A new year brings new beers, and Colorado's breweries have already released or are just about to unveil many of them. They include: Breckenridge Brewery Ophelia, a hoppy wheat ale; Great Divide Lasso, a low-ABV IPA made with Columbus, Centennial and Cascade hops; New Belgium Rewind, an IPA brewed with Maris Otter and Special B malts and Horizon, Willamette and Galena hop; New Belgium Spring Blonde, a Belgian-style golden ale brewed with pale malts; and AC Golden Framboise Noir, a sour aged in oak barrels with blackberries from the Western Slope. That last beer, which will be fairly limited, is packaged with labels made from real cherry wood, so each one is uniquely grained.
Turn the page to see more of this week's craft beer events.
Wednesday, January 22
January is New Year's Resolution cask month at the Copper Kettle, and today, the brewery will be serving Superfoods Wheat, a light wheat made with acai berries and pomegranates.
Thursday, January 23
Our Mutual Friend Malt & Brew will tap a brand-new beer, Chinook Red Ale, today at 4 p.m. Quiero Arepas will be serving food, while Ryan Means will spin soul and jazz.
Friday, January 24
The two-day annual Winter Brew Fest kicks off today at Mile High Station, with about 45 breweries and cideries in attendance, roughly thirty of which are from Colorado. The hours are 7 to 10 p.m. both today and tomorrow. General admission tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door (although they will likely sell out beforehand), cash only, and include unlimited tastings and a souvenir glass. VIP tix are $40 and $45, get you in an hour early at 6 p.m., and include Mouco cheeses paired with a beer. There will also be live local music, food and other vendors. This event benefits Swallow Hill Music Association.
Dry Dock Brewing will throw a party at its original taproom today to celebrate one full year of canning beer. The brewery, which opened a major production facility in Aurora in January 2013, now cans Hefeweizen, Hop Abomination, Apricot Blonde and Amber Ale. The party, which runs all day, includes giveaways, prizes and the chance to win free beer for a year (one mixed case of Dry Dock cans once a month for a year and a growler-of-the-month package).
Saturday, January 25
River North Brewery and Mr. B's Wine and Spirits have teamed up again, collaborating on a second release in their B-Side barrel-aging project. Today the two businesses will each begin selling B-Side Avarice, a new take on River North's Belgian-style Imperial Stout, aged for one year in freshly emptied rye whiskey barrels. Only thirty cases were bottled, so the beer will only be available at the brewery and Mr. B's. River North's release party starts at 1 p.m.; Mr. B's will release additional bottles later this afternoon.
It's England vs. Germany at Lucky Pie in LoDo today when the restaurant and American Craft Beer Radio host representatives of Hogshead Brewery (which makes English-style cask ales) and Prost Brewing (which makes German-style lagers), who will each try to sell the crowd on why their country's beers are better. In addition to hearing speeches, you'll be able to try three to four of the beers that each brewery will be featuring. The battle runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will be featured live on 102.3 FM, where head brewers Steve Kirby (Hogshead) and Bill Eye (Prost) will give stump speeches.
Odell Brewing will celebrate the much-anticipated return of Lugene Chocolate Milk Stout today and tomorrow in its Fort Collins taproom. Named for the local dairy farmer who has hauled away the brewery's spent grain for nearly two decades, Lugene is brewed with 250 pounds of chocolate per batch. On Saturday at noon, Odell will be serving Lugene beer float samplers made with ice cream from another local dairy, Cozy Cow. Then on Sunday, guests can meet Lugene's calves and enjoy live music by The Longest Day of the Year from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. The Common Link food truck will be on hand both days.
The annual Winter Brew Fest continues today from 7 to 10 p.m. at Mile High Station. See above for details.
Sunday, January 26
Odell Brewing will continue celebrating the return of Lugene Chocolate Milk Stout, which celebrates the dairy farmer who hauls away the brewery's spent grain, in its Fort Collins taproom. Today guests can meet Lugene's calves and enjoy live music by The Longest Day of the Year from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. The Common Link food truck will be on hand.
TRVE Brewing will be selling the third batch of its Eastern Candle, a wheat beer aged with Brettanomyces yeast in wine barrels, today. This version was dry hopped with Citra hops, and the bottles were "topped with thrash metal green wax."
Tuesday, January 28
Crooked Stave will release bottles of Batch 60 today at 5 p.m. The beer is a an American wild ale dry-hopped with Amarillo and Citra hops. Each bottle costs $10, cash only.
For more events later in January and in February, turn the page. Wednesday, January 29
Barley's Angels, an international women's craft beer organization, recently created a new, roving Colorado chapter that plans to hold monthly meetings at different tap rooms along the Front Range. (Initially, there will be one meeting per month in both the Denver and Boulder areas.) The first one, at the Wynkoop Brewing Company, was on January 27 and sold out quickly. The second one is today at Sanitas Brewing in Boulder. At this meeting, cheese educator John Scaggs of Haystack Mountain Goat Cheese will lead a beer-pairing class featuring four Sanitas beers.
Thursday, January 30
Parry's Pizzeria & Bar in Highlands Ranch is tapping what it calls a "truly heroic" lineup of rare beers that include some "super duper" examples of what beer can be. Starting at 11 a.m., they'll have Freik by Odell Brewing, Bitches Brew by Dogfish Head, Lolita by Goose Island, Foeder Projekt #1 by Boulevard Brewing, Barrel Aged G'Knight from Oskar Blues, and Avery Brewing's Lilikoi.
The Warwick Hotel is hosting a winter beer tasting today with Colorado Springs-based Bristol Brewing that will include Smokebrush Porter and Winter Warlock Oatmeal Stout; hors d'oeuvre will be served. Tickets are $20 and can be reserved by calling 303-318-7272; the event will be held on the 15th floor of the hotel.
Friday, January 31
The National Federation of the Filipino American Associations is raising money to support Philippine typhoon victims by holding an event from 6 to 11 p.m. today called Breweries and Foodies at the Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum in east Denver. Twenty-five Colorado breweries will be in attendance, along with six food trucks; there will also be giveaways and a silent auction, live music from Hey Lady! and dancing by the Hype 303 Dance Crew. Tickets are $45 and include unlimited beer samples and food tickets for the food trucks.
Saturday, February 1
The Vine Street Pub in Denver and the three Mountain Sun pubs in Boulder will kick off the company's 21st annual Stout Month today. All four places will "fade to black" by loading up the taps with local, regional and national versions of the rich, thick and dark ale. But the highlights of the highly-anticipated yearly series are the dozens of house stouts that the pubs brew themselves, including Oatimus Prime Imperial Oatmeal Stout, Megatron Imperial American Stout, Chocolate Dip Stout, Korova Cream Stout and Old School Irish Stout. There will be special Stout Month events all month long.
Monday, February 3
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer is Oatimus Prime Imperial Oatmeal Stout.
Tuesday, February 4
As part of the month-long Stout Month, the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will all release Oatimus Prime Imperial Oatmeal Stout today. The beer "is dark and rich with flavors of chocolate from the blend of roasted grains balanced by warming notes of alcohol. A large addition of Golden Naked Oats lends aromas of oatmeal cookie as well as contributing to the smooth texture and full mouth-feel."
Tuesday, February 11
As part of the month-long Stout Month, the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will all release Stoked Oak Stout. "Former Mountain Sun brewer Scott Overdorf masterfully balanced various malts, vanilla and oak to create an 'Old World-Style' stout with barrel-aged character," the company says. The combination of smoked malt and the additions of pure vanilla extract and toasted oak spirals give the impression of a barrel-aged stout without having undergone the barrel-aging process."
Monday, February 10
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer is Stoked Oak Stout.
Thursday, February 13
The Wynkoop Brewing Company will present the inaugural Masters of the Brewniverse Beer Festival and Brewery Pageant tonight from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. at the Oriental Theater. Guests will receive unlimited tastings from more than fourteen breweries while watching reps and brewers from each brewery compete on stage for the crowning title of "Master of the Brewniverse." Teams will showcase the personality of their brand through various rounds of beer pageantry including fashion, talent and interview. Contestants include Asher, Big Choice, Black Bottle, Caution, Crooked Stave, Denver Beer Co, Elevation, Epic, Great Divide, Left Hand, Mountain Sun, Renegade, Twisted Pine, Yak & Yeti, and the Wynkoop. Tickets are $26 and available at ImbibeDenver.com. Proceeds benefit the Mile High United Way.
Monday, February 17
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer is Mutual Respect Imperial Coffee Stout, a collaboration with Odell Brewing.
Monday, February 24
Every Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. during the month of February (Stout Month), the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun or Vine Street pubs will offer anyone who buys a six-beer sampler a preview of the next day's special stout release and a tour of the brewery. Today's preview beer will be the winner of the Stout Month 2014 Homebrew Contest.
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.