There are plenty of new canned Colorado craft beers hitting the market this month, including Oskar Blues Fugli Yuzu & Ugli Fruit IPA, Ska Brewing Pink Vapor Stew, Telluride Brewing Russell Kelley Pale Ale and Denver Beer Co. Maui Express. But it's hard to beat the refreshing, can-tastic artwork on Station 26 Brewing's first-ever canned seasonal, Lemondrop Wheat, which should be in liquor stores beginning this week.
Brewed with Lemondrop hops and a hint of lemon, the 4.5 percent ABV beer was also "crafted to reduce gluten," the brewery says. It's also on tap at the brewery starting this week.
Now, here are the best craft-beer events through June 24.
Wednesday, May 24
It's Saison Cask Month at Copper Kettle Brewing, which will tap a firkin of coriander table saison at 2 p.m. Pavy's Food Truck will be outside.
Something Brewery in Brighton taps Project X-8 at 3 p.m. The beer is a Basil IPA "with so much aroma, it's like you just stepped foot in an Italian pizza shop," the brewery says. There's only one keg, so it will go fast.
Zuni Street Brewing will continue its beer-and-cookie-pairing event at 4 p.m. For $10, you get four cookies from Good Sugar Baking and four beer tasters from Zuni Street.
Thursday, May 25
As part of a renewed push to help nonprofit organizations this summer, Declaration Brewing has brewed an experimental double IPA called Overland Thunder, which will benefit Habitat for Humanity. The beer will be tapped today, and $1 of every pint will benefit Habitat for Humanity of Metro Denver.
Friday, May 26
Help 4 Noses Brewing in Broomfield celebrate its third anniversary with a weekend-long party beginning tonight and ending on Memorial Day. There will be a variety of special tappings, including the release of the brewery's third-anniversary double IPA, brewed with Simcoe, Galaxy and Amarillo hops. In addition, there will be food trucks, cellar-beer releases, taproom can releases and more surprises.
Mother Tucker Brewery officially opens today as the only craft brewery in the Denver suburb of Thornton. There will be ten beers on tap on opening day.
Beryl's Beer Company in River North will tap the latest iteration of its O.G. Dunkel Bavarian Lager. "You choose between a half liter or full stein of Dunkel," the brewery says. Tacos With Altitude will be on the patio.
Saturday, May 27
Denver Beer Co. is releasing its Maui Express Coconut IPA for the first time in cans this year, and to celebrate, the brewery is throwing a proper Hawaiian luau at its taproom at 1695 Platte Street. "Denver Beer Co. will be transformed into a tropical paradise for the party, and we're hoping to see a lot of dudes sporting coconut bikinis and grass skirts, and ladies in awesome Hawaiian shirts," the brewery says. In addition to beer and music, there will be raffles for lots of DBC swag, including Maui Express growlers and a Maui Express keg. Raffle tickets will be handed out with every Maui Express pint purchased between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.
The second edition of Great Divide's super-limited, taproom-only Local Knowledge series, Apricot Colette, goes on sale in six-packs at the brewery's original taproom and in the Barrel Bar in RiNo; the beer will likely sell out today or within a few days. Each six-pack in the Local Knowledge series includes a bookmark with a tip or trick from a Denver local — thus the name of the series — about places to eat and drink and things to see and do. The suggestions come from beer writers, Great Divide employees, beer drinkers and other party people.
Black Project Spontaneous & Wild Ales is releasing Peacemaker, a new spontaneous "solera" blend at noon. Part of the brewery's experimental series, the beer is a blend of two base beers: a 100 percent wheat brew and a golden ale made with pilsner malt. "Both beers were brewed on Black Project’s four-barrel system and then cooled in the brewery’s coolship, a custom-built, twelve-barrel copper vessel designed to cool wort overnight while inoculating with wild yeast and other microbes from the air," the brewery says. "Once cooled, the wort was transferred to stainless-steel totes, where it aged and fermented for eight to twelve months." For much, much more information on the beer and recent changes at Black Project, go to the brewery's Facebook page.
Alpine Dog Brewing taps a new West Coast-style IPA at 1 p.m. The beer, Yakima Nectar, was named "for the growing region that these hops come from," Alpine Dog says. "Huge amounts of Chinook, Centennial and Cascade hops for a resiny, grapefruity and piney IPA."
Cerebral Brewing releases its newest 100 percent Brettanomyces-fermented saison, Ripping Through Dimensions, at noon. The saison was brewed with pilsner malt, Colorado wheat (from Troubadour Maltings) and oats, then hopped with Galaxy and South African XJA2/436 hops. Bottles are $10 each, limit six per person. For more information, go to the brewery's website. Hoof, Wing, and Fin will be out front starting at 2 p.m.
Grist Brewing will host a grand opening for its second brewery and taproom — this one at 9535 Park Meadows Drive, Unit F, in Lone Tree — starting at noon. "Our new experimental brewery will feature a Colorado-made brewing system from Forgeworks, a next-level tasting experience, all the great beers you have come to expect, and new and exciting concoctions brewed in small batches," Grist says. Cub's Q BBQ will be on hand with food.
Fiction Beer Company is tapping a beer based on a craft-beer romance novel (yes, there is such a thing) that was based on beer. It's kind of complicated, so if you want more details, go to the Fiction Facebook page. But the beer itself, called Adjunct Lovers, is a Kölsch fermented with guava. It goes on at 1 p.m.
Odd13 Brewing hosts a dual beer release at noon. The first, Ubern00b, is the Lafayette brewery's taproom-only can release for May. Ubern00b is a bigger, hoppier versinon of n00b, the brewery's year-round pale ale. "An irresponsible dry-hopping regimen with Mosaic and El Dorado creates an incredibly juicy DDH IPA," Odd13 says. The second beer is chardonnay Barrel Aged Liftmaster, a mixed-culture Bier De Garage fermented and aged in a chardonnay barrel. "The result is a moderately tart vinous beer with bright flavor contributions of white wine, fresh oak and young Brett." These are taproom specials only, so don't wait for them to show up in liquor stores.
Odell Brewing's on-again, off-again Small Batch Festival returns at a new time of year for 2017. This year, the Fort Collins event will be one day only, from 1 to 6 p.m., and will include more than fifty — yep, fifty — different Odell beers on tap. Many of the beers were made on Odell's five-barrel pilot system, and they include sours, barrel-aged brews, seasonals and twists on some Odell favorites. “This festival is the culmination of a year’s worth of brewing,” says Odell's Adam D’Antonio. “For months, we’ve been hoarding a few kegs of our favorites.... I think our brewers look forward to it as much as the fans." There will be food trucks along with live music from Choice City Seven, the Reminders and Euforquestra. Tickets are $35 and include two beer tokens and a stainless-steel cup.
Tuesday, May 30
Black Shirt Brewing is bring back Barrel-Aged Born To Hula, a tropically-flavored beer that was conditioned atop fresh pineapple and coconut, dry-hopped with Citra and aged for two-and-a-half months in bourbon barrels.
Friday, June 2
Great Divide Brewing's Barrel Bar kicks off summer with a reveal party from 6 to 9 p.m. for the new artwork on its cans of Denver Pale Ale. The First Friday event, taking place at the brewery's RiNo location, celebrates art, beer and Denver." Last year, Great Divide revamped the recipe for its venerable Denver Pale Ale, refocusing its distribution to Denver only and pledging to create an artist series for the cans, which will change each year. The new one showcases a piece by John Vogl of The Bungaloo. "The new Denver Pale Ale cans will be available alongside other Great Divide brews and different Denver Pale Ale firkin tappings," the brewery says. You can also check out a Denver Pale Ale collaborative art project, live screen printing, commemorative merchandise, raffles, games, live tunes, food trucks, artwork submissions for series No. 3. The E-Tuk circulator will be giving rides throughout the rest of the neighborhood for the evening "so you can start your RiNo First Friday adventure with us and head out from there." The party is free to get into, and a portion of beer sales will benefit the RiNo Art District.
Join Crooked Stave for the release of 2016 L'Brett d'Blueberry — a golden sour ale that was aged in oak barrels with Washington blueberries — at 5 p.m. in the taproom at the Source. "We uphold the time-honored traditions used to make spontaneous Belgian lambic through embracing natural fermentation with the microflora native to our brewery.," Crooked Stave says. "For our Harvest 2016 release, we've selected unique barrels to balance the heavy-handed addition of Washington blueberries, expressing the Pacific Northwest terroir from which our fruit is sourced, and a quality that reflects the skilled stewardship of our partner farmers." L'Brett d'Blueberry will be available on draft and in 750ml cork-and-cage bottles. This beer will sell out.
Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery will tap a beer dedicated to the memory of Mike Sadler, a former punter for the Michigan State Spartans who died in a car accident in 2016. Sadler, who was known for a fake punt/trick play called "Hey Diddle Diddle" and for his humorous Twitter feed, was volunteering as a coach at a kicking camp in Wisconsin and was set to begin law school at Stanford before the accident. For the beer, Jagged Mountain brewmaster Adam Glaser has infused rose petals as a reference to Sadler's role in winning the 100th Rose Bowl in 2014. Some proceeds will benefit the Michael Sadler Foundation, which holds events across the country.
Join Freshcraft at 5:30 p.m. for a special tapping of Odell Brewing's annual cellar-series beer, Brazzle, a sour golden raspberry ale aged in oak barrels with wild yeasts and 300 pounds of golden raspberries. Others also on draft: Odell Friek and Odell Myrcenary.
Halfpenny Brewing in Centennial releases a new beer every Friday this month. Today's is SMaSHed Hallertau Mittelfruh. That will be followed next week by Hefeweizen, then New England IPA, then SMaSHed Sorachi Ace.
Saturday, June 3
The Larimer, a new brewery that makes beer at Crazy Mountain Brewery in Denver while searching for a permanent home, will release its latest can at noon at Crazy Mountain. Regulators IPA is a 6.6 percent ABV hazy New England-style IPA. "Brewed with raw oats, wheat and lactose sugar, and triple dry-hopped with Mosaic, Citra and Amarillo," it has very low IBUs and "a juicy citrus blast of hop aroma and flavor." Regulators IPA will be on draft and available in six-packs to go all day. A portion of sales will be donated to Rocky Mountain National Park.
Fiction Beer Company taps a beer that it has been waiting two-and-a-half years to make. Awaken the Intellect Cream Ale was "fermented with coffee whose beans were bourbon barrel aged, then roasted and cold brewed just for Fiction Beer by Copper Door Coffee Roasters," the brewery says. To do it, Copper Door deposited green Colombian coffee beans inside a bourbon barrel, where they sat for three weeks. Then the beans were roasted. The end result is a beer with "aromas of oak, vanilla, dark fruit, cedar and coconut." There is also subtle aroma that is "similar to a freshly finished glass of bourbon." Copper Door will be on site for the release with samples of the coffee used in this brew, talking about coffee roasting and the processes used to make these beans.
Platt Park Brewing will celebrate its third anniversary with a luau all day. The brewery will tap several new beers and various favorites; more details TBA. There will also be a ticketed Brewer Cellar VIP lunch; $30 will get you lunch (a whole roasted pig with all the fixins) and a pour of an exclusive beer from the cellar.
Ursula Brewery will also mark its third anniversary today with live bands, a pig roast, and the 11 a.m. bottle release of its new sour beer, Angel of the Odd. More details TBA.
After a two-year sabbatical, Unified Theory is returning to River North Brewery. The oak-aged double witbier will be available on draft and in bottles to go. "Big citrus notes collide with dry vanilla and oak, breaking all the rules with a flavor combination that just plain works," the brewery says.
Cellar West Artisan Ales in Boulder debuts its latest bottled beer, Grey Muse, which is an example of a grisette, which the brewery calls "a storied Belgian style scarcely made today... Few seem to have concrete evidence on how the grisette came to be. Although historical accounts differ, the interpretation I tend to follow is that of Yvan Da Baets, brewer/owner of Brussels' Brasserie de la Senne. Yvan suggests: 'The beer was made in a region with a lot of "stone quarries, and it would quench the thirst of those workers, who came back from work covered with grey dust.'' But regardless of origin, the grisette is "a beautiful beer style," Cellar West continues. "The benchmarks of grisette are low ABV, a large portion of local wheat used in the grist bill, and delicate but noticeable late hopping." Cellar West's version, at 4.9 percent ABV, was made with wheat from Troubador Maltings and then bottle-conditioned. IT will be available on draft and in 500mL bottles.
Nighthawk Brewery in Broomfield hosts its Second Annual Funk & Farm Fest from 1 to 5 p.m. The party, which is a celebration of grisette, saison, and farmhouse beers, features beers from breweries from around the state, including: Crooked Stave, Trinity, Atom Brewing, Barnett and Son, Bruz Beers, Cerebral Brewing, Our Mutual Friend, The Post Brewing, Wiley Roots, Nighthawk and the Follow the Light Project. Tickets include a commemorative glass, food from Nighthawk's pizza kitchen and lots of beer.
Sunday, June 4
"To commemorate the longstanding tradition of drinking on, off, and all around the stage," Shakesbeer will return for the summer with a new script at Ratio Beerworks. The free performance of A Midsummer Night's — Dram (a sixty-minute adaptation of the Bard's A Midsummer Night's Dream) begins at 7:30 p.m. and will be performed by the Wit's Shakesbeer group; actors imbibe before and during the show. "Lambic pentameter...Vienna-style verse — frankly, few things fit together like theatre and beer," the group says.
Wednesday, June 7
Free beer alert! From 5 to 7 p.m., Pizzeria Locale in Highland Square will host an Elevation Beer Company happy hour. Each guest can snag one free flight of beer from the Poncha Springs brewery; no food purchase needed.
Thursday, June 8
Renegade Brewing brings back its 5:00 Bangkok-style Ale at, of course, 5 p.m. This is the brewery's regular 5:00 Afternoon Ale session ale brewed with lemongrass and ginger. With the purchase of a pint between 5 and 10 p.m., you'll also get a limited-edition glass and a six-pack of beer to go.
Friday, June 9
New Kids on the Block, "the rad-tacular ’80s dance party and new-breweries beer festival" returns for its fifth year from 7 to 10 p.m. Sponsored by The Lobby (2191 Arapahoe Street) and PorchDrinking.com, the festival highlights local breweries that are two years old or younger. This year, that mighty list includes 14er Brewing, Banded Oak, Bierstadt Lagerhaus, Brewability Lab, Briar Common Brewery + Eatery, Call to Arms, Cellar West Artisan Ales, Cerebral Brewing, Cheluna Brewing, Holidaily Brewing, Little Machine, Maxline Brewing, New Image, Outer Range Brewing, Resolute Brewing, Seedstock, Something Brewery, Spangalang, The Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project, and WestFax Brewing. Each will pour two beers, which will help fuel you for the dance party that will rock all night with a live DJ and prizes for the best ’80s outfits. Small-bite munchies will be provided by the Lobby, Briar Common and the Rackhouse Pub. Tickets are $35 at nightout.com or $40 the day of.
Saturday, June 10
Banded Oak Brewing celebrates its one-year anniversary on Broadway with a party from noon to 11 p.m. The brewery will tap three previously unreleased beers and maybe a surprise or two from head brewer, Chris Kirk. In addition, Atomga, the twelve-piece band that Banded Oak named its imperial stout after, will be playing. And finally, Areyto will be on hand serving authentic Puerto Rican food.
Alpine Dog's Ski Naked Saison has evolved into a new version of the beer, Ski Naked Wild Saison, which was brewed as "a mixed-culture farmhouse ale this time around, adding an aromatic strain of...Brettanomyces to primary fermentation along with our house saison yeast. The result will be a dry, robustly aromatic saison with big tropical fruit notes and earthiness," the brewery says.
"Warmer days are upon us, which means it's time to cool down" with New Wave, Ratio Beerworks's kettle-soured Strawberry Berliner weisse "brewed with "patio sessions in mind," the brewery says. The bright pink beer was brewed and fermented with more than three hundred pounds of real strawberries.
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Dry Dock Brewing brings back its A-Town Funk Fest for a second year, and this time, Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project and Wing Hut have been invited for a sour-beer-and-food-pairing event. Guests to that part of the fest will get seven beers from Dry Dock and Crooked Stave, including a collaboration made just for Funk Fest, all paired with dishes from Chef Josh Prater and his team. The pairing sessions are at 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. There will also be music, games and other beers on tap. For the pairing menu, go to Dry Dock's Facebook page.
Sunday, June 11
Station 26 Brewing's monthly Bluegrass Brunch returns at 11 a.m., with lots of beer, tunes from Cosmic Mesa, doughnuts from Glazed and Confused and barbecue from Turn-In BBQ.
Thursday, June 15
Hogshead Brewery will roll out four consecutive days of cask ales starting Thursday in order to celebrate its fifth anniversary. There will be beer tappings, music, a pig roast and an English breakfast. More details TBA.
Saturday, June 24
Big Choice Brewing is moving from Broomfield to Brighton after five years for a larger space, but the owners want to say goodbye to the old location with style, so they're hosting a party at the location "from noon until whenever." There will be lots of beer and plenty of stories from staff and regulars. More details TBA.