Beer Man

Beer calendar for the week ahead: Maharaja; the governor's mansion; Great Divide gets around

The Breckenridge and Wynkoop breweries officially sealed the deal on their joint venture and celebrated their future on Tuesday by tapping kegs of each other's beers at their respective breweries. And later this month -- possibly as early as March 28 -- Breck will open its newest location, Ale House at Amato's.

But Breckenridge has also been honoring its two-decade history over the past year -- something that culminated with the tapping of Twenty, a limited-edition draft-only ESB that was aged in Stranahan's whiskey barrels for five months.

Also on tap at its breweries and restaurants: 72 Imperial, a chocolate stout made with dark chocolate from the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. You can enjoy both of these beers this week, as well as a whole bunch of other beery events. Cheers!

Wednesday, March 9

Freshcraft, 1530 Blake Street, hosts the second in its series of weekly Great Divide nights, featuring beers from one of Denver's best breweries.

Thursday, March 10

Join chef Ian Clark of Boulder's Centro restaurant and the crew from Upslope Brewing at a special beer-pairing dinner that includes a special brew, a chocolate eisbock, made specifically to go with dessert, chocolate and guajillo tamales with date compote and almond ice cream. The dinner, at 7 p.m., is $35 per person.

At 7 p.m. FreshCraft, 1530 Blake Street, will tap Left Hand Brewing's newest creation, TNT Weizen Doppelbock, a wheaty beer brewed with smoky lapsang souchong tea.

The Wazee Supper Club will celebrate its twelve new craft and Belgian beer taps (bringing the total to 32) with a party starting at 5 p.m. Some of the Wazee's liquid assets now include Tripel Karmeliet and Duchesse de Bourgogne, both from Belgium, alongside beers from Russian River, the Bruery, Breckenridge, Avery, Great Divide, Odell, Ommegang, Ska, Bristol and, of course, the Wynkoop, which owns the Wazee.

Rock Bottom's downtown Denver location combines its Thursday free pint night celebration with its fifteenth annual Firechief Ale fundraiser, benefiting the Denver Firefighters Burn Foundation. Some of the firefighters themselves will be serving lunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and other events will take place during the day, including rides in the bucket truck and a firefighter menu. Rock Bottom will tap the Firechief Ale, a German-style alt bier, at 6 p.m. and offer free pints until 6:30 p.m.

Friday, March 11

Avery Brewing will release the 2011 version (batch #13) of The Maharaja Imperial IPA -- one of the most sought-after beers in its collection -- at 6 p.m. with a party at the Boulder taproom, 5763 Arapahoe Avenue. Unlike some other Avery releases, there should be plenty of this beer to go around, both on tap and in bottles.

Saturday, March 12

Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids and Solids in Longmont will host its last five-gallon keg of Pliny the Younger at 1 p.m. But get there early, because the restaurant will only sell 64 tickets -- one per person. The last keg was gone in seven minutes.

Monday, March 14

The Governor's Residence at Boettcher Mansion hosts Pints & Bites, a Colorado craft-beer tasting with food and a piano performance. It runs from 5 to 8 p.m., and admission is $30; visit Will Colorado's brewer-in-chief be there? Hard to know, but he sure loves a pint.

Tuesday, March 15

City, O'City, 206 East 13th Avenue, breaks open a firkin of Great Divide's Oak Aged Claymore Scotch Ale at 7 p.m. Claymore is brewed in the tradition of Scotland's wee heavy beers and carries a sweet, malty flavor and feel.

Follow Westword's Beer Man on Twitter at @ColoBeerMan.

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Jonathan Shikes is a Denver native who writes about business and beer for Westword.
Contact: Jonathan Shikes