to focus on how good this feels. "We are excited to be part of this community in Arvada" says Kelly. "We have received tremendous support from local groups, like the Chamber of Commerce, the AEDA(Arvada Economic Development Association), and the Historical Association. We feel like it really is about all of us here in Historic Olde Town. The businesses here are really trying to establish Olde Town as a hip, family-oriented place to visit." *(To clarify, the Cheshire Cat, now Yak & Yeti was the first brewpub in Arvada. Arvada Beer is the first brewery that is not a brewpub. Brewpubs and breweries have different regulations that they must comply with under the law)
The opening of this brewery for Kelly and Cary included renovating an old historic building, on the corner of Wadsworth and Grandview, and upgrading systems to handle a brewery. This building housed, among other things, a Pool Hall in the early days, hence the name of their porter, Pool House Porter. The names of their beers all point to some historical fact about Arvada's history. Louis Ralston made the first gold discovery in Colorado in 1850. His discovery was in what is now known as Arvada, CO. Ralston's Golden Lager is their flagship beer. The beginning tap list at Arvada Beer:
An IPA on tap (soon to be called Goldline IPA)
Olde Town Brown
Ralston's Golden Ale
Pool House Porter
Mexican Lager (not yet named)
The Floyds started as homebrewers, and Kelly is one of only a handful of professional women brewers in Colorado. They have racked up quite a few awards for their beer, including several recently at the Foamfest at the Colorado State Fair. They have hired as their head brewer Dennis O'Harrow, who will do most of the brewing. Dennis won a gold medal in the Pro-Am Competition at GABF. So there is good reason to anticipate tasting some quality suds from these brewers. The hours of operation will be:
Grand Opening Friday, Oct.28, 11am-11pm
Head to Arvada this weekend, and see what Colorado's newest brewery has to offer.
Telluride Brewing Co. Celebrates
- October 17, 2011 -
Telluride Brewing Company opened Friday, Oct 14th, to a happy group of thirsty beer drinker's, ready to support Colorado's newest brewery. Co-owner/Brewmaster Chris Fish says "It feels really good. Finally, the construction is over, and we're getting in the groove."
Getting in the groove for co-owners Chris Fish and Tommy Thatcher means finally brewing beer. The brewery is located in Lawson Hill, about 3 miles outside of Telluride. However, the tasting room for Telluride Brewing is in The Llama restaurant at 100 West Colorado Ave. in the town of Telluride. Here they will eventually have 12 beers on tap, and you can take full advantage of The Llama's new menu, which offers everything from kicked-up burgers to sushi.
Telluride Brewing has a 15 bbl system, with a max production of 25,000 bbls per year possible. On opening day they had 2 beers, Rye # 1, which is an American Pale Ale, and Redfish Ale, an American-Style Red. Next, they will be dialing in Rye # 2, which will become Bridal Veil Pale Ale, the first beer that they plan to put into a 12 oz. can. They purchased a used manual canning line from the old Steamworks location in Broomfield, and want to go into production immediately. "The plan is to self-distribute from Montrose to Durango", said Fish. But to find their beer right now? You can purchase a pint at The Llama in Telluride, or visit the brewery to fill up a growler to go. While at the brewery, you can purchase a pint glass and they can pour you some samples. But at this time they cannot use their brewery space as a taproom because of some issues with the city of Telluride. They hope to eventually get this ironed out, so that their beer can be displayed via a "wall of taps", and customers can view the crafting process firsthand as an internal part of their brewery space. Congrats to these guys, and much success!
Monument Beer Week At Pikes Peak Brewing
- October 12, 2011 -
The first ever Monument Beer Week starts Monday, Oct 17 and runs through Sunday, Oct 23. This has been organized by Monument Beer Week, the new brewery that opened last May in Monument, CO.
Owners Dan York and Chris Wright are going all out to provide some fun beer events, so get up to Pikes Peak Brewing and check this out:
Mon: Beer Chef Contest: Bring in your best dish made using beer for great prizes
Tues: Beer and Cheese pairing
Wed: Beer Cocktail Night with 303 Distillery and Black Forest Meadery
Thurs: Beer Academy
Fri: Mini IPA Fest - Return of the Elephant Rock IIPA, plus other great IPAs from around Colorado
Sat: Oktoberfest - Polka Band, German Food, and release of the Oktoberfest beer
Pikes Peak Brewing Supports Native Trout
- September 16, 2011 -
The Cheyenne Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited (CMCTU), in partnership with Monument, CO based Pikes Peak Brewing Company, are scheduled to release Bear Creek Porter; a craft beer brewed to promote the protection of Colorado's State Fish; the threatened Greenback Cutthroat Trout and its habitats in the Pikes Peak Region.
"We are excited to partner with Cheyenne Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited (CMCTU) to promote the protection of the Greenback Cutthroat Trout." Said CMCTU's President, Erik Heikkenen. "The Greenback is 1 of 4 native trout species historical found in Colorado. We're trying to raise and broaden public awareness of this threatened native species found right here in the Pikes Peak Region."
Members of the Cheyenne Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited along with the owners of the Pikes Peak Brewing Co, hiked to Bear Creek to collect a gallon of water from the trout's natural habitat. This water was added to the boil when making the beer. "Brewing this beer illustrates the connection between beer, the community, and the beautiful Colorado environment" said Chris Wright, Co-founder and brewer at the Pikes Peak Brewing Co. "Pikes Peak is honored to play a part in the protection of this native Colorado fish, and through purchasing the beer our patrons can contribute as well", said Dan York, Co-founder of the Pikes Peak Brewing Co. "As part of the proceeds from the sale of Bear Creek Porter will be donated to help protect the Greenbacks and their habitats."
A Bear Creek Porter launch and release party is scheduled for; Saturday, September 17, 2011 at 5:00pm at the brewery's tasting room at 1756 Lake Woodmoor Dr., Monument, CO. Trout Unlimited members and the general public are all invited to the launch celebration.
Founded in 1959, Trout Unlimited is the nation's oldest and largest coldwater fisheries conservation organization, boasting over 140,000 members from coast to coast. The Cheyenne Mountain Chapter of Trout Unlimited, organized in 1986, strives to conserve, protect, and restore Colorado's cold-water fisheries and their watersheds. Visit www.cmctu.org to learn more about membership, volunteer opportunities and cold-water conservation.
The Pikes Peak Brewing Company is an award winning brewery and tasting room located in beautiful Monument, CO. Come out and support the native Greenback Cutthroat Trout by buying a pint or a growler of Bear Creek Porter!
Bristol Brewing Autumn Seasonals
- September 12, 2011 -
Last week Bristol Brewing Co. in Colorado Springs released their Octoberfest, described as a clean, smooth and traditional German Octoberfest lager with a slightly sweet, roasty malt character and a crisp, dry finish.
Tuesday, Sept. 13th, at 5:00pm, Bristol will celebrate the release of their annual Local 5 Ale, (brewed and bottled with the help of actual firemen)! This malty, easy-drinking ESB is part of their Community Ale series. 100% of the profits will go to the Colorado Springs Firefighters Local 5, who use the money to host the families of fallen fire fighters who visit us each September for the national Bristol Brewing Co. services in Memorial Park. In addition to the great beer and complimentary snacks from Blue Sage Catering, the Local 5 buddies will be in the house, visiting with folks and offering free fire truck rides for families.
The Community Ales series is Bristol Brewing's way of releasing seasonal beers that also benefit local non-profit groups. They donate 100% of the profits from the featured Community Ale to that particular group that it was created for. Local 5 will be on tap soon, then look for Venetucci Pumpkin Ale coming up, a wildly popular beer that disappears off the shelves and out of the brewery quickly. The profits from this beer go to support the Venetucci Farm, which, over the last six decades has given away literally millions of pumpkins to school children all across the Springs. Just before he died, Nick Venetucci made plans to donate the farm to the Pikes Peak Community Foundation, that it might be preserved forever as a rich community resource. And, yes, so that hundreds of children wouldn't go empty-handed each fall.
Drinking these delicious beers is a great way to support your community, as well as a lovely way to satisfy your palate. Visit Bristol Brewing and soak some up.
FCB 1 Year Anniversary at New Location
- August 23, 2011 -
Fort Collins Brewery is celebrating their 1 Year Anniversary at their new location. The brewery moved last year into their current location at 1020 East Lincoln Ave. Here's the press release explaining all the fun:
Fort Collins Brewery is thrilled to announce our 1-year anniversary at our new location, just a stone's throw away from Old Town.
In an effort to share our excitement with you, we are throwing an anniversary party at the brewery on August 27th from 1-8pm and hope that you will bring your friends, family or just your self to help us commemorate this special occasion.
We have something to please and excite all your senses. Our LIVE local music lineup includes The Better than Bacon Brothers, Edgewater Juke, and The Breaktones jamming outside on the patio.
Wet your whistle with one of our 3 specialty beers outside on tap, including our brand new brew "For the Love of Peach"! Indulge your taste buds with scrumptious samplings from our on-site restaurant Gravity Ten Twenty, a first for Northern Colorado breweries.
Then, to help you work it all off, we'll have fun games for the whole family to enjoy.
We take pride in our past, present and future and want to share it with all of our Fort Collins friends. Come check out our unique Growler filler in action, 1 of 9 in North America, with Specials on our anniversary Siphons and fills!
Make sure to bring the kids so they can try our homemade cherry root beer, brewed specially for those under 21 or those who still like to have fun. ;)
We still can't believe it's already been 7 exciting years since we first opened our (then much smaller) doors to craft beer loving Fort Collins. While we are proud of where we've come from, we are even more excited about where the brewery is headed so please join us rain or shine for a darn good time.
For any further questions or to request additional information regarding this event please visit our website
or call Kim at 970-472-1499 ext#16
Zenia's Buddha Nuvo Review
- August 19, 2011 -
Carol White and I recently reviewed Buddha Nuvo, a collaborative brew born from the great beer minds of Rockyard Brewing's Jim Stinson, and Trinity Brewing's Jason Yester. Colorado brewers from New Belgium, Ska, Funkwerks, Crooked Stave, AC Golden, Elk Mountain, Strange, Black Fox, Pumphouse Brewery and Rock Bottom all gathered to brew a one-of-a-kind Belgian-style saison.
I often find saisons to have too many things going on at once for me to really enjoy them. Often I find they are too over spiced for me to really enjoy drinking a whole pint. But the Buddha Nuvo is unlike any saison I have tried before. In fact, it was unlike any beer I have imbibed before. In short, this beer rocked my beer world.
The beer pours with a lovely golden sunshine color, with just the slightest bit of haze. The first sip immediately reminded me of a very dry, crisp chardonnay with just a hint of astringency and bitterness at the back of the palate. I also got aromatic hints of chardonnay in the nose, so obviously the chardonnay barrels the beer was aged in did a very fine job of imparting their goodness to the beer.
There was no alcohol burn, and hardly any alcohol taste, which made it very light and refreshing. Not a light beer, but a beer that is light. I think a lot of this comes from the mouthfeel of the beer. Instead of the often yeasty bread feel to me it was more like biting into a crisp apple. As I continued to drink I started to get more hints of the honey in the nose, but try as I might I was unable to taste or smell any pumpkin, not even a hint and for a beer made with 175 pounds of it; you'd think it would be more pronounced.
It's the carbonation of this beer that makes it most unique to me. It pours more like a sparkling wine or a hard cider than a beer. Instead of a thick foamy head, it pours a very light — almost soda-pop-like head with lots of bubbles that quickly dissipate. I wanted to put my ear to the glass to see if I could hear any fizziness as the carbonation settled out a bit, but it was too loud at the bar for that.
Buddha Nuvo had a somewhat different appearance in my glass compared to Carol's glass. Carol's beer held it's head a bit longer than mine, and hers also showed some lacing, where as mine did not hold it's head, and I had no lacing on the glass. This may have been a result of the difference in cleanliness in each of our glasses.
The question you may have now is whether or not the beer is worth it's hefty $40 price tag. I would say yes-ish. Since I split my bottle with a friend that helped a little bit with the cost. Do I have buyers regret? Absolutely not. This beer is so unique I am thrilled I had a chance to taste it. It's a bit of a splurge, but worth it to get your beer-geekiness on.
The Buddha Nuvo, not unlike Buddha himself, has brought me to enlightenment. Beer still surprises me, and probably will always surprise me, and it's these fantastically unique beers like Buddha Nuvo, that keep me coming back for more.
New Beers From New Breweries
- August 17, 2011 -
A sampling of what awaits you from some of Colorado's newest breweries:
Renegade Brewing, Denver
Hit Me: Renegade's take on a red ale. Malty with notes of burnt sugar like and Irish red, but hopped up. Hit Me again barkeep! 5.6% ABV
Another Thrill: Love a good thrill? Well, find your next one in a beer glass. This imperial baltic porter will make your taste buds dance. 10% ABV
Sunday Morning: You'll probably want a growler of this at the ready when you grab the morning paper. American Strong Ale brewed with a healthy dose of locally roasted coffee beans. 6.8% ABV
Pateros Creek, Fort Collins
Car 21: A throwback to younger days, Car 21 is named after the locally famous Birney Safety Car Trolley that still runs in Fort Collins today. The younger brother of an ESB made with all English hops, malt and yeast, Car 21 has a sharp but spicy hop bitterness up front that finishes caramelly with toffee undertones. Enjoy this session style ale and then hop the original Car 21 for a look into Fort Collins' past! 4.5% ABV, 28 IBU, 1.047 OG,
English Best Bitter
Copper Kettle, Denver
Mexican Chocolate Stout: A rich black ale with dark roasted malt flavors blended with bittersweet chocolate, Mexican Mulato, and Guajillo chili peppers, and cinnamon. Inspired by a 500 year old Aztec recipe for Mexican hot chocolate. 7.0% ABV-50 IBU
Black IPA: A dark version of a British classic. Dark roasted grains and toffee amd bitter chocolate flavors with a medium-sweet body to balance the hop bitterness of the IPA. Dry hopped with golding hops to add a gentle British character. 7.6% ABV-68 IBU
Denver Beer Co, Denver
Saison: This Saison is brewed with Cambodian black pepper, lemon grass, and rose hips.
Lone Tree Brewing Opening Autumn 2011
- August 09, 2011 -
Business partners John Winter and Jason Wiedmaier are preparing to launch Lone Tree Brewing Company this fall in the Parkway Point building at 8222 Park Meadows Drive, across the street from Furniture Row in Lone Tree, Colorado.
"The Lone Tree Brewing Company mission is to create a neighborhood gathering place where everyone feels right at home," says Head Brewer and Co-owner Jason Wiedmaier. Lone Tree Brewing will provide the public with small batches of hand craft beer produced in their seven barrel brewing system, featuring six flagship beers and a couple of small batch rotating taps.
The beers will be sold on premise in a tasting room. Patrons will be able to order sample flights, allowing them to sample a variety of brews, or regular pints. The brews will also be available at a small number of local restaurants and liquor stores.
Wiedmaier, a high school German teacher whose interest in beer was heightened by a trip to Germany, is a long-time homebrewer who honed his skills working at The Brew Hut homebrew supply store in Aurora. He has won several awards in homebrew competitions over the last few years. Winter also spent a lot of time in Germany working in the aviation industry. The two met at Dry Dock Brewing. Winter has been seriously brewing for more than three years now. But, it has always been much more than a hobby for him as he took his research to new heights, completing the "Concise Course in Brewing Technology" from the Siebel Institute of Technology to further his brewing knowledge. Together, they intend to create a comfortable community atmosphere where friends will meet over a pint.
Watch for updates on the Lone Tree Brewing opening this fall.
Aspen Brewing Soon To Can
- August 02, 2011 -
Aspen Brewing Company is yet another example of how the craft brewing industry in Colorado is blossoming. Aspen Brewing started with 2 college buds, Duncan Clauss and Brad Veltman, getting turned on to the craft beer scene while in school at the University of Colorado in Boulder. They started as homebrewers, and both were determined after earning their degrees to move to Aspen and make Aspen Brewing Company a reality.
This they did, starting with a 7 bbl system, and as their popularity grew, realized that they couldn't keep up with demand. This last year they moved from their original location on Mill St. to East Hopkins in Aspen, and have moved their production facility to the Aspen Airport Business Center. They have moved up to a 20 bbl brewing system, and have been installing a new canning line designed by Wild Goose Engineering in Boulder, the same company that designed a line for Upslope Brewing, Eddyline, and Breckenridge/Wynkoop, among others. Aspen Brewing's canning line will be able to can approximately 1 case per minute. "We can't wait to get it up and running", said Brad Veltman, co-owner. "It's all taken longer than expected, but by this fall we will be putting out cans of This Season's Blonde Ale and our Independence IPA".
So look for Aspen Brewing's new cans up in the high country this fall, and hopefully here on the Front Range soon after.
Bristol Brewing Releases Their Belgian B6000
- July 29, 2011 -
In honor of their 6000th batch of beer brewed, Bristol Brewing is releasing B6000, a Belgian Dubbel. The description from Bristol: "It has a malt bill that bears a similarity to that of Laughing Lab, the beer that started it all. The yeast is a specially selected Belgian strain. We added a dark Belgian candy sugar, of the variety used virtually everywhere in Belgium, but not even available in the US until a few years ago. We brewed, as is common in the low country, in an open fermenter; the same vessel, as it happens, that Mike opened the brewery with in 1994.
So it is with both nostalgia and a vast sense of pride that we introduce the B6000, available only in 750 mL bottles, bottle conditioned, and hand corked, caged and labeled. It is, to use the Belgians' term, "digestible", meaning the mouthfeel and body are bright and fine, quaffable and not cloying or overtly alcoholic, despite its 8% ABV. The slightly spicy flavors evoke raisin, rum and caramel, and it finishes with a dry, expressive carbonation."
The beer will be released Tuesday, August 2nd in the Bristol Brewing Tasting Room at 5pm. Blue Sage Catering will provide some classic Belgian food pairings to enjoy alongside the new brew.
Colorado Mountain Brewery 1 Year Anniversary!
- July 28, 2011 -
Come celebrate at Colorado Mountain Brewery this weekend as they celebrate their 1 year anniversary.
Thursday: Summer Concert Series; Featuring Whiskey Tango @ 7:00PM
Friday & Saturday: All day food and drink specials!!!
Sunday: Anniversary Brown Ale $3 drafts, only 10 Gallons, get it while it lasts!!!
Denver Beer Company Ready To Pour
- July 27, 2011 -
Charlie Berger and Patrick Crawford, owner/brewers of Denver Beer Company are ready to open their doors and start pouring beer! The opening celebration is Friday, August 12, from 7:00pm - 11:30pm. With an exciting line-up of beers, they plan to have an official ribbon cutting ceremony at 7:00 pm, though the doors will be open at noon that day.
Charlie and Patrick have been working on converting an auto body shop along the Platte river into a new brewing space since early last winter. Their brewing equipment came from an old Hops brewery that closed in Connecticut. It's a 7 bbl system which, as Charlie says, hits the "sweet spot". "It's just big enough so that we can supply the brewery and not be struggling every day to keep beers on tap, as well as allowing us to get our beer into a few select beer bars."
These two brewers met in college, at Colgate University in New York, and connected again out here in Denver. Charlie was working in the craft beer industry, his last stint being at Wynkoop, and Patrick was a long-time homebrewer. They started brewing together, and decided the brewery was something that they needed to do. Their concept is all about having a community place for people to meet and share good beer. It will be a seasonal, constantly changing menu of brews to keep it fresh and innovative. Here's their list of beers on tap at the opening:
Platte Pils, Graham Cracker Porter, Kaffir Lime Wheat, Gear Up IPA, Rye Twenty Five, Confluence Pale Ale, and Summer Stout. When those beers run out, look for new ones to take their place. They're also serving giant German pretzels to go with that beer. All of that should be enough to get you moving to check out yet the latest new brewery to open in Denver this year. They are located at 1695 Platte St. in Denver. Soak it up beer fans!
Pikes Peak Brewing Releases Big IPA
- July 25, 2011 -
Pikes Peak Brewing Company in Monument has released their new Elephant Rock IPA. Described as a "massive" IPA, the hops bill lists 5 varieties of hops: Centennial, Cascade, North Brewer, Columbus, and Magnum. The IBU is 76. The flavor is big and bold, an abv of 8.8%, with notes of citrus and pine. Get on up to Monument and taste some!
6th Annual Boulder Country Brews Cruise
- July 22, 2011 -
The wildly popular Boulder County Brews Cruise is back for round 6! Founding breweries Avery Brewing Company, Boulder Beer Company, Left Hand Brewing Company and Oskar Blues Brewery will be the stops on this year's tour. The "Perfect Six Pack Tour" cracks open on Wednesday, September 28th, one day before the start of the Great American Beer Festival at the Colorado Convention Center.
For just $60, Brews Cruisers get a seat on the bus, free samples at each stop, a light breakfast, lunch, a commemorative "Perfect Six Pack Tour" 32oz Stainless Steel Water bottle from Liberty Bottleworks and 15% off all beer and merchandise at each brewery.
The 2011 Boulder County Brews Cruise bus departs from the Colorado Convention Center (at 14th Street and Stout Street) at 8:00 AM on the morning of September 28th. The Brews Cruise returns to the Convention center around 4:00 PM.
Please contact Aly Dratch, firstname.lastname@example.org, with any additional questions.
New Belgium's New Winter Seasonal
- July 22, 2011 -
New Belgium has announced that their current winter seasonal, 2 Below, will be replaced with a new seasonal beer, Snow Day.
The Winter Ale will be available from November-January.
New Belgium's Bryan Simpson says "We're looking at giving seasonals a two year run. It's such a good opportunity to develop and place new beers that we want to keep the program dynamic."
The description on the beer label reads: "With three feet of powder closing the roads, a brewery is not a bad place to get snowed in. Given the unanticipated hall pass of a snow day, our brewers decided to experiment. Hmm...what about this dark caramel roasted Midnight Wheat braced with a serious load of Styrian Goldings, Centennial and Cascade hops? Shovel it in. What a deliciously unexpected way to spend a SNOW DAY!"
Bristol Brewing's Buses at The Brewery
- July 18, 2011 -
Bristol Brewing Co. hosts their 4th annual Buses At The Brewery event on Saturday, July 30th, from 12pm-5pm. Join the fun as scores of vintage VW bus enthusiasts converge on the back lot of the brewery. They block it off to make room for cherry VW split window vans, live bands, food and of course, lots of cold, hand-crafted brews. It's good, clean, retro fun for the whole family!
Breckenridge Brewery is Booming
- July 18, 2011 -
Craft beer just keeps getting bigger. Breckenridge Brewery has recently announced a growth of 39% in production for the first half of 2011. In two decades Breckenridge Brewery has gone from a 3,000-barrels-a-year brewpub to producing 30,000-barrels-a-year. They've also made recent investments in infrastructure, including an automated canning line, and two new 300-barrel fermenters, that are sure to increase their growth even more.
The press release: (source is beernews.org)
(Denver, CO) - Breckenridge Brewery of Colorado, LLC, announces momentous production growth of 39% in the first half of 2011 over the same period last year. Production of all brands is up - across main line, seasonal and small batch offerings.
Outstanding performers (based on year over year barrels through June) are:
SummerBright - up 118%
Agave Wheat - up 88%
Vanilla Porter - up 78%
Sampler Packs - up 59%
Lucky U - up 76%
471 IPA - up 67%
"We've invested more than ever in sales, production, and marketing in the last 18 months, and we're seeing real results" says Todd Usry, Brewery Director and Brewmaster. "We expanded in the northeast this year, but we're growing our existing markets as well."
"We've seen a 35% increase in sales in Denver this year...that's on top of double-digit growth in 2010," says Scott Whitley, President of Coors Distributing Company, Breckenridge's distributor for Denver, Colorado and surrounding areas. "Breckenridge will continue to grow this year, and it's well-balanced portfolio of beers positions the brewery to keep growing at a steady pace for a long, long time. We are excited to have Breckenridge in our portfolio and to represent Breckenridge's brands in its home market."
Other traditionally strong markets for the brewery, like Texas, Ohio, and Illinois, are up over 50%. Todd Thibault, Director of Marketing for the brewery, has focused the marketing strategy on organic growth as much as new market growth. 'Our recent series of short spoof commercials (found by searching "Breckenridge Brewery pokes fun" on www.youtube.com) were a ton of fun and got some attention. Those ads tied in nicely with our growing social media efforts, which are certainly contributing to our organic growth."
The L. Knife and Sons Companies distribute into Breckenridge Brewery's recently added northeast territory. "We are excited to be partnering with the Breckenridge team," says Michael Brazel, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for The L. Knife and Sons Companies. "From the outset, the level of commitment and cooperation from the brewery has been as solid as we've experienced. As a result, our retail execution and sales results have exceeded our ambitious expectations. With that said, we still feel there remain enormous opportunities ahead for continued growth."
To help manage its growth, the brewery is investing in infrastructure this summer and fall.
In partnership with Wynkoop Brewing Company, Breckenridge Brewery purchased the first automated canning line from Wild Goose Engineering of Boulder, Colorado. The new line, the first of its kind from a U.S. manufacturer, will dramatically boost the production of canned beer for both companies. Within weeks Breckenridge Brewery will begin shipping Avalanche Ale, Lucky U, and SummerBright cans in volume. On the horizon is a boost in availability of Wynkoop's Rail Yard Ale and Silverback Pale Ale in cans.
Two new 300-barrel fermenters are scheduled to be installed later this month. An additional three 300-barrel fermenters are scheduled to be installed in October. The additional capacity, along with a ramped-up 7-day-a-week brewing schedule, will add 37,500 barrels to Breckenridge Brewery's production capability.
"With these additions to our brewery, we can keep growing at an accelerated rate and still meet demand in our markets," says Usry.
Breckenridge Brewery was founded in 1990 in Breckenridge, Colorado. In the past two decades Breckenridge Brewery has grown from a small 3,000-barrels-a-year brewpub to one of the most successful craft beer and restaurant companies in the nation. It now handcrafts well over 30,000 barrels of fresh beer annually and owns and operates five brewpubs and ales houses in the state of Colorado.
40 Beers in 40 Days
- July 14, 2011 -
Bull and Bush Pub & Brewery is celebrating their 40 years in business in a big way. Starting July 15 the brewery will tap a new beer everyday for the next 40 days. That's right, 40 beers in 40 days. And these won't just be any old beers, they will include rare beers from other Colorado breweries and around the world as well as a plethora from Bull and Bush . For the completely awesome looking list check out Denver off the Wagon
Identical twin brothers Dean and Dale Peterson started Bull and Bush in 1971 in the Glendale area of Denver. They quickly developed a following, and settled into the status of neighborhood pub. In 1997 the pub became a brewery with their first batch of beer brewed on New Years Day. Bull and Bush has remained a family business, now run by Dale's sons David and Erik. For the complete and fascinating history check out their Denver off the Wagon
Sweet 16 For Twisted Pine!
- July 13, 2011 -
Happy Birthday Twisted Pine! Twisted Pine Brewing will celebrate their 16th Anniversary on July 16th from 2-7pm. And the celebration is sure to be a good one. For $25 attendees get 10 5oz beers, a commemorative anniversary mug, brats and hamburgers, live music, and a special release of Bough Breaker Barleywine.
The Bough Breaker Barleywine is Twisted Pine's special 16th anniversary beer. According to Bob Baile, brewery owner, "We've worked hard to get where we are and as we continue to grow we're able to brew and bottle more and more unique and original beers, Bough Break being the next of this series." Bough Breaker pours a deep, rich red color with aromas of citrus hops, dark fruit and light toffee. While delectable to drink the day it's bottled, Bough Breaker will only become more enchanting with aging and cellaring. The beer is hopped to 120 IBUs with Amarillo hops.
There will also be plenty of other beer to drink as the event will feature over 20 specialty beers including an array of seasonal and aged varieties. Even the grilled food will be ale-infused.
And it truly is a sweet 16 for Baile. "We've come a long way since 1995, but we will always follow the practices of community support and involvement this company was founded on. After all, it is our values, culture, staff and ingenuity in brewing that had brought us here today and will sustain us in the future. On our sweet 16, I raise a glass to these tenets and say, 'what else can I ask for?'"
Twisted Pine is located at 3201 Walnut St. Boulder, CO. Tickets are $25 an can be purchased at the Twisted Pine Ale house or online
FCB Imperial India Wheat Ale!
- July 12, 2011 -
Fort Collins Brewery continues their "Know Your Brewer" series with brewer Paul Nissen and an Imperial India Wheat Ale!
From the brewery -
FCB brewer Paul Nissen didn't think he would end up in Fort Collins creating unique beers for people across the country to enjoy, but plans changed as now he has created an Imperial India Wheat Ale to call his own.
The Iowa native attended the University of Iowa to pursue a degree in engineering. Paul's path changed and he found himself in Fort Collins searching for something to spark his passion and creativity. During his initial stint in Fort Collins Paul fostered his love of cooking with a newfound passion for brewing beer.
After meeting a local brewer and learning how he got into the industry, Paul dropped everything and moved to Sunderland, England in spring 2009 to attend brewer's school where he was able to fine-tune his craft. While across the pond, Paul enrolled in traditional brewing courses that offered him hands-on experience in creating balanced and unique beers.
Working in microbreweries around England offered him a once in a lifetime opportunity to gain inside knowledge about the craft beer industry while uncovering a talent for creating new and exciting beers. "I love that I get to use my creativity everyday and not be trapped behind a desk," says Paul.
The third installment in the four-part "Know Your Brewer" Incredible Hop Series, Imperial India Wheat Ale, will be available July 22nd. This cross between a double-IPA and an American wheat beer derives its unique flavor. Centennial and Cascade hops impart refreshing orange and grapefruit notes and with a Malt bill that consists of 50% wheat to create a pleasantly light body and bready flavor. The beer pours a pale gold with a slight haze and a rocky white head. The nose is bursting with North American Hops, very citrusy and slightly pungent. The flavor is very hoppy, yet still balanced. The finish is dry, with a lingering lemon bitterness.
Supplies of this brew are very limited; 22 oz bombers will be available for a limited time in select markets. Join Paul in the FCB Tap Room July 22nd for a one-on-one about beer, brewing, and beer culture. This FREE event is the third in the "Know Your Brewer" series featured in correlation with the Incredible Hop Series.
The Incredible Hop: Imperial Wheat Ale 9.6% ABV, 50 IBU, 9 SRM.
Canned Beer is Growing Taller
- July 11, 2011 -
Ever since Dale Katechis of Oskar Blues started the canned beer revolution back in 2002 the popularity of canning craft beer has grown not only in Colorado, but across the nation. And the movement's about to get bigger, Four-ounces bigger that is.
Craft beer tallboys, sixteen-ounce cans as opposed to the standard twelve-ounce cans, will soon be arriving in a cooler near you. New Belgium Brewing is the latest brewery to announce plans to begin canning some of their beers in tallboys. They are expanding their overall canning abilities to around thirty percent of their total output with a new system that is currently under construction. Right now their canning line fills sixty cans per minute, the new system will allow for 360 cans per minute. You can find New Belgium's Fat Tire, Sunshine Wheat, and Ranger IPA beers in twelve-ounce cans right now. They say they have yet to decide which of their other beers they will can on the new system.
And you don't have to be a big brewery to put your beers in big cans. Dolores River Brewery has been canning all their beers in tallboys since January 2011. They have five beers: a Mild, Pale, ESB, Stout and DPA. The nine year old brewery limits the sales of the tallboy four-packs to the brewery and a select few retailers in Montezuma County.
In late July or early August Eddyline Restaurant and Brewery will be the next Colorado craft brewer to present their beers in tallboys. The brewery is a getting a new canning line from Wild Goose Engineering, a company based in Boulder, CO. Wild Goose has delivered canning lines to Upslope Brewing, Breckenridge Brewing and also plans to deliver one to Aspen Brewing.
The canning line at Eddlyine will fill thirty cans a minute and will eventually provide the canned beers to the Arkansas River Valley, Denver, and Colorado Springs areas.
Kevin Baity Kraft Beer Opening July 1st
- June 29, 2011 -
Kevin Baity Kraft Beer is set to be the newest craft brewery to open in Colorado Springs. Kevin is planning to open for business at 5pm on July 1st. His is a small operation, and will begin with limited hours. He will begin by opening Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 4pm-8pm. This opening weekend, however, he will also be open on Saturday from 5pm-10pm.
As far as beers, Kevin will start off with a porter, a wheat, a pale ale, and a light lager. He also has a lager on tap flavored with lavender flowers. There will be specialty beers released periodically. He will be filling growlers for beer to go, and kegs are also available.
All of his beers are cask conditioned, unfiltered beers.
Kevin Baity Kraft Beer is located at 3668 E. Bijou St. in Colorado Springs. He's on the north side of the street. Turn in at the Kirby vacuum sign.
Pikes Peak Brewing Grand Opening Bash
- June 24, 2011 -
Saturday, June 25, Pikes Peak Brewing Co. in Monument will host their Grand Opening Celebration! Open from 11am-11pm, the party goes all day, with brats on the patio, Happy Hour all day long, prizes, and live music from 7pm-10pm. For directions, check out their website.
Denver's Renegade Brewing Set To Open 6/26/11
- June 23, 2011 -
Renegade: an individual who rejects lawful or conventional behavior, according to Webster's Dictionary. Renegade Brewing is set to open their doors this Sunday, 6/26/11 and become Denver's newest craft brewery. Located in the arts district of Denver, owners Brian and Khara O'Connell want to bring "inspired, hand-crafted ales to Denver, each with a little bit different twist". So the name Renegade makes perfect sense.
Brian and Khara are long-time homebrewers, huge craft beer lovers, who want to push the creative envelope on what craft beer can be. They describe their beers as "offensively delicious", and can't wait to open their doors to the neighborhood and share their beers.
They have brought along brewer Rick Abitbol on this journey. Rick was most recently head brewer at the Rock Bottom Brewery in Park Meadows. He's excited about the new venture, and what Renegade is bringing to the Denver craft beer scene. "I'm having a great time here" says Rick. "We're going to be brewing all kinds of beer".
They will have 8 taps to start with. Opening day they plan to have 3 house beers on tap:
Ryteous - A rye IPA, crisp malt with a touch of caramel and a generous helping of rye, hops, hops and more hops. This Rye IPA is 7% ABV and 100+ IBU's.
5 o'clock- a crisp blonde ale coming in at 5.5% ABV
Uno Mas - Mexican style amber with an uncommon yeast strain for added flavor and just a hint of roasted chili peppers. 5.5% ABV.
They will also have "a few small offerings". What this means is that Renegade will run a program where they bring in homebrewers to brew their own special recipes on their 10 gallon pilot system. According to Brian, this will keep things fresh, and bring in new ideas. Besides, he points out, "In a smaller batch you can sometimes afford to do things you wouldn't necessarily do on a big 15 bbl system. You can add ingredients you might not be able to afford on a big scale and tweak the recipe in different ways." As homebrewers, that community involvement means a lot to Brian and Khara.
Brian's professional background is as a research analyst for the University of Colorado. "My background was definitely helpful in coming up with a business plan. I went at everything in a very logical and methodical way. As I kept learning, I finally decided that this is something that we could do."
Plans for Renegade Brewing's 15 bbl system include getting some draft accounts right away. Long term plans will include canning and getting their beer into liquor stores. The party starts at 2pm on Sunday afternoon, June 26th, and goes until 9pm. Their hours of operation will be:
Monday - closed
T - Th 2pm-9pm
F - Sat 2pm - 10pm
So be a Renegade, and check out Denver's newest craft brewery!
Pateros Creek Opens, Ft. Collins' Newest Brewery
- June 14, 2011 -
Steve Jones, owner/brewer of Pateros Creek Brewing in Fort Collins, has a big smile on his face. His brewery opened on Saturday, June 11. "It was great, down to the last minute, but great" chuckled Steve, citing a few details about last minute inspections and issues in finishing the patio in time. "We had a good crowd show on Saturday, and more people showed up on Sunday". The taproom finished, the beer brewed and flowing, Pateros Creek Brewing becomes the tenth brewery operating in Fort Collins. (We are including Crooked Stave, which brews out of Funkwerks)
It's a family affair at Pateros Creek. Steve Jones is the brewer. Bob Jones, Steve's dad, is the business manager and in charge of sales. Cathy Jones, Steve's wife, is in charge of marketing and running the taproom. Pateros Creek is said by local historians to be the original name of the Cache La Poudre River that runs through the city of Fort Collins.
Their Philosophy? "We want to create easy drinking session ales - the kind of beer you want to share with friends, sitting out on a patio on a sunny Colorado afternoon." Sounds good to us. This line-up looks to have something for everyone.
Cache La Porter - chocolaty, easy drinking,subtle roasted balance
Old Town Ale - light bodied, lower in hops
Stimulator Ale - A rye pale ale, the rye giving it a spicier, drier finish than other pale ales
Lady Moon - A raspberry & cherry ale
Snowy River - a vanilla porter
Hours of operation are: Tues - Thurs 12pm-7pm, F-Sat 12pm-9pm, Sun 12pm-5pm.
So check out their nice patio, and sip some of Fort Collins' newest brews.
Del Norte Brewing Keeps Growing
- June 06, 2011 -
Last October we wrote about brewery expansions across the state, one of which was Del Norte Brewing. Del Norte is a Denver-based brewery that specializes in Mexican-style lagers. They started out several years ago as a small operation, and are experiencing tremendous growth. In October they were adding 10 new 20 barrel fermenters. According to co-owner Joe Fox, 3 of those will now be swapped out for 40 barrel fermenters.
Lots of beer required because they are in several new states. Del Norte beer can now be found in Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Texas, Wyoming, and even Alaska. "It's been exciting, and we're tired", laughs Joe. "We also have a new beer coming out. It's kind of a Bohemian Pilsner derivative, a little bit darker, light amber color." The beer has yet to be named, but is available at their tasting room to sample, which is open Friday afternoons 3:30pm-7ish.
They also just had a bit of good news from the North American Brewers Awards held this last weekend. This competition is sponsored by the North American Brewer's Association in Idaho Falls, Idaho. Cinco won gold in the Latin American Tropical Lager category, and Orale won a bronze. These will add to the cadre of medals their beers have won so far. Joe was recently asked "How many gold medals does a beer need to win?" "I said as many as we can get-we'll take 'em."
Pikes Peak Brewing Opens In Monument
- May 31, 2011 -
Pikes Peak Brewing Company opened in Monument Friday, May 27th with a bang. What was supposed to be a "soft" opening soon turned into something more, as word got out in the community, and people came to check out the new spot, and sample some suds.
"It was great" said co-owner Dan York. "Lots of nice people drinking lots of great beer". Dan and his partner Chris Wright have been working on opening their brand new brewery since the end of last summer. The timing was right to get open with 4 of their beers on tap by Memorial Day weekend. They are also carrying 4 guest taps of local breweries, including BierWerks, Bristol Brewing, Rocky Mountain, and Trinity. Their Grand Opening is scheduled for June 25.
Their house beers are Devil's Head Red, Summit House Stout, Gold Rush, a Belgian Golden Blonde, and America the Pale and Beautiful, an American Pale Ale. Thursday, June 2, they will release Rocky Wheat, and soon to be released The Brits Are Here, a British Mild.
So stop by and visit Pikes Peak Brewing in Monument. They love the saying "Everyone needs something to believe in, and I believe I'll have another beer". Oh, the joys of living in Colorado.
Bristol Brewing Wows the Women
- May 18, 2011 -
Pairing a wide variety of craft beer with the right foods can be a tricky endeavor. It's not as easy as saying "White wine with seafood or lighter meats, red wine with steaks or heavier pastas".
Craft beer has many characteristics of taste and smell that can hit people's palates differently. Finding the right balance between food and drink that can highlight both requires knowledge and talent.
The lucky ladies that attended the Bristol Brewing Women's Beer and Food Pairing got to experience this first hand. In celebration of American Craft Beer Week, Bristol hosted a women's only beer and food pairing on Tuesday, May 17th. Thanks to Laura Long, Bristol's Beerocrat, and Chef/owner Gregg Soukup of Bristol Brewing, the dozen or so women attending were treated to a lovely evening indeed. Laura's knowledge of the subtleties of how to taste beer, how the different elements of beer hit the palate, and especially her familiarity with Bristol's lineup are wonderful. That alongside Chef Soukup's delicious cuisine made for a memorable evening.
We were served four courses, each paired with 2 to 3 of Bristol's beers. We started by tasting a sampling of Bristol's beers that are lighter on the palate, more malt up front - less hops, that wouldn't leave too much on the tongue. These included Laughing Lab, Beehive Honey Wheat, and a belgian wit Edge City Wit Bier (Hadn't tried this before, light and refreshing). These were paired with a meat course that included sliced chicken breast, sausage and a lamb/beef kabob. All were served with a variety of sauces including a cranberry-chipotle sauce on the chicken and a sweet honey mustard mayo.
As we were led through the courses, Laura would talk about the beers offered, what we might notice, and were encouraged to discover what we thought worked well together. Chef Soukup added his explanations of what we were tasting and how it worked with the beer.
A ceviche course was 2nd, served with the Edge City Wit Bier, Mass Transit Ale and Yellow Kite Pilsner. Delightful how the crisp clean finish of the pilsner cut through the richness of the seafood. The third course was a lovely puff pastry filled with asparagus and mushrooms that worked well with the Compass IPA and Red Rocket Pale Ale. Delicious chocolate cake with Smokebrush Porter and finally rich blue cheese, cherries and candied cashews with Old No. 23 Barleywine left us happy, to say the least.
Have we made you hungry yet? Don't miss the chance to share in a great food and beer pairing, especially if it's at Bristol Brewing! Happy American Craft Beer Week to all!
Celebrate American Craft Beer Week!
- May 13, 2011 -
It's great to be a beer drinker in Colorado, and especially this next week! Check out our events page for lots of fun places to go, cool things to do to show your support for American Craft Beer.
New Craft Beer Eateries
- May 11, 2011 -
In the Fort Collins area, visit Gravity Ten Twenty, the new restaurant opening May 12 at the Fort Collins Brewery. Their desire is to apply a real "field to fork" approach to the Northern Colorado Culinary Scene. They plan to do this by purchasing as many of their ingredients from local Colorado sources as possible.
Their mantra is fresh, local, truly inspired dishes to showcase Colorado Cuisine. They plan to feature their full line-up of beers in the restaurant, as well as wine and spirits. Hours are Mon-Thurs 11am-10pm, Fri-Sat 11am-11pm, closed Sunday for now.
Las Oasis Latin Grill and Cerveceria plans to open the 1st week of June in the space previously occupied by the Boulder Draft House, at 2027 13th St. in Boulder. Owner George Hanna, previous owner of Oasis Brewery, has recruited manager Josiah Richmond and brewer Mike Kasian from the Boulder Draft House.
"The menu will be upscale Oaxacan themed, very authentic", said manager Richmond. The chef Michael Barry has been traveling back and forth to Oaxaca, sampling chiles, preparing recipes.
Brewer Mike Kasian plans to have at least 5 beers on tap, several Mexican themed lagers and ales as well as an IPA and a Pale Ale. They are also distilling their own Blue Agave, which they are very excited about. Call 303-955-7085 for more details, or check their facebook page.
And speaking of new brewpubs, Royal Gorge Brewing has opened their doors in the space vacated by McClellan's Grill and Brewing Company in Canon City. They are currently wading through the paperwork to receive their brewing license, but until then are serving other Colorado Craft beers on tap, including beer from Bristol Brewing, Tommyknocker, and New Belgium. Their menu features a variety of sandwiches, burgers, steaks, and killer appetizers. Hours are Sun - Thurs 11am-10pm, Fri-Sat 11am-12pm.
Beer Bill Gets Big Boot in State House
- April 12, 2011 -
In a one-sided vote, Colorado House representatives voted down House Bill 1284 yesterday, a bill that would have allowed grocery and convenience stores to sell full-strength beer in their stores.
Instead, a 46-17 vote denied Rep. Larry Liston another opportunity to advance a cause he has championed for at least three years. During discussions, he offered several amendments to curry favor with legislators opposed to his bill. After being voted down, Liston vowed that the issue was not done and that his next step may be petitioning the issue into voters' hands.
John Schroyer from the CSpgs Gazette does a nice, succinct wrap of the vote.
But for a fascinating step-by-step look at your legislature in action, be sure to check out John Schroyer from the CSpgs Gazette does a nice, succinct wrap of the vote.
Tim Hoover recaps the craziness in his Denver Post story (http://blogs.denverpost.com/thespot/2011/04/11/bill-to-expand-beer-sales-fizzles-in-house/27483/
There is more to come, however. Senate Bill 194 is still due for future discussion on the Senate floor. It would allow most convenience stores to sell beer above 3.2 ABV, and permit bars and restaurants to sell beer below 3.2 ABV.
C-Store Bill Advances to Colo. Senate
- March 31, 2011 -
While the US Congress wants to defend your neighborhood craft brewer (see story below), the Colorado Legislature has loaded another barrel of the gun aimed at protecting the interests of convenience stores while shooting down those of liquor stores and craft brewers.
Colorado Senate Bill 194 passed through the Senate Business, Labor and Technology Committee yesterday, in a 4-2 vote, and will pass on to the next phase: discussion on the Senate floor. SB 194, sponsored by Sen. Betty Boyd, aims to rework laws that will allow c-stores less than 5000 square feet in size to sell beer above 3.2% ABW, and allow restaurants and liquor stores to sell beer below 3.2% ABW.
Similarly-focused Colorado House Bill 1194, which includes grocery stores in the mix, too, passed through committee last week and will be heard by the full House, but exactly when is still uncertain.
Both bills, interestingly, share the same title, "Concerning the regulation of alchohol beverages", and if either one is passed will benefit one business (c-stores/grocers) at the expense of others (liquor store and brewery owners).
It is notable that the two bills in Colorado's Legislature that threaten to blow holes in the guts of Colorado brewers and beer lovers, are in stark contrast to the two US Congress bills that help both brewers and consumers.
Support your local brewer, for God's sake, and tell your elected officials: Stop punishing beer makers and beer drinkers, and get back to real work!
U.S. Senate Bill Would Help Small Brewers
- March 30, 2011 -
Bill S.534 proposed in the U.S. Senate by Senators John Kerry(D-Mass) and Mike Crado(R-Idaho) would reduce the small brewer tax rate on the first 60,000 barrels by 50 percent(from $7.00 to $3.50 per barrel). It would also institute a new rate of $16.00/barrel on beer production above 60,000 barrels up to 2 million barrels. This announcement came from the Brewer's Association today, the not-for-profit trade group that represents the majority of U.S. breweries.
In a statement, Senator Kerry stated that"Small brewers have been growing and creating jobs ever since the craft beer revolution began. Today there are over 40 small breweries in Massachusetts and 1,700 across the country, and this bill will help ensure that these small businesses keep people on the payroll and create jobs even during tight economic times."
The House has a similar companion bill, H.R. 1236, The Small Brewer Reinvestment and Expanding Workforce Act, that would also enact a graduated excise tax rate for small brewers. Check out the full Brewer's Association for more information.
Hick's Got Some 'Splaining To Do
- March 28, 2011 -
We all know that politics can be very ugly, and bring out the worst in people. Throw alcohol into the mix, and who knows where things might lead.
The Denver Post reports today (nice job, Tim) that e-mails they have poured over between newly-elected Colorado Governor (and former Wynkoop brewer) John Hickenlooper's staff and brewing industry reps seem a bit - well, unseemly.
Of course, we, too are shocked - SHOCKED - that politics is being conducted, right here in this very state. Immediately someone will wonder if there's something going on here.
There is. It's called Good Government, where elected officials communicate with their staffs, the regulators who enforce laws, legislators who make the laws, and the rest of us who must live with the consequences.
It's also called Participation, where those who are most affected by ill-conceived laws get to stand up and have a voice. The c-store and grocery store lobby behind the SB83/HB1284/SB194 efforts will continue to characterize all this as "interventionist" and "croneyism", but only because the end result hasn't been to their liking (yet).
Special-interest meddling aimed at punishing brewers and consumers is just wrong. Lots of people spent time trying to make sense of the regs cooked up in response to SB83, and the e-mails are an interesting look at the way government operates to make poorly-crafted laws actually work. It turned out the best solution was to forget them, move on and free up time to do MORE IMPORTANT WORK.
Sure, Hick used to be a brewer. So what? He was a founder at Wynkoop Brewing in LoDo, long before he was elected Denver Mayor and then Colorado Governor. Hickenlooper sold his brewery business interests before he became mayor, and has had no say in their operations for at least 8 years. He used his experience and business knowledge to improve government.
What's wrong with doing the right thing, huh?
UPDATE: Beer Bill Heads to House
- March 25, 2011 -
Proposed regulations that would allow grocery and convenience stores in Colorado to sell full-strength beer passed through committee hearings yesterday, paving the way for debate soon on the floor of the Colorado House chamber.
The House Economic and Business Development committee heard testimony for seven hours on the issue before voting 7-6 to forward the bill, with new amendments, on to the legislature for further consideration.
Dozens of people spoke out in favor of and opposed to the bill. HB1284 would eliminate the regulatory distinctions between fermented malt beverages and malt liquor. 3.2 beer would be swept away, and replaced with 'real beer', ushering in (according to the bill's sponsor and chief cheerleader, Rep. Larry Liston) a new age in "customer convenience".
It's no surprise that the convenience stores and grocers support the bill. They've been squawking that they were losing sales to Colorado liquor stores since July 2008, when laws were changed to allow Sunday liquor sales.
But Tim Hoover of The Denver Post reports in an excellent article that support from other groups was surprising, including grocery store workers and UFCW7 who say the new regs will mean job security and growth for their ranks.
Opposition to the proposed changes is coming from Colorado craft brewers and liquor store owners, who will see sales lost to big-beer producers and out-of-state corporations if the law passes.
Liston tacked on two amendments to his bill in an apparent effort to appease liquor store owners and further muddy the regs: one provision allowing them to sell some non-perishable food items, and another add-on that would permit ownership of multiple liquor stores, less than 5000 square feet in size.
This will be first time that a significant change to state liquor and beer codes will be debated by the full House assembly, and passage is far from certain. You can Tim Hoover of The Denver Post reports in an excellent article, and we will keep you posted on this developing and important issue.
Legislature Targets 3.2 Beer - AGAIN!
- March 15, 2011 -
Larry Liston, Colorado State legislator from Colorado Springs, just can't quit. After numerous unsuccessful attempts in the past three years to change Colorado's beer laws, he's trying again.
He's introduced a new late-session bill that reportedly will eliminate the distinction between 3.2 beer and "full-strength" beers in state liquor codes, and allow a licensed beer seller to choose what kind of beer it would like to sell to consumers.
Rep. Liston sure does get involved a lot in beer laws, especially for a guy who doesn't drink. He co-authored an alcohol-strength certification amendment to another bill last year - SB 83 - that was recently shot down by Department of Revenue Director Roxy Huber, who issued an emergency order repealing it on March 4. Ed Sealover does a great job explaining this complicated story in the Denver Business Journal.
But it will undoubtedly get more interesting, as Tim Hoover of the Denver Business Journal that another potential change to beer laws may be presented to the legislature by Sen. Betty Boyd, who is considering a bill in addition to Rep Liston's proposal.
We"re working on a longer story about all this - stay tuned.
RMMS 2011: In Case You Missed It
- February 21, 2011 -
Attending the Rocky Mountain Microbrewing Symposium is like immersing yourself for a day into the world of beer. This was the 16th year for the symposium that is given at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. The symposium brings leaders in the brewing industry together to discuss various topics that are important to brewers. It's attended by brewers in the Rocky Mountain region, professional as well as home brewers. Oh, and did I mention beer? More on that later.
The Rocky Mountain Microbrewing Symposium was founded by the Center for Biotechnology & Bioinformatics at UCCS, which is a non-profit designed to spur commercial development of biotechnology and biomedical technology. It was founded by Dr. James Matoon, a professor of Microbiology and Genetics, who taught and lectured around the world, ending up teaching and retiring here at UCCS. He passed away this last year on Christmas Eve, 2010. A moment of silence was held at the beginning of the symposium in his honor. Dr. Matoon was instrumental in pushing forward research in yeast genetics and fermentation science.
There were 121 participants this year, ready to listen and learn, and of course, taste some beer.
The first to speak was Bryan Pearson from the Brewing Science Institute. He gave a presentation on Lager Yeast and Fermentation. Since lagers have different requirements than ales, he touched on some of the specifics, including how lager yeast grows, temperature requirements for fermentation, how to use Krausening. (Krausening?)
Steve Breezely, Production Manager for Avery Brewing Company, was up next. Steve explained the Avery philosophy, "We can make it all", and the idea that, as with the growing popularity of IPA's, "The drinkers were there, they just didn't know it yet". Brew it, and they will drink. Avery Brewing is known for brewing big beers, pushing the limits with experimentation, barrel aging, and ABV's. They don't believe a brewery needs to limit themselves to one style. We got to taste some Avery beers, including The Beast, a Belgian Grand Cru coming in at 14.9% ABV that had some deep complex flavors. Well rounded and delicious, it reminded me of sipping an aged port. Also we tasted Dihos Dactylon, soon to be released, that is a Barrel-aged Sour aged in Cabernet Sauvignon Barrels. As Breezely said "I want to have that diversity in our beers". Yum.
Next Dr. Frank Stonaker from CSU's Hopyard project spoke to us about what's happening with hop production in Colorado, and its future. In 2004, CSU planted 14 varieties of hops at research centers near Ft. Collins and near Hotchkiss. There were many varieties that did well, which is good for local microbreweries that want to use Colorado grown hops. There is a strong market here for "local" and "organic", which should continue to push the cultivation of hops in our state, despite some initial high costs of getting a hops farm started.
After lunch and beer sampling, the Keynote Speaker address was given by John Bryant, President of Oskar Blues Brewery. He talked about sustainability in the craft beer industry, and how important the independence of Colorado craft breweries is. John spoke about his career in the brewing industry in the Pacific Northwest, and his experience time after time with a brewery growing bigger, losing focus, and "losing their passion". He discussed their efforts at Oskar Blues to create a sustainable business by focusing on 3 things: 1) People 2) Beer 3) Family. He discussed the importance of keeping your passion alive and having a clear strategic plan. Oh, and did I mention drinking beer?
Chad Yakobson, owner/brewer of Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project in Denver spoke next. Let's just say that this man knows his yeast. First studying wine-making in New Zealand, Chad switched his focus to brewing, and completed a master thesis on the characteristics of Brettanomyces and their use in brewing. Now, for those of you who don't know, Brettanomyces are a variety of yeasts known for their role in production of lambic and sour ales, and are used increasingly in the craft beer industry. Chad reported on his research with this yeast and different methods used. Enough said. Mostly because I can hardly pronounce anything else from his talk.
After a much appreciated beer break, we got to listen to Tom Hennessy, a well respected figure in the craft beer world. Tom is the current owner of Colorado Boy Pub & Brewery in Ridgway. He started out as the founder of the Il Vicino chain and went on to open Palisade Brewery, before opening Colorado Boy. He discussed his Frankenbrew system, which details how to put together a brewing system for under $20,000, and his easy to follow steps to opening a brewery on a budget.
We also got to hear from Bob Wall of Colorado Malting Company. Bob and his partners built their own equipment and started malting their barley in 2008. A cool story of starting small and building what they needed. "We didn't need engineers because we had farmers".
Finally, Randy Flores who started San Juan Hop Farms talked about his recent efforts in representing various Colorado hop farms, and trying to get their hops directly into the craft brewers' hands. The GABF may have a separate entry this year for a Fresh Hops beer.
Enjoying the camaraderie, making connections, discussing common concerns, and just having a hell of a good time are all good reasons to attend RMMS. Oh, and did I mention the beer?
White House Serves Homebrew For Superbowl
- February 08, 2011 -
The White House served up their own homebrew, as one of the beers offered for their Superbowl party, according to Obama Foodarama, a blog of record about White House food initiatives. The beer, White House Honey Ale, was brewed by one of the White House chefs on homebrew equipment purchased by the Obamas. The ale reportedly used 1 lb. of honey from the White House bee hive, which is located next to Mrs. Obama's South Lawn kitchen garden.
Other beer served was ordered in from Hinterland Brewery of Green Bay, Wisconsin: their Pale Ale, Amber Ale, and Luna Stout. Pennsylvania also contributed, with beer from Yuengling Brewery in Pottsville, PA, the oldest brewery in the country. Scott Smith, owner of East End Brewing Company in Pittsburgh really wanted his beers to be served at the White House Superbowl shindig. He started a media campaign through Twitter and Facebook, trying to get the White House to bring in his beer. He went so far as to enlist the help of invitee PA senator Bob Casey to bring along some growlers to the White House, but the senator declined, citing White House security measures for liquids that come into the White House.
Its nice to know that there is an awareness in the White House about homebrewing, and that they bothered to bring in regional beers from both states represented in the Superbowl. It makes you wonder what beer would have been brought in if the Broncos had been in the game. So many choices...
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