Beer Man

Craft beer calendar: two brewery openings, a festival and a host of tappings

New Belgium Brewing is rolling out its new look on a wide scale this month, after having introduced bits and pieces of it last year. The "portfolio-wide packaging refresh...reimagines New Belgium's iconic and playful watercolor imagery from the past 22 years through a modern lens," the Fort Collins company says. The new artwork, by Leah Giberson of San Francisco's Hatch Design, replaces the easily recognizable work of Ann Fitch, who is the neighbor of New Belgium co-founder Kim Jordan.

Turn the page for all of this week's craft beer events.

Wednesday, January 8

Star Bar will host Cory King, the head brewer for St. Louis-based Perennial Brewing, at 6 p.m. tonight for a mini-tap takeover. King will be on hand to talk about the beers, including Aria, a Belgian-style ale with brettanomyces; Heart of Gold, a wheat wine; Hereafter, a Belgian golden ale with Missouri pears and white sage; Fete de Noel, a Belgian strong dark; and Abraxas, an imperial stout with cacao nibs, Ancho chiles, vanilla beans and cinnamon.

January is New Year's Resolutions cask month at the Copper Kettle. Each Wednesday, the brewery will tap a different cask made with a different ingredient. Today's resolution is to reduce stress, so try a pint of Holy Basil IPL, an India Pale Lager made with the stress-reducing herb holy basil, adding a light scent of mint and cloves.

Thursday, January 9

Epic Brewing will be tapping Old Sage Brett, its elegant and unusual Utah Sage Saison aged in Chardonnay barrels that were previously used to age Brainless on Peaches. There are only two kegs, so the beer won't last more than a couple of days.

The Post Brewing, the long-anticipated new chicken-and-beer joint in Lafayette, is scheduled to open today at 4 p.m. Owned by the Big Red F group and run by one of its chefs, the Post also boasts brewmaster Bryan Selders, formerly of Dogfish Head.

Station 26 Brewing, which just opened in December, ‏will debut a new weekly firkin program today by tapping coffee red IPA, made with coffee from Novo, a local roaster. Next week, it will tap a red IPA with chipotle peppers and cacao nibs.

The fourteenth annual Big Beers, Belgians and Barleywines Festival kicks off today in Vail, featuring dinners, tastings, seminars and other events, along with hobnobbing with craft-beer celebrities and brewers. Tickets are still available for some events, but they are going fast. For information, go to the Big Beers web site.

Friday, January 10

Kokopelli Beer Company in Westminster will hold its grand opening at 2 p.m. today with six of its own beers on draft, including a milk stout, an IPA, an American pale and an English pale, along with a couple ciders and a sour from other brewers. The brewpub will also be serving Austrian pretzels, appetizers and pizzas.

J Wells Brewery in Boulder will celebrate its one-year anniversary today from 4 to 9 p.m. with seven beers on tap.

Crazy Mountain Brewery in Edwards turns four years old today and is throwing a birthday party that includes beer toasts at noon, 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.; if you're on hand, you'll get a complimentary glass of beer. At 6 p.m., there will also be live music by Denver Blues/Rock/Funk band, Leung and The Wreck, along with homemade comfort food from the Crazy Wagon food truck.

Grimm Brothers Brewhouse in Loveland will release 7 Ravens Schwarzbier today in its taproom. The winter seasonal is a variant of a Munich Dunkel. "Sometimes referred to as a black pilsner, this beer is rarely that dark and doesn't have strong roasted or porter-like flavors," the brewery says. "7 Ravens keeps with German tradition and is balanced throughout combining subtle, smooth roast malt flavors with hints of caramel."

Tuesday, January 14

Crooked Stave will begin selling bottles of Nightmare on Brett, one of its sour ales, today at 5 p.m. Bottles are $12 each (cash only) with a six-bottle limit. At 6 p..m., the brewery will tap its final keg of Galaxy dry-hopped Hop Savant.

January is beer month at Euclid Hall, and the restaurant kicks things of today with Brew Bites, an every-Tuesday event in which it will pair three two-ounce pours of selected beers with three bite-sized snacks from thekitchen for $12.50. Today's pairing (the deal runs from 3 p.m. to close) is called "Big Bad Ass," and features Anchor OBA American Strong Ale, Dogfish Head Raison D'etre Belgian Strong Dark, and Ommegang Take the Black Stout.

For more events later in January, turn the page.

Diebolt Brewing in Sunnyside has initiated an experimental, presale bottle club called Bottled Lightning. For $125, members (and there are only 100 memberships available) get twelve 22-ounce bottles of experiment, one-off ales await you, one per month throughout 2014. Bottled Lightning Club members also get ten percent off all beer and merchandise at the brewery for the year.

Wednesday, January 15

January is New Year's Resolution cask month at the Copper Kettle, and today, the brewery will be serving No Bitterness Ale, a mild ale made with all finishing hops, for a ultra low IBU rating.

Thursday, January 16

Breckenridge Brewery will throw a kickoff party for its newest bottled beer, Ophelia today from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Irish Rover. Ophelia is a wheat beer, but has been supercharged with Mosaic hops. There will complimentary appetizers.

Friday, January 17

TRVE Brewing will tap Decibrew today at 7:06 p.m., which the brewery made in conjunction with the "Brewtal Truth" column in Decibel magazine. The beers is described as "a burly German weizenbock brewed under the sign of evil...the name loosely translates as 'wheat goat.' The bock style originated as a strong lager, but this is actually a strong wheat ale and the special Bavarian yeast used to brew it produces some interesting flavors. It is a hefty, malty 7 percent ABV beast of a beer."

Saturday, January 18

Epic Brewing will host a coffee and beer workshop today in conjunction with Imbibe Denver, the Colorado Brewers Guild and the Craft Coffee Alliance. Brewed, as it is called, runs from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and will be led by coffee roasters and brewers; participants will learn about coffee, beer and coffee beers; then, they'll get to play with blending them. Tickets are $15.

World of Beer in Glendale will host its first-ever Sour Night tonight with more than twenty sour and wild ales on tap, including some rare ones. Customers can buy beer by the glass, or buy a ticket, $50 in advance or $60 the day of, and get unlimited four-ounce samplings of these beers. Several brewery owners and representatives will be coming in throughout the day to showcase their beers, which include: Russian River Consecration, Temptation and Supplication; New Belgium La Folie; Green Flash Little Freak; Jolly Pumpkin Luciernaga; Bear Republic Tartare; Aspen Cougar; Elevation Engel Weiss; Cuvee de Jacobin's Rouge; The Bruery Oude Tart, Rueuze and Tart of Darkness; Odell Sour Mash; Wynkoop Brewjolais Nouveau; and Trinity 7 Day Sour.

Cannonball Creek Brewing in Golden will celebrate its one-year anniversary today from noon to 10 p.m. with multiple new beers on tap, including a collaboration with the Colorado School of Mines Homebrew Club, and an anniversary beer. There will also be food from Quiero Arepas and Basic Kneads Pizza, and live music from Modern Whiskey Market and the Lookout Mountain Boys.

Caution Brewing West, which opened in Lakewood in December, will celebrate its grand opening today with a party from noon to 10 p.m. complete with beer specials, food trucks and entertainment. More details TBA.

Left Hand Brewing and Murray's Cheese/King Soopers will join together today for a beer and cheese tasting from 1 to 4 p.m. at the brewery's Longmont tasting room. Guests will get private experience that includes four four-ounce beers and array of Murray's cheeses. Tickets, $25 are available on Left Hand's website; all proceeds will be donated to the Left Hand Brewing Foundation to benefit flood relief. The first fifty people to buy tickets will get a Colorado Flood Relief pint glass and sticker.

Sunday, January 19

Hogshead Brewery will tap the second in its Beer From the Wood series today at 2 p.m. Birth Of, an East India porter, will be served straight from the firkin.

Tuesday, January 21

January is beer month at Euclid Hall. During Brew Bites, an every Tuesday event from 3 p.m. to close, Euclid will pair three two-ounce pours of selected beers with three bite-sized snacks from the kitchen for $12.50. Today's pairing is called "Show Us Your Pucker Pace," and features Petrus Sour Pale, Bear Republic Tartare Berliner-style Weisse, and Trinity Red Swingline IPA Primitif.

The two-day annual Winter Brew Fest kicks off today at Mile High Station with about 45 breweries and cideries in attendance, roughly thirty of which are from Colorado. The hours are 7 to 10 p.m. both days. General admission tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door (although they will likely sell out beforehand), cash only,and include unlimited tastings and a souvenir glass. VIP tix are $40 and $45 and get you in an hour early (at 6 p.m.) and include Mouco cheeses paired with a beer. There will also be live local music, food, and other vendors. This event benefits Swallow Hill Music Association.

Saturday, January 25

River North Brewery and Mr. B's Wine and Spirits have teamed up again, collaborating on a second release in their B-Side barrel-aging project. Today, the two businesses will each begin selling B-Side Avarice, a new take on River North's Belgian-style Imperial Stout, aged for one year in freshly emptied rye whiskey barrels. Only thirty cases were bottles, so the beer will only be available at the brewery and Mr. B's. River North's release party starts at 1 p.m. Mr. B's will release additional bottles later this afternoon.

The annual Winter Brew Fest continues today from 7 to 10 p.m. at Mile High Station. See above for details.

Thursday, January 30

The Warwick Hotel is hosting a winter beer tasting today with Colorado Springs-based Bristol Brewing that will include Smokebrush Porter and Winter Warlock Oatmeal Stout; hors d'oeuvres will be served. Tickets are $20 and can be reserved by calling 303-318-7272; the event will be held on the 15th floor of the hotel.

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Jonathan Shikes is a Denver native who writes about business and beer for Westword.
Contact: Jonathan Shikes