Hops & Pie plans to build its own brewery behind the restaurant by next fall

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

As evidenced by the name of the restaurant, Hops & Pie has considered beer as important as pizza since the spot opened two years ago, serving up the best or the rarest stuff beers it can find, from Colorado and around the country.

And by this time next year, Hops & Pie owners Drew and Leah Watson would like to be making some of that beer as well, from their own five- or seven-barrel brewery out back.

See also - Hops & Pie rolls out the barrels in a special beer project with five breweries - Hops & Pie expands, gets a beer engine and adds new dishes beyond pizza - Beer, pizza and basketball: Hops and Pie delivers a happy hour trifecta

"From the beginning, this has always been what we wanted," says Drew. "And we have been so lucky that the shop is now in a position to be able to afford its own brewery."

Last February, the Watsons annexed the space next to their original restaurant, doubling their operation and adding nearly forty seats, more taplines and a bigger menu. The expansion also gave them access to a 600-square-foot garage behind the property where they plan to build the brewery. At one point, the Watsons considered leasing another space nearby and operating a stand-alone brewery and taproom, but they recently decided against that.

The goal is to make a lot of seasonals and one-off brews along with a couple of standard year-round beers. The Watsons will add six taps at Hops & Pie for their own beers, as well as keep the fourteen to twenty guest handles they currently have going.

To do it, though, they'll need some help. "I'm not a brewer, so there is a lot for me to learn," Drew says. "I've cooked my whole life and worked in restaurants." The Watsons hope to hire a practiced brewer to handle that aspect of the business.

When the brewery opens -- by Hops & Pie's third anniversary on September 29, 2013 -- it will sell growlers and bombers on site, but doesn't plant to distribute.



's Beer Man on Twitter at @ColoBeerMan and on Facebook at Colo BeerMan

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.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.