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Ken and April Pishna (foreground) of Living a Stout Life.
Ken and April Pishna (foreground) of Living a Stout Life.
Living a Stout Life

Beer Calendar: Superdamp at Comrade; Oktoberfest at Dry Dock

One of the things that many people in Colorado forget when they compare the 1918 flue pandemic to the current situation with Covid-19 is that our state was almost completely dry back then. Yep, no alcohol. That certainly wouldn't have worked in this day and age, but back then, voters had elected to cut off the supply of booze two years earlier — and two years before the nation would begin full-scale Prohibition. While doctors could "prescribe" alcohol (whiskey, in particular), and the wealthy were allowed to import it from others states that hadn't yet gone dry, most people faced the disease and social distancing sober. Oh, so sober.

That's one of the topics that I delve into on the latest podcast from Ken and April Pishna, a beer-writing duo who run Living a Stout Life and who travel the country in a 24-foot RV looking for interesting beer stories. They had me on last week to talk about journalism; my new book, Denver Beer History: A History of Mile High Brewing; and the local craft beer scene as it exists today. To record it, we met on the socially distanced patio of Tivoli Brewing, whose roots date back to 1859, and drank a variety of delicious ales and lagers.

Want to check it out? Go to livingastoutlife.com, where you can also find Ken and April's other podcasts from around the country and posts about drinking and traveling.

Keep reading to see craft-beer events into early October.

Beer Calendar: Superdamp at Comrade; Oktoberfest at Dry Dock
Comrade Brewing

Wednesday, September 9
Copper Kettle Brewing hosts a five-day-long Oktoberfest celebration (and 9.5-year birthday party, since the brewery couldn't party on its actual ninth birthday). Copper Kettle will release seven beers, and there will also be food trucks and live music. The event kicks off with the tapping of both a hefeweizen and the brewery's annual Oktoberfest lager, which will also be available in six-packs. Enjoy free pretzel bites with your beer; Rustic Nomads will serve German food.

Comrade Brewing taps Superdamp, its GABF-winning fresh-hop IPA. The beer, a version of the brewery's flagship Superpower IPA, is brewed with fresh, whole-cone hops from High Wire Hops in Paonia. The hops are "harvested and put into the beer less than eighteen hours" after they come off the vines, Comrade says.

Novel Strand Brewing has three fresh cans available. The first is Weapon of Choice: Riwaka, which is made from a rare hop variety from New Zealand called Riwaka. "This is likely one of your only chances to try a 100 percent Riwaka beer in Colorado, and, truthfully, most states," Novel Strand says. "We were able to brew this beer once before and...went to great lengths to get more Riwaka, importing it directly from New Zealand ourselves." It has flavors and aromas of passion fruit and white grape sour diesel. The other two beers are
"2>1: HBC-586 + Motueka,: an unfiltered hoppy beer in the brewery's Duet series, and Budding Thoughts, a session pale ale made with Columbus, Denali, HBC-586, Samba and Strata hops.

Cerebral Brewing releases three new beers in cans. Chromosphere is a gose made with Valencia oranges; Momentum Shirt is an IPA brewed with Nelson, Citra and Motueka hops; and Barrel-Aged Cryptic Message is a foeder-fermented German-style schwarzbier aged ten months in Laws Whiskey barrels.

Beer Calendar: Superdamp at Comrade; Oktoberfest at Dry Dock (3)
4 Noses Brewing

Friday, September 11
Briar Common Brewery + Eatery taps Earth to Marzen, a five percent ABV German-style lager brewed with pilsner and Munich malts, along with Magnum and Sterling hops. It has notes of "burnt toast, caramel and floral aromas, with a sharp, crisp bitterness," the brewery says.

Head to either Jagged Mountain Craft Brewery or Odyssey Beerwerks for the release of their latest collaboration, Slice of Heaven, a tart, crushable gose-style beer brewed with watermelon and lime and finished with grey sea salt. It will be available on draft and in cans.

6 and 40 Brewery celebrates its grand opening at 883 Parfet Street, Unit J, in Lakewood, starting at noon. The new brewery is an extension of Tom’s Brew Shop, a popular home-brewing and winemaking shop. The taproom features a "retro mechanics' garage environment best described as an automobile mini-museum," the brewery says. There will be ten beers and seltzers on tap for the opening, but owner Tom Schurmann hopes to have twenty eventually. Munkh’s Mongolian will be on hand with food.

New Image Brewing in Arvada brings back Bromance 2.0: The Bro-Union, a 7.5 percent ABV sour ale with elderflower and lemon that was made in collaboration with Funkwerks. It's available on draft or in cans.

Luki Brewery, the new circus-themed beer maker in Arvada, taps Rocinante Mexican Lager, which it calls "a beer for the dog days of summer." Brewed with corn, honey malt and Wakatu hops, which provide a hint of lime, the beer weighs in at 5.5. percent ABV.

4 Noses Brewing in Broomfield debuts Hamster Ball, a West Coast-stye IPA brewed with 100 percent Citra hops. Hamster Ball will be available on tap and in cans to go.

Beer Calendar: Superdamp at Comrade; Oktoberfest at Dry Dock (4)EXPAND
Dry Dock Brewing

Saturday, September 12

Dry Dock Brewing

strikes up the band for its annual Oktoberfest celebration, which will take place at the brewery's original South Dock location. Obviously, all social distancing requirements are in place, and the brewery will have expansive outdoor seating under a tent and inside. In addition to traditional beers on tap, including Docktoberfest Oktoberfest, Helles, Pilsner, Maibock and Franconian Lager, there will be German food from Three Tomatoes Catering and live music from Polka Folka. Wear your lederhosen and dirndls.

River North Brewery taps its own Oktoberfest-style lager fit for a giant Bavarian mug. You can find this rich, malty festbier at both of the brewery's taprooms, and $15 gets you a mug with your first pour.

Life Hack goes back on tap at Lakewood's Westfax Brewing. This hazy double IPA was brewed with Mosaic, Zythos and Pacifica hops, "producing juicy tropical notes of pineapple, mango and papaya," the brewery says. The beer will also be available in canned four-packs to go.

Sanitas Brewing in Boulder celebrates its seventh anniversary this weekend, with several special tappings, food and live music. The beers include Dry Hopped Sour, First Take Hefe and more.

Monday, September 14
Seedstock Brewery taps its Oktoberfest beer, a traditional Marzen-style lager. Malty and with "a rich, toasty and bready flavor, it also has a soft bitterness and a clean, dry finish," the brewery says.

Wednesday, September 16
Crooked Stave Artisan Beer Project kicks off Peach Beer Week (previously known as Stone Fruit Harvest Weekend and Persica Day), its annual celebration of peaches, by showcasing all of its peachy favorites. "Fans of peaches, sour beers and Crooked Stave are invited to join Crooked Stave to discover the unique and complex marriage of juicy peaches and barrel fermentation," the brewery says.

Thursday, September 17
Luki Brewing releases Grammy’s Pumpkin Pie at 3 p.m. This seasonal brown ale was brewed with a "hand-blended spice blend from an old family recipe," as well as roasted butternut squash with brown sugar and lots of pumpkin puree, the brewery says.

Friday, September 18
The Post Brewing, which has locations in Denver, Boulder, Longmont and Lafayette, will tap its Oktoberfest marzen at all four. "Made from almost 100 percent Munich and Vienna malt, this märzen is rich, full bodied and malt forward, while remaining highly quaffable," the brewery says. There will be $10 Giant Steins of Oktoberfest lager plus beer-steamed brats, fried cheese curds, and crispy chicken schnitzel.

Barnett & Son Brewing in Parker hosts an Oktoberfest event under its tent. The brewery will tap its Oktoberfest Marzen and Dunkel Weizen beers. There will also be food, glassware and stein hoisting competitions.

Saturday, September 19
Bierstadt Lagerhaus typically plays host to a huge Oktoberfest party each fall, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, this year's event will be muted — though still fun. The brewery releases its Marzen lager and will allow people to reserve a table (for up to eight people) and their own personal ten-liter keg, all for $120. The tables will be socially distanced in the brewery's expansive indoor and outdoor spaces and can be reserved for three hours at a time. "If you fail to finish the keg, we won’t judge you, but you can take it home, and we will have a keg tap available for you to purchase at our cost," Bierstadt says. "The keg is recyclable and single-use, with no need to return it. If you and yours do finish it and want another, we will judge you. We will judge you as being fine specimens of adulthood and a shining example to aspire to." There will be pretzels and sausage.

Our Mutual Friend Brewing would normally host its annual Gratitude Party today, a week before the Great American Beer Festival was scheduled to take place, with 2,000 people in attendance. But that's not happening for obvious reasons. Instead, the RiNo brewery will have a few special tappings and some additional outdoor seating, along with special Gratitude packs. Space is limited.

Dos Luces Brewing, which specializes in the pre-Colombian alcoholic beverages known as chicha and pulque, will celebrate the many Independence days that take place across Central America and Mexico in September by having a party and tapping its newest beverage, Imperial Pulque, Moctezuma III With Strawberry. Aged in tequila barrels, the 10 percent ABV, gluten-free pulque has aromas of apricot, vanilla and white pepper, the brewery says. It is available on draft and in bottles to go. Festivities will include a limited vertical tasting of two years' worth of Moctezuma releases. Tickets will be required for that at squaresite.com.

Odyssey Beerwerks in Arvada taps its Oktobefest beer with an Od-toberfest party starting at 2 p.m. Arvada's mayor will be in the house, as will a pair of food trucks.

Holidaily Brewing in Golden is throwing an all-gluten-free Oktoberfest. The brewery, which brews only gluten-free beers, will have fall beers on tap, along with gluten-free pretzels and beer cheese from Boulder-based Crestone Bakery, an Oktoberfest menu from Mikey G’s Food Truck, and Oktoberfest decor and music.

Tuesday, September 22
Counter Culture Brewery + Grille will note its anniversary with a beer-pairing dinner from 7 to 9 p.m. There will be five courses, including elote empanadas paired with the brewery's Mexican lager.

Beer Calendar: Superdamp at Comrade; Oktoberfest at Dry Dock (2)
Falling Rock Taphouse

Thursday, September 24
Every fall, when the Great American Beer Festival comes to town, Falling Rock Tap House serves as the unofficial meeting place and headquarters for beer lovers from all parts of the globe. But in 2020, the pandemic forced the cancellation of the festival (though there is an online version) and severe seating and operating restrictions for Falling Rock. So the beer bar is looking to pull off an alternative that it says will give people a little taste of the GABF atmosphere, but "done in as responsible of a manner as possible, and following all local guidelines." Introducing FRAFOGB (Falling Rock Alternative Festival of Great Beer), which will have four sessions (just like GABF) from September 24 through 27. The seated series of events will be spread out throughout Falling Rock's upstairs, downstairs and patio, and will include two different lineups of thirty two-ounce beers, poured in six flights of five each. There will also be food (see Falling Rock's website for details). "We will be pulling out all the stops in our cellar as well as bringing in some tasty treats in order to fill up the two lineups with exceptional beers. Help us continue the tradition of Falling Rock during GABF Week in this challenging year in a new way," Falling Rock says. Tickets are $100 per person, and tables will seat a specific number of people. Reservations are required — as are masks on your way to and from your table.

Friday, September 25
Copper Kettle Brewing brings back Snowed In Coconut, a "velvety smooth oatmeal stout that is aged in bourbon barrels and made with fresh coconut flakes and chocolate," the brewery says. This seasonal beer will be available starting at noon on tap and in 19.2-ounce cans.

Falling Rock Tap House continues its Falling Rock Alternative Festival of Great Beer in lieu of the Great American Beer Festival this year. See Thursday for details.

Saturday, September 26
Seedstock Brewing brings a taste of Munich to Colfax Avenue with an Oktoberfest-style event featuring the tappings of Special Hell, a Helles lager. "Its rich malty aroma is balanced by a slight cracker sweetness that, rather than filling you up, leaves you wanting more. After tasting a special hell for the first time at Germany's Andechs Monastery 10 years ago, Seedstock knew they needed to bring this deliciously subtly flavored beer to Denver," the brewery says. There will also be polka music. Come dressed in your Lederhosen and Dirndl.

Falling Rock Tap House continues its Falling Rock Alternative Festival of Great Beer in lieu of the Great American Beer Festival this year. See Thursday for details.

Saturday, October 3
Join Hops & Pie as the beer-and-pizza joint safely celebrates its tenth anniversary with a crazy tap list, live music and giveaways every hour from noon to 5 p.m.

O'zapft is!
translates from German to English as "It is tapped," and serves as the traditional cry to start the annual Oktoberfest celebration in Bavaria. The saying is also the name of Strange Craft Beer Company's new festbier lager. To celebrate the beer and the occasion, Strange hosts a socially distanced, sit-down Oktoberfest event starting at 4 p.m. Reservations and tickets for tables of four or six people are available online; each attendee gets a commemorative liter Maß filled with O'zapft Is ( the tapping is live) and a plate of authentic German food. 

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