Nothing gives us a warmer, fuzzier feeling than the thought of trying brand-new beers from some of Colorado's 350-plus craft breweries — especially when the weather is cold and the nation's mood is stormy. From coffee beers to hazy, New England-style IPAs to even a sake beer, there's a lot to look forward to. Even better? Every single one of these beers is available in cans, so you can take them with you, Colorado-style, wherever you go.
Dry Dock Brewing
Wake up and smell the coffee when Dry Dock Brewing releases its seasonal canned beer, Coffee Stout, in six-packs and on draft. The 5.5 percent ABV beer was brewed with lactose to give it some creaminess and Denver's own Coda coffee to give it some roast. The release party is January 15 at the South Dock location (15120 East Hampden Avenue, Aurora).
Denver Beer Co
Japance Off is a "refreshing and delicate" mashup of the flavors of France and Japan, according to Denver Beer Co. "Fermentation is achieved through the use of French ale yeast as well as sake yeast to create a light apple flavor and a subtle fruit spiciness. French hops add unique floral notes that mellow on the palate with a crisp, clean finish." This saison is now available in cans in local liquor stores.
Intergalactic Juice Hunter
As it did with its flagship Codename Superfan, Odd13 Brewing is testing different versions of Intergalactic Juice Hunter in its taproom and soliciting feedback online from the craft-beer community. Eventually, the brewery plans to release a year-round canned version of this beer, a hazy double IPA made with lactose. "We finally have a decently large contract for our favorite hop, Galaxy, and that's a big focus in this beer. We will probably spend some time fine-tuning the blend of the other hops in the beer," the brewery wrote on BeerAdvocate.com.
Voodoo Ranger Juicy Haze IPA
New Belgium Brewing
New Belgium Brewing is one of several major craft breweries jumping on the New England-style IPA craze by releasing its own versions of the style. New Belgium's has already debuted under the Voodoo Ranger brand. The brewery has also been working for a while now with smaller breweries that specialize in the style to help them get the chemistry right. "This medium-bodied, unfiltered IPA is packed with tropical aromas and big citrus flavors from a delicious blend of Citra hops combined with Cascade, Centennial, Simcoe and Nugget," the brewery says. "Voodoo Ranger Juicy Haze IPA pours pale orange with an opaque haze and bright white head. Vibrant lemon, orange, guava and pineapple notes are balanced with a light grassy and caramel-like malt aroma, giving the beer a sweet start that transitions into a smooth, bitter flavor."
Upslope is releasing three new bees this year in cans, although the first doesn't show up until March. That will be Experimental IPA, a 7 percent ABV IPA with a new recipe that will be offered year-round after the initial release. Experimental IPA gets aromas and bitterness from Denali, Azacca, Galaxy and Vic Secret hops, "imparting ripe passion fruit, pineapple and orange zest notes with a soft malt finish," the brewery says. The second beer, Rocky Mountain Kolsch, made with Colorado honey, sage and Mosaic and Lemondrop hops, debuts in May. The third is a mystery winter seasonal.
Boulder Beer Company
Irish Blessing, released by Boulder Beer Company on draft last February, will be canned for the first time this month, and both the original brewery (2880 Wilderness Place) and the new Boulder Beer on Walnut (1123 Walnut Street) will host roll-out parties starting at 5:30 p.m. For the first half-hour, Boulder Beer will give away free pints of the beer, an oak-aged coffee stout brewed with OZO Coffee and aged on Tullamore D.E.W. Irish whiskey-soaked oak chips. There will also be live music starting at 5:30 p.m. at the Pub on Wilderness and at 7 at Boulder Beer on Walnut.
Settle Down Brown Ale
Odell Brewing very quietly released a new brown ale in mid-December. The 6.5 percent ABV seasonal beer "has a rich malt flavor with complex tropical fruit and caramel notes," the brewery says. There aren't a lot of brown ales coming out these days, so perhaps this fills a hole in Odell's lineup.
Car Camper Gose
Great Divide Brewing
Like Left Hand Brewing, New Belgium and Odell, Great Divide has a handful of new beers in store for 2018. The brewery will start with a new limited-edition series of sours called the Wood Werks Barrel Series and follow up with several seasonals, including Vanilla Oak Aged Yeti, Heydey Modern IPA (Great Divide is recycling the Heydey name from a previous beer), the return of Rumbe Oak Aged IPA and Car Camper Gose. The last one will probably be the first to hit liquor stores in cans, however. This tart, German-style ale will be brewed with guava and passion fruit, and is likely to hit shelves in April, just in time for the warm-weather camping season.
Death Before Disco Porter and Left Hand IPA
Left Hand Brewing
Left Hand Brewing has been turning out new beers at a rapid rate over the past two years, and 2018 will be no exception. Among other beers, the company will introduce four new year-round offerings in cans. The first two, both debuting in January, are Left Hand IPA, "dominated by a blend of tropical fruit characteristics and citrus tang, and Death Before Disco, a 6 percent ABV porter brewed with roasted chocolate malt." Later in the year, Left Hand will can Juicy Goodness, a dry-hopped golden ale, and Colorful Colorado Pale Ale.
Free to Roam APA
Renegade Brewing will be an interesting one to follow this year after the brewery announced last November that it had sold a significant financial stake to a private investment company. The brewery has been revamping its canned lineup and is looking to add Free to Roam APA at some point in the new year.
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Berliner Weisse-Style Ale
Ska Brewing introduced its new Mod Project series last year by canning up limited runs of small-batch beers created on its pilot system. So far, most of the beers have been sour or tart styles, and that will be true of the next one as well, Berliner Weisse-Style Ale, a tangy, low-alcohol German-style wheat beer.
Mountain Haze New England Style IPA
River North Brewery
River North Brewery has been experimenting with New England-style IPAs for the past year or so, ever since it decided to drop its focus on Belgian-style beers. So far, the brewery has done a good job with the style and has now dialed in a recipe that it plans to add to its canned-beer lineup in March.