Americans are drinking more craft beer, but they're also making more of their own at home. The Boulder-based American Homebrewers Association released the results of its fifth annual Homebrew Supply Shop Survey, which used data from 408 shops in 48 states, and found that gross revenue grew by an average of 10 percent in 2013. Other facts:
There are 1.2 million homebrewers nationwide today. Over the past year, there was a 24 percent increase in sales of beginner homebrew equipment kitsl beginner kits were most commonly purchased by 30-39-year-olds. And there was considerable growth in new shop openings, with 37 percent of respondents indicating they have been open for three years or less.
Turn the page to see this week's craft-beer events.
Wednesday, May 28
May is fruit month at the Copper Kettle, which will tap a fruit-themed firkin at 3 p.m. every Wednesday. Today's cask, the last in the series, is Raspberry Le Chapeau. The Ckrepes food truck will also be on hand.
Lucky Pie Louisville is hosting a Chef vs. Chef dinner featuring the pizza joint's Louisville chef, Josh Stone, and his sous chefs, Chris Ryan and Conner Updegrave, in a four-course, head-to-head showdown. Guests will choose their favorite courses and determine which beer reigns supreme -- Sam Adams or Sierra Nevada. Tickets are $65 per person including tax and gratuity and can be purchased at LuckyPieTickets.com.
Friday, May 30
Wonderland Brewing will celebrate its grand opening today from noon to 11 p.m., featuring seven beers on draft, ping pong and contests. In fact, there is a throwback theme, so if you wear a concert shirt from the last century, you will be entered into a drawing where you can win prizes. The Basic Kneads food truck will be on hand at 5 p.m. and the New Classics will be playing live music starting at 6 p.m.
Breckenridge Brewery and Denver Comic Con will celebrate the release of their third collaborative superhero beer, Brews Wayne, at 8 p.m. tonight at the 1UP Colfax. The beer, a malty amber ale, was named via a Facebook naming contest and will be served at Denver Comic Con, June 13-15, as well as other venues in town. Josh Viola, a Colorado-based author, artist and video-game developer, along with comic book artist and illustrator Aaron Lovett, created the commemorative pint glass and tap handle art for Brews Wayne. The kickoff party will feature live music from Total Ghost, Sundown Social and Ginger Perry. The concert is free to people 21 and up, and the first 200 people to arrive will receive a limited edition pint glass.
Saturday, May 31
Hops & Pie will host the the Littlest Big Wild & Sour Fest II today, starting at noon. You'll find rare and special beers, including Odell Friek; Jester King Das Wunderkind; New Belgium's Clutch and Felix; Russian River Consecration; Elysian Blueberry Tart; Cantillon's Classic Gueuze, Vigneronne and Mamouche; the Bruery Rueuze; Lost Abbey Cuvee de Tommee; and Tilquin's Olde Gueuze.
Copper Kettle will release its third year round bomber, Naja Imperial Red IPA, today at noon at the taproom. This American Red Ale comes in at 9 percent ABV. CKrêpes & CKatering will be out at 2 p.m.
Oskar Blues Brewery and the Town of Lyons will bring back the popular Burning Can Festival and Lyons outdoor games today, despite the September flooding that damaged most of the town's parks and rec areas. Located in the unaffected areas of Bohn Park, Burning Can includes 150 beers from more than fifty can-centric breweries from all over the country. General admission tickets for the fest, which runs from 4 to 7 p.m., are $30 ($35 the day of); VIP tix are $45 and get you in an hour early. Proceeds go to the Oskar Blues CAN'd Aid Foundation (which has already raised more than $600,000) and benefit the Lyons parks and rec department and the Colorado Brewers Guild. The Lyons Outdoor Games, meanwhile, will again include pro kayak events, the high-flying "Outlaws of Dirt" Jump series, along with a junior pump-track event, a rugby tournament, the Ultimate Athlete Competition, the 2014 Lyons Outdoor Games Slackline Jam presented by Gibbon Slacklines, cornhole tournament, live music (Anders Osborne), food booths and a family-friendly area. For a list of the breweries, events and for tickets, go to burningcan.com.
Sunday, June 1
TRVE Brewing will begin selling bottles of its latest sour or wild ale, Melissa, today at 2 p.m. There is a four-bottle limit at $8 each.
Tuesday, June 3
Verboten Brewing in Loveland will release its first bottles of Pure Imagination today at 1 p.m. at the taproom. The Double Oatmeal Stout won a silver medal at the World Beer Cup earlier this year. Buy a bottle and get $1 off a pint of your choice in the taproom while you are there; buy three bottles and get $1 off a pint and a Belgian tulip glass.
For more events later in May, turn the page.
Thursday, June 5
Former Future Brewing and A Cheese Peddler will host a beer and cheese pairing tonight from 5 to 7 p.m. at Former Future. There will be four cheeses and four beers along with an education-focused tasting. Tickets are $25.
Saturday, June 7
Denver Pearl Brewing will host a Grand Opening Party today from noon until midnight with 11 beers on tap, limited release tappings, and prizes.
The 2nd Annual Highlands Ranch Beer Festival takes place today from 2 to 6 p.m. at Civic Green Park. There will be live music, local and national breweries and lawn games. Tickets are $25 ($35 on the day of, although this will probably sell out) and include unlimited one-ounce samples and a souvenir tasting glass. Individual beer will be available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit the Highlands Ranch Scholarship Fund.
Thursday, June 12
Twelve Degree Brewing plans to be Louisville's official FIFA World Cup 2014-watching spot beginning at 2 p.m. today. To celebrate, the brewery is pouring MFBPA, a 6.3 percent ABV Belgian-American hybrid pale ale, today. Dry-hopped with American Columbus hops, the beer has piney, citrusy buts along with light, fruity esters from the Belgian yeast. Twelve Degree will be opening for extended hours during the World Cup in order to show almost all games live.
Saturday, June 14
Great Divide Brewing will host its twentieth anniversary blowout at the "future site" of its second location, at 3403 Brighton Boulevard, today from 2 to 6 p.m.; in the past, the brewery has held a block party on its current location on Arapahoe Street. There will be live music (Gin Doctors, Dirty Few, Varlet and Confluence) and food trucks (Basic Kneads, Burger Radio, 5280 Street Eats, Pink Tank); tickets are $30 or $35 in advance (although the party has sold out early in years past), and include a food ticket. There will also be bike valet parking provided by Denver's B-cycle. And, of course, there will be plenty of beer, including Great Divide's 20th Anniversary Belgian Style Ale, some special sours and barrel-aged brews, and a sneak peak of Showdown, an 8.3 percent ABV rye IPA that will be released later this year in bomber bottles.
Sunday, June 15
Avery Brewing will release Obscuro & Nimbosus, number twenty in its Barrel Series, today at 1 p.m. at the Boulder taproom. The tropical sour was aged in rum barrels. Each twelve-ounce bottle is $12 and there is a limit of twelve per person. The line will form early. Cash only. Also, there will be a lineup of other rare or obscure Avery beers to drink while you are in line. And Avery will treat fathers to a pint of IPA or White Rascal since it is Father's Day.
Saturday, June 28
Renegade Brewing will celebrate its third anniversary today with a block party from 3 to 10 p.m. in the 900 block of West Ninth Avenue in front of the brewery. There will be music all day (3:30 CP Carrington, 5:30 Holly Lovell, 7:00 The Way, The Arrow, 8:30 The Knew), food trucks (Matt's Snack Shack, Baba & Pop's Kitchen, Slider Shack 303, Em's Ice Cream), ice cream, and tons of beer. There is no entrance fee and all beers, including the regular lineup and a few hits from the past year, are $5. A free bike valet will be provided by the Denver Bicycle Cafe.
Westword's Beer Man on Twitter at @ColoBeerMan and on Facebook at Colo BeerMan
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.