Beer Calendar: Dark Beers, Pies and Yeti Awareness Week

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When it comes to believing or not believing at this time of year, Santa Claus is the mythical character who gets the most play. But there's another seldom-seen creature who stirs debate: the Yeti. As a result, Great Divide Brewing, which makes a line of Yeti beers, has declared November 14 through November 18 as National Yeti Awareness Week, with November 18 the official National Yeti Day.

"The search for the mythical Yeti dates back to 326 BC with Alexander the Great, and continues on today, with the most recent Yeti sighting in the Pyrenees mountains of Spain this past February. To this day, no one has succeeded in capturing the Yeti," the brewery says. “The Yeti population is becoming increasingly reclusive due to human skepticism. The Yeti is an incredibly misunderstood, and often forgotten, majestic creature. Our goal is to unite believers from around the world to join this cause."

To help raise awareness, Great Divide has created an awareness website at yetiawareness.com, and is hosting several tap takeovers and Yeti-themed events around the country, culminating at 5 p.m. Friday, November 18, with a National Yeti Day celebration at Great Divide’s Barrel Bar. The party will feature a plethora of Yetis, including Velvet Yeti, special Yeti firkins and the rest of the seasonal clan. There will be food pairings as well as snacks made with Yeti Imperial Stout.

Wednesday, November 16
November is Candy Cask Month at Copper Kettle Brewing, and each cask beer will come with a side of candy. "This week's Gingerbread ESB is an English-style pale ale with a perfect hop bitterness and malt balance, and has a more bitter taste than traditional pale ales," the brewery says.

Did you know that Crooked Stave makes more than sours? Yep, it also makes "clean" beers, which are brewed without the yeasts and bacteria that make wild and sour ales taste so funky. Today at 6 p.m., First Draft Taproom & Kitchen will highlight some of Crooked Stave's recent clean offerings, including Sourless IPA; Hemperor's New Clothes; Brewer's Select #3: Dry Hopped American Porter; Coffee Baltic Porter; and Von Pilsner (a collaboration with Casey Brewing and Blending in Glenwood Springs).

Thursday, November 17
The fifth annual Chef & Brew Festival, offering dozens of on-point pairings between twenty local chefs and twenty local breweries, returns this year to the Exdo Event Center from 7 to 10 p.m. (VIP ticket holders get in at 6 p.m.) Some of the pairings include chefs Jensen Cummings and Brandon Muncy of Brewed Food and Spangalang Brewery; Mizuna chef Ty Leon and Strange Craft; Euclid Hall chef Jorel Pierce and Ratio Beer Works; Blueprint Bar chef Ryan DiFranco and Wit’s End Brewery; Squeaky Bean chef Darren Pusateri and Elevation Beer Company; and Cho77 chef Ryan Gorby and Caution Brewing. Guests can taste samples of all the dishes and all the beer and vote for their favorites. Judges will select three awards for Best Dish, Best Beer and Best Pairing, while the Grand Prize – Best in Show – will be selected by festival attendees. Organized by chef Michael Long and Excelsior Events, the event raises money for Project Angel Heart. Tickets, $49 for general admission and $69 for VIP, are available at chefandbrew.com.

At 3 p.m., Call to Arms Brewing will release Amigos Con Beneficios, the sixth bottled beer in its Carriage House series of rare barrel-aged ales and lager. The beer, an imperial Vienna lager aged in Deerhammer Distilling whiskey barrels, "offers complex notes of hazelnut, brown sugar, apricot, dark cherry and vanilla — with a touch of oak weaving its way throughout," the brewery says. Call to Arms also teamed up with Il Porcellino Salumi to create Amigos Con Beneficios Cerveza salami, which was made with the beer. Both Deerhammer and Il Porcellino will be on hand today for the tapping;  Il Porcellino will be selling the salami to-go and sliced up alongside a four-ounce taster of Amigos. There will only be 100 375mL bottles of the beer available, with a limit of two per customer, and a small amount on tap.

Freshcraft will host its annual Green Flash Brewing Treasure Chest fundraiser tapping at 5 p.m. "This is a great cause and an opportunity to help the Prevent Cancer Foundation," the restaurant says. "This year's beer is an exotic pink IPA brewed with grapefruit, prickly pear juice, and hibiscus flowers. Erupting with fruit-forward complexity, 100% mosaic hopspresent armoas of heady citrus and refined stone fruit. We will be donating $3 per pour to the Prevent Cancer Foundation."

Jake's Brew Bar in Littleton will tap Three Floyds Brewing's Dreadnaught Imperial IPA today at 2 p.m. The tapping is unusual because Three Floyds doesn't typically distribute in Colorado.

Upslope Brewing in Boulder will release the latest in its Lee Hill Series today at 5 p.m. at its original Lee Hill location: Yirgacheffe Coffee Dubbel, available on draft and in to-go 19.2-ounce cans. To make it, the brewery teamed up with its neighbors, Dragonfly Coffee Roasters. "This unique beer combines the bubblegum esters of Belgian yeast with the roasty blueberry flavors and aromas of Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee," Upslope says. "The two come together to create a sweet aroma somewhere between cotton candy and plums, balanced against a subtle coffee earthiness. The flavor is a perfect balance between the semi-sweet flavors of the Dubbel and the smooth bitterness from the coffee. This beer is sure to please, and change any preconception you may have of what a 'coffee beer' is supposed to be."

Friday, November 18
Head to Great Divide's Barrel Bar today at 5 p.m. for National Yeti Awareness Day, which celebrates yetis, at least according to the brewery. The party will feature a plethora of Yetis, including Velvet Yeti and special Yeti firkins. There will be food pairings as well as snacks made with Yeti Imperial Stout.

Comrade Brewing, which suffered some serious damage after a truck plowed into the building on October 13, is mostly back up and running, and the brewery plans to release two new beers today to celebrate. The first, fittingly, is More Dodge Less Ram, a triple dry-hopped version of Comrade's acclaimed Superpower IPA. The second is Honeyman 14, which was hopped with Sorachi Ace and Lemondrop in the kettle and dry-hopped with Experimental #07270, Centennial and Cascade. "Beautifully bright golden straw color, intense floral and citrus aroma with big notes of red fruits," the brewery says. "Crisp and dry finish with a nice smooth bitterness. The beer is named after our favorite hand-truck manufacturer, Honeyman Aluminum Products in Portland, Oregon."

Dry Dock Brewing will release a brand new Signature Series beer today at its original South Dock taproom in Aurora (the beer debuted two days ago at North Dock). It's Hazelnut Double Coffee Porter, at 10.5 percent ABV.

Saturday, November 19
Wynkoop Brewing has revamped its dark-beer event and will host Day of Darks today from noon to 4 p.m. More than 25 breweries will be in attendance. Tickets are $30 and include a commemorative glass, chocolates and chocolate desserts. Proceeds go toward the Movember Foundation and local men’s health organizations, the Colorado Cancer Research Foundation and the CU Cancer Center.

It's pie season, and Denver Beer Co is feeling festive. Come in today between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. for a Thanksgiving pie and beer pairing. They will have four pies paired with four beers for $20. You can also pre-order pies (and a growler) for Thanksgiving from the Long I Pie Shop. Pick up your order, $40, on November 23 from noon to 5 p.m. Here are the pairings: Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Pie and Barrel Aged Imperial Porter; Salted Honey Lavender Pie and Incredible Pedal IPA; Pumpkin Pie with Chocolate Ganache and Graham Cracker Porter; and Spiced Apple Cranberry Pie and Cherry Creek Saison.

Joyride Brewing in Edgewater will host a fundraiser for Pints for Prostates from noon to 4 p.m. today, featuring a special blueberry cream ale called So Fresh and So Cream. Pints for Prostates' color is blue, so Joyride brewed this beer to benefit the organization and is donating $1 from every pint sold all month. In addition, the Prostate Conditions Education Council will be on site to do free PSA screens. There will also be raffles and fun. For more information, go to the Facebook event page.

Peak to Peak Taproom in Aurora will celebrate its second anniversary today with a whole new lineup of twenty craft brews it has never served before. There will also be special tastings and firkin tappings throughout the day; an American Craft Beer Radio Broadcast noon to 1 p.m.; DJ music from 1:30-5 p.m.; live music from Scarecrow Revival at 7 p.m.; food from Pile High Burgers, Q’s Cuisine and Pride of Philly; a caricature artist; and games like cornhole, washers and hammerschlagen. Over the past two years, Peak to Peak has served more than 500 Colorado craft beers from more than 100 breweries.

Today, at its original Lyons brewpub, Oskar Blues will celebrate the fourteenth anniversary of when it kicked off the canned craft beer revolution in the United States. There will be live music from Interstate Stash Express and In the Whale, a silent disco, Cajun-inspired food, and the tapping of Interstate S.M.A.S.H. (which also stands for "Single Malt And Single Hop"), which the brewery made in collaboration with the band. Tickets are $10.

Keep reading for more beer events.

Sunday, November 20
Black Shirt Brewing will host a tenth anniversary for Toast Wine and Spirits, an excellent neighborhood liquor store and craft-beer bottle shop near Sloan's Lake, today at 4 p.m. As part of the celebration, Black Shirt will tap Black Beacon Storm, an imperial red rye stout aged in Toast's first A.D. Laws Whiskey Barrel. Toast is also treating people to one beer, and there will be prizes. Entry is free, but you have to RSVP at eventbrite. The total number of attendees will be capped at 100 people.

Avery Brewing will host a brewery-only release of No. 41 in its Barrel-Aged Series – Dui Cochi. "This festive holiday porter has been aged in bourbon barrels with coconut, spices and pumpkin added," the Boulder brewery says. "After crossing the Pacific Ocean in 1521, Magellan landed in the Philippines and was given the gift of two coconuts (dui cochi) by the natives as a symbol of their hospitality. Magellan was eventually hit by a poison arrow and left to die, but Dui Cochi is our gift to you." The beer will go on sale at 1 p.m. There is a limit of one case per customer ($12 per bottle). It is likely to sell out.

Monday, November 21
Joyride Brewing in Edgewater will tap a small amount of bourbon barrel-aged Tour Time Barleywine today at 5 p.m. This particular version was aged in Breckenridge Distilling bourbon barrels for six months. The brewery will also have the regular version on tap, for comparison's sake, as well as one that only spent two months in a barrel. Supplies are very limited on all three.

Join Ratio Beerworks and The Long I Pie Shop for a beer-and-pie tasting event featuring four pie samples and four beer tasters; tickets are $20. You can also buy purchase your Thanksgiving Day pies as Shauna Lott will be selling whole pies. The pairings are Dear You French Saison with Spice Apple Cranberry; Rented World Session IPA with Salted Honey Lavender; Darklands Hoppy Brown Lager with Pumpkin Pie with Chocolate Ganache; and Hold Steady Scotch Ale Bourbon Chocolate Pecan.

Friday, November 25
"Put down the shopping bags and join us for another bourbon-barrel-aged imperial stout journey," says Station 26 Brewing, which releases its Dark Star Imperial Stout and several variants every year on this day. This year's version, at 13 percent ABV, was aged in a mix of bourbon barrels for tens months. It will also be sold in bottles, along with two variants: German Chocolate BBA Dark Star Imperial Stout and Salted Caramel BBA Dark Star Imperial Stout. These will be on tap, too, along with several other versions, including: 2015 BBA Dark Star, Coffee BBA Dark Star, Mexican Chocolate BBA Dark Star, Chai BBA Dark Star, Root Beer Float BBA Dark Star, S'mores BBA Dark Star (served with a toasted marshmallow), Manhattan BBA Dark Star (served with a Luxardo cherry); and Elvis BBA Dark Star (served with a bacon-rimmed glass).

Last January, Factotum Brewhouse released the wintry Cranberry Cream Ale, a traditional cream ale infused with unsweetened cranberries, for a slightly tart taste, with guest brewers Chris MacDermaid and Trupti Suthar. But the brewery took some of it and aged it in a Chardonnay barrel for nine months before bottling it. It will be for sale today.

Beryl's Beer Company will tap Antero, a 4.5 English-style bitter, along with Brandy Barrel Aged Antero today. The brewery opens at 1 p.m

Copper Kettle Brewing is tapping into its cellar and pulling out some barrel-aged bombers that have been gently aging for years and years. "Don't be afraid of a little dust on the bottle," the brewery says. For the full list, go to the brewery's Facebook page, but bottles include: Snowed In from 2014, 2015 and 2016; Well Bred from multiple years; Law's Whiskey Charlie's Golden Strong; and Le Chapeau.

Black Shirt Brewing will release the fourth can in its new lineup of canned brews today at the taproom. Fourtrack Porter is an 8.5 percent ABV beer "with complex milk chocolate, toffee, caramel notes."

Westfax Brewing, next to Casa Bonita in Lakewood, is dedicating the day to dark beer. Instead of dealing with mall crowds, try one or all of six small-batch beers at noon, with additional tappings throughout the day. Beer Lineup: Black Lager, Imperial Stout, Coffee Imperial Stout, Black IPA, Mango Chili Stout, Nitro Milk Stout and others. The Yummy to Eat! Brazilian food truck will be there.

The brand-new New Terrain Brewing in Golden will release Black Planet today in honor of Black Friday. The seasonal Imperial Belgian Porter was brewed with vanilla beans and tangerine peel and then aged on oak. "Yes, that's what we said, an Imperial Oaked Belgian Vanilla Tangerine Porter," the brewery says.

Green Mountain Beer Company in Lakewood will celebrate its grand opening starting today and running through the weekend, 2 to 10 p.m. each day.

Up in Greeley, Weldwerks Brewing will host a dual crowler and bottle release. The first beer is the brewery's latest batch of Mexican Achromatic, a 10.5 percent ABV imperial stout brewed with cacao nibs, Madagascar vanilla beans, and cinnamon sticks. Mexican Achromatic will be available on draft and in crowlers to-go. In addition, Weldwerks held back several cases of Barrel Aged Mexican Achromatic, originally released during GABF week, and the remaining bottles will be available for purchase along with crowlers of Mexican Achromatic (no draft). There will be a limit of two crowlers of Mexican Achromatic ($21 each) per person and two bottles of Barrel Aged Mexican Achromatic ($14 each) per person.

Saturday, November 26
Resolute Brewing in Centennial will tap Vanilla Chai Brown today at 11 a.m. "This robust dark malty body beer with rich caramel, dark chocolate, milk and hazelnut hints finished with a touch of raw Chai spice and fresh Madagascar vanilla beans is a must try," the brewery says.

Sunday, November 27
Odd 13 Brewing in Lafayette has once again teamed up with Cerebral Brewing, Fiction Beer Company, and WeldWerks Brewing for another New England-style double IPA collaboration. This one, called Robot Libertarian, is the sequel to Robot Librarian. "This time we kept the same yeast (London Ale III) and grain bill but altered the hops...using Azacca, Denali, Idaho 7 and Meridian hops," Odd 13 says. "This batch was brewed on our ten-barrel system resulting in a taproom-only release." There will also be beers on tap from the other three breweries.

Wednesday, November 30
November is Candy Cask Month at Copper Kettle Brewing, and each cask beer this month comes with a sweet side of candy. "This week's Coconut Chocolate Porter is a dark, malty beer with chocolate and coconut characters," the brewery says.

Saturday, December 3
The Parade of Darks, a beer-focused holiday season fundraiser for Denver’s Metro Caring — is returning after a brief hiatus. Originally hosted by Wynkoop Brewing, the Parade of Darks is now organized by local beer guru Marty Jones and Metro Caring, a hunger-prevention organization. It will take place from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Turnhalle Room in the Tivoli Student Union building on the Auraria college campus. The fest features more than fifty "holiday minded and winter seasonal beers in the amber-to-opaque color categories," Jones says. The event will also feature  gourmet chocolates and a silent auction. Tickets are $45 in advance and come with a commemorative one-ounce tasting glass.

Thursday, December 8
Lone Tree Brewing will celebrate its fifth anniversary with a three-day party beginning today. There will be LTBC-themed trivia starting at 6 p.m., and the brewery will tap Imperial Peach IPA.

Friday, December 9
Lone Tree Brewing continues its five-year anniversary celebration today by conducting a special tour from 5 to 7 p.m. where brewery staff discuss LTBC's beginnings, how the company has grown in the last five years, and what’s on the horizon. Lone Tree will tap its Patagonia Pale Winter Ale.

Saturday, December 10
Our Mutual Friend will celebrate its fourth anniversary today with a party and the release of several bottles: Year Four Golden Brett Ale Aged on Damson Plums; Sahti Collaboration with the Populist; 2016 American Wild Ale; Thanatoid BA Russian Imperial Stout; and 24FPS Golden Sour. A portion of sales will be donated to LYRIC : Learn Your Rights in Colorado.

Station 26 Brewing will celebrate its third anniversary today with live music, food and special tappings. There will be special firkins at 1, 2 and 3 p.m., along with Bourbon Barrel Aged BarleyWayne tapping at 4 p.m., and Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Star Imperial Stout tapping at 5 p.m. The brewery will also release bottles of its Third Birthday Beer, a triple IPA brewed with Belgian candi sugar and hopped with Zeus, Cascade, Amarillo, Simcoe, and Citra. Live music from Boogie Mammoth at 7:30; wood-fired pizzas from Basic Kneads Pizza all day.

Black Project Spontaneous & Wild Ales will release  two special beers today. The first is Oxcart."Three years in the making, Oxcart is our first 100 percent spontaneous/coolshipped blend of 1, 2, and 3 year old barrel aged beer," the brewery says. "Similar in method and in the style of the great, traditional Gueuze of Belgium. Notes of hay and stonefruit, with complex layers of funk. Some sweetness carries through each sip along with pleasant yet assertive acidity, ending with a dryness on the back of the palate. This beer is expected to age for many years, but is ready to drink now. Complexity will only continue to develop with time in the bottle." Bottles are $30 with a limit of three. The second beer is Peach Rye Whiskey Dreamland, which was recently named one of the best beers in American by Draft magazine. "This time, using 100 percent whole fruit from Palisade — fifty pounds per barrel of perfectly ripe Cresthaven peaches from our family-owned orchard were added directly to the beer, allowing a secondary fermentation inside of a wet Laws Whiskey House Secale Rye Barrel. Intense peach on the nose with a soft, round mouthfeel and beautiful acidity." Bottles are $26 with a limit of one per person. Adelitas Cocina y Cantina will be on site serving breakfast tacos, and there will be Corvus Coffee to keep you warm.

Odd 13 Brewing in Lafayette will release cans of Codename: Holidayfan Triple IPA today in the taproom only.

Lone Tree Brewing's fifth-anniversary celebration culminates with the 5th Anniversary Soiree at 4 p.m. Jessie’s Smokin’ Nola will be on-site serving lunch, dinner and passed appetizers. The official anniversary brew, Toasted Coconut Brown Ale, will tap at 4 p.m., along with a Tequila Barrel-Aged Hop Tree IIPA, Coffee IPA, and Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter.

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