Beer Calendar: Saisons, Fruit Beers and July Fourth Fun at Local Breweries

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Good beer and good marketing have gone hand in hand at Oskar Blues for as long as the brewery has been canning — and one of the key components to that marketing has always been the aluminum vessels themselves. Oskar Blues hands empty cans out by the hundreds at festivals for people to wear around their necks — and it has been using half-empty ones to cook up loads of beer-can chicken for hungry beer lovers at events for years. So for the Fourth of July weekend, the brewery is giving out its recipe. Like any good grill master, though, OB is keeping a few secrets to itself: the key flavoring, Rev Rog's BBQ Rub, is only available for sale on the brewery's website as far as I can tell. Here then, is the recipe. Enjoy.


1 3-lb delish chicken
1 Oskar Blues CAN of bliss
Salt & pepper Rev. Rog's BBQ Rub
1 beer can holder to hold the can
Covered gas grill that heats to at least 400 degrees

Heat covered gas grill to 375 degrees. Season bird inside and out with all seasonings.
Drink half an Oskar Blues beer. Put the other half in the can holder.
Stick chicken on the can/can holder.
Cook the bird on top of the can for about an hour and a half or until bird reaches 180 degrees. Stick meat thermometer thru the breast to the middle of thigh to insure proper temp.
Keep the direct flame off bird throughout cooking.
Serve with homemade coleslaw or potato salad and corn on the cob. 

Wednesday, July 1
Crooked Stave will release two beers today at 6 p.m. The complex Flor d’Lees is a 5 percent ABV wild ale aged in oak barrels. "Numerous barrels are sampled to get just the right blend," the brewery says. "Never one to be complacent with brewing tradition and classical styles of beers, Flor d’Lees walks the lines of the most ancient of beers." The second beer is Progenitor Dry Hopped Golden Sour, a 6.2 percent ABV beer fermented with Crooked Stave’s mixed culture of Brettanomyces yeast and bacteria and then dry-hopped.

Strange Craft Beer used 660 pounds of fresh watermelon to make a twenty-barrel batch of Watermelon Hefe, which it will release, both on tap and in 22-ounce bomber bottles, today at noon, in time for the July 4 weekend. This is the first time that the 5 percent ABV summer seasonal has been released in bottles (which will also be available in some liquor stores). "Bright and crisp, this easy-drinking wheat brew is perfect for a hot summer day," the brewery says — like watermelon in a glass.

It's Saison Month at the Copper Kettle, which is celebrating the warm-weather beer by tapping a new firkin each Wednesday. Today's is Black Saison, which was made with roasted malts. The Cluck Truck will be selling chicken fingers, sandwiches, mac 'n cheese balls.

Thursday, July 2
Spangalang Brewery will tap Le Sony'r Ra today at noon. It is the first in a series of wild/brett beers that the brewery will be releasing over the next couple months. Le Sony'r Ra is a 4.5 percent ABV petite saison, "fermented first with a French saison yeast, after which a culture of Brettanomyces was pitched," the brewery says. "The resulting beer is super refreshing and dry, with subtle but distinct earthy and cherry pie like aromas."  Today and tomorrow, Zivix at Spangalang will be serving a special cheese board that pairs perfectly with the new beer. 

The Brew on Broadway, known as the BoB, will celebrate its second anniversary with beer releases, food trucks and live music today through Monday. Some of the beers include: Brown’s Bridge Rye Oatmeal Stout, Club Hula Key Lime Pale, Alexander Airplane American Pale Ale, Skerritt’s Russian Imperial Stout (2013), and RYE the Hell Not Rye Pale (a collaboration with Black Sky, Strange Craft, and Chain Reaction). Today's music is Our Celtic Session Group. See the BoB's Facebook page for other details.

Star Bar will tap New Wave, a strawberry Berliner Weisse from Ratio Beerworks today at 8 p.m. It's the first time the beer has been served outside the brewery. Star Bar also has karaoke tonight.

Friday, July 3
Today, TRVE Brewing will release the first beer to be bottled at its new Acid Temple brewing location, which went into production in May. Life's Trade, as the beer is called, is a farmhouse ale fermented in wine puncheons. "With this beer...we are paying homage to tradition with our grain bill and by fermenting in puncheons. We will be using several yeast strains and then blending from the puncheons to produce the final beer," the brewery says. "This beer – and The Acid Temple as a whole – represents a lot of dedication and soul just like the album it is named after. And, as cheesy as it sounds, this work really has become our life’s trade. The barrel-aged and sour beers we have been able to produce until this point act as a prologue to what is to come."

Comrade Brewing will tap Honeyman the Fifth today at noon. The fifth in its series of Honeyman research-and-development IPAs, this 5.7 percent ABV beer was brewed with Mosaic, Azacca, Lemondrop and Citra hops. "Beautifully bright golden straw color, intense floral and citrus aroma with big notes of passion fruit," 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."

Freedom Kolsch, which won a 2014 Gold Medal Winner at the Colorado State Fair, returns to the Copper Kettle today at noon in time for the Fourth of July weekend. "This bright, German pale ale has a light, creamy finish," the brewery says. The Tony Guacamole Food Truck will be on hand as well.

Baere Brewing is celebrating its first anniversary all weekend, beginning tonight when it taps some barrel-aged beers, including Wine Barrel Imperial Stout, Barrel Hoppy Brown Batch 4 from Laws Whiskey House Barrel 121, Sour Brown Ale, and Anniversary Small Sour Ale.

Saturday, July 4
C Squared Ciders, a new cidery co-owned by former Wynkoop head brewer Andy Brown, will host a party today at 7 p.m. inside the building that will eventually house C Squared, Bierstadt Lagerhaus and the new Rackhouse. This will be the first time that C Squared is open to the public before its eventual grand opening, soon. "We want to celebrate the holiday in our wonderful neighborhood, watch some fireworks, and give thanks to all our friends that helped us on this journey," the cidery says. "There will be music, starting with the funky side of Miles Hurwitz, and Andy Babb's Big Beautiful Band followed by Buteo Buteo later in the evening."

Baere Brewing continues its three-day first anniversary celebration today with a Jorts of July Dance Party/Sour Beer Extravaganza. The brewery will tap Apricot Table Sour, Tart Cherry Table Sour, Hopped Table Sour, Sour Brown, Sour IPA, Anniversary Small Sour. Oh, and the jorts: you get 10 percent off your tap if you rock a pair.

Locavore Beer Works in Littlleton Come will celebrate July 4 by tapping three news beers: Jolly Farmer watermelon wheat (at noon), Oaked, barrel-aged ESB (1 p.m.) and Sassafras bitters barrel-aged FiFi (at 3 p.m.). Rocky Mountain Catering will be making baby back ribs using Locavore beers in the sauce (a rack, plus slaw and a slice of watermelon is $18).

Echo Brewing in Frederick will celebrate the holiday with happy hour all day, a bean bag toss competition, a pot luck, a red-white-and-blue costume contest and firkin of a beer it calls 'Merica.

Sunday, July 5
Baere Brewing wraps up its one-year anniversary weekend today by serving up Happy Leaf Kombucha Beermosas, along with a Pop Up Brunch by a.m.BS with Vegan and Vegetarian options, Sweet Action Beer Ice Cream, Live T-Shirt Printing by INDYINK.

Wednesday, July 8
It's Saison Month at the Copper Kettle, which is celebrating the warm-weather beer by tapping a new firkin each Wednesday. Today's is Desert Pear, which has a purple hue and subtle sweetness. Pavy's food truck will be there with gourmet sandwiches.

Thursday, July 9
Goldspot Brewing and its neighbor, the Noshery (the cafe just celebrated its one-year anniversary), will host a collaborative beer dinner at 6 p.m. tonight at Goldspot. The dinner features meats from Western Daughters. Tickets are $60 and available at either business.

Factotum Brewhouse will tap 5280 IPA today at 6 p.m. The West Coast-style IPA was made by guest brewer and local beer lover Steve Comeau; "it features more hops than anything else we've brewed at Factotum," the brewery says. "Brewed with Columbus, Centennial, Chinook, Citra, and Simcoe hops and dry-hopped with Columbus, Centennial, and Simcoe, this one's a hop-head's delight." Comeau will be on hand to meet and greet all the fans of his beer, Factotum says.

Friday, July 10
Swingin' Udders, Copper Kettle Brewing's milk stout, returns today at noon with more intensity. "We added more roasted malt and lactose this year for a fuller flavor with a sweeter finish," the brewery says. Hamborghini will be serving burgers.

Comrade Brewing will tap Yank Tank, a session IPA, today at noon. The 4.9 percent ABV beer includes plenty of late kettle additions of Azacca, Citra and Mosaic hops. It was then dry-hopped. It's a session beer that taste like a regular IPA, the brewery says.

Saturday, July 11
The West End Tavern and The Farm will bring the seventh annual JUL-IPA Festival back to the outdoor pavilion at the Millennium Harvest House today from noon to 4 p.m. in Boulder. A "celebration of the best and the baddest IPAs out there," the event features beer from more than thirty breweries, bites from the West End Tavern (BBQ Pulled Pork, Bacon Baked Beans, and Mac ‘n’ Cheese), live music from the Goonies and Sixty Minute Man and carnival games. Some of the breweries include: Avery Brewing Co., Boulevard Brewing Co., Bristol Brewing Co., BRU Handbuilt Ales, Crazy Mountain Brewing, Crystal Springs Brewing Co., Denver Beer Co., Elevation Beer Co., Epic Brewing Co., Fate Brewing Co., Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Left Hand Brewing Co., New Belgium Brewing Co., Odd 13 Brewing, Oskar Blues Brewery, Pikes Peak Brewing, River North Brewery, Sanitas Brewing Co., Ska Brewing Co., Stone Brewing Co., Telluride Brewing Co., The Post Brewing Co., Upslope Brewing Co., and Wild Woods Brewery, Tickets are $30 per person and $10 for designated drivers (non-drinking). All proceeds will benefit Safehouse Progressive Alliance for Nonviolence.

Wednesday, July 15
Old Chicago has teamed up with Aurora's Dry Dock Brewing on a new beer that will served this month at locations (Aurora-Southlands, Aurora, Arapahoe Crossings – Aurora, Littleton, Thornton, Grant-Thornton, and Lakewood) in Colorado as part of the restaurant company's continuing Explorer Series. To make the 6.1 percent ABV beer, called Grapefruit IPA, some Old Chicago employees went to Dry Dock's original South Dock location on Hampden Avenue to work with head brewer Tim Evon. His tasting notes read: "The light sweetness of Golden Promise and CaraRuby malts provide the base to this IPA for the summer hop head. We loaded it with Cascade, Chinook, and Centennial hops to take advantage of their potential to impart grapefruit character before adding actual grapefruit peel and juice. The result is a summer IPA with huge hop character, smooth fruitiness, and a refreshingly tart finish." The Old Chicagos will also be pouring Dry Dock's Apricot Blonde, Hefeweizen, Amber Ale, and Vanilla Porter. Grapefruit IPA will also be available at Dry Dock.

Saturday, July 18
Großen Bart Brewing — the Longmont beer maker with the facial hair theme — will host its inaugural Longmont Mane Festival from 2 to 8 p.m. today at the taproom. Owners Shad Chancey and Taylor Wise plan to fete "beers, beards, and community" at the fest, which will include a Beard & Mustache Contest (it costs $10 to enter at the brewery's website) from 4 to 5 p.m., featuring categories like "The Business Beard", "The Groomed Beard", "The Full Beard Natural", "The Styled Mustache", "The Natural Mustache", "The Goatee", and "Sideburns & Chops." There will also be a "Whiskerella" category for women and a "Freestyle" category for "particularly creative and outlandish facial hair." In addition, there will be live music from 2 to 8 p.m., food trucks all day long, free beard and mustache trims by Sean Murphy, mustache rides (Speed/Obstacle Race on Adult Big Wheels), mustache tattoos (fake), facial Hair-themed vendors, and lots of beer. Tickets are $5 in advance and $8 at the door.

Twisted Pine Brewing in Boulder will celebrate its twentieth anniversary today from 2 to 7 p.m. with an indoor/outdoor party. There will be live music from members of Head for the Hill,s Augustus and Dear Landlords, life-sized lot games, and food from Umami Mobile Eatery. Plus, the brewery will release Twenty to Life, "a canary-colored Belgo-American ale with a light, bright body and tropical fruit finish." In addition, Twisted Pine will tap other special treats throughout the day. Tickets are $5.

Sunday, July 19
The fourth annual A Night to Remember beer festival takes place today from 4 to 8 p.m., at Four Mile Historic Park, honoring the twelve people who were killed in the Aurora theater shootings in 2012. One of those was Alex Teves, the 28th member of the Brew Club at Copper Kettle Brewing, which co-founded the festival; proceeds from the event go to the Alexander C Teves Foundation, which benefits the Humanex Academy, which provides scholarships for "students with unique academic, social, or emotional needs." There will be beers from 29 breweries, as well as food trucks, live music, a silent auction and prizes. 

Follow Westword's Beer Man on Twitter at @ColoBeerMan and on Facebook at Colo BeerMan

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