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Colorado beer calendar: Freshcraft gets bitter; Copper Kettle gets cheesy

Wit's End Brewing, which may be Denver's smallest beer maker, is getting bigger. Owner Scott Witsoe has purchased two three-barrel fermenting tanks from Strange Brewing, which is going through an expansion of its own. "Once I get these online, it will almost double my fermentation capacity," says Witsoe, who started his brewery last fall with just eight single-barrel (about two kegs' worth) tanks. Thursday, June 14

As part of Freshcraft's attempt to become Stone Brewing's Most Bitter Bar (an annual contest), the restaurant will be tapping Stone Ruination 10th Anniversary IPA (10.8 percent ABV; 110 IBUs) at 7 p.m. tonight. Freshcraft will also have a pint glass for sale and will pour several other hop-forward selections from Stone.

Copper Kettle Brewing hosts cheese pairings on the second Thursday of every month, bringing together four artisan cheeses from the Truffle Cheese Shop with four Copper Kettle beers (sometimes even a beer that is not out to the public yet). The Truffle also supplies breads and fruit and has bulk cheese for sale afterward. Today's pairing begins at 7 p.m., and tickets can be purchased in person beforehand by e-mailing kristen@copperkettledenver.com or calling 720-443-2552.

Upslope Brewing will release two new draft beers, a Doppelbock and a Maibock, in its taproom today at 2 p.m. Some customers got a sneak peak of the Doppelbock, the brewery's Pro/Am entry in this year's Great American Beer Festival, last month; it was created by homebrewer Ed Moore. A "malt-lover's dream," the Dopplebock boasts dark, caramel, bready flavors and weighs in at 9 percent ABV. The Maibock, also a traditional German lager, is paler in color but is still malt forward in flavor.

Friday, June 15

Great Divide taps a firkin of The Spinster -- a special Colette cask that has been conditioning for more than three months -- at 2:30 p.m.

Dry Dock Brewing will tap a firkin of Blackberry Spring Ale at 3 p.m. today as part of its weekly Firkin Friday program. It will tap another firkin of that beer around 7 or 8 p.m.

Falling Rock Taphouse kicks off a week-long party today celebrating fifteen years of No Crap On Tap. Join the crew today starting a 5:30 p.m. with the tapping of South Pacific Ale, a beer that Falling Rock owner Chris Black brewed with Odell Brewing co-founder Doug Odell. An extra pale ale, the beer was made with pilsner malts and hops from New Zealand and Australia. Falling Rock has ten kegs of the beer.

Saturday, June 16

Falling Rock continues its week-long birthday party at 5:30 p.m. by tapping Port Brewing's Anniversary Ale. The massively hopped triple IPA clocks in at 11 percent ABV.

SOLD OUT: Great Divide Brewing will shut down Arapahoe Street for its eighteenth-anniversary party today, featuring numerous special-release beers that aren't available elsewhere and four food trucks; the $25 entry ticket includes one food ticket. There will also be live music from Bonnie & the Beard, the Knew, Tin Horn Prayer and the Kentucky Street Parlor Pickers. The party runs from 2 to 6 p.m., and fair warning: It will sell out.

Copper Kettle brings back its Imperial Red today, tapping a beer that hasn't been around for months. The brewery will also host Pete Stein on acoustics from 6 to 9 p.m., while Biker Jim will be slinging dogs at 5 p.m. Reetz Treats will also be in the house.

Tuesday, June 19

Falling Rock Taphouse will tap a batch of Belgian IPA today that owner Chris Black made in conjunction with Pikes Peak Brewing in Monument. And at 6 p.m., Falling Rock will host its birthday barbecue with nearly 200 pounds of free beef brisket.

For some events a little further down the road, go to the next page.

Sunday, June 24

Avery Brewing will release Oud Floris, #12 in its Barrel-Aged Series, today at 4 p.m. in the Boulder tasting room. The 9.5 percent ABV Flanders-esque dark brown sour is a blend of beer aged in cabernet, chardonnay barrels, bourbon and rum barrels. It was fermented with Saccharomyces, Lactobacillus, Pediococcus and Brettanomyces. It will be sold in twelve-ounce bottles at $8 per bottle (cash only), with a six-bottle limit; there are only 225 cases available. The previous Barrel-Aged releases were Recolte Sauvage and Muscat d' Amor.

Wednesday, June 27

TRVE Brewing will open its doors today at 4 p.m. The new Denver brewery has a three-barrel system, a black-metal music theme and hellaciously tasty beer. "Come in and help us fulfill our goal of having everyone at the bar windmill headbang in sync," they say.

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Saturday, June 30

Renegade Brewing will celebrate its one-year anniversary today with a party from noon to 10 p.m. and the release of its first canned beer, Ryeteous IPA. There will also be other special beers on tap, including a version of Renegade's Russian Imperial Stout, Hammer and Sickle, aged for nine months; a six-month aged version of its winter seasonal, Radiator; a four-month aged version of its Scottish Wee Heavy, Edinburgh Elixer; and a six-month whiskey barrel-aged version of Elevation triple IPA -- going by the name Elevated Wood. Renegade will have a food truck on hand as well as live music, giveaways, and a photo booth for patrons to capture their good times. The sixteen-ouince Ryeteous cans will be available for sale in the taproom and in a few liquor stores locally, with a broader launch in late July.

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