Hosted by the Colorado Brewers Guild, the Collab Fest features more than 100 collaborative projects between Colorado breweries and their friends from near and far. Many of the beers are one-off creations that will never be seen again, while others will develop into new offerings for some of the participating breweries.
Some of the proceeds from the festival, which has become Colorado's signature craft-beer event, go to support the Colorado Brewers Guild, the nonprofit trade association that "promotes, protects, and propels" independent Colorado craft breweries through advocacy, community, education and public awareness.
General admission tickets are $65 in advance and include as many three-ounce pours as you can responsibly drink; VIP tickets are $85 in advance and include early entry at 2 p.m. Buy them at coloradobeer.org.
Keep reading to see craft-beer events into late February.
Odell Brewing is building a second Denver brewery and taproom, on the edge of Sloan's Lake. When it is completed, sometime this year, Odell will be neighbors with Joyride Brewing, which is adjacent to the park on the other side. Fittingly, the two breweries collaborated on a beer called Cohorts in Hops; it includes a variety of experimental hop varieties, as well as Citra and Mosaic. It will be tapped at Odell's spot in RiNo.
Woods Boss Brewing brings back Hisolda Irish Cream Coffee Stout, which is one of the better coffee beers in town. Rich chocolatey malts combine with coffee and lactose for a silky blend of latte goodness.
Stout Month is just two days away, and this year, Mountain Sun director of brewing operations John Fiorilli and his team are hosting an event from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Vine Street Pub so that you can sample some of the best and most unusual Mountain Stouts you'll see on tap at all five locations throughout February. "Learn the origins of this stout-rageous style of beer and the history of Stout Month at the Mountain Sun," the company says. There will be seven beer samples along with seven passed appetizers from Chef Forrest Bayne. Tickets are $50 and are extremely limited. Get them at Vine Street Pub (and get a free pint with every ticket purchased).
Comrade Brewing taps Bogan Tinnies IPA at noon. "Brewed with Root Shoot Genie Pale Malt, which was grown and malted in Loveland, and hopped with Australian Enigma and New Zealand Waimea hops," this 6 percent ABV Southern Hemisphere IPA has notes of "white grape, light tropical fruit, resinous pine, grapefruit and pomelo," the brewery says.
TRVE Brewing releases a brand-new collaboration with its friends at Our Mutual Friend Brewing at 3 p.m. The beer, called PYRE, is a 7.0 percent IPA fermented with TRVE's Norwegian kveik yeast and dry-hopped with Citra and Azacca. It is "beautiful and pillowy with dense notes of orange and mango," TRVE says. Cans and draft will be available at TRVE, OMF and at a very select number of retailers along the Front Range.
Great Divide Brewing and Pablo's Coffee, two local businesses that have been around since the mid-’90s, have teamed up on a new beer that Great Divide will release today on draft and in cans. Coffee Porter, which is part of the brewery's Tank Farm series, is made with barrel-aged beans from Pablo’s. "After de-barreling and packaging the 2019 edition of Barrel Aged Yeti Imperial Stout, select barrels were transported to Pablo’s Coffee, where they were filled with green coffee beans from Mexico and aged to perfection," Great Divide explains. "Once the beans had been imparted with flavor of whiskey, stout and barrel, they were roasted, ground and returned to Great Divide to brew this Coffee Porter." The tapping, which takes place at both Great Divide taprooms, will also feature Pablo’s cold brew made with the same barrel-aged beans.
Well, the Kansas City Chiefs are in the Super Bowl on Sunday — and the Broncos aren't — so we suppose it's only fair that Blue Pan Pizza in the Congress Park neighborhood is celebrating Boulevard Brewing on the Missouri beer maker's thirtieth anniversary (not that it makes any sense at a place specializing in Detroit-style pizza). Anyway, there will be swag and giveaways, some Boulevard staples and a tapping of Boulevard's 12.5 percent ABV 30th Anniversary Barrel-Aged Blended Ale, which is a blend of eight different beers.
Cerebral Brewing will drop five beers at noon in cans and on tap, including Cheat Code Double IPA, brewed with Galaxy Mosaic and El Dorado; Dark Galaxie Oatmeal Stout; and Character Reference, a foeder-aged Vienna lager. Also coming is Inhabited Form Dry Hopped Foeder Oat Lager, which was brewed with Pilsner malt and oats and then hopped with Galaxy and debittered Citra. And finally, there will be a new variant of Forever Awake, Cerebral's 11 percent ABV imperial coffee stout. This one was conditioned on copious amounts of MiddleState Coffee's Honduras Isaura Martinez Natural, along with Haitian cacao nibs from Cultura Craft Chocolate, vanilla, and hand-toasted hazelnuts.
New Image Brewing in Arvada will release Betts Brownie Butter Birthday Bash, a 10 percent ABV milk stout that was "loaded with peanut flour, cacao, vanilla, chocolate and lactose to recreate the tastes of a brownie stuffed with peanut butter cups," the brewery says. The beer was brewed in collaboration with Transient Artisan Ales. It will be available on draft and in twelve-ounce four-packs at the brewery starting at 11 a.m.
Wiley Roots Brewing in Greeley is always experimenting, which is why it always has something new. Today the brewery is releasing five new beers in cans — all of them unusual. They include "a special New England IPA we brew once per year; a new milkshake sour IPA with raspberries and chocolate; a white stout with cold-brewed coffee, chocolate and vanilla; and a dual release that launches us into the exploration of the phenomenon that is the smoothie-style sour," the brewery says. Get the details on the Wiley Roots Facebook page.
Vine Street Pub and the Mountain Sun group of restaurants and breweries will kick off their 27th annual Stout Month in Denver, Boulder and Longmont. At least 36 Mountain Sun stouts will be showcased, including 48 Smooth Chai Stout, Coconut Cream Stout, Addition Imperial Coffee Stout, Nihilist Russian Imperial Stout, Chocolate Dip Stout and Space Odyssey Stout. There will also be barrel-aged stouts like Rye Whiskey Barrel-Aged Addition Imperial Coffee Stout, Chocolate Thunder Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Chocolate Milk Stout, and Pinot Noir Barrel-Aged Nihilist Russian Imperial Stout. In addition, stout offerings from other Colorado breweries will rotate through the taps. The pub group operates the Mountain Sun, Southern Sun and Under the Sun locations in Boulder, as well as Denver's Vine Street Pub and Longmont's Longs Peak Pub.
Baere Brewing brings back Bring the Greenback, a special beer it releases once a year in bottles. "This beer was quick soured with our house lactobacillus culture and fermented in stainless with a mixed culture of yeast and bacteria," the brewery says. "It was aged on emergent green Engelmann spruce tips foraged from Southern Colorado. This limited-release table sour celebrates the rebirth of a rare Colorado native, the Greenback Cutthroat Trout. Until recently, the true Greenback could only be found in Bear Creek, but aggressive recovery efforts are underway to put our state fish back into its native waters within the headwaters of the South Platte." Proceeds from each bottle will be put toward Greenback Cutthroat Trout projects by the Colorado-based nonprofit Running Rivers. There will also be a Valentine's Craft Market at the brewery.
Call to Arms Brewing is "celebrating the end of a long, grueling, and horribly boring #DryJanuary with a Foggy February Dual Release Party. The first beer is Backwards Pageantry Guava Session IPA, a 5.2 percent ABV
beer dry-hopped with Amarillo and Sabro. The second beer is Good N You?, a 6.6 percent ABV IPA made with Nelson Sauvin hops. Call to Arms will also be offering BOGO deals on all of its lagers.
If you're a fan of Hops & Pie, then you probably weren't a fan of the parking lot next door, which switched to a complicated and confusing set of validation rules last year. But the restaurant says those dark days are ending and that the parking returns on February 1 "to its original form as a no pay, no validation, no nonsense place for guests to park." To celebrate, Hops & Pie is tapping some special kegs, including Sante Adairius Saison Bernice, WeldWerks Medianoche #18805, Comrade Triple C Double Dry Hopped Superpower, Knotted Root Space & Time, Cerebral Cookie Butter, Jester King Saison Americaine, and Westbound & Down Raspberry Fruit Squad.
Goldspot Brewing kicks off a month of barrel-aged beer tappings with the release of Our Maple Scotch Ale at noon. This beer was aged in Laws Bourbon barrels for four months and "has notes of boozy caramelized plums, vanilla, raisin, cherry and oak," the brewery says.
Comrade Brewing taps two beers at noon. The first is Samba Single Hop IPA, featuring a new hop blend. It has notes of pineapple, mango, stone fruits, orange and tangerine. The second is Poseidon's Stick, a single-malt IPA featuring the new Trident hop blend. "Fruity, citrus, tropical and passion fruit," the brewery says.
The South Side Beer Bus returns from 2 to 10 p.m. There will be two buses running continuously between Comrade Brewing, Copper Kettle Brewing, Dry Dock Brewing and Launch Pad Brewing. Ride all day for $5.
Lone Tree Brewing kicks off its own series of weekly Stout Month tappings with a one-off keg of Chocolate Mint Stout. It will also tap Oreo Stout on February 8, Churro Stout on February 15, Orange Chocolate Stout on February 22, and Oak & Vanilla Stout on February 29. For Valentine's Day, Lone Tree Brewing taps White Irish Coffee Stout, which was brewed specifically for Old Chicago and is available in eighteen Colorado locations.
Counter Culture Brewery + Grille hosts its inaugural five-course beer dinner, which takes place at 7 p.m. and includes dishes like short ribs and polenta paired with a doppelbock, and wood-fired chicken satay paired with an English IPA. Tickets, $65 per person, are limited, and available by calling 720-638-8786.
Wednesday, February 5
Today is World Nutella Day (as if you didn't already know), and the Brewability Lab in Englewood is serving up Nutella-rimmed porters and complimentary Nutella cookies.
Thursday, February 6
Join Cedar Creek Pub in Aurora for its third annual Stout Day, with rare stouts from across the country. The tap list includes Fremont Brewing B.A. Dark Star; Founders KBS Kentucky Breakfast Stout and CBS Canadian Breakfast Stout; Ursula Brewery 180 Gram Imperial Stout (2018); Ecliptic Brewing Sedna Tiramisu Stout; Hoppin' Frog Brewery Peanut Butter Chocolate Coffee Porter; Boulevard Brewing Whiskey Barrel Stout; Beachwood Brewing Mocha Machine and Tovarish Double Espresso; and Cerebral Nordic Noir Baltic Porter.
Friday, February 7
Strange Craft Beer Company turns ten this year, and to celebrate, the brewery is bringing back many of the crowd favorites from years past. The first is Cherry Bomb Stout. "Originally a mistake after a very long brewing week, Tim decided to tap this happy accident as a one-off. Riots ensued in the taproom when he announced this beer was a one and done, so to placate the angry mob Tim brewed it again, and again, and again," Strange explains. The 5.5. percent ABV Belgian stout is finished on the same Montmorency tart pie cherries that Strange uses for its Cherry Kriek. The beer hasn't been brewed since 2015.
Burns Family Artisan Ales will release 2088-Hour Jam Stout at 8 p.m. The barrel-aged jam stout (which took 2,088 hours from mash-in to release) is a collaboration with Chuck Jones, the bassist for Dopapod, who has organized several charity concerts and jam sessions, including one last December at Burns. In light of the Australian bushfires, Burns and Jones have decided to donate all proceeds from the sale of this beer to the Australian Red Cross. Music starts at 6 p.m. and continues all evening.
It's First Friday on Tennyson Street, and that means a new beer at Empourium Brewing. This time it's the Nightman Cometh Schwarzbier, a smooth and roasty dark lager. Little Red's Kitchen will have food.
It's time for Snowed In Cherry at Copper Kettle Brewing, which will tap this annual barrel-aged oatmeal stout when it opens at noon. The beer, made with cherries and chocolate, will also be available in 19.2-ounce cans.
"As a kid with a coloring book, if somebody got you that big box of crayons, the world was your oyster," says Cerebral Brewing. "Those 64 colors were basically all the colors. No item’s nature dare stand in your way. Now, as an adult, you don’t have to be a graphic designer or a painter to know the world has a plethora of pigments to dazzle the eye…but then nanotechnology comes along and even black has its hues…and the darkest of the dark, the all-consuming, the thou-shalt-not-pass, no-holds-barred consumer of 99.965 percent of all visible light: Vantablack." In celebration of this "synthetic obsidian shade," the brewery is hosting Vantabrews, a tapping of a variety of the inkiest beer not just from Cerebral, but from some other purveyors, including Alvarado Street Brewery, Bottle Logic, Great Notion Brewing, J. Wakefield Brewing, Other Half Brewing Company and Solemn Oath Brewery. No tickets required. First come, first served.
Black Project Wild & Spontaneous Ales celebrates its sixth anniversary with a party starting at 4 p.m. In addition to special hourly beer tappings, there will be limited giveaways and more.
Bruz Off Fax, which is the new taproom from Bruz Beers, hosts a grand-opening party from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on York Street, just off Colfax Avenue. There will be special beer tappings all day, "local food available, prizes given away, and good people drinking good beer and having a good time," the brewery says.
River North Brewery brings back Hop-A-Tronic Lupulosinator, its double New England Style IPA, to both of its taprooms. "With two new hop varieties, this is one of our best Hazy IPA releases to date," the brewery says. It will be available on draft and in cans to go at noon.
Cerveceria Colorado is partnering with Denver's Las Conchas Bakery ¡Cervezas and Conchas!, a pairing of beer and conchas, "which are a traditional Mexican pan dulce (pastry) that take their name from their pretty shell-like appearance," says Ceveceria, which is a branch of Denver Beer Co. The pairings will include: Señor Piña Pineapple Blonde Ale y Pineapple Upside-Down Concha; Seven Bridges Hibiscus Juicy Pale Ale y Strawberry Concha; Rosita Schwarzbier y Cafe Concha with Dulce de Leche Filling; and Churro Stout y Churro Concha with Nutella Filling. Each pairing will include four mini-conchas and four beer tasters. Tickets are $25.
Ursula Brewing will release 180 Gram Barrel Aged Imperial Stout at noon, along with several variants, and pair them all with Girl Scout Cookies. Also, a local troop will be selling cookies from noon to 2 p.m. at the brewery.
Ratio Beerworks celebrates its fifth anniversary this weekend with a wide variety of music, beer and beer, but it kicks things off today with the canned release of King of Carrot Flowers, a carrot and elderflower saison that has a big following. Although Ratio doesn't regularly can its beer (yet), it borrowed a canning machine from Codi Manufacturing for this limited run of twelve-ounce six-packs. "First introduced in celebration of EatDenver's 2017 Harvest Week at the GrowHaus, King of Carrot Flowers bursts forth in an illuminate, ripe cantaloupe orange hue, while exhibiting subtle fruit-forward citrus notes and nuances of pear, honey, coriander, and vanilla brought on by the elderflower," the brewery says. Ratio opens at noon, and there are limits on the beer.
Friday, February 14
The 2020 vintage of Stolen Kiss from Burns Family Artisan Ales will steal your heart — and your brain, at 14.5 percent ABV. Enjoy this dark rum barrel-aged imperial brown ale on tap and in 750ml bottles.
Strange Craft Beer Company turns ten this year, and to celebrate, it is bringing back many of the crowd favorites from years past. Today's beer is Belgian Chocolate Raspberry Love Stout, a 10.5 percent ABV imperial stout. "Our annual Valentine's Day seasonal was first brewed in 2012 with John and Stacy Turk. Colorado Craft Beer Radio was a huge supporter of Strange in our early days, and it was John's and Gary's tireless work telling the story of craft beer in Colorado that helped many craft beer enthusiasts find Strange in our early days," the brewery says. "The credit for the recipe, though, has to go to Stacy. She created this chocolate lover's dream, finding the right combo of chocolate and raspberries to satisfy any Belgian truffles fan."
Westfax Brewing isn't in the mood for love, which is why it's tapping Tears of our Enemies Scotties Ale with chile peppers and Red Velvet Tears of Enemies, which is a version of the brewery's Scottish ale with chocolate and vanilla — and served on nitro. It's also Keep the Glass night.
Saturday, February 15
Ratio Beerworks is celebrating its fifth anniversary all weekend long with a wide variety of music, special concerts and food. And there is also beer. In addition to the canned version of King of Carrot Flowers, which was released on Thursday, the brewery will tap a limited amount of Barrel-Fermented Wild Dear You, a wild barrel-aged version of its flagship Citra Dry-Hopped French Saison.
Thursday, February 20
Join Woods Boss Brewing from 6 to 8 p.m. for a guided tasting through several of the brewery's one-off, rare and unique barrel-aged beers. "Taste samples from wine, rum, tequila, Scotch or whiskey barrels and let your taste buds open up to a world of new flavors," Woods Boss says. "Throughout this experience, head brewer Jordan Fink will provide insight on the process and flavors." Tickets are $75 at Eventbrite and include eight four-ounce pours straight from the barrels, one 500ml bottle of Dreams The Stuff Are made Of, and paired cheese bites from Goed Zuur chef Anthony Lopiccolo and cheesemonger Rachel.
Strange Craft Beer Company turns ten this year, and to celebrate, it is bringing back many of the crowd favorites from years past. Today's is Strangely Epic. "A blend of Epic Brewing’s monster imperial stout Big Bad Baptist and Strange’s tart fruit explosion, Cherry Kriek, the result is a complex journey thru coffee, chocolate, and cherries," Strange says. "Created by Kevin Crompton and Tim Myers for the Inaugural Collaboration Fest back in 2014, this beer has been requested more than any other of Tim's creations in the last 10 years."
Saturday, February 22
Call to Arms Brewing hosts its fifth annual Mardi Gras Rumpus starting at noon and featuring the World's Tiniest Mardi Gras Parade at 4 p.m. There will be special tappings, a crawfish boil at 2 p.m. by Rolling Smoke BBQ, a live brass band, and, of course, the tiny parade, with special-guest tiny floats from Little Machine Beer, Bierstadt Lagerhaus, Under the Sun Eatery and Pizzeria, the Grateful Gnome Sandwich Shoppe & Brewery, Empourium Brewing Company, Valhalla Cakes, FlyteCo Brewing, Avery Brewing Company and more.
It has been eight years since River North Brewery first opened its doors. To mark that milestone, the brewery plans to party at both taprooms. There will be special beer releases, including an eight-hour boil imperial stout. There will also be food at both locations and other fun.
Friday, February 28
Strange Craft Beer Company turns ten this year, and to celebrate, the brewery is bringing back many crowd favorites from years past. Tapped the first night Strange opened back in 2010, Paint it Black Honey Coffee Stout was served on nitro until 2013 "when it lost an arm wrestling contest with Cherry Bomb to be the featured stout on the Strange Beer Board," the brewery explains. "The beer starts sweet but immediately goes bone dry with roast, coffee acridity, and big hop bitterness all at the same time. Medium bodied, the honey really dries this one out (it’s so fermentable), but leaves its wildflower honey notes behind."
Saturday, February 29
It's Leap Day! If you're not doing something special on a day that only comes around once every four years, you just aren't paying enough attention to your calendar. Platt Park Brewing paid attention, which is why the brewery is throwing a Leap Day party, complete with the tapping of a new New England-style IPA brewed with tangerine, vanilla and milk sugar. Oh, and for you planners, the brewery is selling limited-edition Leap Year glasses, which you can bring back in four years for a free refill (assuming the planet isn't consumed in a fiery apocalypse before then).
Burns Family Artisan Ales notes today's quirk of the calendar by tapping Thoughts of Winter Imperial White Stout. There will also be live music from Sunrise Drive at 7:30 p.m.
Send beery information to [email protected].