Owner Matt Cutter is looking for a place in Boulder where the brewery can expand, and hopes to nail down plans this year. But in the meantime, Upslope is making more beer, including cans of the award-winning Belgian Style Pale Ale that hit store shelves this week. This is Upslope's second limited release, following on the heels of its Foreign Style Stout, which came out in January.
"We had planned a while ago to put this beer in a can, but we never had the capacity to do so until now," Cutter says, noting that Upslope bought a new sixty-barrel fermenter last fall and will add another one in the next few weeks. That will help the brewery increase its brewing output from 3,800 barrels in 2011 to about 6,000 barrels in 2012.
Upslope brewed 200 barrels of the Foreign Style Stout before switching to the Belgian Style Pale Ale, which will it will continue to brew for the next few months. "We have no defined plan or any defined term in which each of these limited releases will be out," Cutter maintains. "We have to protect our core brands and fill orders for those first. But we will continue to brew these as capacity allows." Upslope makes four core, year-round beers: IPA, Pale Ale, Brown Ale and Craft Lager.
And Upslope will continue to make them in Boulder and distribute those beers only in Colorado for the foreseeable future. "We have definitely been looking and weighing our options within the city limits of Boulder," Cutter notes. "We believe the support of Boulder brought us to where we are today. It's an important part of our brand."
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Upslope is also looking toward the future with its canning line. It currently owns one that was modified by Boulder's Wild Goose Engineering and can handle 25 cans per minute, but Cutter wants to upgrade to a new Wild Goose System that does 40 cans per minute.
He recently purchased one of Oskar Blues's old lines, which can handle 160 cans a minute. But that one would take up half of Upslope's 4,500-square-foot space, so Cutter won't install it until the brewery moves or expands.