Summer's over, but the canned beers never stop rolling off the lines in Colorado. Over the next few weeks, you'll be able to try at least five new canned beers from three breweries: Spice Trade, Good River and Lone Tree. The first two are canning their beers for the very first time, so they'll be new on the shelf.
Spice Trade Brewing is the new moniker for Yak & Yeti's brewing operation. The Arvada Nepalese restaurant has been brewing beer for years, but decided last year to get into the packaging game. The company is currently laying down plans for a production brewery and taproom in Arvada with a fifteen-barrel brewhouse, but in the meantime is packaging two beers at Crazy Mountain Brewing. The first is Chai Milk Stout, which is brewed with a secret family blend of chai spices; this beer won a silver medal at GABF in 2013. The second is Sun Temple IPA, a New England-style IPA fermented with a yeast strain that "has evolved in Northern Vermont breweries," Spice Trade says. It offers notes of "mango, peach and citrus flavors."
Good River Beer Company, which began contract-brewing in 2015 at Prost and is now with Sleeping Giant, will begin selling six-packs on October 2. The first beer is American Authentic Pilsner (named after the American River); it is described as a "clean, crisp, brilliantly clear lager that packs much more flavor than you might expect. The second beer is Class V Colorado IPA (inspired by paddling Class V rapids), an 8.5 percent double IPA with notes of citrus and pine. Good River will also package a limited amount of Fu Fighter Belgian Golden Ale, named for the Futaleufu River in Patagonia, Chile, in 750 ml champagne bottles.
And finally, Lone Tree Brewing is canning Vanilla Caramel Amber. "Originally developed on brewery co-founder John Winter's homebrew system, this beer’s autumnal flavors are created with crystal malt and Madagascar vanilla beans," Lone Tree says. "The caramel notes in Vanilla Caramel Amber come from a large amount of Crystal 60 malt in the grain bill; no other caramel or other sugar is added to this beer."
Wednesday, September 20
Bring your stein to the Intrepid Sojourner Beer Project for a 32-ounce pour of Irish Red, English ESB or Scottish 80 Shilling for the price of a regular pint. Or you can buy an Intrepid Sojourner-branded stein for $12 and get a free 32-ounce fill. They're also good for $5 fills of different beers each night during the brewery's Oktoberfest week, September 25-30. Go early, because there are only 72 steins available.
Copper Kettle taps a firkin of El Duderino Stout at 2 p.m. The beer is a double milk stout brewed with vanilla and whiskey barrel-aged coffee, as inspired by the White Russians drunk by the Dude in The Big Lebowski. Copper Kettle will be playing the movie all day, and anyone wearing a costume inspired by the movie will get $1 off.
Thursday, September 21
Hops & Pie will tap four beers brewed as part of the SOWN Beer Project's second wave of brews made with all-Colorado ingredients. Organized by Colorado's Troubadour Maltings and TRVE Brewing to highlight the differences of flavor, color and aroma that come from malt, the autumn SOWN beers were made by Goldspot Brewing, Little Machine Beer, Oskar Blues Brewery and TRVE Brewing.
Denver Beer Co. in Arvada hosts a kick-off party from 5 to 8 p.m. for Water Tower Wit, a beer made only at the brewery's Arvada location in collaboration with Arvada Mayor Marc Williams, who participated in the brewing process. The unveiling of the beer will serve as a fundraiser for the nonprofit Rocky Mountain Children’s Health Foundation in Arvada. For each pint, keg or Crowler sold, a portion of proceeds will be donated to the RMCHF. Water Tower Wit is a Belgian-style wheat beer brewed with lemon peel, sweet orange peel and coriander.
Friday, September 22
Spangalang Brewing releases four beers as part of its Harvest Festival to celebrate its favorite time of year. The first is the excellent Colorado Junction, which is back for a third iteration; this fresh-hop wild ale was fermented with Brettanomyces yeast to give it funky flavors, then aged on freshly harvested Colorado Chinook hops and Palisade peaches. The second beer is the more classic Fresh Hop IPA; brewed with Yakima Valley Simcoe hops, it has a grassy, fresh hop flavor and aroma. Then there's Concrete Peaks, a hoppy Oktoberfest-style lager that was brewed in collaboration with the Bronx Brewery in New York City. "We brewed a traditional Oktoberfest utilizing German malts and hops and added a little extra something in the form of aroma and dry-hopping with Mandarina Bavaria hops," the brewery says. And finally, Svitak's Autumn Freshener is an American Strong Ale created by home brewer Jen Svitak, who took home a medal for this beer earlier in the year. "Dark, malt forward, with a nice fruity yeast character, this beer is the perfect beverage to take us into the cooler months ahead," Spangalang says. Zivix Five Points will be offering food specials to go with the beers.
"It's been a long time coming, but we are so thrilled to be hosting our first-ever can release." That's the word from Cerebral Brewing, which will release a limited number of sixteen-ounce cans of both Strange Claw and Time Crystal at noon. Strange Claw IPA, at 6.2 percent ABV, was brewed with a blend of pale, pilsner and wheat malt with a touch of crystal malt, and hopped with an immense amount of Citra and Columbus. Time Crystal IPA, at 6. 8 percent ABV, was brewed with both malted and flaked oats and hopped with tons of Galaxy and a sprinkling of Amarillo. Cerebral should have 100 cases of Strange Claw and 50 of Time Crystal; they will cost $16 per four-pack with a limit of one case per person of Strange Claw and a half case per person of Time Crystal. Both will also be available on tap.
Strange Craft Beer Company made its Pumpkin Porter with 45 pounds of baking pumpkins, and it plans to tap the beer today in its taproom. The beer won't be bottled this year.
In April, Casey Brewing and Blending owner Troy Casey and his wife, Emily, each made a blend of Funky Blender selected from their favorite barrels. At 7 p.m., Goed Zuur will tap both blends, taste them blindly and ask people to judge which one is better. The beer bar will also have three additional stone-fruit beers on tap. "The last blend that Troy and Emily made together was Saison Blend 3, the so called 'Wedding Blend.' For that one, they each picked their favorite barrel of saison and made a blend for their wedding. Since then, Emily has never let a chance go by to remind Troy that she is the better blender, based solely on the fact that the Wedding Blend is extremely sought-after. They're asking for your help to decide, once and for all," Goed Zuur says.
Kokopelli Beer Company in Westminster brings out its favorite German-style beers starting at 11 a.m. and will go through the day and into the evening. There's Lederhosen Mock-toberfest, Mein Schatz Dunkelweizen and Alter Furz Alt.
Longmont Oktoberfest returns to Roosevelt Park today and tomorrow, showcasing ten independent craft Longmont breweries, two cideries, lots of food and ten bands, including headliner Reel Big Fish. The music begins Friday at 4 p.m. (FACE, followed by Andy Frasco & the U.N. and then Reel Big Fish). There will also be bratwurst-eating and stein-holding contests. Tickets, $10, are available at lefthandbrewing.com. The fest, which is produced by Left Hand Brewing, raises money for the I Have a Dream Foundation.
Saturday, September 23
Kyle Moyer, owner of the Crafty Fox Tap House and Pizzeria and Bogey's Beer & Wine, has pulled out all the stops for the brand-new Micro Brew Fest and IPA competition, which runs from 1 to 5 p.m. on four acres of land at 725 West 39th Avenue, just off Fox Street, near the light-rail station. There will be more than fifty breweries on hand, along with live music, yard games, food trucks and a gluten-free zone. In addition, brewers will be bringing their IP-”A” game for a competition: The winner gets a tap handle for a year at the Crafty Fox and some free ads on iHeartRadio’s Modern Eater and Modern Drinker radio shows, which are co-sponsoring the fest. The beers will be evaluated by six celebrity judges. Tickets, $35, are available at givebacktickets.com.
"Our Oktoberfest lager is fermenting. The maßkrüges are ready. The lederhosen and dirndls are washed and waiting," says Station 26 Brewing. The brewery will host its own Oktoberfest all day, with live music from the Polkanauts on the patio, brats and other food from Smokestack 70, and the brewery's special Oktoberfest lager.
It's Zwanze Day, the day that Cantillon, the esteemed Belgian lambic maker, releases a special beer all over the world called Zwanze. In Colorado, the only venue that is allowed to pour the beer is Crooked Stave, which will open up its production facility, the Barrel Cellar, for the event. Crooked Stave will also release magnums of its own beer. Doors will open at 10:30 a.m. with tickets first come, first served, but the line is likely to form many hours before that. Zwanze will be tapped at 1 p.m., and last call will be at 3 p.m. Only the first 150 people will get a pour of Zwanze, but there will be many other beers to enjoyed as well, including more from Cantillon and Crooked Stave. For all the details, go to Crooked Stave's Zwanze Day Facebook page.
Fermaentra Brewing will tap FÆRM FRÆSH, its fresh/wet-hop IPA at noon. "We made this one with whole, wet Cascade and Chinook hop cones in the whirlpool after boil and then also added wet hops after fermentation, recirculating between the fermenter and our hop back, to impart wonderful hop resin and leave behind the typical vegetal flavors associated with whole-cone hopping," the brewery says. "This produced a brilliant floral, dank, orange and lime citrus rind aroma unlike any other brew we have made.... We'd also like to note that the fresh hops, Pevec Pilsner malt, and fruit-forward yeast strain used in this IPA are all local, Colorado ingredients from High Wire Hops in Paonia, Troubadour Maltings in Fort Collins and Inland Island Yeast Laboratories."
Great Divide Brewing releases the sixth beer in its Local Knowledge Series: Colorado Fresh Hop, which uses all-Colorado ingredients. The hops come from High Wire Hops out of Paonia, while the malt is from Root Shoot Malting from Loveland, and the yeast comes from Denver's Inland Island Labs. Colorado Fresh Hop will be available on draft and in six packs of bottles at both the Ballpark and RiNo locations starting at noon. Local Knowledge is Great Divide’s hyper-limited pilot series. The single-batch pilot brews are exclusively available in the Denver taprooms and designed to give beer drinkers something new to take home each time they visit.
Jagged Mountain Brewery joins the Oktoberfest onslaught with a party and special: $16 gets you a limited-edition mug and two fills of any $6 beer on the menu. There will also be Jagged Mountain beer-poached brats.
Someplace Else Brewing in Arvada will honor its first year in business with A Year in Beer party. New beers will be tapped, including the "long-awaited" Seasonal Pumpkin. The Corner of Gourmet will be on hand, and local bands Zed and the Misled and St. Stevan will be providing live music.
The fifth annual Women of Colorado Craft Breweries Pinup Calendar will go on sale at a release party from 5 to 9 p.m. at Big Choice Brewing in Brighton. Produced by Copper Penny Photography, the calendar features women from Colorado breweries dressed up as pinup girls; this year, the pinups come from Big Choice, Echo Brewing, Factotum Brewhouse, Golden City Brewery, Holidaily Brewing, Goldspot, Left Hand, Mother Tucker Brewery, Something Brewery, Very Nice Brewing and Wibby Brewing. The party is free and the models will be on hand to sign calendars. There will be live music, vintage autos and food from the Chow Down food truck; the Hop Mobile Vintage Boutique will be there at 6:30 p.m. to sell vintage clothing and retro home goods.
Peak to Peak Tap & Brew in Aurora throws down with an all-day Oktoberfest that includes a masskrugstammen (stein-holding) contest at 6 p.m. For $15, you can get a commemorative 25-ounce Oktoberfest stein filled with beer, plus participation in the contest. Prizes include brewery swag and gift certificates. There will also be cornhole and hammerschlagen in the parking lot.
Locavore Beer Works rolls out its own Oktoberfest from 11 a.m to 11 p.m. with beer, games and food. Beer releases include: Das Litre Bier Märzen, Friend of the Devil Schwarzbier, Uberweizen German Hefeweizen, Smokey Joe Rauchbier, and Helles Yes Munich Helles. There's a saurkraut cookoff, a stein-holding contest, a costume contest and more. Contact the brewery for details.
Longmont Oktoberfest continues today at noon with a full day of festivities for all ages including a best-dressed contest, stein-holding contest and Longmont’s fifth year building the world’s longest bratwurst, at more than 300 feet. Enjoy a full day of live music with Rapidgrass, Bonnie & the Clydes, Gasoline Lollipops, Pandas & People, BIG Something, and Perpetual Groove headlining Saturday evening. There will be beer from ten independent Longmont breweries and two cideries, as well as plenty of food. Tickets, $10, are available at lefthandbrewing.com. The fest, which is produced by Left Hand Brewing, raises money for the I Have a Dream Foundation.
Purpose Brewing and Cellars, founded by Zach and Laura Wilson and longtime New Belgium Brewing head brewer and innovator Peter Bouckaert, will host its grand opening in Fort Collins from noon to 7 p.m. There will be special beer releases, food from the Tramp About, outdoor games and live music from Queen Bee and the Stingers and the Troubadour Sound System.
Wednesday, September 27
Strange Craft Beer will pair the five beers it's planning to take to the Great American Beer Festival with five unusual, domestic cheeses from Truffle Cheese Shop from 6 to 8 p.m. Tickers, $25, are on eventbrite.
Join Black Shirt Brewing, which kicks off five days of special beer tappings, live music and parties in honor of its fifth anniversary. The brewery will tap a TBA vintage brew tonight.
Thursday, September 28
Comrade Brewing taps Saphir Smash Pale Ale at noon. This single hop and single malt American pale ale was brewed with Colorado-grown Genie Pale malt from Loveland. "We've hopped it with German Saphir for floral and spicy herbal noble hop aromatics and dry-hopped for good measure," the brewery says.
Join Dustin Hall of the Brewtography Project, along with Call to Arms Brewing, at Hotel Teatro, where Hall will host an opening reception for his photography, which will be on display there through December 1. A Denver-based home brewer and photographer, Hall was able to combine his passions in the past few years, capturing thousands of behind-the-scenes images at more than one hundred Colorado breweries; the best of these works have just been published in a huge coffee-table book called Discovering Colorado Breweries. To celebrate, Hall, Call to Arms and Rocky Mountain Barrel Company collaborated on a beer called Beautiful Impression, which will be tapped at 7 p.m.; it's a farmhouse ale that was aged in oak barrels with Brettanomyces yeast and has "notes of guava, pineapple and orange zest, with a balance of soft vanilla from the oak," the brewery says. The beer will continue to be on tap at hotel and at the Nickel, the restaurant inside the hotel. This is Hall's first solo exhibition and was timed to coincide with the Great American Beer Festival, which takes place October 5 to 7 at the Colorado Convention Center. Hall will sign and sell books there. Backed on Kickstarter by more than 300 people and businesses, the book’s printing is a result of a lot of community support.
Join Black Shirt Brewing, which continues its five-day-long fifth-anniversary party by tapping Pistachio & Lavender Rye Pale Ale (200 Crowlers will be available to go).
Friday, September 29
Local brewery photographer Dustin Hall and Call to Arms Brewing will return to Hotel Teatro to celebrate the installation of the Brewtography Project artwork on the hotel's concourse level (see Thursday). The exhibition will include Hall’s behind-the-scene photos; for $5, guests can get a pint and a print from the collection.
Grandma is old. But Grandma's House is only three, and the brewery and time capsule will celebrate all weekend long. Some of the activities include birthday beer releases, a thrift-store fashion show, a balloon-animal artist, Tarot card readings and, of course, mid-day naps.
Black Shirt Brewing is in the midst of a five-day fifth-anniversary party. Today it taps its Fifth Anniversary Beer, a 5 percent ABV hazy IPA that was hopped five times with more than five pounds of BSB's favorite hop varieties per barrel; there will also be a free concert from the Hashtones and Kid Reverie.
Verboten Brewing in Loveland will release Little Nonsense, its fantastic bourbon-barrel-aged imperial oatmeal stout (and one of my favorites from the Big Beers Festival in January). This 11 percent ABV monster won a bronze medal last year at GABF. It will be available on draft and in twelve-ounce bottles.
Saturday, September 30
River North Brewery, known for its Belgian beers during the first few years of its existence, continues to expand into other realms. This year, the brewery has made its first Oktoberfest-style Marzen lager and will celebrate with an Oktoberfest party. The beer, which is "unlike anything we've brewed before," the brewery says, spent a full two months in production, "for a proper malty meal-in-a-glass" feel. River North will have custom steins for the occasion, brats and other fare by Matt's Snack Shack, and traditional German tunes on the speakers. Snag two half-liter pours and keep the glass for $18.
Fiction Beer Company has brewed more than ninety different styles of beers and two hundred batches of beer over the three years it has been open. To celebrate its third anniversary, the brewery will host a party that includes special glassware, a literary character photo booth, prizes, live music from 5 to 8 p.m., a dunk-the-brewer event, and several guest taps, featuring beers from Caution Brewing, Cerebral, Chain Reaction, Odd13, Ursula and Strange Craft. Fiction will also sell bottles of some special anniversary beers, including: Barrel Aged Feely Efftects Green Tea Milk Chocolate Imperial Stout; Mexican Chocolate Feely Effects; Orange Blossom Feely Effects; Buffalo Trace Bourbon Barrel Aged Awaken the Intellect, Bourbon Barrel Aged Cold Brewed Coffee Bean Cream Ale (collaboration with Molly's Spirits).
Strawberry Milkshake IPA. That's what is coming at you from Station 26 Brewing, which will sell 150 Crowlers of this experimental beer today and another 150 tomorrow (limit three per person). The brewery describes it as being "Brewed with malt from our friends at Root Shoot Malting plus wheat, oats, and lactose. Fermented with our house English yeast, then conditioned atop 420 pounds of strawberry puree and 150 vanilla beans, and finally dry hopped with a blend of Citra and El Dorado." It will be on tap as well.
Black Shirt Brewing continues its five-day fifth-anniversary party by tapping some cellar beers; there will also be live music from Montropo, Secret Creatures, Animal Electricity and High St. Collective.
Every year on the Saturday before the Great American Beer Festival, Our Mutual Friend Brewing takes the opportunity to celebrate its fans (and its anniversary) with Gratitude, an event honoring friendship. "We wouldn't be where we are today without the support of our customers, friends, family and countless people in the craft beer industry," the brewery says. For the party, there will be a photo booth, beer specials, food trucks, music, merchandise giveaways and the release of Gratitude 4, a pink guava saison, in bottles. There will also be more than twenty beers on tap, including: Broken Time Blackberry Golden (a collaboration with Spangalang that is in bottles); Gruppetto Tiramisu Imperial Stout (in Crowlers); Gratitude 4; Proletariat Session Ale; Camisado Cream Ale; Sur Framboise Belgian Sour Wit on Raspberries; Wicket Belgian Wit; Cherry Gose; Wierding Way; Inner Light Pale Wheat; Zero Sum IPA; Brown Ale; Novo Coffee Stout; Belgian Porter on Nitro; Brave Little Grisette.
Declaration Brewing has renovated its already stellar beer garden so that it now includes "a legal dog patio," so that "your best buddy can join you for a cold one," the brewery says. (Breweries were told last year by the City of Denver that they have to follow certain guidelines in order for patios to welcome dogs.) The dog patio is wrapped with donated bicycle parts making up an artistic custom fence and includes a pet cleanup area. To celebrate the new patio, Declaration has teamed up with the Denver Dumb Friends League to throw a party that includes dog adoptions booths, the Gyros Kings food truck and a dog-treat cart by Smart Cookie Barkery. Live music begins at 2 p.m. with Zack Maruniak, and Kindred Soulz go on at 4 p.m. Several beers will be designated as fundraisers for the Dumb Friends League, and $1 of each designated pint sold will go to the nonprofit.
Lone Tree Brewing brings back its popular seasonal, Hop Zombie Imperial Red IPA, which will be sold on draft and in bomber bottles. The brewery says the beer is its most anticipated release of the year and typically sells out within a day. "It’s a complex, bold IPA that’s deep red in color, with rich malt character balanced by huge hop flavor and aroma created by eight different hops," Lone Tree says. "Hop Zombie is a beer brewed to bring you back from the grave, weighing in at 8.9 percent ABV and 90 IBUs."
Two Penguins Tap & Grill in Centennial hosts an Oktoberfest party that is says is overflowing with authentic German-style Oktoberfest beer from Bierstadt Lagerhaus. Each admission includes access to the event, a commemorative stein, two beer tickets and one snack ticket. Anyone showing proof of transportation via Uber or Lyft upon arrival will get one extra ticket of his or her choice. There will be contests, including a stein-hoisting competition and a costume contest.
Outer Range Brewing in Frisco will hold the next in its popular series of limited can releases at noon. This time, the brewery will release Forestry IPA and Blocks of Light IPA; there are about 100 cases of each, and four-packs are $16. Whole Foods Market will be grilling on the patio from noon to 3 p.m. There will live music, as well.
Sunday, October 1
Black Shirt Brewing wraps up its five-day-long fifth-anniversary party today with a pig roast and bluegrass music from the High Desert Band; there will be a variety of beers on tap, including the brewery's fifth-anniversary beer, a 5 percent ABV hazy IPA that was hopped five times with more than five pounds of BSB's favorite hop varieties per barrel. For tickets, $23, go to the brewery's Facebook page.
De Steeg Brewing and Lady Justice Brewing have teamed up to create a collaboration beer that supports STEM programs for girls in Colorado. Tipping its hat to STEM, Avogadro's Fractal Tripel offers: "Science! Avogadro's number, 6.022x10^23, inspired our Original Gravity prior to the agave (1.06022) and our hop addition (23oz);
Technology! Brewed using custom software on a touchscreen; Engineering! Brewed by an engineer on a custom engineered brew rig; Math! The addition of agave and pineapple are representatives of naturally occurring fractals," according to Lady Justice. The beer will be tapped at De Steeg at 2 p.m.
4 Noses Brewing in Broomfield and New Image Brewing in Arvada present the first Party Bus, which will take drinkers between the two breweries, where they will be able to try an unusual collaborative effort. Instead of making different versions of the same beer, the two breweries have made completely different beers that fans can mix together. 4 Noses has brewed a Pale Ale with Motueka and Galaxy hops and New Image brewed a Sour Ale with orange juice and orange zest. More info and bus tickets are available at nightout.com.
With GABF rapidly approaching, Backcountry Pizza & Taphouse in Boulder is once again pulling out all the stops for its annual Sour Sunday starting at 10 a.m. "You can expect to see the largest selection of some of the rarest sours to come to this great state on tap," Backcountry says. Some of the expected breweries are: Almanac, Alvinne, American Solera, Arizona, Avery, Beachwood, Birrificio Del Ducato, BFM, Cascade, Casey, Crooked Stave, Firestone Walker, Funkwerks, Hansen's, OEC, Jester King, Jolly Pumpkin, La Cumbre, LoverBeer, New Belgium, Paradox, Pure Project, Russian River, Scratch, Trinity, TRVE, Two Roads.
Head to Lafayette for the Lupulin Fiasco from 1 to 9 p.m. at Romero's K9 Club & Taphouse, which has quickly become a Boulder County destination for beer geeks. To honor GABF, Romero's is offering a "bangin' lineup of some of the stickiest hop-centric treats from around the country...everything from pale ales and IPAs to dry-hopped saisons and sours." In addition, there will be hip-hop on the speakers and "Co2 extracted hop terpenes will be on showcase for sensory immersion, and there's more to be announced," the taphouse says. Featured breweries Include Alesong Brewing, Beachwood BBQ, Boneyard Beer, Breakside Brewery, Cerebral Brewing, Fort George Brewery, Half Acre Beer Company, Jack's Abby Craft Lagers, Jackie O's Brewpub & Public House, Jester King Brewery, Lawson's Finest Liquids, MadTree Brewing, Melvin Brewing, Odd13 Brewing, Outer Range Brewing, Rhinegeist and Societe Brewing.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.