Beer Man

Mockery Brewing Opens Friday in River North's Burgeoning Brewery District

Yes, there's a new brewery getting ready to open its doors this weekend in the River North neighborhood, just across from the Source market. But no, that brewery isn't Great Divide, which is building a huge complex there. Rather, it is Mockery Brewing, at 3501 Delgany Street, which will be located literally in the shadow of what will eventually be Great Divide's five-acre, $38 million production facility, taproom and canning plant.

"We had already locked up our space before we knew about them," says Zach Rabun, who owns Mockery with his wife, Rachel. "We were half way through construction when we found out for sure."

See also: Photos: Great Divide Brewing Breaks Ground on Its River North Campus

But rather than feeling frustration, Rabun says he's thrilled to be one of the points in a beer triangle that will include Great Divide, probably in 2016, and Crooked Stave, which is currently located inside the Source.

A former brewer at Elk Mountain Brewing, Rabun signed the lease on his 2,500-square-foot space back in the summer of 2013. When it opens, Mockery will have room for about fifty people in the taproom and another eighty or so in a large outdoor patio that will have propane heaters and lawn games.

For their brewhouse, the Rabuns initially purchased a fifty-barrel system owned by Bristol Brewing in Colorado Springs. But once they got it to Denver, they realized it would take up too much space. As a result, they sold that equipment and bought a smaller, ten-barrel system.

When it opens -- at 3 p.m. on November 7 -- Mockery will have nine beers on tap: Black IPA, Vanilla Bourbon Porter, Blonde, Peach Blonde, Salted Scotch Ale, Red Session IPA, Southern Hemisphere Ale, Pumpkin Oktoberfest Ale and Rye Saison. It will add a rauchbier, a schwarztbier and a Belgian quad with dates over the next couple of weeks.

Eventually, there will be twelve beers going, including barrel-aged batches that the Rabuns will store in a garage on-site. They'll be making the beer with help from a second brewer, Justin Burnsed, who has professional experience working at breweries in California.

The name Mockery comes from a desire to make some beers that adhere to Germany's fifteenth-century Reinheitsgebot law that only allowed malt, hops and water as beer ingredients -- and many more that mock those laws, meaning they will have fruit, spices or other ingredients.

Mockery will be the seventh brewery to open in the RiNo area, with an eighth, Zephyr Brewing, set to open at the end of November or in early December. Great Divide will make it nine, and there other breweries in planning scouting the area as well.

"It's pretty exciting to see how much the city and everyone is taking interest in the neighborhood," Rabun says, adding that there will be a new park, along with bridges over the railroad tracks and the South Platte River sometime in 2015 or 2016.

Follow Westword'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'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Jonathan Shikes is a Denver native who writes about business and beer for Westword.
Contact: Jonathan Shikes