Denver's Best Craft Beer Events From November 27 to December 13 | Westword

Beer Calendar: Be Thankful for Black Friday Beer Insanity

Read about Black Friday beer specials, Small Brewery Sunday and other beery happenings.
Chain Reaction Brewing is Denver is the epitome of a small brewery doing things from scratch.
Chain Reaction Brewing is Denver is the epitome of a small brewery doing things from scratch. Chain Reaction Brewing
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Black Friday. Small Business Saturday. Cyber Monday. How about Small Brewery Sunday? The Boulder-based Brewers Association is moving in on the post-Thanksgiving holiday madness with its own inaugural holiday on December 1 "to encourage beer lovers to support craft brewers and seek the independent craft brewer seal, a certified mark that identifies beer brewed by independent brewers."

“Every dollar a beer lover spends at a craft brewery, and buying their craft beer at stores and restaurants, fuels a small business and supports the economic health of its local community,” says BA craft-beer program director Julia Herz. “Small Brewery Sunday gives us beer lovers a formal reminder that when we buy a growler, Crowler, six-pack or pint, we are supporting small brewery businesses and helping them keep their doors open, lights on and fermentation tanks full.”

The craft-brewing industry contributed $79.1 billion to the U.S. economy and provided 559,545 total jobs, the BA noted in its 2018 Economic Impact Report. In addition to providing jobs and a space for community building, craft brewers also support tens of thousands of nonprofits and charitable organizations. According to the Brewers Association, craft brewers gave an estimated $92.6 million to charitable organizations in 2018.

Keep reading to see craft-beer tappings into mid-December.

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Baere Brewing
Wednesday, November 27
This year's hyper-peach-packed Palisade Peach Table Sour from Baere Brewing will be available starting today for a limited time on tap and in bottles to go. As such, the brewery says it will will be opening early and closing late "for all you pre-Thanksgiving Day party people," with 20 percent off all sales of to-go beer.

For the first time, Renegade Brewing will release cans of Depravity on a day other than New Year's Eve. The chocolate-y peanut butter beer is made with real candy. The party starts at 3 p.m. and the beer will be available on tap an in four-packs during the afternoon while supplies last.

As is its tradition, Strange Craft Beer Company will tap its Sweet Potato and Green Chile Wheat Ale at 2 p.m., and will also host a massive chili potluck party, so bring your taste buds and some Tums.

Goldspot Brewing taps Figgy Pudding, a Belgian brown ale made with figs, at 3 p.m. The beer is a collaboration with Bruz Beers and features "a yeast blend adding notes of cherries, prunes, plums and light spice complimented by the juicy and complex fig puree." The beer will be available at both breweries.

Join Old 21 Brewhouse in Lakewood for the the tapping of Bourbon Barrel Aged English Porter, a collaboration with Dustin Hall from The Brewtography Project. Aged in a Bear Creek Distillery Wheated Bourbon barrel, the beer is "rich, oaky, and delicious," the brewery says.

Dead Hippie Brewing taps Strawberry Cream Ale, "a bright session beer made with twenty pounds of strawberries that were added to the mash and boiled with a little lactose; then some strawberry puree was pitched into the fermenter," the brewery says. The beer is part of the Traveling One Barrel Wednesdays program, so it will also be tapped at Strange Craft, Black Sky and Chain Reaction.

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Wiley Roots Brewing
Thursday, November 28
Eat, party and take a looong nap. Then get up again for Wiley Roots Brewing's 11:59 p.m. release of fifty Black Friday Midnight on the Run box sets to the first fifty people who line up at the Greeley brewery. The box sets, which cost $100 each, include a Black Friday handmade wooden box, one signed Midnight on the Run sixteen-ouince can, one signed Barrel Aged Du Hast Cake twelve-ounce can, one four-pack of Midnight on the Run (sixteen-ounce cans), and one four-pack of Barrel Aged Du Hast Cake (twelve ounces). If you manage to land a box, the price also includes four-ounce pours of Midnight on the Run and Barrel Aged Du Hast Cake. The brewery will also have Midnight glassware and shirts for sale. At noon the next day, Wiley Roots will release all of the remaining beer. For details on the deal, along with a variety of other beers for sale, go the Facebook event page.

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Fiction Beer Company
Friday, November 29
Falling Rock Tap House has checked its cellar and located some rare treats for Black Friday. They include Deschutes Brewery Black Butte XXVI, Dogfish Head World Wide Stout 2010, Elevation Beer Company Coconut Oil Man, Firestone Walker Parabola, Great Divide Brewing Big Yeti, and Los Abbey Serpents Stout 2015.

Join Baere Brewing once again for Black RyeDay, its annual celebration of dark beer. "We've really outdone ourselves this go-around with the titular beer," the brewery says. "We pumped up this year's batch of Black RyeDay to over 11 percent ABV and have a very limited amount of a very delicious chocolate variation." Baere's "annual ode to Democracy Now! and independent journalism worldwide, War and Peace Report, will also be gracing the taps, along with a never-before sipped-on Palisade Peach variation of Duplicitous." There will also be a limited amount of pumpernickel bagels from Moe's Bagels to pair with the beer.

Comrade Brewing brings back Quit Stalin Russian Imperial Stout, which is brewed with Chinook, Azacca and Centennial hops. "Toffee and chocolate aromas dominate," the brewery says, while the 8.3 percent ABV beer is "lightly sweet, full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a subtle smoky finish and just enough bitterness to balance out the malt sweetness."

Fiction Beer Company taps seven culinary-inspired stouts at noon. "We’ve crafted these variants with flavors and ingredients that provide the ultimate sensory stout experience," the brewery says. The beers are Steep Imperial Coffee Stout with lavender petals; Steep with chaga and lion's mane mushrooms; Steep with guajillo and pasilla negro chile powders; a version with coconut and vanilla; and another with molasses, cinnamon, ginger and allspice. There will also be two kinds of Feely Effects Green Tea Milk Chocolate Stout Variants: Macadamia Nut and Figgy Pudding with fig, raisin, current and plum. Deputy Spudslinger will have food.

Woods Boss Brewing taps its holiday seasonal, Magical Narwhal Candy Cane Unicorn Stout. There will also be Black Friday merchandise sales.

River North Brewery taps Hello Darkness at its new taproom in River North at noon. This was the first beer to come out of the brewery's original brewery in 2012, and now it's back to honor the new space. Hello Darkness is brewed with Simcoe, Cascade and Mosaic hops.

Epic Brewing opens early on Black Friday to provide a refuge from the madness. The brewery will have half of its new Baptist variants on tap (chocolate, peanut butter, hazelnut, etc.), as well as other special releases and unique brewery tours. Migration Taco will be on hand with brunch and tacos all day.

Burns Family Artisan Ales will tap a brand-new beer called I Hate Shopping at noon. The beer is a Black IPA "for the masses," the brewery says, and should help ease the holiday shopping burden.

Say goodbye to Nightfall of Diamonds (formerly known as Dark Star) and hello to Hell Bear Imperial Stout, a new concoction from Station 26 Brewing, which celebrates Black Friday every year with dark and barrel-aged beers. Hell Bear was made in partnership with Mythology Distillery, which provided Station 26 with several barrels that held its Hell Bear American Whiskey. The beer will be available on tap and in 22-ounce bottles. The brewery will also tap eight non-barrel-aged versions of its imperial stout, all made with adjuncts or flavorings.
They are: Mint Chocolate Imperial Stout, Honey Chamomile Imperial Stout, Manhattan Imperial Stout, Pistachio- Almond Imperial Stout, Mexican Chocolate Imperial Stout, Coconut Coffee Imperial Stout, Bruschetta Imperial Stout, and Thanksgiving Imperial Stout. There will also be a custom Teku glass deal. Station 26 will have food trucks on hand. No tickets required. Doors open at 11 a.m.

Copper Kettle Brewing raids its cellar for a Black Friday Cellar Release starting at noon. "We will be releasing a limited amount of our aged Well Bred and Snowed In beers," the brewery says. "Taproom opens at noon so come early and get ’em! Some of these babies have been waiting years for this release."

Joyride Brewing taps this year’s batches of its Naughty and Nice Porters, along with bourbon barrel-aged versions of both beers. These spent close to two years in freshly dumped barrels from Breckenridge Distillery.
Naughty is a Cherry Chocolate Robust Porter made with sweet and tart cherry puree and roasted cocoa nibs from Ecuador. Nice is a Vanilla Robust Porter, created with a blend of vanilla beans.

Cerveceria Colorado will tap Seven Bridges Hibiscus Juicy Pale Ale. The beer is a collaboration between Denver Beer Co., Dos Luces Brewing and seven Mexican craft breweries. It was made with Simcoe, Mosaic, and Centennial hops "for a full rounded hop profile of tropical fruit, citrus, pine and passionfruit," the brewery says. "Brewed with blue corn and jamaica (hibiscus) flowers, it carries a nice red color with a slight tartness."

Westfax Brewing in Lakewood releases two barrel-aged beers, an imperial stout and three small-batch dark beers  — Maple Coffee Stout at 2 p.m.; Peanut Butter Imperial Stout at 4; and Mole Stout at 6 — as part of its Black Friday Dark Beer & Vinyl event. At 7 p.m., Something Vinyl Club will be spinning records and will have vinyl available to purchase and/or to play (or bring your own).

Join Grimm Brothers Brewhouse in Loveland for its first Black Bier Friday, starting at 10 a.m. "Ditch the shopping crowds and have some breakfast beers," says the brewery, which will tap five of its favorite dark beers, along with The Dude Abides in cans for the first time. The five are: Midnight Strikes Swarzbier, The Dude Abides White Russian Stout, The Owl Smoked Porter, Black Bull Baltic Porter, and Black IPA Cascadian Dark Ale. For $15 you get a flight of all five, plus a free doughnut from Peace Love and Little Donuts.

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Comrade Brewing
Saturday, November 30
Join John Frank, author of Beer Lover's Colorado, and Dustin Hall, photographer/author of Discovering Colorado Breweries, at Call to Arms Brewing from noon to 3 p.m. Stop by for a tasty brew, support local, small business, and pick up some uniquely Colorado gifts, great for any craft beer lover.

The second iteration of the Brewery Bus Loop revs up at 2 p.m., with two buses running continuously between Comrade Brewing, Platt Park Brewing, Copper Kettle and Alternation. The bus starts at Copper Kettle, but you can hop on at any of the breweries. It's $5 to ride all day! Stop at all four and get a coupon for a free beer.

Put your dancing shoes on and find your best ugly sweater for Dry Dock Brewing's annual Ugly Sweater Party, which kicks off at 5 p.m. at the the Aurora brewery's South Dock location on Hampden Avenue. There will be an ornament-crafting class, dancing, a DJ and food truck. And the brewery releases all of its winter beers.

Sunday, December 1
Powder Session IPA makes a comeback at Comrade Brewing at 1 p.m. This 5.3 ABV IPA is loaded with Citra and Simcoe Cryo Hop pellets "for a crisp and refreshing citrus finish," Comrade says.

Tuesday, December 2
Seedstock Brewery taps its Bohemian Barn Beer, which it calls a "pre-lager lager. Fermented cold, this style was the most popular beer in Prague before lagers." Seedstock's version has "a malty-sweet aroma, with a slight hint of melon. It gets its sweet and rich mouthfeel from the Vienna malt, but the Saaz hops really shine through with a spicy, peppery finish." In addition, there will be a book signing from 7 to 8 p.m. by journalist John Frank, author of the Beer Lover's Guide to Colorado (Seedstock's Bohemian Ale home-brew recipe is included in the book).

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Upslope Brewing
Thursday, December 5
Upslope Brewing in Boulder gets into the holiday spirit from 5 to 9 p.m. at its original Lee Hill location with an ugly sweater party and the annual release of its highly sought-after Wild Christmas Ale. This time, the brewery has taken its regular Christmas Ale and and matured it in oak casks with our house sour culture for one year before racking it onto more than 1,000 pounds of Colorado-grown red plums to re-ferment for eight weeks. It has "aromas of mellow oak, orange peel, and baking spices, backed by deep, juicy plum flavor and a pleasantly tart finish," the brewery says. Try it on tap or take some home in 19.2-ounce cans. You can also buy verticals of previous versions of Wild Christmas Ale with cranberries, black raspberries and Balaton cherries.

Friday, December 6
The Empourium Brewing Company on Tennyson Street taps Cotton Headed Ninny Muggins, a winter warmer made with 120 pounds of raw maple syrup straight from Vermont. Little Reds Kitchen will be serving up an Elf-themed holiday menu including "the four main food groups." Bring in a new and unwrapped toy for this First Friday to be donated to Toys for Tots and get your first pour of Cotton Headed Ninny Muggins free.

Cerebral Brewing will also debut its first-ever winter warmer, Winter Halo, a 9.2 percent ABV ale brewed with a wide variety of malts, wheat, oats, CTZ and Kent Goldings hops, ginger and cinnamon. It will be available on draft and in four-packs to go. Cerebral will also have new cans of Time Crystal, a 6.8 percent ABV IPA made with Galaxy, Simcoe and Strata hops; and Tactical Maneuver Foeder Helles.

Copper Kettle
hosts the release of Cafe Con Leche, starting at noon. The 5.6 percent ABV beer is a milk stout made with rich coffee and vanilla, and will be available in six-packs and on draught.

TRVE Brewing will beef up its annual holiday program, TRVE Gives a Shit, by adding some new activities. In addition to the sweater sale/auction (in which all proceeds go to charity), there will be a coat drive (bring a coat, get a beer), a TRVE-themed holiday photo booth, coal for everyone (of course), and a visit from Krampus. The mayhem starts at 7 p.m.

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Raices Brewing
Saturday, December 7
Our Mutual Friend Brewing will celebrate its seventh anniversary with some new and favorite beers, packaged releases and an Anniversary Double IPA. More details are TBA.

You'll find Sea Creatures and New England Beers at TRVE Brewing staring at noon as the brewery welcomes in their homies "from the spooky state of Maine to the Queen City of the West. High Roller Lobster Company is air mailing some  "fresh-as-hell sea creatures so they can dole out some of the best lobster rolls in the country," TRVE says. In addition, TRVE will tap six beers from craft beer darling Bissell Brothers.

Celebrate "the official birth of our community, multicultural brewery with a ribbon-cutting with Mayor Michael B. Hancock and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Denver," says Raices Brewing, which is hosting a grand-opening celebration. There will be live music, beer, food trucks and activities all day long.

Join Burns Family Artisan Ales for a candle-lit intimate evening release of the 2019 Buche de Noel Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout. Aged ten months in a Breckenridge Bourbon barrel, this year's Buche de Noel "is a holiday keeper," the brewery says. "Clocking in at 15.5 percent ABV, it'll warm your winter bones — perfect for sipping under a warm blanket or cellaring." The beer will be on tap and available for sale in 750ml starting at 6 p.m. "A slice of the holiday cake confection that our beer gets its name from is yours for the asking during the release, until it is gone. Christopher Ryan will lighten up the evening with a free concert."

Lone Tree Brewing is celebrating its eighth birthday with a charity event from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. that supports Buddy’s Builders, a local nonprofit that builds doghouses to protect outdoor dogs from the elements. There will be three specialty firkins (tapping at noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.), along with three other beers, Carrot Cream Ale, Horchata Stout, and four-packs of Barrel-Aged Wee Heavy. There will also be a silent auction from 2 to 6 p.m., live music, and barbecue from Ol’ Skool Que.

Sunday, December 8
"The time has again come to ditch your neighbor’s ugly sweater party and check your holiday cheer at the door," says Bierstadt Lagerhaus and the Rackhouse Pub, which host their fourth annual HO HO HO Slapdown. Seven Colorado brewers "go toe-to-toe with exclusive seasonal beers that would smack even Santa right in the mouth. It’s your one chance this year to cast a vote for something that doesn’t suck. You get awesome beer, and the winning brewer walks away with bragging rights and a sweet-ass trophy." Of course, Bierstadt, which counts the votes, has also won every there's that. Tickets are $25 and include five-ounce samples of each beer, and a vote. Buy tickets at the door or Participating breweries are Bierstadt, Cannonball Creek, Comrade Brewing, Barrels and Bottles, Little Machine, Call to Arms and Westbound and Down.

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Ratio Beerworks
Friday, December 13
Ratio Beerworks brings back one of the best parties of the year when it releases 2019 Bourbon Barrel-Aged Genius Wizard Imperial Stout. "This unique event will transport attendees to a mystical new world featuring an immersive art installation by Spectra Art Space," Ratio says. Attendees will also have the first chance to get their hands on this year's rendition of the beer, along with four variants: BA Vanilla Coconut Genius Wizard, BA Maple Pecan Genius Wizard, Espresso Coffee Genius Wizard, and BA Mayan Chocolate Genius Wizard. There will also be a stunning lineup of bites from Smok - Denver, Tavernetta Denver, Super Mega Bien, Work & Class, Yuan Wonton and Voodoo Doughnut. Tickets are $45 at and include four-ounce pours of all five beers, along with one full pour of 2019 Genius Wizard, a bottle of 2019 Bourbon Barrel-Aged Genius Wizard to go, and commemorative Genius Wizard glassware. The party starts at 7 p.m.

Send beery information to [email protected].
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