Beer Calendar: Celebrate Valentine's Day, Peyton Manning, Ratio Beerworks

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Peyton Manning may have looked a little wobbly in the Super Bowl, but we was right on target when it came to shilling for Budweiser during his post-game interviews. You've probably heard the clip — along with the outcry from people who thought it was blatant ad placement, inappropriate given the NFL's rules against players selling alcohol, or just plain lame. But the comments also raised the hackles on craft beer drinkers, who were already irritated by Bud, which has taken aim at craft beer for two years in a row now during its Super Bowl ads. As a result, Left Hand Brewing is offering people a free pint in their Longmont taproom for anyone who brings in an empty bottle or can of Bud (Left Hand also took aim at Peyton in 2014, when he made similar comments), and the Boulder-based Brewers Association, the craft beer trade group, has decided to send the QB a craft-beer care package. You can see the beers they sent him above and find the organization's comments below.

"On Sunday, the Denver Broncos took the Super Bowl 50 title, and Peyton Manning took home his second victory in football’s biggest game. Congratulations to The Sheriff on a game well played and a win well deserved. And while the feat did indeed earn Mr. Manning the right to kick back with his teammates for a beer or two, the seemingly shameless plug of the World’s largest beer company made many in craft beer land confused," the BA said in its statement. "Wouldn’t he rather have a beer more fitting of his superstardom; maybe a beer that more closely represents the Bronco’s status as an underdog? That’s what we believe small and independent craft brewers represent.

"So, the Brewers Association... put together a care package for the talented quarterback in hopes of helping him find another post-game refreshment. Since Peyton happens to play in one of the most beer-centric states in the nation, we made sure to include a good number of beers that were local to Colorado in addition to a few other classic and approachable options from around the country. Along with the beer, we included a letter of congratulations and appreciation for his hard work. We hope you enjoy the beer, Peyton!!"

Wednesday, February 10

February is Decadent Chocolate Cask Month at Copper Kettle Brewing, which will be tapping new casks each Wednesday. Today's beer, Chocolate Raspberry Blonde, was made with raspberries and chocolate. Farm to Truck will be on hand.

Thursday, February 11
If you missed Melvin Brewing's 2x4 day — the Wyoming brewery's introduction into Colorado last week, then head down to Freshcraft at 7 p.m., when they will host a Melvin tapping and give away some shwag. Beers on tap: 2x4 DIPA, Melvin IPA, Clinic ISA, Dready Copper.

Friday, February 12
Ratio Beerworks will celebrate its one-year anniversary with a three-day party this weekend. The events kick off today with the bottle release of Barrel Aged One Great City!, a Belgian quadrupel aged nine months in rum barrels. The beer will be available for purchase in 375ml bottles. A limited amount will be available on draft at the brewery that evening. Ratio will also release this year’s version of the regular One Great City! in 375ml bottles. In addition, the bar will tap an anniversary firkin and there will be food from Smokestack 70 and a special edition of Ratio Comedy. Hosted by Andrew Bueno, the lineup will feature Los Angeles-based comedian Allen Strickland Williams, Nathan Lund, Matt Monroe, Timmi Lasley, Meghan DePonceau, Miriam Moreno and Ian Douglas Terry.

Cerebral Brewing will tap two versions of a brand new table beer, a 4.8 percent ABV wild ale, today at 4 p.m. called Invisible Hand. Fermented with Brettanomyces, Invisible Hand spent two months conditioning in stainless steel tanks before being split in half; each half was then dry-hopped with a different hops strain. The first, which was hopped with Amarillo, has notes of "lemon/lime zest and black pepper backed up by a medley of tropical fruits," the brewery says. The second, dry-hopped with Hallertau Blanc, has "soft, bright notes of white wine, gooseberries, and freshly cut grass." Burgersmith will be parked outside and the patio will be open.

Saturday, February 13
Ratio Beerworks will continue its weekend-long anniversary celebration today by releasing its one-year anniversary beer, a Lemon Zest Belgian Tripel, at noon. Ratio will also re-tap a special, very limited, keg of Wild in the Streets, a Wild Saison Fermented in Oak Barrels, which was released in bottles earlier this year. Other surprises may hit the taps during the party as well. The afternoon and evening events will feature performances by Matt Pryor, frontman of The Get Up Kids, as well as a Weezer tribute band featuring brewery employees. DJ Digg will be spinning punk, indie and soul during the afternoon and evening as the party continues. Raffles and giveaways will take place throughout the day and Matt's Snack Shack will be out front providing food.

Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse LoDo has partnered with Proper Barber Shop once again for the second-annual Beerds & Barrels event today from 5 p.m. to close. Lucky Pie will be pouring five barrel-aged beers as well as having a beard contest. Proper will provide a portable barbering chair and provide free beard trimming. "Come down for a nice frothy pour of your favorite pint while you enjoy complimentary beard grooming," the businesses say. "Beards deemed sexiest will be awarded with not only high honors, but with some great gifts as well." The beers are Crazy Mountain Tequila Barrel-Aged Lave Lake Wit; Almanac White Wine Barrel-Aged Peach De Brettaville; Finnriver Barrel in the Forest (whiskey barrel aged cider with fir tips and ginger);  Telluride Tripel Cork (Belgian tripel aged in red wine barrels); and Almanac Truthful Statement (sour stout aged in Woodford Reserve barrels with orange peels and cherries).

Sunday, February 14
The Rackhouse Pub (along with C Squared Ciders) has teamed up with Epic Brewing and Ratio Beerworks for a Valentine's Day progressive beer and cider dinner today called the RiNo Love Fest. The event features three courses at three locations over a three-hour period. The first course, of cheese and beer, will be at Epic. Course two is at the Rackhouse and consists of pork osso buco, roasted-carrot puree, risotto, shaved parm, pickled beets and the ciders, Alma, Ginger and Nona. The third course is at Ratio, which has partnered with Crepeful for dessert and beer. Find tickets at nightout.com.

Denver Beer Co will host a Valentine's Day Beer & Chocolate pairing today from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Barrel Room next door to the brewery's original location on Platte Street. It's $25 for four beers paired with four chocolates from The Chocolate Lab. Info on their website

Ratio Beerworks will wrap up its anniversary weekend today with a Valentine's Hangover Brunch featuring sweet and savory crepes from Crepeful, a hangover firkin and another appearance from DJ Digg. Ratio is also taking part in the Valentine’s Day RiNo Love Triangle event alongside Epic Brewing and the Rackhouse Pub. The three neighbors will be offering a progressive beer and cider dinner with stops at all three RiNo establishments. For more information, go to Ratio's website.

Alpine Dog Brewing is teaming up with Colorado Raw for a catered oyster-and-beer pairing today at 6 p.m. "There will be four oyster varieties with four suggested beer pairings then choose your favorite two oysters to go with your favorite pint," the brewery says. Seats are $30, then oysters after the pairing go for $3 a piece with $1 off pints.  Reserve your spot via Eventbrite.

Vine Street Pub, the Mountain Sun and the company's other three locations in Boulder and Longmont, are at the halfway point of Stout Month, and as always, they will tap some special beers on Valentine's Day. They are Planet Lovetron Imperial Milk Stout, a 10.4 percent ABV Raspberry Chocolate Coconut Imperial Milk Stout. It is described as "full-bodied and decedent. It has a delicate, creamy mouth-feel from additions of milk chocolate, dark chocolate, milk sugar, and shredded coconut complemented by bitterness from roasted malts and tartness from an addition of raspberries." They will also tap 7.5 percent ABV Cherry Vanilla Bean Stout. "This Foreign-Export Stout is dark and medium-bodied with malt flavors reminiscent of chocolate, molasses and a touch of licorice, complemented by the tart, fruity flavors contributed by more than 1.5 pounds per gallon of both sweet and tart cherries," Mountain Sun says. "This beer is then aged on Madagascar vanilla beans, which imparts not only vanilla character but a creamy mouth-feel."

Black Shirt Brewing will be featuring a chocolate pairing today from 3 to 5:30 p.m. with Dead Dog Chocolate, "a local Denver company that prides itself in supporting ethically sourced and organic cacao farms," Black Shirt says. "They hand sort, crack, roast, winnow, grind, conche, temper and mold all of their chocolate." There is no cover and no tickets but seats will be limited. There will also be live music from Sugar Still, "an acoustic duo from Chicago featuring violin, guitar, and bluesy vocal harmonies" from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

Avery Brewing will debut a new 5.4 percent ABV beer today called Lunctis Viribus, number 33 in the Boulder brewery's Barrel-Aged Series. Fifty percent of the beer was aged in tequila barrels and 50 percent was aged in Cab Sauv barrels. Bottles will be available for sale starting at 11 a.m. After that, bottles will make their way to liquor store shelves. 

Tuesday, February 16
"A year ago today," Boulder's Avery Brewing says, "we closed the shutters to our beloved alley and prepared to open the doors of our new brewery. Thank you for helping us realize our dream." To celebrate, Avery will host a brewery-wide cheers every hour on the hour today; they'll also tap a new beer, Mondo Roboticus, in honor of the Boulder agency that built their site, Mondo Robot. It's a blood orange-infused barrel-aged Belgian-style quadrupel.

Thursday, February 18
TRVE Brewing will release the first in a series of eight IPAs today. For this beer, called Hymn 1: Of Wolf and Fear, TRVE "used a basic recipe comprised mostly of 2 Row malt and a small amount of Crystal Malt. Our procedural change for this hymn has been the use of a large number of additions throughout the boil, as well as a large whirlpool charge,' according to the brewery's web site. "Dry-hopping was per our usual method, though with Centennial, Vic’s Secret, Waimea, and Mosaic." The eight IPAs will be released on a monthly basis, with the last one occurring on All Hallow's Eve. Here is TRVE's explanation of the series: "In a continued effort to increase our knowledge of the art of brewing, we are excited to announce the beginning of our Aatte Hymne til Humle program. In honor of Nattens Madrigal, the black metal masterpiece by seminal band Ulver, we will be brewing eight distinct hymnal IPAs. Through each hymn, we will modify ingredients and techniques to further educate ourselves on how to improve how we brew this style of beer."

Friday, February 19
Goldspot Brewing is celebrating its first anniversary today and tomorrow with a variety of special beer tappings, including whiskey-barrel aged Black River Imperial Stout. There will be food from Matt's Snack Shack today and Bakin' Bakery tomorrow. In addition, there will be live music with Regis's own Souled on Saturday. Also: random giveaways and prizes during the day.

Copper Kettle will tap its Milk Stout today. "This dark and delicious beer was brewed with real lactose for a creamy body," the brewery says. 5280 Sliders will be on hand as well.

Sunday, February 21
Black Project Spontaneous and Wild Ales, a part of Former Future Brewing, will host a dual bottle release today from noon to 2 p.m. featuring Dreamland Sour Golden Ale (Blend 2) in 750-ml cork-and-cage bottles ($18) and Supercruise Tempranillo (barrel one of three) in 750-ml bottles ($22). "I'm super excited to debut the second blend of Dreamland. Due to solera aging, the majority of this blend has more age on it than the first one — more funk, more complexity, but overall pretty close. Seeing as blend 1 is now close to a year in the bottle, it is a fun comparison side by side if you still have a blend 1 bottle around. The beers were pretty similar going into the bottle but now you can see what happens to beers that are allowed to develop in the bottle with the presence of real, environmental wild microbes," says Black Project's James Howat in a Facebook post. "Supercruise is our traditional fruit level line of beers (compared to Mach-Limit where we add as much as we legally can). It debuts with the Tempranillo variant done in collaboration with Red Fox Cellars. I have 3 barrels of this beer, all with slightly different base beer blends, barrels, and also slightly different parts of the pressed Tempranillo grapes (some were from earlier in the pressing vs later and it makes a noticeable difference). This month we will sell Barrel 1 which was done in a second use AD Laws Rye barrel."

The weather may be turning warmer, but they're still snowed in at Copper Kettle, where the brewery is planning its second annual Snowed In Brunch this morning, with times at 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. The brunch will feature Copper Kettle's barrel-aged Snowed In — an imperial oatmeal stout made with local Pablo's Coffee, raw cacao nib and aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels — along with a three-course food pairing from Drew Watson of Hops & Pie. There will also be two beer cocktails. First course: Cranberry/orange quick bread & house cured/hickory smoked pork belly, 63 degree egg, second course: Buttermilk poached & crispy fried chicken, savory waffle, molasses butter, pralines, and the third course: Scratch apple/sage pork sausage, buttermilk cheddar biscuit, maple/bourbon gravy. Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased on eventgrid.com.

Wednesday, February 24
Halfpenny Brewing, a 5150 East Arapahoe Road in Centennial, will celebrate its grand opening today. Focused on German, American and English beer styles, the brewery includes a 2,000-square-foot taproom with room for 100 people Halfpenny is owned by Chris Reigrut and Chris Garner, friends since high school in Maryland who have been home-brewing together in Colorado since 1996.

Saturday, February 27
Station 26 Brewing aged its once-a-year Dark Star Imperial Stout in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels for thirteen months then bottled some of it. The brewery will sell those bottles today, starting at 1 p.m.; it's $20 for a 22-ounce bottle. The beer will also be on tap. 

Oskar Blues Brewery has teamed up with Stoney's Bar and Grill for a new event called the Southern Hemisphere Hop Festival, which runs from 7 to 10 p.m. (VIP tickets get you early entrance at 6 p.m.). Inspired by OB's newest beer, IPA, which features which features an all-Australian hop lineup, the fest will focus exclusively on beers and food from "the other side of the world," including Australia, South Africa and New Zealand. At least twenty breweries will be on hand to showcase two beers each, all made with southern hemisphere hops. Attendees can vote for the their favorite, and the winning beer will be placed on tap at Stoney's for a full month. Since these hop varieties are hard to find, OB helped source many of them for the breweries. GA tickets are $35. For more information, go to the Facebook page.

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