Have you seen a lot of natural-wood tap handles recently? So has Adam Draeger, the brewmaster at Arvada's Yak & Yeti Brewpub, which is why he decided to replace his handmade wooden Ys (rep the double Y's in the Yak and Yeti) with one-piece molded urethane-based handles finished with a glossy paint job. Made by Taphandles.com, each one features the yeti wearing a sandwich signboard for labeling each individual beer.
Turn the page to see this week's craft-beer events.
Wednesday, February 5
February is Decadent Chocolate Cask Month at the Copper Kettle, and today's beer is Cherry Chocolate Milk Stout, a sweet, roasted stout brewed with fresh cherries and cocoa. It goes on a 3 p.m. The Ckrepes food truck will be on hand at 4:30 p.m.
February is Barleywine month -- or Dain Bramage month, as they call it -- at the Falling Rock Taphouse. Check its Twitter feed or stop in to find out what's on tap.
Friday, February 7
Wit's End Brewing will tap a new beer tonight. Me, Myself, and Rye is a rye pale ale made with Millennium and Tettnang hops. "It is dry and crisp, with layered spicy and fruity notes from the 28 percent rye malt bill. It rings in at 6.4 percent AVB and has 42 IBUs," the brewery says.
Former Future Brewing, which officially opened last weekend, will celebrate its grand opening today at tomorrow, with beer, food trucks and board games. Hours today are 2 to 10 p.m., with the Baba's Falafel food truck on hand. Hours tomorrow are noon to 10 p.m. with Maria Empanada in the house. In addition, Adelita's, a taco place next door, has put together a special taco menu for Former Future.
Our Mutual Friend Malt & Brew is planning to create a series of barrel-aged wild and sour ales later this year exclusively for The Populist, its neighbor in River North. And although the first beer won't be available for at least six months, OMF will offer a sneak peak at 4 p.m.today, when it taps an un-aged version of the straw-colored light rye ale that the brewery will use as the base beer for its barrel-aged versions. The un-aged version should have some tartness since OMF soured it in the brew kettle by letting the mashed grain sit for 36 hours.
Avery Brewing will tap Trogdor the Burninator in its Boulder taproom tonight at 5 p.m. The beer is described as a "German-style smoked doppelbock featuring 30 percent beechwood-smoked malt. It's named with the 'ator' suffix in deference to Paulaner Salvator, the original German doppelbock."
Saturday, February 8
World of Beer in Belmar will host an all-day event today -- Kegs, Cans and Helping Hands -- that is designed to raise money for the flood-related charities created by two Longmont breweries, the Left Hand Flood Relief Fund and Oskar Blues Can'd Aid. For $20, guests get a ticket good for four beers and a raffle ticket. If you don't want a ticket, WOB will also be selling the donated beers for $6 each and raffle tix for $5 each. The donated beers include: New Belgium Ranger; Oskar Blues Mamas Little Yella Pils; Boulder Beer Hazed and Infused; Avery White Rascal; Tommyknocker Imperial Nut Brown; and beers from Epic, Twisted Pine, Odell and Left Hand. There will be live music from Kenny Lee Young from 4 to 7 p.m. and Ryan Chrys at 9 p.m. In additon to the raffle, there will be a silent auction featuring a New Belgium Bicycle, Oskar Blue's skis or jacket, Omni Resort stay donated by New Belgium Brewing, a chance to brew a beer at Twisted Pine.
Oskar Blues's Tasty Weasel Taproom in Longmont is celebrating its fifth anniversary today starting at 4 p.m. live music from Kort McCumber, then the Jack, Ken & Juice trio and The Strategic Beef Plan B. They will also tap a specialty version of G'Knight, the brewery's imperial red IPA, that they're calling G'Afternoon.
Sunday, February 9
Avery Brewing will bring back Uncle Jacob's Stout today in the Boulder taproom. The beer, a "robust, silky smooth, full-bodied and altogether extremely American rendition of an Imperial Stout aged for six months in the very finest Bourbon barrels," is typically one of the best barrel-aged beers made in Colorado. Sales begin at 1 p.m. and each twelve-ounce bottle costs $12; buyers are limited to one case (24 bottles each), cash only. To help ease the pain of standing in line, or to celebrate afterwards, Avery will have several rare and exclusive beers on tap, starting at 11 a.m., including Khodynka, Tweak, 2012 Beast, Chewblacka, Bolder Weisse, Double Dry-Hopped Maharaja, and more.
New Belgium Brewing says it will make history today by opening its Fort Collins tasting room for tours and tasting for the first time on a Sunday; the brewery is typically closed on Sundays and Mondays, but will begin keeping hours from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. during the winter months on those days. To celebrate, New Belgium will tap a keg of Tart Lychee, which combines New Belgium's barrel-aged sour beer, Lychee Fruit puree, and cinnamon sticks, at 4 p.m. today. (P.S. tours still book up fast, so reserve tour tickets online at newbelgium.com/Brewery/tasting-room/visit-us/tour-calendar.aspx).
Monday, February 10
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer is Stoked Oak Stout.
Tuesday, February 11
As part of the month-long Stout Month, the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will all release Stoked Oak Stout. "Former Mountain Sun brewer Scott Overdorf masterfully balanced various malts, vanilla and oak to create an 'Old World-Style' stout with barrel-aged character," the company says. The combination of smoked malt and the additions of pure vanilla extract and toasted oak spirals give the impression of a barrel-aged stout without having undergone the barrel-aging process."
For more events later in January and in February, turn the page. Wednesday, February 12
February is Decadent Chocolate Cask Month at the Copper Kettle, and today's beer is Chocolate & Vanilla Cream Ale, a light to medium bodied classic American style, brewed with Tahitian vanilla beans and cocoa. It goes on a 3 p.m. The Ckrepes food truck will be on hand at 4:30 p.m.
Thursday, February 13
The Wynkoop Brewing Company will present the inaugural Masters of the Brewniverse Beer Festival and Brewery Pageant tonight from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. at the Oriental Theater. Guests will receive unlimited tastings from more than fourteen breweries while watching reps and brewers from each brewery compete on stage for the crowning title of "Master of the Brewniverse." Teams will showcase the personality of their brand through various rounds of beer pageantry including fashion, talent and interview. Contestants include Asher, Big Choice, Black Bottle, Caution, Crooked Stave, Denver Beer Co, Elevation, Epic, Great Divide, Left Hand, Mountain Sun, Renegade, Twisted Pine, Yak & Yeti, and the Wynkoop. Tickets are $25 and available at ImbibeDenver.com. Proceeds benefit the Mile High United Way.
Friday, February 14
River North Brewery will kick off its week-long two-year anniversary party today by opening early, at 1 p.m., and tapping its Anniversary Ale #2, a Belgian-style Golden Strong Ale dry-hopped with Nelson Sauvin. Today, you can try a side-by-side tapping of Anniversary Ale #1 (an Imperial Stout) and Anniversary Ale #2, along with other rare River North brews. There will also be food trucks on hand. Bomber bottles of AA#2 will be for sale throughout the weekend for $9 each, with a six-bottle limit.
As part of Stout Month, the Vine Street Pub, along with the Mountain Sun and Southern Sun pubs in Boulder, will tap Cherry Chocolate Stout (brewed with Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate and a blend of more than three hundred pounds of dark sweet cherries and red tart cherries) today.
Epic Brewing is offering a three-cheese, three-chocolate, four-beer pairing today in the taproom chocolate pairing. It costs $15 for one, or $20 for a couple.
Barrels and Bottles Brewery in Golden will host a tap takover today by Oskar Blues, featuring eleven beers, including rare and small batch ones like: Ten FIDY aged in Makers Mark barrels; Gubna aged in thirty-year-old tequila barrels; Brewing Market Coffee Stout; Chaka aged in Merlot barrels; Icey Wheat IPA; Reeb Rye'd pale ale; and more. The brewery will also have chocolate desserts paired with beers and wines like Odell Brewing Lugene Chocolate Milk Stout, Epic Brewing Company Big Bad Baptist Imperial Stout, the Strange and Epic collaboration called Epically Strange Cherry Imperial Stout, Rogue Ales Double Chocolate Stout.
Copper Kettle will host the, yes, Romance and Bro-Mance Beer Dinner with the El Toro the Tot food truck, and chef Vincent Burns, today beginning at 7 p.m. The four-course meal is $65 per person and includes dishes like Tempura Fried Soft Shell Crab, Potato and Chive Gnocchi, and Braised Pork Osso Bucco. The featured beer will be a Belgian blond ale with rose hips, but the brewery will serve several others as well.
Saturday, February 15
River North Brewery will continue its week-long two-year anniversary party today by tapping its Anniversary Ale #2, a Belgian-style Golden Strong Ale dry-hopped with Nelson Sauvin, along with some other rare brews. There will also be food trucks on hand. Bomber bottles of AA#2 will be for sale throughout the weekend for $9 each.
Sunday, February 16
TRVE Brewing will release the third in its series of bottled sour "Mythological Occult" ales today at 2 p.m. Winter Zephyr is a "black sour, with the most potent acidity of the series," the brewery says. "Citrus and roast akin to cold-brewed coffee make this one of our proudest achievements." There is a four-bottle limit per customer. CVLT members get in a half hour early.
River North Brewery will continue its week-long two-year anniversary party today by tapping its Anniversary Ale #2, a Belgian-style Golden Strong Ale dry-hopped with Nelson Sauvin, along with J. Marie Barreled & Bretted (a farmhouse ale aged in red wine barrels with Brettanomyces). There will also be food trucks on hand. Bomber bottles of AA#2 will be for sale throughout the weekend for $9 each, and today only, the brewery will host its first Cellar Sale, offering limited quantities of rare bottles from throughout the brewery's history.
Monday, February 17
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer is Mutual Respect Imperial Coffee Stout, a collaboration with Odell Brewing.
Tuesday, February 18
As part of Stout Month, the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street will tap Mutual Respect Imperial Coffee Stout today. Made in collaboration with Odell Brewing, this Belgo-American Imperial Coffee Stout "has a fruitiness contributed by American hops and Belgian yeast, which complement the robust flavors of cold extracted coffee," the brewery says.
Wednesday, February 19
February is Decadent Chocolate Cask Month at the Copper Kettle, and today's beer is Orange Grand Marnier Chocolate Milk Stout, a sweet, roasted stout brewed with fresh orange peel, cocoa, and Grand Marnier liqueur. It goes on a 3 p.m. The Ckrepes food truck will be on hand at 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, February 23
Dry Dock will release 22-ounce bottles of its highly-acclaimed Bligh's Barleywine today, starting at 11 a.m. Bottles are $20 and they'll have a limited amount on tap as well.
Odell Brewing will have a party to celebrate the re-release of its Tree Shaker Imperial Peach IPA today from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. in its Fort Collins taproom. The beer was brewed with 3,000 pounds of pureed Colorado peaches. There will also be food and live music.
Monday, February 24
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer will be the winner of the Stout Month 2014 Homebrew Contest.
Tuesday, February 25
Wednesday, February 26
February is Decadent Chocolate Cask Month at the Copper Kettle, and today's beer is Strawberry Chocolate Blonde, a malt-oriented American craft beer brewed with fresh strawberries and cocoa. It goes on a 3 p.m. The Ckrepes food truck will be on hand at 4:30 p.m.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Westword's Beer Man on Twitter at @ColoBeerMan and on Facebook at Colo BeerMan