It's an idea whose time has come. In June,Hugo's Colorado Beer & Spirits will open in Capitol Hill, selling primarily craft brews and spirits cooked up in Colorado.
"My goal is to get everything I can get my hands on, and that includes stuff from small breweries," says Joe-Michael Wright, a former real-estate agent who decided it was time to do something different. "Colorado makes the best beer in the country."
Originally, Wright had planned on selling only craft beer at the store, but decided to include spirits when he saw how many new small distilleries were opening. Eventually, he says, he may look to sell some Colorado-made wines. (He'll carry a smaller selection of craft beers from out-of-state, as well).
The store is located in the 1,400-square-foot former Nicolo's Chicago Style Pizza at 1205 East 13th Avenue; Nicolo's recently moved one door down.
And, yes, it's just eight blocks from the massive Argonaut Liquors on Colfax Avenue, but that fact doesn't bother Wright. "I like the spot, I love Capitol Hill and the neighborhood, and I like being next door to Nicolo's," he says. "If I can carry just one or two things that Argonaut doesn't, I think people would want to stop at a small, neighborhood shop withough having to go into a big shop like Argonaut."
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Wright says he's received a lot of support from the breweries he's talked to and hopes he can convince them to let him sell some of their rarer brews. And while Hugo's -- named for Wright's grandfather -- won't carry the macrobrews like Budweiser, Miller or PBR, he's making one exception:
"As a nod to who got it all started, I will carry Coors Original."