For the first time in more than a decade, the Blue Moon Brewing Company at the Sandlot, which has been open only to Colorado Rockies ticket-holders -- and then only on game days -- will be open to the public on non-game days beginning May 2.
The news means that revelers in LoDo will have another taproom at which they can sample small-batch beers. The Sandlot -- which opened when Coors Field did in 1995 -- is the only operating brewery inside a Major League ballpark in the nation.
See also: - Blue Moon brews a special beer at the Sandlot to commemorate the Rockies 20th anniversary - The brewers at Prost and the Sandlot will team up on a new German-style lager - Five things you didn't know about the Sandlot brewery at Coors Field
"It was open to the public for the first couple years, but after that, we just wanted to concentrate on games," says Richard Hesse, regional manager for Aramark, which operates the restaurant portion of the Sandlot and the other concessions at Coors Field. (The brewery portion, which is primarily in the basement, is run by MillerCoors.)
"But now, with the build-out of LoDo and the popularity of these tasting rooms up and down the Front Range -- the ones that make this area the best beer destination anywhere -- we feel like our space is right up there with the best of them," he explains. "And we feel like the Blue Moon brand rivals any brand in the United States."
The Sandlot is currently undergoing renovations to give it a new layout and a new look, but it will still be open to ticket-holders on game days through April, starting with tomorrow's Opening Day. And starting in May, the Sandlot will be open to everyone as a taproom on non-game days, with a light menu on Wednesdays through Sundays; specific hours are still up in the air.
On game days, the brewery and restaurant will still be reserved for Rockies ticket-holders, although Aramark, the team and MillerCoors are discussing the idea of opening to the public for limited hours during the day when the Rockies play at night.
"The plan right now is also to stay open year-round," Hesse adds, noting that in the past, the Sandlot has closed when baseball ends every year. "I think it will be hugely successful."
The beers served will be the ones brewed on-site, including Blue Moon, as well as the other Blue Moon brands and some beers brewed by the staff. Although it is owned and operated by MillerCoors, the brewhouse itself has just a small brewing system and just four employees, including head brewer John Legnard.
The team plays thirteen home games in April before hitting the road in late April and early May. They won't be here on May 2 when the Sandlot opens for the first time on a non-game day, but the team will return on May 3 for a three-day series.
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