Six months after Crazy Mountain Brewing took over Breckenridge Brewery's longtime headquarters at 471 Kalamath Street, the Edwards-based beer maker is ready to bring barbecue and brews back to the public. Crazy Mountain will officially open its taproom and Texas-style barbecue joint on Friday, February 19.
The restaurant, called Crazy Mountain Tap Room + BBQ, will be operated by Beaver Creek-based Group970 Restaurants (which also runs Blue Moose Pizza in Vail and Beaver Creek). It will feature 24 taps, including fifteen to eighteen from Crazy Mountain and several guest taps, along with a menu centered around a massive smoker that Breckenridge Brewery left behind when it moved out.
“It's a pretty special machine, classic Americana,” says Group970 chef Jay McCarthy, who has a background in Texas barbecue. Made by Southern Pride sometime in the 1990s, the wood-burning smoker can handle 5,000 pounds of meat at a time. McCarthy plans to incorporate several of Crazy Mountain's beers into his recipes, including chicken wings, chile, baked potatoes and chili.
Breckenridge ran a North Carolina-style barbecue restaurant on the spot for many years, in addition to its primary brewing operation. The company moved to a twelve-acre, $36 million campus in Littleton last summer, selling all of its equipment to the company that leases to Crazy Mountain. Breckenridge was bought out by AB InBev in December.
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“It's so exciting that we are finally opening because we have met so many neighbors over the last month,” says Group970's Sarah Franke. “It's amazing the number of people who were regulars at Breckenridge that have stopped by. We are looking forward to bringing them something new."
In addition to the restaurant, which seats about fifty people, Crazy Mountain will operate a “speakeasy” down the hall, where it will sell growlers, cans and bottles. The room, decorated with hewn-log tables, has eight taps and will be open on Saturdays, when the brewery will offer free tours. People who want to buy growlers, cans and bottles at other times can do so by asking a staff member in the restaurant. (The reason for the separation is because Crazy Mountain and Group970 have different liquor licenses.)
Founded in Edwards in 2010 by Kevin and Marisa Selvy, Crazy Mountain had its eye on the location for several years. The brewery has already significantly ramped up production – using all of Breckenridge's old equipment – and is also contract brewing for other beer makers, including Stillwater and Omnipollo.
For this weekend, the restaurant will be open on Friday and Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and closed this Sunday. But regular hours after that will be 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.