The starting and ending point of tours at the Great Divide Brewing Company was formerly a chest-high metal tap station tucked into a chilly concrete corner of the brewery's main production room. From that vantage point, more than a decade's worth of tourists watched Great Divide brew, filter, bottle and package its award-winning beer while sipping on samples and freezing their asses off. "We just had to get people out of that old room," says Great Divide founder Brian Dunn. "Everybody was freezing in there."
Starting this week, aficionados of Great Divide's beer can thaw out in the new Tap Room, the final component of the craft brewery's recent expansion. Built in response to the increase in demand for Great Divide brews and a growing number of visitors to the brewery, the Tap Room will be, according to Dunn, "a neighborhood bar for people who appreciate good beer." From any seat in the Tap Room, drinkers can look from a warm, comfortable distance through two large windows into the production room. And with four of the eight beers on tap being over 9 percent alcohol by volume, beer lovers shouldn't have a problem warming up. "Our beers are big," says Dunn. "They're challenging and assertive, and that's how we want it, because the people that drink them come back again and again."
Beers will be served half-price this week to celebrate the opening of the Tap Room, and drawings for various prizes including a year's worth of free beer will be held every night. Located at 2201 Arapahoe Street, the Tap Room will be open Monday through Friday from 2 to 7 p.m. and from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Tours start at 2 and 4 p.m. on weekdays and on the hour from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information, call 303-296-9460 or visit www.greatdivide.com.
Mondays-Fridays, 2-7 p.m.; Saturdays, 12-5 p.m., 2007